Archive for October, 2009

You need a plan, and a theme song, when chasing bad guys

People frequently ask me: “What was your inspiration to get into police work?” or “Did you have a calling?”

First of all, I don’t know how the calling happens. I’ve heard others say they had a calling to do something — something significant — but the callings apparently escaped me in my youth. (Callings are rare after 50.) If I had a calling then, I missed it — something totally possible.

You can take people and compare them to others who did great things before them. In this business we’re frequently compared to TV cops. I didn’t even make that cut!

The last comparison I heard about myself was when someone compared my career to Bob Uecker and his baseball career. I thought about that and have to admit that it’s just about right on the mark. I didn’t plan on it, but it just turned out that way. So be it! Could be worse. Besides, I like Bob Uecker. He came and spoke to my Little League Opening Day ceremony back around 1964 or so over at Flowers Park in Doraville. The kid next …

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Police Blotter: Hookah smoking pipes missing

These are some, but not all, of the reports filed with Sandy Springs Police recently.

7800 block of Roswell Road: The manager of a store said that someone smashed the front glass doors and took twenty Hookah Smoking Pipes.

700 block of Hammond Drive: Someone stole some company mail and then cashed some company checks.

7700 block of Spalding Drive: The manager of a grocery store caught a woman stealing meat and Kool-Aid. He refused to prosecute her.

2200 block of Summit Springs Dr.: A man reported that two female friends were in his apartment with him. They left and after they departed, he discovered his wallet missing. He called them and told them that if they didn’t return the wallet, he could call the cops. They didn’t return it.

6100 block of Roswell Road: A man reported that his $350 BlackBerry cell phone was stolen when he got up and re-ordered his complicated-to-pronounce caffeine beverage.

Tip: Don’t assume that because your stuff is in close proximity, someone won’t …

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Police blotter: Businesses as crime scenes

5500 block of Roswell Road: A store employee reported that someone forced the door open and apparently went through the cash registers. The burglar also damaged the DVD recorder.

Tip: If you own a business, especially a small business, do invest in a camera and DVD or computer hard-drive recorder. Video images are great for identifying and prosecuting burglars and thieves. Remember that the DVD recorder is something you want to hide someplace where it would take a LOT of time to find. Business burglars, when they get in, look for the recorder so they can disable it.

6100 block of Roswell Road: A store manager reported that some DVD’s and some Hookah-Hookah Tobacco was missing from the inventory. On checking the video, it appears an employee was tapping the till in the form of not ringing up the complete customer sale and pocketing the money instead.

4500 block of Roswell Road: Two men came into the office area of the Rite Aid store and robbed the employees of an undisclosed …

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Why do we turn into twits at four-way stops?

Here’s a subject that never gets old in conversation: Morons on the roadway.

I spent about 11 years in patrol before going to detectives, so I figured I averaged at least 125 miles each shift. So that, multiplied by — let’s say — 247 working days in the year, uh, minus about another 14 days of training — so let’s say 233 working days. Uh, okay, let’s subtract another five for sick — otherwise known as screw-off — days, so 228 working days times about 125 miles each. So that would be, uh, about 28,500 miles — or roughly the distance to the moon, uh, minus the 210,357 left over. Okay, never mind the moon (as if we actually went there anyway.)

What is with people at the stop light? We have successfully proved that you can take four rocket scientists and put them at a four-way stop and they become drooling twits. This has been proven over and over every time I reached a four-way at the same time the other three drivers did. I admit I have been the mayor of Twit-Land before.

I’m …

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Messages on my phone (or, While my voicemail gently beeps)

Since Monday was a holiday for me (Yom Kippur) — the annual day of skipping out to play golf — I resumed working on Tuesday with all of the little fun things that I’m normally greeted with on Monday.

Phone messages:


“Hello, I wanted to report that my neighbor’s yard man is taking a dump at the end of the property, which is right under my window. Would you do something about it? He needs to use another part of the yard. He goes the same time every day, about 1 p.m.”


“Hello, my neighbor is having large parties at her house. I think it’s a business and if she’s having a party with people who she’s doing business with, then, uh, it’s a business party and I think she has to have a permit. It’s very inconvenient for me — plus, she didn’t invite me.”


“I need a police report. Someone stole my iPod. I think it was in 2007. I need the report for insurance.”


“Can you get in trouble for running over a chicken? I didn’t mean to. It ran out in front of my car. …

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