Two days later, with over a dozen photographs in hand, Gurpreet and Christian, along with Phil, strode into the local police station. Phil was especially proud of his team’s actions and wanted to be there when they reported the crime to the police. Feeling a great sense of pride, the trio approached the reception desk where Christian informed the attending officer, “We’re here about the burglary I reported two nights ago, the one on St. Stephens Street.”

Looking very confused, the officer told them to wait before disappearing. So they waited and waited for about 45 minutes before another officer, this one in plain clothes, returned. Apologetically, he explained, “Sorry to keep you waiting for so long but it took us a while to find your report of the burglary. The person whose house you say was broken into did make a report so we had to make sure yours and his was the same thing. Now, which one of you made the call?”

Christian put up his hand while at the same time saying, “I did.”

The officer, a tall white man in his mid-thirties, identified himself as DS Wilkes before beckoning them to follow him. The detective sergeant led them to a small interview room and asked them to sit down.

Do you have something to add about the burglary?” he asked

We have these,” Gurpreet responded with great glee as he laid the photos before the sergeant.

DS Wilkes was speechless! His jaw dropped as he studied each photograph very intently with his mouth agape. Meanwhile, the three friends fidgeted in their chairs with nervous excitement and when the DS did speak several minutes later, he asked, “How did you get these?”

Taking the lead, Christian relayed that night’s events. “I was walking down St. Stephens Street around half past eleven the other night with my friend Nikita who couldn’t be here today, when we saw this figure run between the houses. A minute later, we heard noise like glass breaking, that was when I dialed 999 and asked for you lot. We decided to hang around just in case, when Gurpreet here and his friend Martin, who also can’t be here today. That was when this white van pulled up and we saw the driver get out and together with the first guy, started putting things in the back of the van. That was when we thought we should take these pictures.”

Still taking in the enormity of what Christian had told him, DS Wilkes asked, “When did you take the photos of the broken window?”

We hung around for an hour waiting for you to turn up and when you didn’t, I decided to go between the houses and that’s when I saw the broken window. So I took a picture of it.”

I see,” was all the police officer could muster. Then, turning to Phil, he asked, “What was your role in all of this? Were you there?”

No, no,” Phil admitted, “I am just here to give my friends moral support.”

Oh,” DS Wilkes simply nodded. Looking at Christian and Gurpreet, he stated, “From what I see here, you two would make good policemen.”

The three men all laughed, all the while, Phil was thinking, “Could I quote that on an application form?” The sergeant continued, “We will take this photographs and conduct our investigation. However, we may need you to testify in court. Are you both willing to do that?”

Oh yeah!” Christian declared with his usual self assuredness.

Absolutely,” came Gurpreet’s reply.

What about the other two you say were with you? Would they be willing to testify?”

I’m sure they will, “Christian stated with the same bold assuredness.

Then, that’s all we need for now. We’ll be in touch once we’ve concluded our investigation.”

An air of confidence and accomplishment filled not only Christian and Gurpreet’s team but the other two teams as well. The knowledge of having brought two burglars to justice proved to them that the neighbourhood patrols were making a difference in keeping their estates safe from crime. Some of the members found it nigh impossible not to let the who affair go to their heads as they swaggered around the estates. Their confidence was further bolstered by the fact there seemed to be no more crimes committed during the four weeks following. Philip and his group truly believed that they were making a positive difference.