Wednesday, February 07, 2007

That was fun, but now I'm tired

I was really expecting this ride along to be lame, being 3rd shift and all, middle of the night, people sleeping... but it was not lame at all. When I got to the station, I was waiting around and I saw a familiar face, but I had a hard time placing where I'd seen him. It took me a while, but I figured it out - he was a sergeant in the employment services division when I was being hired, and when I worked in that division before I started 911 training. As I've mentioned, that was right before Christmas the year my ex-husband was arrested, and employment services provided Christmas for our family that year. So I asked this guy if he was at that division at that time, and he was, and he remembered me. He's now 3rd shift lieutenant at the precinct where I was last night. So I got the chance to let him know how much what they did for us still means to me, and I'm so thankful for that. If nothing else was interesting the whole night, I'm glad I got to go there because I ran into him.

But there was plenty that I found interesting. First call was a noise complaint. Nobody wanted contact, we didnt hear anything, so we moved on to the next - A burglary call. It was a report call, the people came home to find their house basically cleaned out. It was a young couple with two young kids, they both work, and from the decorations left in the house, it looked like they were Christians. I felt sick to my stomach seeing their house. The living room was empty, the all but one of the bedrooms were emtpy, and they said here was a lot of money and jewelry missing. Leather furniture, about 1000 CD's and DVD's, TV's, bedding, the kid's bedroom set... as a call taker, I don't think I will ever think of a burglary call as routine again.

Next we responded to an emergency call of a rape. It turned out to be a prostitution situation gone bad, and the victim was claiming to be 18 years old. There were a few officers there, and they ranged in attitude from "non-payment for services = shoplifting" to "yeah, it may be a job, but nobody deserves that." I was talking to the sergeant for a few minutes, who was a female, about the situation. One of the first thing she said was that she'd be willing to place money that this girl was molested as a younger child. I wonder what kind of help she's had, who cared about her then, and who cares about her now? Does she have anybody who tells her she's worth something and God loves her? Will having someone who cares make a difference for my daughter? This job gives me so many things to pray for!

We didn't stay there too long, and went on to our next task - helping out an undercover unit by providing transportation to the police station for someone he'd arrested. Another prostitute. Claiming to be 18. Who looked VERY young. All we had to do was drop her off.

As we were headed out the door, we passed another officer who was bringing in a guy with no shirt, no shoes, sweatpants, who looked totally out of it. They were going to finger print him to see if they could determine who he was, because the officer that brought him in couldn't even get a name out of him. One of the other officers walking by knew the person, and even knew his address, so we followed the officer who had the guy in cuffs to drop this guy off at his house. His family didn't want him there. He's bipolar, not taking his meds, and on drugs. He's prone to violence, and was at the mental health emergency room the night before but left. We called the mental health crisis team and they responded, but I don't know what happened after that, we left in search of stolen vehicles or other kind of trouble. I could sympathize with his family though. We weren't sure for a while if we were going to be able to get the crisis team there because he wasn't threatening anybody or himself, or damaging property. He was lying there calm and wanted to go to sleep. We also couldn't arrest him because he hadn't committed any crime. They were afraid of him though. The mental health care system could use some work I think.

Next we drove around for a while running plates, we chased a drunk trespasser off private property, and then we did manage to find a few people to pull over. Of the 3 people we pulled over, we only gave one a ticket. And it's my fault she got the ticket. The officer left the decision up to me. Suspended license, no proof of ownership, no proof of insurance - yeah, she was getting a ticket. Too many irresponsible drivers making the insurance rates here one of the most expensive in the country!

We went out with another officer who had pulled someone over on suspicion of drunk driving. The guy could NOT walk a straight line to save his life, and blamed his utter lack of balance on new boots. We were quite suprised however when the breathalyzer only came back with a .022. Drunk is .08.

At one point we stopped back at the station, and there was an officer there booking a juvenile for drug possession. And sitting there on the table was two little bags - one with m e t h and one with m a r i j u a n a. The big deal there was it was the first time I've ever seen either. When I said that, especially about the weed, the officer didn't believe me at first.

I was able to see dispatching from the officer's persective for a while and we talked a good bit about what dispatchers do that drives officers crazy vs what officers do that drive dispatchers crazy :) And my trainer was dispatcher for a while so that was cool. I got to play on the in car computer a little bit :P

As it got later all we really did was run plates, and circulate the beat area looking of suspicious activity. Even though we were in a high crime area, everybody seemed to be calm. We went to grab something to eat at 5, and when we were done with that we responded to an emergency burglary in progress call. We were going pretty quick anyway, but when the first unit to arrive there asked how long it would be till someone else showed up, we went lights and sirens the rest of the way, something police here rarely do anymore. Six Flags has nothing on a squad car responding code 3 ;P The suspect was likely someone known to the homeowner who was trying to harrass them. They turned off the circuit breaker box, turned on the water spigot in the back yard, banged on a few doors and windows, then hightailed it out of there. Since it was getting to be late, we didn't stay there long once we couldn't find the guy, because I had to get home to take my kids to school.

I was glad there was nothing too horrific, but there was enough to keep me interested and thinking. And the officer was very nice, and cute too... cute in a "let me introduce you to my daughter..." kind of way ;D


Erna said...

I'm glad the ride along was good. I think it's great that you take the situations that come up as opportunities to pray. The burglary of the one family was sad to read.

As for your daughter, there is hope. :0) It's too bad that others don't have the support she does. I know someone who has gone through a similar situation when younger and she's living for the Lord. He has been her shield and buckler.

Janean said...

WOW sounds like a real eye-opening night. Much more interesting than the ride-alongs I had in the county I live in. Nuthin' - and Nuthin'.
I'm joinin' you in prayer - There are so many things that can go haywire when you're a parent regardless of how hard you try. All we can do is pray and love the stuffins out of them.

Rebekah said...

code 3 is our sig 10. I remember one officer running sig 10 with coffee in one hand and a smoke in the other. I was hanging on for dear life...but loved every minute of it. You're right, its better than Six Flags

Sista Cala said...

Besides the word lame, did you happen to mention anytime, you hoped for a QUIET night? I'm in the medical field and it is a common superstition: If you use the word quiet, then the shift will be any thing but.

I enjoy your post, found it through the comments on my sister's blog, Beneath the Ivy Wreath.