I receive quite a few emails asking me to include law enforcement related information/blog posts on my Bad Luck Detective Blog. The emails are usually generic and always tell me they love my blog and feel their information is essential to my readers. I hope during my years of blogging, no one ever felt my blog was essential. The idea behind BLD was to bring a lighter side to law enforcement or maybe a human side. But more, I wanted it to be fun. “Essential” sounds boring.
A week ago, I had an interesting email from Antone Hammers concerning a humorous short film he produced about a cop/doctor i.e. Coptor. This is more like it!
All you not so serious readers grab a hand-full of popcorn, your favorite piece of movie candy, a coke slurp, and you’re ready.
I’ve put in my request for a grandma cop short film next. We’ll see if they listen to me. A working title could be Copgranny.
Click the link below and enjoy your next two minutes with no essential relevance whatsoever!
I know I haven’t been around in a while (under exaggeration) but I wanted you to know I wrote a Mother’s Day post for Below The Salt News.
I’m wishing all the amazing mom’s a wonderful day filled with joy, breakfast in bed, children on their best behavior, and more kisses that you can possibly handle.
Link: Strength in Motherhood
This is a short post but I’ve been feeling neglectful in my blogging duties and thought I would share something I found this morning. The mugshots you are looking at are typical of today’s county jail booking photos.
These mugshots are a great tool and I’ve used countless prisoner photos for identifying criminals. If I think I know the identity of a suspect, and I know they’ve been arrested in the past, it’s easy to show a grouping of pictures to a witness and ask him or her to identify the guilty party. This is called a six-pack.
Like many other techniques in fighting crime, I’ve trained to use these photos so the identification process cannot be thrown out in court.
I call the jail giving them similar physical characteristics of who I’m looking for and request a booking photo of my suspect along with five to ten others that match my description. I include height, weight, hair color, etc.
I choose five to go with my suspected bad guy, and lay the pictures face down on a table. I bring my victim/witness in and have them pick up the pictures in any order and look at them. By having them choose which picture to look at first, it takes the defense theory of “stacking the deck” out of the equation.
I would love to say this technique always works but in real life, it doesn’t. But when someone is looking at six similar photos and shows you the correct one with no doubt and identifies your bad guy, it’s a great feeling.
This morning I ran across the website below and became fascinated with the pictures of criminal booking photos from the twenties. I don’t know if it’s the black and white, standing photos or just the suits but seriously some of these are a work of art and nothing like we see today.
I loved the guy who wouldn’t open his eyes. Enjoy!
I don’t know if bad luck follows me, I make my own, or that god just knows I have a great sense of humor. Earlier this month, on a book-signing/convention trip to Vegas my journey began with marijuana and ended with marijuana.
Some readers might be saying, “Oh Suzie, what did you do?”
Seriously, I did nothing. This crap just makes for great blog posts!
I stayed in a room at the end of a long hallway. Directly across from me, the occupants of room 1599, smoked MJ the entire time I was there. We were the only two rooms at the end of the hall, and within twenty feet of approaching my door, you could smell it. Luckily, inside my room there was no odor.
It’s hard to stop being a detective and for five days I tried to get a look at my neighbors but never did. The smell was strongest when I came back to my room late at night and I think if I stood outside my room for any length of time, I would have received a second-hand induced high.
I didn’t, I swear!
After I returned from my trip, a friend asked why I didn’t notify people that I was signing books in Vegas. I’ll tell you a secret… I was petrified. It’s very difficult having an a.k.a., much less two and signing those names on books. It’s problematic enough when a reader asks to send their book to my house so I can sign and mail back. I’ve replaced several books, after giving them bad signatures, with my own copies. I now have a stack of unusable books in my closet.
At the signing event, I displayed paperbacks of Bad Luck Cadet & Officer alongside my romantic vampire fiction series, written under D’Elen McClain. My pink handcuffs sat between the two stacks and drew a lot of attention. When someone commented, I picked them up and said, “These pink handcuffs have arrested more child molesters and wife beaters than any pink handcuffs in the state of Arizona.”
True statement and I challenge anyone to prove me wrong.
So, at a predominately romance reader book signing, I sold lots of “Bad Luck” books. I’m happy to report that I managed to sign both my pen names without incident.
My closest partner/table mate at the signing was Wendy (W.L. Sexton). We actually met in the coffee shop that morning, started a conversation, and were friends before we walked out. As luck would have it, we were assigned side-by-side seats out of two hundred authors in attendance. Fate!
A few sales people approached and gave their, “Author, I can do this and this and this for you,” speech. Some were interesting and some not so much. One thirtyish dark haired woman, made my ivy sense kick into overdrive. I knew her and it wasn’t in a good way. She stopped giving her spiel to Wendy, turned to me and said, “I know you from somewhere.”
It clicked. I did know her and remembered arresting years ago.
“I recognize you too, I’m a police detective from Small Town, Arizona.”
Her sales pitch flew out the window and she left before Wendy or I could blink. I explained to Wendy that this was the reason my husband never argues when I take my gun everywhere. I was gunless at the signing and felt completely naked.
I woke up at 5am my final morning and decided to enjoy some quiet time, look through email, and drink some coffee at the outdoor café. Within five minutes of sitting down, a 65ish, older man joined me.
“How are you this morning?” he asked.
I’m 52, hadn’t bothered with makeup, and wore Diamondback’s Baseball flannel pajama bottoms and a really large black t-shirt.
This guy was obviously desperate to pick up a woman or considered me desperate enough to have him.
He told me all about his product. It actually cured dementia and Alzheimer’s, opened your mind to endless possibilities, and would help me lose weight.
This great wonderful product goes by the name… you got it, marijuana. If I smoked it only once a month, my entire universe would be cured of all the ills affecting me.
I gave him the look, smiled, and said, “I’m a cop!”
If you’re wondering if he got away with it don’t worry. Just for the “weight” comment alone, I promise his body will never be found.
I’ll be back in Vegas next July and I’ll give everyone plenty of notice in case you’d like to tag along for some bad luck.
A good officer/detective should thoroughly clean their desk/office every few years even if it doesn’t need it. I finally took the plunge and did a top to bottom muck-out (quite painful really). After heavy procrastination… I donned my gloves, mask, and full body suite and got to work.
Where does all this crap come from? Was my first, second, and third question. Plus, the undertaking took longer than expected because I re-read all the notes and letters sent by wonderful people, mostly victims of crimes, who expressed their appreciation in words.
My favorite included the picture of two brothers, who, after years of physical abuse, were removed and placed in foster care and their mother and step-father prosecuted. The card, with yellow sunflowers on the front opens to simply say, “Thank you. We are happy.” The picture shows them hanging upside down from a tree and smiling for the camera.
I found two letters that didn’t fit the victim scenario. One, from the wife of a man I arrested for road rage. She thanked me for treating her husband with respect. I remember that case so well because the suspect was more concerned with his wife of twenty years worrying about him than the consequences of his actions. I asked for his wife’s cell number, and then after leaving the jail, I called her to explain the circumstances of his arrest. I think the knock upside the head he received after returning home was far worse than his night in jail and the hefty monetary fine imposed, my kind of woman!
The other note that made me smile came from a seven-year-old boy, who bit his mother several times, and then proceeded to get the better of two officers because we didn’t want to hurt him. His scrawled apology included the words, “Thank you for not tasing me.” Gosh… why didn’t we think of that?
When my cleaning was said and done, I shredded two large bags of paper, found enough single bullets to fill my gun magazine, dusted, vacuumed, and beautified my surroundings, then gave a sigh of relief that I wouldn’t repeat the painful process again for years.
*Note* The State of Arizona lost 19 heroes in the Yarnell Fire. Please pray for their friends and families. The 100 Club of Arizona sent checks for $15,000 to each family within 48-hours of this tragedy and I want to thank this incredible organization for their never-ending support of law enforcement and fire. We stand taller because of all you do!
Have a wonderful 4th of July weekend and stay safe!
Summer’s here, I’m busy, and life swirls by faster than I can keep track of. I’ve been informed I will be a grandma again later this year. I know I should feel older but for some reason I don’t. I think grandkids keep me young and remind me there is life outside of the police department.
I know everyone (I may be exaggerating here) is impatiently awaiting the next Bad Luck book. The darn thing is 50% written and sits on the edge of my consciousness constantly. I’m also getting emails about the pink handcuff tour which will coincide with the book’s release. At some point, I need to sit down and work on Bad Luck in Small Town and I will, I promise, I really do!
I did manage to get in a wonderful vacation to Vegas and California’s wine country. We spent an afternoon in Murphys sampling too much wine. Nope, I wasn’t driving so was able to over imbibe. I discovered, as much as I love sweet red wines, I’m not a fan of desert wines. I guess liquid cake is just not my thing.
I received a call from my daughter a few weeks ago, after my 15-month old grandson locked her out of the house when she took the dogs outside to do their business. Bryson, the cute and lovable monster, then proceeded to crawl onto his diaper changing table and hit the emergency house alarm while his mother frantically tried to get back inside her fortress.
When the police showed up, she was holding a rock to break the back window and as you can imagine, things got a little hairy. When all was said, and done, one of the officers slipped a credit card against the locking mechanism and easily opened the door.
I’d like to thank those officers for asking question before shooting a woman armed with a rock, in the act of breaking and entering. I’d also like to thank them for improving my daughter’s home safety measures so she now owns a better lock. Bryson has no clue about the trouble he caused, but gosh, payback is a bitch, and my daughter was just like her son. I truly can’t wait until he’s a teenager and gives his mother lots of gray hair. I’m really evil that way.
Until next time, stay safe and be happy.
With the tragedies in Boston and West Texas, I felt the need to write something on the lighter side and step away from the turmoil overwhelming me. I’m sharing my smiling moment of the week to see if my humor is contagious.
Cop magazines inundate the Small Town Police Department every month. I usually have one or two sitting on my desk and I peruse them while waiting on the phone or eating lunch at my desk.
These journals include American Police Beat, Law Officer, LET (Law Enforcement Technology), and American Cop but there are many more. The majority of the magazines sit around the squad room taking up space, cause a mess, and get in our way. My fellow officers (the guys) ooh and awe over the latest police gear, ultra-cool Taser resistant gloves, the hot new police cruisers with all the bells and whistles that our small agency can’t afford, and every tactical gadget on the market.
Flipping through the pages of one of these magazines this week, I came across an advertisement for a new police flashlight. The pictures are the first thing that caught my attention. I started reading the ad and began laughing until tears slipped down my face.
If you’ve been pulled over at night, and had an officer point a flashlight in your eyes you’ll cringe at the pictures below. Looking for your driver’s license and registration, under these circumstances is almost impossible. But, for officers, these flashlights save our lives and many times during my stint at the police academy, I was on the receiving end of their use during practice scenarios. Hours later, when I went to bed, spots remained in my eyes. I know someone out there is screaming about the damage to eyesight but I can’t imagine pepper spray in the eyes is any less harmful and I suffered that too.
This brings me to the ad—“Lumen Face” the latest and greatest Streamlight rechargeable flashlight. I own two of their older models in two sizes and though I’ve tried other brands, Streamlight is my favorite. I finished laughing, read the remainder of the magazine, and then carried it back to the squad room. An hour later I found myself chuckling again, and retrieved the magazine to cut out the ad for my wall.
Some people may not have my twisted sense of humor and if so I hope you’re absolutely horrified (please). I absolutely must get this new light, the Lumen Face +500 lumens. When I arrest someone and get a Lumen Face booking photo, I will share it with you. Seriously their advertising states, “They’ll still be squinting after they’re booked.” Now I just need $150.00 to purchase it.