Monday, April 9, 2012
The taste of brass is there. I do not recall how many times I took those walks. Facing men that have rifles, or handguns will involve certain risks. One thing is for sure, you must be prepared for the calculated risks to not succeed.
The adrenaline was always a part of it, and maybe it serves to help you if you are hit by a bullet, or shotgun fire.
Inside our court house lock up there were bullet holes on the wall where a convicted killer tried to escape. I never knew who he was, but the holes were there. It takes a lot of impact , and force behind lead for it to partially penetrate cement so imagine what one can do to a body.
I never had a desire to see anyone with gun shot wounds ,so I made it my business not too. If your going to seek suspects you should be at least a little fearless. When one of my partner's , and I had to respond to a shooter armed with shotguns ,we traveled fast, and at code three which means that you must respond as soon as possible to a crime scene , or to and emergency quickly.
I joked with my partner to relieve the tension as we traveled at high speed. We did not call for back up. It was a bad situation. When we arrived a distance away from the shooter's home , my partner turned off the ignition to our car . We opened our front doors. I told my police partner to remain with the car. I could not raise my right knee , or leg. My leg did not want to go anywhere . I took my hands, and lifted my leg up, and shoved my leg outward.
I stood outside , and then I yelled out, " Please come out of your house unarmed . We are from the Sheriff's department. We will not hurt you, but you have to come out ."
The shooter walked out side, and about a nine year old boy walked outside with him. I knew the shooter had a handgun. I did not see it, but I knew he had one concealed.
The situation was extremely sensitive. The child was to close to the shooter which was his father .
My next step was too use the right language that would not make him impulsive, or nervous. I just knew he had a handgun in his back pocket, and he could shoot me with it. As I slowly walked toward the man I used these words. " I am not going to hurt you. We only want to talk to you." I did my best to be casual, like I was just talking to a regular every day person . I intentionally tried my best to seem as relaxed as possible. My next important words to him were, " I promise you that no one will hurt you, and that nothing will happen to you, and that you will be treated with respect."
I meant exactly what I said. He would be treated with respect, and I would see to it that he would have his rights protected. My duty as and officer was to protect people, and that included him unless he would give me a reason not too.
It worked out absolutely fantastic. I knew exactly what the shooter intended to do in every moment of his movements. At all times the child was in my mind , and in providing safety for his young life. I knew the suspect would hand me his hand gun. He reached behind himself with his right hand, and handed me a 38 Smith & Wesson blue steel revolver .
He said, " I was going to commit suicide with it."
My words to him were, " My God. I am glad you did not do that, but you need to come with us. My partner read him his rights. My partner , and I did not use a lot of dramatic hum bug .
I told him that I had to search him , and that we had to read him his Constitutional rights. My partner , and I broke only one rule. I chose not to handcuff him because he was searched well . I know I should have, but I did not want to hand cuff the child's father in the child's presence.
Inside the suspect's home was his five year old girl which was his other child. The suspect was charged with a double shooting. I will not discuss the victims, but they were not killed. They were injured badly.
Inside the suspect's home , and on his kitchen table were half a dozen , or more rifles. My partner , and I were advised that the suspect would not surrender, and would fire upon police officers.
Although I , and my partners were told many times that shooters would be armed, and dangerous, I never took it on my own to assume the very worst about anyone.
I was very happy that the situation worked out so well. Police work is not the kind of place to draw premature conclusions about people no matter how dangerous anyone is said to be.
I never handled situations with general ideas. Every individual in life deserves to be treated in a careful manner with careful circumstances, and conditions. I would never become , and open target to armed suspects that are dealing in illegal drugs like Heroin or something mind altering . When there is a chance that a person will surrender, you give that person a chance .
I am not the young man I was, but my advice to any man, or woman that decides to become a police officer is to give every person a chance to be treated right, but always be careful , and follow your rules, and procedures.
Never consider a call a safe one. By doing this you will always be on guard, and your mind will process important information sensibly with ways to try to get a job done as safe as possible. You do not want to hurt anyone, or get hurt, and you do not want to make a mountain out of a mole hill. You do not want to create trouble, or give birth to it, or be some sort of hot shot looking for , and excuse to create violence. The key of it all is to reduce violence, stop violence, and to avoid a load of paper work, and legal actions where you might also be brought to court for actions you have done wrong.
A good police officer is a protector, and not a destroyer. Good officers try to save lives, and to protect society.
I have never beaten a man with a night stick . In fact I never carried the darn things. I am sure some officers felt they have had to use them. All I usually did was to wrestle suspects down that would have a knife. I have wrestled a lot of guys , and to tell you the honest truth, sometimes I hated to even do that much.
Sometimes only words are good enough to make an arrest. One day I knocked on a door, and a giant of a man opened his door. I said, " I am from the Sheriff's department. I have a warrant for you're arrest. "
He said, " No way, I am not coming with you."
I said, " Just go put on your pants , and come with me, or I will just have to walk back to our car , and ask four more officers to come back with me." He came with me without any problems. A car full of deputies were shocked. They could not believe I could make the arrest so easily. He was not a bad man. He just did not want to go to jail, and I told him that it was out of my hands, and that I had a certain job I had to do , or my captain would fire me. I told the big man that I had to put handcuffs on him because of silly rules. Cops had placed bets on me that I could not do it.
One sarcastic officer said, " You're the fella that believes in talking instead of fighting ."
I said, " Why sure I am, I don't want to get my behind whipped three times a day, and twice on Saturdays to please you. This prisoner beside me could stomp all five of us. I have seen deputies get the living you know what beat out of them. My partner became a smart ale ck with the wrong man one day. I sat back to watch my partner get the living wax beat out of him for being a fool . My partner was extremely angry with me, and did not help me when I had a terrible fight with a large rapist maniac . I became quite nasty wrestling the rapist in a large back yard pile of garbage.
A few weeks later the big man I arrested volunteered to come with my partner, and I to help us stop a war at a bar room back in a discreet area near a place around blood river , and was called "the Silver Slipper." It was a hang out for horrible nasty mother hunkers, and husky brutes with real bad rotten gross looking teeth, and they smelled bad. They had really long ugly jack knives. Well this is the truth. I hate violence with a passion , but that night I was happier than a chirping frog on a water lilly to have that big man with us , and a pump shotgun in my hands with buck shot. The criminals there were awful. My partner, and I called for back up. We had sixty million deputies with us later.
God Bless Everyone.