Anything Betty needed, Betty got. I had sticky hands. I got arrested for retail theft: Two little girls’ tops, 2 pants for my girls and a lady’s top for me. I guess they had good security—“Ma’am, can you come with me.” The DA wanted a 90-day sentence but the judge gave me 9 days in Wheaton for a felony conviction. He saw I came from a domestic violence marriage.
People think the homeless are all on drugs. You can become homeless. I was messing with the wrong people. I was living at 36th and Parnell in Bridgeport with 2 kids. The landlord, Dino, started drinking. He was a beautiful landlord but he started messing with a young Czech woman and stopped paying his mortgage—he was buying her fancy clothes. Dino lost the building and the people who bought it said we had to get out in the spring. I was evicted and ended up homeless with my son. I stayed with my brother for 6 months. We had to find a shelter that would take me and my adult son, Don, who is in his 30’s and autistic. We stayed for like 7 months at Amani House until I got my own place.