RVing message boards > The Shade Tree

When Officers dont get it right - it matters

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durangod:
I started a new topic here because i think it deserves one.

I often wonder how many times this happens across our country.   How many sensitive and explosive situations could have been prevented if the Officers on the street who didnt know the law would not try to guess the law or state the law as they see it.

Im not bashing officers at all, i think they do a very dangerious and needed task.  But such as in my case ill explain what i mean. 

My door has a sign on it that says "please ring doorbell"  yes i installed a doorbell on my RV.   The reason being is that ever since the accident loud banging noises seem to be a trigger for my anxiety attacks. 

In my case not only was i awakened by the loud banging on the door but in no time i was also standing in my living room being barked at and trying to understand what was happening.   This process caused me to get defensive with the officer as i tried to grasp the details and check my emotions.   Especially when i said let me explain and the officers said "no i dont want to hear it, here is what we are going to do"  and i was taken back by his overly aggressive nature as if he was talking to a known criminal which i am not.  (and no i  am not a unknown criminal either lol)

Then on top of that he states that i am not to go on the building property at all and that even though i was banned from one part of the building it was all inclusive and i could not enter any part of the building.   This made me very anxious as i needed to use the RV office to pay my bills but when i ask about that the officer stated "no im sorry youll have to figure out  another way"  i said what other way, there is no other way.  He said "well sorry but thats how it is".  This specific moment could have been a pivital point in the experience, my insides were exploding but i remained calm. 

Well at first i felt like my life was about to fall down around me and i started getting very mad but then i remember that just because an officer says something does not always mean that its true, and that truth will have to be decided in court or with his supervisor.  So i just let the officer blah blah blah all he wanted and signed what i had to sign and let him go on his merry way.

So today i spoke with the chief of police here, he was very nice and took the time to explain to me, i didnt even feel i was talking to a police officer at all, it just felt like talking to my neighbor which felt so good.  Totally different than the officer that showed up here earlier this week.  Anyway the chief said the officer (a SGT by the way) was unfortunately incorrect and the chief apologized.  This is not a quote of the law and i am not an attorney but this is what i am told the law is.


--- Quote ---In Texas for business landlord tenant trespass, if the trespass order business shares a building with other businensses then as long as there is a dividing wall (any size wall) between the two businesses then they are considered two separate entities and are not inclusive.   Meaning that if you are trespassed from one does not mean you are trespassed from the other.  Now if they only have one shared doorway then yes they would be inclusive and you would be trespassed from both busineeses.
--- End quote ---

So with that, everything is fine now, i will use the office when i need to and stay away from the restaurant which is no problem for me as the food sucks anyway lol....

He also told me that as soon as she is out of business (which from what he is hearing wont be long) he will vacate the order which was good to hear because the paper says "no termination date" which also got me stressed out.


Now imagine folks that i was someone with alittle less drive and control over their emotions, someone who didnt believe that this moment will not define me,  or someone that was not on their meds or just someone that had anger issues.   Imagine that pivital point whent the officer said "well sorry thats just how it is".   And think about how many times that happens in a day across the country and how many times a good situation turns bad just like that by the words they use.  Especially since the officer was wrong about the law.

Now think about how the same situation would have gone much better and alot less stress in my case if the officer would have gotten the law correct and just said "all you have to do is just stay out of the restaurant"  you can still use the office just bypass the restaurant sir.   Way less stress and also i had to wait all weekend to find out the truth so the correct response would have saved me two days of stress on top of that wondering how i was going to make this work with paying my bills. 

So again think about how many times such a thing happens in a day and how many times a situation could be defused with just some different tone, different stance, talking too people not down to people, and of course getting the law correct.   

I will bet that there are thousands of cases that turned south that could have been prevented all together.  If it was not for my strong character and skills i would most definately been one of those negative stats and would probably be sitting in jail right now because of my fight or flight emotions kicking in. 

I think this is something that needs to be address nationwide especially in the inner cities.   What was it that someone said, the difference between a wanted criminal and a good citizen could be nothing more than chance and a different outcome in a bad situation.

Thanks for listening.  :)

John From Detroit:
I worked with police for 25 years as a dispatcher.

I will admit some officers do tend to be a bit...er.. aggressive. this can lead to law suits. In fact there is one to whom I have given my last warning. And I think a judge likely warned him as well. if we "interact" again I will not loose my temper. but I'll be he does when he's served.  I am not a nice person when you tick me off and I do know both the law and my rights at least in the state he practices in.

For the most part (Oh he's a township cop. I worked for State) the Police I know are really nice people.    Most of the time.

SargeW:
Being a law enforcement officer (LEO) is a tough job no matter where you are. Whenever a LEO responds to a call, there is always at least one party that is not going to be glad to see them. It's the nature of the beast. But over reacting is always a recipe for disaster. Often times the reaction of the officer is predicated by what information is available at the time. So if the complaining party gets to tell their side first, party 2 is at a disadvantage.

The very best response it to listen, not over react, and then follow up with whatever avenues are available. Often the reporting party will embellish the facts to try to sway the result in their favor. And likewise the responding officer doesn't have the luxury of investigating all the facts, which often occur outside of business hours. Their main concern is keeping the peace, and preventing a situation from escalating. 

After sifting through all of the stories, the real facts come to light. Congratulations on making a measured rational response. 

Bill N:
I see your point but take the time to watch LIVE PD on A&E, Friday and Saturday nights and see what the law officer has to put up with.  Yes, the guy may have been gruff but did you request a supervisor or call the police department when the activity was taking place.

I may be the only one but your post left me wondering what you did to get trespassed from the restaurant.  Evidently it got you a reputation that may or may not be deserved.  But if you don't care to share that I can understand but it does seem to leave a gaping hole in your story.

Sounds like you handled the situation right without blowing up (and winding up in cuffs).  JMHO

Bill

Oldgator73:
I have never had any problems with LEO’s. I have been visited, at home, a few times but they turned out to be mistakes. Everybody was calm and LEO’s were very respectful as was I. I have been stopped for traffic violations and again no problems. However, our son, an Iraq War Vet, has PTSD. I worry about him being stopped or visited by the police. He is super respectful but if backed into a corner he can blowup in a millisecond. Things could get nasty real fast.

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