And They're Off!!
After nearly a year on the street I had my first foot pursuit last week. I heard a squadmate announce over the radio he found a stolen truck parked in front of a small strip of business buildings. There was nobody in or near the truck so he called for a tow truck. I drove over to stand by and wait for the tow truck to arrive.
He told me the engine was still warm and he guessed the driver was probably in one of the apartments. "Apartments?", I asked. I was familiar with the row of business buildings but didn't know there were any apartments in them. He told me there were about 10 small apartments in a courtyard between businesses. "Just look for the white gates and and archway.", he told me.
Both of our patrol cars were parked on the side of the building and the stolen truck was in the front. I walked around the corner of the building to the front to look for the white gates. Just then, a man and woman came out through the gates and walked toward the truck. They split apart with the man approaching the driver's door and the woman to the passenger side. Just as the man was reaching for the driver's door handle, he looked up and saw me coming towards him. He quickly turned around and started walking briskly back to the apartment courtyard.
"STOP! POLICE!", I commanded with my gun drawn. My partner was right behind me and also yelled at him to stop. The man bolted into a run and threw something to the ground as he rounded the corner through the gates and into the courtyard. We were right behind him and caught him quickly in the dead-end courtyard. My first pursuit was over before I had any time to even think about it.
"I didn't do anything! You got the wrong guy!", he pleaded.
"Then why did you run when we told you to stop?"
"Well, I was going to jaywalk across the street and figured you guys knew what I was planning to do."
We put both of them in our patrol cars and returned to the courtyard to see what he threw. A black handgun and remote-key to the truck were lying on the ground. We then found some suspcious items in the stolen truck including: cell phones, bolt cutters, pry bars, a blow torch, laptops, fake checks, mail, tools, hundreds of keys, and many other items. The man had 3 drivers licenses with the same picture but with 3 different names.
As we begain to reveal the scale of the crime, the man then treated me to my first fake seizure/suffocation routine. He gasped for breath, rolled his eyes back, and was unresponsive to any of my questions. The fire department arrived to check him out and took his vital signs as he convulsed and panted on the ground. They all laughed at his act after confirming all his vital signs were normal. He continued his performance well after the medics left but instantly recovered and then pleaded with me to 'give him a break' as I drove him to the station. He insisted he was the victim of an elaborate set up but couldn't explain how someone created fake id's with his actual MVD picture on them and then placed them in his pocket without his knowledge. We'll await the results of the numerous fingerprints we took from the interior of the truck and the property inside.
It took us over four hours to inventory all of the property. A records check revealed an extensive criminal history for the guy.
Some of the recovered property: