Funeral of Army Sergeant Richard Ford at Arlington National Cemetery on March 5, 2007; Ford died of wounds suffered during combat operations near Baghdad, Iraq [File: Charles Ommanney/Getty Images]

I heard her sobs the moment before I saw the butcher knife. It bobbed up and down rhythmically in her hand as she cried, sitting in the driver’s seat of her car. I could not just walk by as if I had not seen anything. I leaned into her open passenger window and stupidly asked her if she was OK.

She gestured with the knife towards the cop cars lining the street. “They won’t even do their job and shoot me! I stood there waving this knife around, and the cops didn’t even notice.

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