BOB ASSAULTED MID-MORNING . . .
Bob had dropped me off at The Bare Wall this morning and was returning home from the grocery when he was attacked by a young black teen armed with a brick at Green and Clinton. The boy struck Bob behind the left ear and ran off without demanding anything. As fate would have it, I was telephoning Bob as he stumbled into the house, and I quickly hung up and called 911. No one answered immediately and when I did get a dispatcher she was less than helpful. I explained that we needed assistance in the 1600 block of Green and gave what little info I had. Rather than send a policeman or ambulance she said she would attempt to be in touch with Bob at his house to assess the situation. If she did call she did not reach him; all the more reason to raise the alarm, I would think. In the meanwhile Dr. Bob Coldren and I raced up to Bob's house to do what we could. I was again on the phone to 911 but was told that the Harrisburg police had been informed but that they were busy elsewhere. Anyway, it was a half hour or more before the police responded to our call for assistance and to see if we needed an ambulance . . . Turns out that several neighbors had seen this kid lurking about but none, including Bob, could give a precise description. And if he was roving the streets mid-morning instead of being in school he should have been easy to spot . . . My anger arises from the fact that the police were so lackadaisical in responding to a emergency distress call. They may not have been able to catch the kid, but in the meanwhile Bob might have been on the sidewalk somewhere and bleeding his life away . . . Last night around five at Green and Verbeke a woman just emerging from her car was approached by a black man about 20 who grabbed her keyring and ran. Of course, all the locks in the house had to be changed immediately . . .