by S. Kopperl
I have lived in Coral Springs for more than 25 years. I live in Zip code 33076. I just read some interesting information about this Zip code. The South Florida Business Journal has declared it the 5th wealthiest in South Florida and call it a “ Boomburg”.
They claim that ” The newest additions to the suburbs, these communities are home to younger families who live a busy-upscale lifestyle. The median age is 33.7. This market has the highest population growth. At 5.3 percent annually-more than 4.5 times the national figure”. It appears they left one thing out of the description of the “ Boomburgs”. They aren’t a safe place to live.
This week a 59 year old grandmother was playing with her twin 2 year-old grandsons in a park, a park adjoining an elementary school. It was 10 AM on a sunny weekday morning. To her and the kids, it was idyllic. As the kids yelled, more, more, she pushed them higher on the swings. She paid little attention to the car that pulled into the lot and parked next to her locked car. She didn’t understand why no one got out, but, she was busy, enjoying the company and the day. Within a few minutes, the familiar call for “juice please” was heard, so it was time for a drink for the kids. She walked the 15 feet back to her car. The recent visiting car passenger had smashed the window, reached in and stole the pocketbook and the baby’s bag that was LOCKED inside the car.
Now you might say, well it’s only a pocketbook, how bad can that be. If you said that, you’ve never had your things and your identity stolen. Someone else is now you. Someone else has your credit cards, your checks, your money, your driver’s license and your keys. You have suffered an economic loss, a sentimental loss, and most importantly, a loss of peace of mind. When the best thing you can feel is relief that you weren’t hurt or killed, something is wrong. You, change locks, stop credit cards, inform banks, go to the DMV and try to take inventory of those items you’ve lost. You can fix most of the economic damage, but you can’t easily fix the physiological damage. You no longer trust a sunny Coral Springs park on a busy street at 10AM.
The police came, took a statement, and filed a report. They were good at this as they said this was the 10th reported smash and grab this week in Coral Springs. It appears that the “Boomburgs” are a boom for stealing other people’s stuff.
I grew up in house, in NYC in the 50’s. We didn’t lock doors. We were able to leave our car 15 feet away without the fear of having it broken into.
I don’t have the answer, but I know the problem. It is not acceptable to feel unsafe to use a park in your neighborhood. It is not acceptable to feel violated when you take your family to the park. Maybe we have to move to a Zip code that not a “Boomburg”. Coral Springs use to claim that it was the best place, “ to live, work and raise a family”, For now, I’d just settle for safe.