Self Defense Tip: Be Careful Where You Read TTAG

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By Accur81

Ever get a case of the Mondays? This last Monday afternoon, I was patrolling the highways and freeways of beautiful southern California. It was near the end of my shift, and I was looking forward to going home when I encountered a young lady whose car – a brand new VW Jetta rental – was stalled in the #1 lane of a 2-lane freeway transition road . . .

I got out of my car and spoke to the young lady. She was visibly upset. As you can imagine, she had caused a back up in traffic and had received more than her daily allowance of honking and non-DMV hand gestures.

I asked her what was wrong with her car, and she said “I don’t know. It just stopped working.” I mentally translated her statement to, “My car ran out of gas because I drove it for 30 miles after the fuel light came on.” I gave her a brief series of instructions, and pushed her car to the right shoulder by hand. As a matter of course, I looked inside the interior of the car. No punched ignition, stock car keys in place, no broken windows, and no visible weapons in sight.

Although the shoulder was a much better location, the young lady obviously still felt uncomfortable. I told her that I would stay with her until the freeway service patrol tow truck arrived so that she would be safe.

Back inside my patrol car, I couldn’t resist the urge to check out a few TTAG comments. I was debating the wisdom of challenging Dyspeptic and one his 1911’s vs. my Glock 23 in an endurance/reliability test. Of course I was also pondering whether I consider myself a cop or a peace officer, and whether my credibility would be shot (pardon the pun) on TTAG because I am a police officer. As I was considering such monumentally important matters, the young lady returned and requested an ambulance for a medical problem. I called the ambulance and monitored her progress, despite the fact that I didn’t believe that there was anything actually wrong with her.

The ambulance arrived shortly thereafter and took the young lady to a nearby hospital. I cancelled the freeway service patrol, and requested a contract tow. Then I ran the plate on the car…which came back smokin’ hot.

The car had apparently been stolen the day before by the driver I’d just packed off in an ambulance. Fortunately, I had good ID on her. I dispatched a nearby unit to the hospital, who arrived just minutes after the ambulance. After a brief chase through the ER, he handcuffed the alleged car thief to a gurney until I could get there. The vehicle theft was legit, and it turned out that the woman was also a burglar. She was probably someone who warranted my full attention out there on the side of the highway, but I’d slipped into “helpful mode” instead of “enforcement mode.”

Needless to say, I didn’t make it home on time that night, but I did make it home. I will say this regarding the incident: be careful where (and when) you read TTAG.

comments

  1. avatar gloomhound says:

    I almost drop my iPad in the toilet when I was reading it in the bathroom once. Keep up the good work and stay safe out there.

  2. avatar Joe Grine says:

    All is well that ends well, as they say. You have to wonder how stupid this chick is to have invited her encounter with the Police. You would think she would have unassed the AO as soon as the car broke down.

  3. avatar BLAMMO says:

    The greatest risk I run while reading TTAG “on the job” is my boss strolling by noticing me goofing off on the interwebz. Which, in my liberal (with a lower-case “L”) work environment, is no real risk at all. After all, it’s not porn. My boss knows I get the job done.

  4. avatar Kirk says:

    And here I thought running the plate was all-but automatic — can’t it be electronically “read” and run while you do important things?

    You know, like un-twisting the panties of the nitwit who over thought her “escape”?

    Heh. Great story. Reminds me of my perennial question to anesthesiologists: “What magazine do you read?” (during surgeries)

    1. avatar TexanHawk says:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Automatic_number_plate_recognition#

      Not all forces/departments have deployed this.

    2. avatar SGC says:

      A lot of advanced technology you see on TV or read about doesn’t exist in the real world. A small town of 10,000 people with a 30 person police department can’t afford that kinda stuff, and probably wouldn’t buy it if they could…

      1. avatar Mark Horning says:

        Tempe AZ (160,000 population) has plate recognition. They mostly use it to troll the parking lots of the State university to try to find expired registrations. (the technology pays for itself in fines)

  5. avatar Leon says:

    I understand the officer’s plight, TTAG can be addictive. Often I suddenly realize I have been online “talking” to folks I don’t know about all kinds of topics for hours.
    I try to tell myself to get a life………but my wife and I have a wonderful life…..we have just accepted the fact that TTAG is now part of it. OMG! :-). I am glad the officer’s story ended well and he got safely home. Be safe everyone.

  6. avatar TTACer says:

    Sounds like the officer was profiling.

    1. avatar Russ Bixby says:

      I like.

      1. avatar Joke & Dagger says:

        Hot chicks live a different life, bitchez.

        1. avatar cg23sailor says:

          DRIVER: But Officer, I thought police didn’t write tickets for pretty women?”

          OFFICER: You’re right Ma’am, we don’t. Sign here.”

    2. avatar Accur81 says:

      Maybe a little.

  7. avatar Aharon says:

    Good story 🙂

    I’m surprised that SOP doesn’t always include running the car plate.

    1. avatar Matt in FL says:

      As am I. I thought it was more or less automatic to run the plate on anyone you pulled up behind on the side of the road.

      Hell, I got pulled over for driving on a suspended license (yes, I know it was my fault; this is a story, not a complaint) once just because a cop decided to run my plate. I was sitting still in a left hand turn lane all by myself when the cop came down the road and got into line behind me. We sat through the red light together, and when the light turned green, he flipped on his lights before we finished the left turn. I wasn’t far enough from my house yet to do anything illegal, and my registration was still current. He ran my plate at the light because he was bored, I guess.

      1. avatar Aharon says:

        He probably did run it because he was bored or behind his quota on handing out tickets.

        BTW, I ordered a really great looking kukri knife from Nepal on Monday from Ex Gurkha Kukri House. It’s slightly westernized in that it features a finger guard (for safety!, I like my fingers) and is full tang.

      2. avatar Swarf says:

        Are you young and brown?

        1. avatar Matt in FL says:

          I am not brown, and at the time I was living in a college town, so being young put me in the strong majority.

        2. avatar Swarf says:

          Huh. That is weird then.

          😛

        3. avatar Joke & Dagger says:

          Not weird if it was Gainesville. True police state there.

    2. avatar Jay W. says:

      I concur, that was my thought too.”First things, first”.

  8. avatar Russ Bixby says:

    Sure, blame the blog and not the user.

    Yes, I’m kidding. I’m also very glad that she wasn’t of a more violent bent, else very bad things might’ve ensued.

    Be safe, bro.

  9. avatar BLAMMO says:

    The greatest risk I run, while reading TTAG “on the job”, is my boss strolling by and seeing me goofing off. Which is not much risk at all in my liberal (with a lower-case “L”) work environment. My boss knows I get the job done.

  10. avatar ready,fire,aim says:

    TTAG does have that power over meer pro 2A mortals as long as no one got hurt and the bad guy…er… gal didn’t get away than I say it’s been a learning experience…

  11. avatar Bob says:

    This post has nothing at all to do with TTAG. He could have been visiting Facebook with the exact same results.

    1. avatar Swarf says:

      I’d like everyone to meet our most recent graduate from Jokekill U, Bob.

      1. avatar Jake L. says:

        +1 Swarf

    2. avatar SGC says:

      Well, lets be honest here…ALOT of the post here have nothing to do with “the truth about guns”.

      1. avatar Carry.45 says:

        Like the yoga pants revolution. Okay to be fair the post was about MAIGs touring bus. But I didn’t read any of it because of the link to yoga bottoms. Lots of bottoms held up right to where god meant for them to be but forgot to account for gravity.

        1. avatar Matt in FL says:

          I, uh, skipped over that post. I’ll be rig… I’ll be in my bunk.

        2. avatar Carry.45 says:

          Didn’t do firefly. My dad has all the seasons. I’ll check it out. Speaking if the old man I need to pick him up a firearm related Father’s Day gift…

        3. avatar Matt in FL says:

          You mean all the season?

          Fvckin’ Fox. I have exceeded my ability to count on a single hand the number of shows that I’ve loved that they’ve canceled.

        4. avatar Gyufygy says:

          +1 to screw Fox.

          How’s business?

  12. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

    Dude. Seriously.

    I’m just not that important. Rant at me all you want, when you have nothing else pressing on your calendar.

    1. avatar Swarf says:

      You’re right.

      Accur81 was talking about disagreeing with someone’s opinion on handguns who happened to be you, not talking about you.

      1. avatar Joke & Dagger says:

        Don’t mess with Dyspeptic.

        1. avatar Swarf says:

          Oh, certainly not, heaven forfend.

          Fortunately I was just agreeing with him.

    2. avatar Accur81 says:

      I tried to think before I comment, and sometimes my mind wanders. I put that part in there merely because I remeber the specifics, not to be disrespectful.

      1. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

        I take it as no disrespect whatsoever.

        I’m telling you that, in the course of your shift, I’m way, way, way down there at the bottom on your list of “things to do.”

  13. avatar jwm says:

    Is it better to be smart or lucky? Respect. But this wasn’t TTAG’s fault. You didn’t have your head in the game. Proves you’re human and not a machine.

  14. avatar Colorado Wellington says:

    A great story with a happy ending and a lesson. BG can mean Bad Girl.

    Now back to the important things in life: how about that Glock vs. 1911 …

    1. avatar In Memphis says:

      “Now back to the important things in life: how about that Glock vs. 1911 …”

      Por que no los dos? Gen 1 G1911

  15. avatar Augur says:

    Being a good police officer would never challenge your authority. Look at all the sheriffs opposing gun control laws. If you were a bad cop, like many of California’s big city cops, then you might be in question. I’m glad the girl didn’t get spooked and pull a gun while you were distracted.

    1. avatar Colorado Wellington says:

      +1. Colorado sorting it out right now.

  16. avatar Hasdrubal says:

    While I usually (not always) run a plate if I find a disabled vehicle, I don’t always run the driver. In fact, I guess I usually don’t unless there’s something odd or suspicious about them. Although, in this case it sounds like the ID didn’t come back with anything, as it often doesn’t.

    I wouldn’t worry about it too much, just take it as a learning experience. I’ve certainly had my share of those. To miss an undamaged stolen car isn’t as bad as missing signs that someone is about to attack you.

    And yes, I also read TTAG sometimes at work.

  17. avatar Gyufygy says:

    Hahahaha, that’s too funny. I just get fussed at for reading online when I should be being social. Oops. Silly social expectations and not being “that guy” reading his phone.

  18. avatar niceguns says:

    Glad to see that there are cops on here, now at least I know that when I mention how Cops will be part of the problem when the FED decides to take our 2 amendment rights, they are listening. Notice how none of them defend themselves, they know they are wolves in sheep’s clothing…

  19. avatar William says:

    Good story, Accu.

  20. avatar LC Judas says:

    Infallible ain’t in nobody’s job description; we would all do well to remember that. But making similar mistakes in the future after notation is pretty stupid. Safety first, man.

  21. avatar RLC says:

    Thanks, Eight, for your service. Great to read your posts.
    Including your gentle tease of Dyspeptic as a nod of RESPECT.

    Reminds me how my favorite family member LEO says the women in domestic disturbance calls are usually the most dangerous,
    and how easy to forget that when the little head is thinking for the big head.

    1. avatar Joke & Dagger says:

      What service?

  22. avatar RLC says:

    Not that I have ever done that.

  23. avatar RLC says:

    Addicted to TTAG, I mean.

  24. avatar scott says:

    Stay safe out there. But also remember innocent until proven guilty.

  25. avatar shawn says:

    I was at a hotel on long island with a bunch of ipads in the lobby…so you know what i did. Put every browser to TTAG.

    1. avatar Matt in FL says:

      I’ve been known to do that at the Apple store, and set the homepage as well.

  26. avatar Dave S says:

    It was procedure to run plates on all stops when I was working, so they would have someone to chat with if you ended up dead on the highway. Its amazing how many warrant arrests you can make on routine stops

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