Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Stranger than Fiction

It’s an old cliché that truth is stranger than fiction.  No place is this truer than law enforcement.  Even after 5 years, I still get amazed by things I see, things people say and do.  I suppose it’s because we get called to handle the strange and unique situations that most people do not want to deal with.   I remember one situation in particular that was in fact strange.

I was called to investigate a guy pooping in the backyard of a vacant home that transients frequented.  I was actually quite interested to find the guy, not just because it would be funny or entertaining; but it’s a serious degradation of the quality of life to look out the window and see someone planting sewer pickles in the backyard of the house next to you or in the alley behind your house.  I mean really, nobody wants to see that.   I check the backyard, of the vacant home.  I am careful to avoid lawn sausages.  I was there a while back and one of the other officers stepped in a sewer pickle and it was a major hassle to get it off his boots, so I am looking to avoid that inconvenience.   The backyard was negative so I check the alley. 

I find a guy hiding in an old sofa.  It was one of the pull out sleeper kind but, it was just the frame with nothing inside except a partly nude guy.  I will call him Sammy (not his real name) is ducked down inside the sofa laying down.  I see a tube of lotion next to him and can’t see his hands.  I advise him that if he is rubbing one out we are going to have a significant problem.  I get him out as my back up is arriving.  I ask  “are you the one droppin a duce in the vacant house yard?”  he denies any felony or misdemeanor pooping.  At this point I am not inclined to use more probative investigative techniques to determine if he is in fact the pooper I am looking for.  I am more concerned with him reaching his hand down his pants and touching himself as he talks to me.  I advise him that it is offending my sensibilities that he is touching himself as he talks to me and I explain how it’s in his best interest to cease this activity. (It didn’t really sound like that, it may have had some colorful adjectives and metaphors and  possibly some veiled and not so veiled threats about what might happen to him if he didn’t stop, but that was the point I got across.)  My problem at this point is that his activity is public sexual indecency, but in this state I need a victim.  I as an officer am not allowed to be a victim of disorderly conduct and such.  It has to be an active crime against me like someone assaulting me or something like this.  So I am looking around to see if someone, anyone has seen him roughing up the suspect.  I contact the caller who called about his pooping and she didn’t actually see him she assumed what he was doing.  I don’t blame her, I would not watch for the gritty details either, but it doesn’t help my quest to put him in jail. 

So with no luck on taking him to jail we document the contact and the suspicious nature of his behavior; his outfit should have been the tell tale sign of things to come.  A white guy, (besides me, the only one in a mile any direction) wearing a derby hat, a vest from a three piece suit no shirt, snake skin vinyl pants and cowboy boots. (rule of thumb, never trust a guy in snakeskin pants and a derby hat)  We release him because he has denied us a consent search for drugs and I have no probable cause to search him and to be truthful I am not willing to find any evidence that may link him to the sewer pickle planting incident.  So after he is warned about trespassing and loitering and public sexual indecency, on his way he goes. 

The next day I was checking the ally much later in the shift to see if Sammy is back.  I stop and talk to the original caller and she tells me his is hiding in an irrigation junction box.  In this alley is a concrete bunker of sorts.  It’s like a giant T to send water in different direction, it’s about 4 feet deep, 3 feet wide and shapped like a giant T.  I leave my car on the street and quietly make my way back to this concrete box.  I shine my light inside and sure enough, Sammy is in there, surrounded by porn on ever side of the inside of this concrete junction box.  But now there is the fact that he is wearing woman’s yoga pants with the crotch cut out so the twig and berries are out and about and he is taking care of business.  I ask him what the hell he is doing.  His left hand shoots into one of the pipes that makes this den of iniquity a T.  Not knowing what he is reaching for, I draw my gun and tell him not to move.  I advise him that if his hand comes out of the pipe and into visibility with a weapon, I will in fact shoot him.  He slowly pulls his hand out with and drops a baggy of what looks like meth.  I keep him at gunpoint until I have the units I requested to meet me in the back are with me.  I get him out and realize that his tight whites are around his neck, yep, neck through one of the leg holes and the waistband and yes, his junk is in fact out and about for the world to see.  This because he chose to cut the crotch out of these woman’s pants.  I cuff him up and the female officer that was backing me up asks him why his underwear was around his neck and not covering his goodies.   His response “Pffft” with a look like “duh, why wouldn’t you”.  

The bad part of this incident, I know your thinking, what?  The other stuff wasn’t the bad part.   Nope, I had to climb down into his den of iniquity to retrieve his meth bag and meth pipe.  I asked him to tell me where his “DNA” would be found in this little pit so that I could avoid it.  I assured him that he would be rather displeased with my reaction to getting his DNA on me down there.  I took off my vest and shimmied my not so slender frame down into this hell hole and got the evidence I needed.  I will leave it at that.  I took him to jail for the drug possession.  He admitted that he was in fact the sewer pickle planter so the caper was solved and ended well.  And really, how strange is it to take a guy to jail wearing women’s yoga pants with the crotch cut out exposing his junk, wearing a derby hat with tightie whities around his neck.  Not quite as strange as the double horse rape report I took, or when the guy jumped out of the house wearing a Mexican wrestling mask and nothing else but it was a still something I could never have made up. 

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