Archive for August, 2009

Even neighborhood watch no match for killer asteroids

Recently, as I sat in the airport waiting for my flight to be delayed, I read a USA Today article titled: “Panel: NASA needs to do more to spot killer asteroids.” It caught my eye and, after looking up at the “departures” screen, I realized I had plenty of time to read it.

In 2005, Congress asked NASA to find 90% of all “potentially hazardous near-Earth asteroids and comets.” To qualify for the “potentially hazardous” category, the asteroid or comet had to be about the size of home plate to centerfield, or large enough to concern Bruce Willis.

NASA’s result: They’ve located a whopping 15%.

Okay, we’re dropping the ball on everything space-related. We have space junk falling to Earth, astronauts flipping out and stalking us in diapers, and now, not only do we have killer asteroids (”killer” being a word that should concern you), but apparently it’s getting less attention than that wedding party that tried to dance down the aisle – and then, in front of millions of horrified …

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For this cop, relief from job stress is spelled V-e-g-a-s

Regardless of what you do, each of you should have your “Happy Place.” Mine and Detective Sandy’s is Vegas.

Ah, yes, it’s like Six Flags — only with a smoking section.

Vegas is one of those places that everyone should experience — at least a dozen times. If you’re opposed to gambling, smoking cigars in fancy bars and beautiful architecture, then you didn’t stay long enough. Vegas is fun. If you don’t think it’s fun then, well, go again until you “get it.”

I’m sure your job has stress. Mine does. I mean, this part doesn’t -unless you can’t think of anything to write about. But my other job has stress — lots of it. Crime, and especially crime prevention, isn’t pretty.

They say “What Happens in Vegas Stays in Vegas.” Sounds really serious, doesn’t it? Vegas is as much about sight-seeing as anything else. You can bet on that. (Get it?)

Here is what I suggest: Find a time. February is good. Not too hot and not too cold. I say this as I am going in August, but I like the pools, too. …

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Sandy Springs blotter: Home burglaries and thefts

Some of the reports filed with Sandy Springs police during the past week:

Residential burglaries

800 block of Glenairy Drive: Officers received a residential alarm and, when they arrived, found someone forced the front door to the victim’s home open. Officers found evidence someone entered the home.

6500 block of Roswell Road: A woman reported she was in her apartment when she heard a knock on the door. She didn’t answer it but looked through the door viewer. She saw a young male. When she didn’t answer, he walked to the back of the apartment and tried to open a rear window. The victim became scared and ran from the apartment to the leasing office. The suspect, dressed in a green shirt and brown pants, then left and got into a black and gray four-door Chevy driven by a female. The lookout description was given by a neighbor.

Clipper Trail: A neighbor notified police after she found evidence someone had forced entry into a home. The front door was open and evidence of a damaged …

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Sandy Springs police blotter

Some reminders now that school’s back

School started this past Monday, so we’ve been all over, monitoring and checking school bus stops and checking to see if people are obeying the laws pertaining to passing school buses. Remember that if there is NOT a median separating opposite lanes, traffic has to stop until the bus clears.

“Clears” means those red lights stop blinking. Here’s what you do:

Leave a bit earlier. Figure on an extra 15 or 20 minutes of drive time for the first few days — or until May.

Don’t let your temper dictate your gas pedal. The fines are steep, and don’t even think that we’re considering warnings.

Relax, chant, chill out, whatever it takes. Put on that Enya CD you got for Christmas

From the Just-The-Facts-Ma’am Files

5900 block of Roswell Road, a woman went to the nail shop to get her nails done:
— Credit card declined.
— Wrote a check that didn’t match her or her ID.
— Suspect walked out and got into car.
— Employee walked out behind her to take down …

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Crime-prevention advice for apartment residents

I see a lot of theft, fraud and burglary reports. Burglary reports list how the bad guys get in. Here are the three most frequent ways:

1) Unlocked or open window.
2) Unlocked door.
3) Pried or forced-entry through a door or window.

Apartment residents have a disadvantage. Maintenance has a key. The good news: Almost never are maintenance crews responsible for thefts and burglaries. The same can’t be said for outside contractors, but that depends on the circumstances. Still, you can do things to prevent thefts.

The other disadvantage for apartment residents is this: Doorframes are generally old and somewhat weak. They don’t build the same support into apartment doorjambs as they do on homes. You can’t do the upgrade yourself,  and chances are the apartment management won’t do it, either.

Your best bet is to check the deadbolt and make sure it’s at least one and a half inches in length. The strike plate on the jamb should be screwed in there with at least inch and a half …

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Oddballs are the spice of life on a cop’s beat

Today The Son of God called.

He sounded okay; a little tired, maybe.

It sounds like I had a religious experience doesn’t it? (My wife wishes that I would have something — anything having to do with religious experience.)

The fact is The Son of God left me a voice mail. He was upset over something to do with some vandalism or something — I can’t remember since he’s always calling and complaining about — well, just things. The SOG calls regularly and, quite frankly, he’s a whiner.

Mrs. “L” called. Her name isn’t Mrs. “L.” It’s really Rebecca Stratovich* but we’ll call her Mrs. “L” so she can remain anonymous.

“Mrs. L” is upset with the CIA who, under the direction of the Reagan administration, planted numerous listening devices within the walls of her condo. As a result, she sleeps in her car. I’ve explained for years that not only is the Reagan administration gone from the White House, the former president has passed on to be with Bonzo in that great ranch in the sky.

She …

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Lessons from my 4:30 a.m. encounter with a PCP-freak

It had never occurred to me that I could be seriously hurt or even killed during that time I spent working a beat car. I was young enough to reassure myself that I would live forever and, after all, I was the law, not the bad guy.

I had my share of bruises and cuts and, for a stretch of about six years, I was in a fight – or whatever you want to call the attempt to wrestle some 215-pound drunk redneck into a set of handcuffs and on to jail about once a weekend, at the minimum.

It was why I worked the midnight watch. It was fun. As far as job satisfaction, you couldn’t beat it. Well, maybe the money could have been a bit better. But I think of all the time I spent on the midnights, I maybe called in sick once or twice and, surprisingly, that’s when I was really sick.

I went to the hospital a few times, not many, mostly to get patched up or cleaned up. During that time, we knew all the ER doctors, nurses and half the regular ER patients on the weekends. The same guys kept …

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Sandy Springs police blotter

Crime prevention is our job — and yours

Crime Prevention Officer Larry Jacobs will move his Table Top Crime Prevention tour to the Whole Foods Market, 5930 Roswell Road, on Wednesday, Aug. 12, from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Larry will have crime prevention material, material on Neighborhood Watch and other items to give away.

Two weeks after that, on Wednesday, Aug. 26, Larry will be at the Kroger, 227 Sandy Springs Place, also from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Aside from hiring Chuck Norris to take a bite out of crime with a swift roundhouse kick, Neighborhood Watch is the best thing out there to learn about, and apply, simple crime prevention techniques. Contact Larry at 770-551-3328 or

From recent crime reports: Thefts

200 block of Sandy Springs Place: A woman reported that while she was shopping, she walked away from her cart. When she turned around, she saw a male reaching into her purse. She confronted the man who said something about how …

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