The Border Guard kept saying, “They’re JUST LIKE YOU!”

by Susan

It’s midnight and I’ve been home for over an hour and I can’t even make myself try on my fancy new clothes.

I’m too devastated to think about my lovely new dresses. I’m frazzled and freaked out. I’m enraged and at the same time sick with sadness. I’m lost in disbelief.

I think I may never fall asleep tonight and if I do I’ll have nightmares of innocent young moms — just like me — unjustly in jail.

I’ll be imagining who was behind that menacing closed door. Who was the young woman whose car they were stripping apart in front of me?

Did she know? Had someone planted the drugs in her car? Or had she been so desperate to pay her rent that she listened too long when that man approached her in Target?

But either way, really… does it even matter? Apparently not.

As the oddly friendly, young border guard shared with me, it doesn’t matter if she knows or not. If the drugs were on or in her car, she goes to jail. It’s impossible for her to prove that she didn’t know.

In the most unusual and disturbing conversation I’ve ever had at the border, this guard told me that a common practise is for drug dealers to hide their drugs on your car while you’re in shopping. They pick a car with plates revealing an unsuspecting Canadian shopper, plant the drugs and then follow her across the border. If she makes it through without being thrown in jail, then he follows her home, waits for her to get out of the car, and then takes back the drugs.

My jaw hit the floor in disbelief as my innocent mind could never have even thought of such a simple, yet evil plan.

I protested that it wasn’t fair. And he just shrugged his shoulders and calmly said that technique isn’t as common anymore. Apparently, that trick was all the rage back in 2005, but the dealers were disappointed with loads that got lost… so they’re focusing more on paying off desperate folks who look like they’d never be questioned at the border.

The guard told me they regularly arrest “people just like me” and also elderly people with canes. He said, “Hey, if you were a drug dealer, who would you get to carry your load? I’d get someone just like you.”

It’s haunting me. Those words. He said them so many times. It makes me think that the person behind that huge metal door was a young mom with two little girls. Except, maybe she wasn’t as lucky as I am. Maybe she couldn’t pay her rent. Perhaps she just weakened and agreed to take a parcel across the border. Or even worse… maybe her car was parked next to mine, and eeny, meeny, miney, moe…

I don’t know how long it will be until I stop thinking about all the injustices surrounding the whole situation. I don’t know how long it will be until I cross the border to go shopping again. I don’t know.

I don’t even know if she’s still behind that same door… or if she’s already behind bars.

 

 

Written by Susan, Mom Blogger and Co-Founder of 5 Minutes for Mom
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Email Author    |    Website About Susan

Susan Carraretto and her identical twin, Janice Croze, created 5 Minutes for Mom in 2006. Susan loves all social media, but her top addiction these days is Pinterest. She recently published a children's book titled "The Pest Detectives" which you can download now in digital format for free.

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{ 27 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Allison July 15, 2010 at 7:47 am

Oh goodness that would have really Shakdn me up too. Now I won’t be able to stop thinking about it.

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2 Susan July 15, 2010 at 10:11 am

Yes Allison… it really is hard to stop thinking about.

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3 Krissy July 15, 2010 at 10:50 am

Wow. I wouldn’t be able to stop thinking about that either. That’s just so hard to watch in front of you. I think there should be some more fairness surrounding all of that. Im sure they arrest innocent people way too much. But honestly, how would they know who’s telling the truth and who isn’t? :(

http://theartsymom.tk

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4 Susan July 15, 2010 at 11:00 am

I know… it enrages me to think of all the innocent people arrested. I understand it’s a complicated issue, but innocent people should be protected.

I think there should be some type of voluntary check that people could elect to go through ahead of time to prove that they believe they are clean and no drugs are in their possession. Then if something was planted on them, it would be caught then. People who are carrying drugs obviously would not choose to go through the check point.

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5 Christine Smith July 15, 2010 at 10:51 am

When I saw the post title, I expected this to be an article about the Holy Spirit and the watchman. I was shocked to read about your border experience, that would have me shaking for months.

I saw this verse: The watchman opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. John 10:3 NIV

The border gate wasn’t opened for you because of a package you carried in innocence, you were not aware of its presence. This is RICH in Biblical value! I’m going to spend most of my day praying on this… Is there something I carry in innocence, that would close the gate for me?

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6 Susan July 15, 2010 at 11:01 am

Oh wow!

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7 Amber Strocel July 15, 2010 at 11:57 am

This is so upsetting. Either way, whether she knew or not, it’s so upsetting. I already find driving through the border to be sort of nerve-wracking, and I am so law-abiding it hurts. I can’t imagine how devastated I would be if someone chose to plant something on my car. And I can’t imagine how desperate I would have to be to agree to that. Awful!

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8 Susan July 15, 2010 at 2:49 pm

I know… it’s just so upsetting. I always found driving through the border a little nerve wracking too, even though I’m not doing anything wrong and now I will really hate crossing.

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9 Forgetfulone July 15, 2010 at 12:03 pm

I just find it hard to believe she didn’t know. I really like Christine’s take on this situation.

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10 Susan July 15, 2010 at 2:52 pm

I think in this particular case, she may have known… but from what he was saying I think there are many times when the drugs are planted on the car.

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11 Boston Mamas July 15, 2010 at 12:38 pm

This. is. craziness. :-(

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12 Susan July 15, 2010 at 2:52 pm

I know! Crazy!

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13 Erica Mueller July 15, 2010 at 2:30 pm

Ok, that scares me. I don’t think I’ll be crossing any borders any time soon… I’m law-abiding too, but having stuff planted on your car???

Do you know if she had kids? Were any with her? I can only imagine how scared she must have been!

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14 Susan July 15, 2010 at 2:55 pm

No, I don’t know if she had any kids, but she had a bunch of milk and other groceries in her car. They were tearing apart the car… the back seat was pulled out and they were stripping it.

Now that I think about it, I didn’t see any infant car seats, so that is good. But the whole thing is so sad.

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15 Barbara H. July 15, 2010 at 2:38 pm

Of course, there is the possibility that she knew the drugs were there and even had them on purpose. But they shouldn’t put her in jail until they determine that. It is sickening that bad people can take advantage of the innocent and cause the innocent to suffer for their crimes.

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16 Susan July 15, 2010 at 2:57 pm

I know… it is so upsetting. The idea of innocent people being in jail is so devastating to me. And the guard was so cold and indifferent… couldn’t care less. I can’t even imagine being so unaffected by other people’s suffering.

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17 Staci A July 15, 2010 at 4:30 pm

What a scary (and sad) situation! I can’t even imagine being judged guilty without having a chance to say differently. And if she did know about the drugs, I can’t fathom what it must be like to be that desperate.

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18 Susan July 16, 2010 at 12:50 am

Yes, being unable to prove your innocence I think would be one of the most frustrating and horrifying situations. And I too cannot imagine being so desperate.

It reminds me of a time when I was in Atlanta and I saw a man stealing diapers. As he ran as fast as he could away from the authorities, I felt relieved that he got away… I can’t imagine having to steal diapers.

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19 Mikki July 15, 2010 at 7:33 pm

Ughh.. it’s so hard to think that people can be sooooo evil.
How crazy is that. This is when I wonder why people don’t believe in Hell or Satan. There is truly just evil everywhere.
But be in peace dear friend. You are a daughter of the PRINCE of peace and King of all Kings..

May you sleep peacefully because you have a God who never sleeps nor slumbers and is watching out over all things!!

Blessings!

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20 Susan July 16, 2010 at 12:52 am

Thank you Mikki.

Yes, that is how I often think about Hell and Satan. To me it is so clear that Satan must be real because evil is so real amongst us. I just wish it weren’t. And I cry out to God and ask why He allows it. I don’t understand any of it at all. I just try to rest in His peace with only the simple understanding and trust of a child.

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21 Amanda July 15, 2010 at 8:48 pm

Makes the knees weak…

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22 Susan July 16, 2010 at 12:52 am

Yes… truly.

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23 Susie's Homemade July 16, 2010 at 10:15 am

That is horrifying!!

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24 Tarasview July 16, 2010 at 3:50 pm

oh Susan, that is terrifying. And so very sad. And unjust. There is something very very wrong with our world.

Makes me think crossing over to the USA isn’t worth saving a few dollars on shopping.

That is truly messed up.

Just stay in Canada my friend. Yikes.

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25 hippie4ever July 16, 2010 at 6:55 pm

How awful! I’ve often wondered about situations like that…or purchasing a used car that unbeknownst to you was used in a crime or had hidden items aboard. I am also leery about giving a ride to someone unless you know them well, perhaps to many COPS shows…

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26 Patricia July 17, 2010 at 10:08 am

Whatever happened to innocent until proven guilty? The drugs on the car do not prove that she was aware of the plant, if it was a plant. Yes, Canada is scaring me with its gestapo methods – we’re becoming way too much like the good ole USA.

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27 Liz July 20, 2010 at 11:36 am

You poor thing. That is awful. It always shocks me how criminal minds work. Imagine if they put that much intuition into good things. I pray for your peace and safety.

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