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Thursday, July 22, 2010

Story Time!

I haven't had a Story Time in awhile, so settle in, grab your iced tea or warm milk or hot cocoa or water with a twist of lemon. Whatever works. Tonight I'm going to tell two stories: one from my rookie cop days (all I was was a rookie so I'm a bit of an expert on rookie stupidity) and one from my veteran insurance investigator days.

The Rookie

Tonight I was watching the new show, "Rookies" or whatever it's called. I cringe at a lot of it as it isn't like any rookiehood I've ever heard of or experienced, but heck, it's Hollywood and God knows they can't tell a story right if their lives and careers depended on it. (That explains a lot of what happens to celebs, but I digress.) Obviously, screenwriters know nothing about how reality makes a far better story than their pedantic and adolescently immature daydreams about what it would be like to be a cop.

Anyway, in part of tonight's version, the rookie cop ends up being left alone at a crime scene, there to keep the woman of the house company until her husband got home. But when the stuff goes down, she realizes that for some weird reason, she forgot to load her gun that morning.

I gotta be honest here; I don't remember ever UN-LOADING my gun! It wasn't our department policy. Heck, I should have ejected the round I carried in my gun during my tour of duty and had it bronzed as the round that was chambered and then retired without ever having to explode.  But I digress.

At the end of the show, the Captain (or whatever he was according to their hierarchy), when Rookie confesses to not having loaded her gun, tells her that it's a common mistake and "that's why you have a partner."

There's truth there; it IS a common mistake, and I remember the night I made that mistake myself!  The difference was this: it wasn't that I'd forgotten to load my gun. I had rather forgotten to bring it with me!

How did that happen?

On Day 1 on the Job, my FTO (Field Training Officer) gave me a tour of the facility and the holding area, showing me the lockbox for weapons. If an arrest was made, we searched them outside of holding, then once they were clear put our own weapons in the lock box.  My FTO said that he put the key (like a gym locker key) in his rear pocket as it would remind him, when he sat on it, that he'd forgotten his gun.

I think I did as he suggested, certain that if I sat on that oddly-shaped thing I'd remember before I ever left the station that I didn't have my gun.

Well, one night we brought a guy in, processed him, and hit the road. This was a normal practice. I remember driving through the streets, my FTO giving various instructions and suddenly I became aware that something was missing.

With a gasp I put my hand to my hip and confessed that....I didn't have my gun!

You know those dreams you have where you show up somewhere public and you're naked or clad only in your underwear?

The realization that I didn't have my gun was a lot like that, but WORSE as I realized that in my role, the public depended on me to have my gun. It wasn't about humiliation; it was quite literally life and death!

In embarrassment I returned to the station and my FTO let me go back inside by myself (it must have been 30 minutes to an hour after we'd left) so that I could sheepishly collect and holster my weapon. Oh, yes, the ribbing that came my way!

I thanked God nothing had happened in that time period; after all, even though my career was short, I did have need to unsnap my .45 and withdraw it during that tenure! I think that while on the Job, I'd rather have been naked than without my gun, even though I hoped and prayed never to have to use it!

It was a serious Rookie dumb moment:  honestly, how do you NOT notice that the weight of a .45 Smith & Wesson is absent?

Y'all, pray for rookie cops; they do stupid things, and you do NOT want them to be doing stupid things when YOU are the one calling 911!

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The Nice Car Thief

This story isn't mine, but it's so memorable and awesome I find the need to post it for your edification and entertainment!

One day, hard at work at my desk, I got a call from a new investigator who had the most interesting case; he thought it so funny he HAD to share it, and I'm glad he did!

It was, for once, a legitimate car theft claim.  The woman reported her car stolen, she gave a good description on the maintenance that was done and, importantly, that which was needed. She described the prior damage to her car (nicks, scratches, door dings, lights out...etc.  I don't know the specifics for her car, but it was an older model so she knew a lot of the marks that would identify it.).

As with many older-model legit thefts, her car was recovered within a couple weeks. She called to inform the Investigator of the recovery and said she was going down to the Impound lot to look at it and sign the paperwork that would allow the Insurance company to inspect it and tow it if needed.

She called her Rep/Investigator from Impound, completely perplexed.

Customer: Hi, Scott. I'm out here at the impound, and I'm looking at my car right now.

"Scott":  Great!  How is it?

Customer:  Well...this is weird. I'm looking at it, and it's DEFINITELY my car, but......

Scott:  What's wrong?

Customer:  Well......remember how I told you about the damage to my bumper? That big scratch I said was there?

Scott:  Yes...

Customer:  It's GONE!  It's like....he fixed it!  But...this is DEFINITELY my car, but it looks way better than it did before!  It's driveable so...can I get it out of here and take it home?

Scott:  Yes, go ahead. Save the receipt of the impound fees so we can credit you towards your deductible, then give me a call back if you find anything wrong with it.

That's where he thought it ended. A couple hours or so later, the woman called back.

Customer:  Hi, Scott, I got my car back and I have the receipt from impound. But..this is really weird.

Scott:  Hi! What's going on with your car?

Customer:  Well....I told you about the bumper, but, you know how I said that it needed an oil change and that it was making a funny sound before?

Scott:  Yes, I it worse?

Customer:  No!'s better! It's like...he fixed my car! It's running BETTER than I ever remember it running!

Scott:  SERIOUSLY????? 

Customer:  YES!

(pause, shocked silence as neither knew how to react)

Customer:  So...I guess you can close the claim, there isn't any damage to my car. It's actually better now than before it was stolen!  The impound fees are under my deductible and I'm happy to have my car back.  He even cleaned it out!

Scott:  I'm glad it turned out so well for you. This is amazing!  I'll go ahead and close the claim, but do let me know if anything does turn up, and I would like a copy of your out of pocket expense in case something else comes up.

Customer:  I'll fax it to you for your file. I can't get over this!  (laughing)

Scott:  (laughing)


You'd think it's over, right?  But wait...there's MORE!

A couple days later, the customer called the Representative back:

Customer:  Hi, Scott, you're not going to believe this....

Scott:  What happened? Is everything all right?

Customer:  Well, I was putting everything back in order. My maintenance manual is missing, but I found an insurance card in the mailbox.

Scott:  Oh?

Customer: Yeah! It looked different than my card, and I looked at the date on was insured through Company XYZ a couple days after it was stolen, and I want to give you all the info.  HE INSURED MY CAR!  (*LAUGHING*)

***       ***       ***

Need I go on? I'm STILL laughing over that one and hoping this guy will steal MY car!  I only wish he had stolen it before the recent (and necessary) brake job/oil change.  My tranny flush is WAY overdue, but yet another thing to hit the credit card along with the brake replacement charges.

Is there a thief out there willing to take my car, fix it, and leave it for the cops to pick up? It would be cheaper to pay impound than to actually pay for it....

(Just sayin'....)

I gotta say, that was the BEST car theft story I ever head. I only regret that it went to a rookie instead of one of we veterans in need of a serious break...

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This Story Time has been brought to you by Adoro in hopes you have found comedic relief. Please show your appreciation in the combox if you would like Story Time with Adoro (TM) to be a regular feature.


Rob said...

I really like Story Time With Adoro! (Great stories).

Terry Nelson said...

I like them too! Wonderful stories.

Lizzard said...

I love story time!! Keep it up!!

Anonymous said...

More good stories, please. And if you have dog stories, those are very nice to hear. Maybe even police dog stories...


Adoro said...

OK, y'all! My 4 commenters like StoryTime with Adoro, that means you get more stories!

I may repost some old ones, then, when I get especially busy or hit writer's block.

Um...Mary, sorry, I don't have any police dog stories. :-(