Kayla Celaya
CJ211 02 The police & the Community
Prof. Mark
Kitty Genovese

On March 13, 1964, Catherine “Kitty” Genovese was brutally attacked, stabbed and rapped on two occasions by 28-year-old Winston Moseley. This happened at about 3:20 a.m. while she walked home from the parking lot in Kew Gardens where she had parked her car. She screamed for help while running from Moseley. Her neighbors, 38 of them to be exact, witnessed the entire crime and did not even bother to call the police. Why didn’t her apathetic neighbors try to somehow help her? Is it the fact that they were scared themselves?
One neighbor did in fact call the police but only after another neighbor had called her to inform her about what had just occurred. Why did the neighbors call after the crime was committed and not during the crime? Where the afraid that the attacker would come after them? Did a form of bystander apathy take place here? I think so. I feel that the neighbors felt that it was not their business to intervene in this attack so they watched and waited till it was over and safe for them to help.   I feel the witnesses felt as if some one else would handle the situation.
Kitty Genovese was also a lesbian in a time period where homosexuality was not normal. Could her neighbors have had a bad case of homophobia and some how did not feel the need to defend a homosexual woman? This could have played a big part in the situation. I believe the people were so afraid of crime in that time period that they did not want to be a part of something that might trace back to them. It could have also been the fact that the neighbors were used to hearing loud commotion at that time because of the area they lived in and feared giving false reports to the police. They also feared embarrassment.
The media definitely made this story look as if the neighbors did not care. Was this really the case? We may really never know. It was not really the neighborhoods fault for thinking the way they...