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Breaking in

What criminals can teach us about fighting crime

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"What happened?" Topalli asked.

"I call them a bad day."

"Just call them a bad day?"

"Yeah. I got shot."

"Can you tell me where you got shot?"

"In the abdomen."

"Do you mind if I ... is there a scar there? Oh, man!"

"Here's where they sewed me up."

"How many stitches did they put in?"

"I had 20 staples."

"Let me ask you this: How do you feel about this? I mean, because this is something that you started, right?"

"Right."

"You don't feel like you all are even now? You shot him, he shot you."

"He treat me like a punk, you know what I'm saying? Shot me and didn't want to be seen."

"You would have had more respect for him if he hadn't done it that way?"

"Right."

"OK. But you don't feel even?"

"When I feel good is when I don't have to worry about him no more."

"Is that what the concern is for you, that you don't have to worry about him coming at you anymore? Or is it is another thing, like you've got a reputation or something?"

"That, too. When they hit you, you hit them back. That's how it is down there, or you'll be a bitch. Everybody will shoot you up, whoop your ass. It's just I got to do what I have to do. You know what I'm saying?"

To Goldie, that's life on the street, living by the code. It all comes down to respect.

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