Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Page Fourteen - Ninja Reflexes (Copcast #129)

George aches today. He’s just crawled out of bed to discover his legs don't want to work and that pretty much everything from the neck down is running about 30 seconds behind. Why?

Well, yesterday they were tasked to implement the summer drink-driving campaign. It’s the same every year; the summer months mean increased alcohol consumption earlier in the day and therefore more chances for the police to catch the scourge of UK roads, the drink-driver.

In the UK police have the power to stop any moving vehicle to check the driver’s driving documents and the drink drive campaign is used to get the message over to anyone who is stopped. For the most part, drivers welcome this small inconvenience but there are the odd few that take a real exception to getting stopped. In George's experience these are the ones who normally have something to hide.

After about three hours stopping vehicles, George decided to go a little further afield. All of the drivers he had stopped so far had been receptive to the campaign. Those with minor traffic violations (brake lights not working, no seat belts) were given tickets and breathalysed. No drink drivers here, so he went deeper into the countryside.

It didn't take him long; his attention was drawn to a sports coupe clearly not keeping to the speed limit in the country lanes. George made ground on it, it was pushing 55 in a 30 but he was struggling to keep it in view. Then a tractor pulled out and the car had to slow down, George caught up with it and pulled it over. He could not get past the tractor so had no choice.

You can tell a lot from how someone gets out of a car. Their stance and their attitude give a lot of information. George’s personal radar was on full and he could sense that he was going to have his hands full. Fortunately he was not alone, his probationer was fired up and could sense the same. He seemed to pick up on George’s wariness as they approached the driver. As it turned out, a fat lot of good that did.

"Hello sir, do you know why we’ve stopped you?” George asked.

"Um, I think I was going a little fast around that last bend officer" he replied.

The driver was leaning against his car, he was a little unsteady on his feet, his speech was slurred and his eyes were glazed. ‘Bingo’, George thought.

"Okay, this is how it is. I suspect you have been drinking so I require you to provide a specimen of breath,” he instructed.

The driver complied, the test was performed and the result was negative. George stared blankly at the readout, which displayed zero. 'Drugs' he thought. As he was thinking this, the driver pushed his colleague who was caught unawares and fell on his ass. George tried to grab the driver but he turned and ran towards the field next to them. Cursing his slow reactions he gave chase, shouting for the man to stop. He didn't and kept running leaping over a hedgerow into the next field. The field was uneven and George was blowing like a steam engine, the going was tough and he could hear his probationer calling up for assistance but he didn't know the name of the road where they had stopped the car. Then George had a stroke of luck, the driver slipped and hit the dirt, as he struggled to get to his feet George launched himself at him.

Being an ex-rugby player (a tight head prop) he tackled him midriff and heard the air expel from the driver and there was a satisfying crunch. 230 lbs of equipment-laden copper was now on top of the man who had now started to cry. The driver made a last effort to fight George off, but by now his colleague had caught up and they cuffed him, arresting him for failing to stop and on suspicion of driving under the influence of drugs.

A search of the prisoner revealed three wraps of crack, so he was nicked for possession and a subsequent search of the car revealed a set of 'knun chucks' under the passenger seat, so he was nicked for that too. Add resisting arrest and he had a full house. The driver cried all the way back to the police station, apparently he was worried about what his 3 year old would think of him in years to come.

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