He Needs To Police His Funds Better

, , , | Legal | May 5, 2021

I work in a police dispatch department. This call happens during a night shift on a weekend at 3:00 am, when all the bars close in our city.

Caller: “Hey, I’m at [Bar]. I need you to pick me up and drive me home to [Town about four miles outside our city limits]. You brought me home last time.”

I ask his name and quickly look up why on earth we would have driven him home. It’s uncommon for us to even leave city limits when it’s not an emergency since we don’t have any jurisdiction outside the city. It turns out that this happened last weekend, and he had gotten in trouble for trying to walk out of a bar without paying for his drinks. By that point, he was drunk, but not massively so, but he didn’t have any money to pay the last couple of drinks and no means of getting any from an ATM. This obviously meant that he didn’t have the cash to pay for a taxi, either. 

The officers that were dispatched told the bartender what his options were while they took down the patron’s details and then they decided to take the patron home where he lives with his mother, since it was just a short drive and there were plenty of other officers on duty, so two guys driving out of town for ten minutes wasn’t problematic. He also wasn’t aggressive and didn’t seem to pose any danger to others or himself, so we couldn’t justify putting him into the drunk tank to spend the night.

Anyway, he somehow got it into his head that it’d be a brilliant idea to just call the cops himself in order to get a free ride home after a night of drinking, instead of provisioning some funds for the ride home.

Caller: “Come on, dude. I don’t have any money — I spent it all on drinks — so you gotta bring me home. You have to help people in need.”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir, but last time was a pretty big exception. We’re the police, not a taxi service so, unfortunately, I can’t help you. You’ll have to find another way to get home or maybe get some money from an ATM to pay for a cab.”

Caller: “Nah, in that case, I’ll just walk home.”

And with that, he ended the call. It’s not unusual for people to walk home after a night of drinking if they don’t want to pay for a taxi, which costs a flat rate of $20 for the nearest few towns. I did it myself in my younger years, and the town I live in was even farther away than his, so it’s doable. Still, I decided to call his mother and inform her that her son had called us about a ride home so if she wanted to pick him up herself, she’d at least know where he was.

Mother: “Oh, no, he’s an adult. If he can’t manage his funds in order to get home, that’s his problem.”

True to his word, the caller did end up walking home that night and he didn’t attempt to get us to be his private free taxi service anymore.

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