You Don’t See That Every Day

, , , , | Legal | February 19, 2021

I’m manning the till at the drive-thru. A car with a cop in it turns up.

Cop: “Hey, I’m not ordering anything. I just took out the drunk driver, but his car was already in the queue. So I’m just driving his car to get it out.”

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So Much For Going Postal

, , , , , , , | Friendly | February 13, 2021

Many, many years ago in the 1990s, when GPS, smartphones, online bill pay, and other such commodities were but a sci-fi dream, I was a teenager, and my parents and I took a family trip to California. Since we would be gone for a few weeks, my mom had brought the checkbook and was staying in contact with our house sitter who was opening our mail so that she could pay any bills that came in during our trip. So far, so good.

One morning, after staying in a motel in San Jose, we went in search of a post office to buy more stamps and mail out the bills. This was a suburban area, so we stopped at a gas station, filled the car, and went in to ask the cashier where the post office was. He stared at us in puzzlement.

Cashier: “Post office? I don’t think we have one of those.”

After assuring him that he absolutely did have one — otherwise, the mail would not arrive — we moved on in our search.

A short while later, we saw a traffic cop. Aha! Surely a police officer would know where the post office is. We parked off to the side and walked up to him. We explained how the gas station cashier thought there was no post office and laughed. He laughed with us.

Police Officer: “No, of course, we have one! It’s… It’s…”

Oh, dear. We sensed trouble.

Police Officer: “No, we do have one, I just… don’t think you can get there from here.”

Stymied by how a post office could be located in a place unreachable by humans, we left him at the corner.

In the end, we decided to wait another day to mail our letters. Thankfully, San Francisco had the foresight to install a post office and roads that led all the way to it.

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Superior In Name Only

, , , , | Legal | January 23, 2021

I live in a second-floor condo when this happens. One night, I’m watching a film and having a couple of beers. At 23:30, the outside doorbell rings.

Me: “Hello?”

Caller: “Police, open up now!”

Something isn’t right. It’s been a quiet night.

Me: “One minute, please. I’ll come downstairs.”

I walk down two flights of stairs. I open the door, confused, to find four police officers.

Me: “Can I help?”

Officer: “Is this 17 [Location]?”

Me: “Yes?”

Officer: “Open, mate, we have business to do.”

I stay where I am and hand him my police ID. It has my picture and name and says, “Sworn in [date one month ago]”.

Officer: “Oh, hello. We haven’t been introduced, I’m Sergeant [Officer].”

Me: “Reserve [My Surname]. What’s going on, Sarge?”

Officer: “A hoax emergency call was placed for an ambulance to this address. Do you know anything?”

Me: “Huh? A hoax ambulance call? Not me.”

Officer: “Is there anyone else on the property?”

Me: “My roommate. Speak to him if you like; he doesn’t know much English. What’s the address again?”

Officer: “17 [Location] Boulevard, [postcode].”

I’m annoyed. He’s got the wrong address; a cop should know the area. It also isn’t how I planned to introduce myself to a superior officer.

Me: “Sergeant [Officer], this condo block is [Location] Plaza, not [Location] Boulevard. Can I help you find [Location] Boulevard?”

Police: “Please.”

Me: “Street over there. Odd numbers are on the left.”

Clarity, people. Google Maps is there for a reason.

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As Long As The Dog Is Happy, That’s All We Care About

, , , , , | Legal | January 13, 2021

This story takes place shortly after I am hired for my first job as a police officer. The city that hired me has a mandatory leash law for dogs. Sadly, some of my fellow officers have recently ended up shooting a few nuisance dogs, which has been spun in an effort to show that our department hates dogs.

One day, while I’m walking around my patrol area — in full uniform and with a running body camera — a large puppy turns the corner ahead of me, sees me, and sprints over in a rush of puppy excitement. The pup seems friendly and well-trained — at least for a puppy — and it’s wearing a collar, so after getting it to sit, I give it a scratch and kneel down to read the tag on the collar.

Suddenly, a woman turns the same corner the pup came from and starts sprinting over, screaming.

Woman: “Get away from my dog! Don’t you dare hurt him!”

Me: “Ma’am, it’s okay. He’s a friendly guy. I’m just taking a look at his tag.”

Woman: “Just let him go! He hasn’t done anything!”

Me: “The only thing I’m seeing wrong is that he doesn’t have a leash.”

Woman: “I have it right here.”

She pulls a leash out of her sweatshirt pocket and clips it to the pup’s collar.

Me: “Did he escape from your yard or something?”

Woman: “No, we were taking a walk. He likes to move faster than I do, so I let him off his leash so he can wander more. He doesn’t usually go this far away from me.”

Me: “Well, ma’am… based on that, I’m going to have to give you a citation for not having a leash on him.”

Woman: “You can’t do that! I didn’t know about the leash law, and I had a leash right here! I didn’t do anything wrong!”

Me: *While writing out the citation* “Unfortunately, you just admitted that you intentionally let your dog walk without a leash. That’s illegal in [City], so I have to write a citation.”

Woman: *With a smug look now* “Well, he has a leash now, so you can’t prove anything!”

Me: “Ma’am, all [City] police officers wear body cameras. You and your dog have been on camera this entire time. I need your information for the citation.”

She glared at me and refused to give me her information, so I knelt down and started reading her name, address, and telephone number off the pup’s tag, making sure to hold the tag in a position where my body camera would get a good recording of it. When the woman realized what I was doing, she scoffed, dragged the pup away from me, and refused to take the completed citation when I tried to hand it to her.

She tried to fight the citation in court, but my body camera footage of the entire incident was more than enough for the judge to rule that the citation was legitimate.

On a happy note: a few months after her court appearance, the woman was arrested for some unrelated crimes and sentenced to a prison term. Because she lived alone and had nobody to take care of her now-adult dog, he was taken to a local animal shelter. Shortly after, he was adopted by another local family who have taken excellent care of him and his leash. I still see the dog most days when I’m on patrol, and I have started carrying a few dog treats in my pockets for him and the other friendly dogs in the neighborhood.


This story is part of our Best Of January 2021 roundup!

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Read the Best Of January 2021 roundup!

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Hold Your Horses!

, , , , , | Legal | December 27, 2020

My parents are holding onto a pair of our neighbor’s escaped horses in our front yard when an animal control officer stops to talk to them.

Officer: “Are these your horses?”

Mom: “No, they belong to our neighbor. We’ve already called and they are on their way.”

Officer: “Good, I want to talk to them. This isn’t the first time I’ve been called about these horses. Do you see them loose often?”

Mom: “No, this is a first for us. The goat, on the other hand—”

Officer: “There’s a goat?”

Father: “There’s the goat!”

As they were talking about it, our neighbor’s little black goat came trotting down the street! All animals were returned home safely and the neighbor replaced their fence so there were no more escapees of the equine or caprine variety.


This story is part of our Horse roundup!

Read the next Horse roundup story!

Read the Horse roundup!

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