FYI.

This story is over 5 years old.

Stuff

Pop Vox: Street Justice in Barcelona

I was just the other day thinking that it's a bit weird that literally everyone I know in Barcelona has been robbed or mugged at least once in the last six months.
PG
Κείμενο Paul Geddis

I was just the other day thinking that it's a bit weird that literally everyone I know in Barcelona has been robbed or mugged at least once in the last six months.But no one really talks about it anymore. I guess it's a bit like living in a warzone or with monsoons--you're so absorbed in rebuilding the family home every 18 months that the reason why ceases to be such a big deal. Still, 80,000 muggings a year in the old town (20,000 more than in the whole of London) points to something being seriously wrong. So, Barcelona… When was the last time you got robbed? Marta, 25 Vice: Have you ever been robbed in Barcelona? Marta: Yes, a few times. The last time I was drinking a cup of tea in the Raval and they grabbed my bag off the seat beside me. Did you lose anything valuable? Not really, but there was something in it that I've had since I was little. An amulet that I used to wear when I was a scout. Oh I'm sorry. Are you tempted to take the law into your own hands? Up until now no, but maybe if it happens again… Jordi, 41 Vice: Hello bearded man. I bet nobody's ever fucked with you. Jordi: Quite the opposite. I've been robbed a few times. Up until last month I was living on the street and making a living playing the guitar. What did they take? Four guitars. Ha ha. No, I'm sorry, so what are you doing now? Selling handicrafts, ashtrays and stuff. I suppose that's safer, no-one would steal this shit. Have you had any problems with the cops? Sometimes they hassle me, but I'm always laid back about it. I'm sure if I was aggressive back to them they'd take the lot just to get at me. Marcos, 26 Vice: You look like an easy target. What did they take? Marcos: My bag, but it didn't have much in it: a sweater, a scarf, and a library book. How'd it happen? It was about seven in the morning. I was walking home, drunk, chatting on my phone. Some guy came up to me and told me to give me his phone. When I said no, he took out a knife and held it to my neck. What happened then? I tried to get free and we started fighting. I ended up on the floor and he grabbed my bag and ran off. My face was cut up beneath my ear. It was pretty scary. Are you going to take to the streets like Charles Bronson in Death Wish? Who? Mirko, 25 Vice: So what happened to you? Mirko: Actually, I've never been robbed in Barcelona. At last, someone who hasn't fallen for the imaginary football trick. Although my girfriend did get her bag stolen. It was on our first date. Were you drunk? Not really. We were having a meal. Very romantic. I guess the rest of the date didn't go too well. Actually, it did. She was really upset and needed consoling. We're still together.