Naked on a Golf Cart

A naked woman drove a golf cart into the middle of a standoff between police and an armed teenager. The teenager was apparently holding himself hostage on the roof of his home around midnight on September 6th (Happy Labor Day!) when Jessica Smith, 28, refused orders to leave the area and found her bare ass being booked for Obstruction.

On its face, this is one of those police stories where someone outside the job would listen and have no idea how to process what they heard. For me, this is one of those insane moments in policing that reinforces why patrol is the best job in the world.

Here’s how I want this to have gone.

Officer Maxwell and Sergeant Collins leaned on the fender of Maxwell’s cruiser looking up at the young man in boxer briefs pacing back and forth across an architectural shingled roof. He had a butter knife in one hand and a smartphone in the other. As he passed the two cops he stared at them, his eyes full of tears.

“You don’t back off I’ll jump!” he declared as forcefully as his screechy voice would allow.

“Guess he figured out the butter knife was a poor choice.” Commented Maxwell.

“It would speed things along too.” Added Collins.

The comments drew a furious eye from Sandra Harmon, mother of the Kyler Harmon, the teenager walking around the roof. Sandra stood in her backyard wrapped in a plush bathrobe and slippers. Next to her, Jim Harmon, Kyler’s father was in a matching robe and slippers. Jim looked pissed off.

“Kyler baby please!” Sandra shouted.

“Moron,” Jim said under his breath. That drew daggers from Sandra as well.

The two cops studied the dynamic between Kylers folks for a moment before Collins said, “Bean bag,”

Maxwell straightened, his eyes flashing with hope, “He’s not that high up there,”

“We can’t…yet.” Replied Collins. He checked the other two patrol cars forming a perimeter around the back of the house. The house sat on a fairway in the middle of a golf community. The roof-mounted floodlights affixed to the cruisers lit up the entire back yard, drawing onlookers from up and down the cart path bordering the fairway. He and Maxwell went to confer with the parents,

“So this is all over a girl?” asked Collins.

“Kaitlin Andrews unfollowed him on the social media earlier tonight. Then she wouldn’t return our calls, that little bitch,” Sandra spat.

“Did you say our calls?” asked Maxwell.

Collins suppressed a chuckle. He took another look at Kyler and immediately noticed the butter knife in his hand catch the light from the cruisers. Kyler’s full attention was on his phone.

“Whoa, stop right there!”

Collins saw the boy’s head snap up and turned to see a golf cart approaching from the cart path. Officer Carson, who was holding back the gathering group of onlookers, walked out into the path of the cart. His hand was up and he flashed his light at the driver. Collins blinked when he saw her.

No way.

The next pass of Carson’s light steadied on the woman, the absolutely naked woman.

“Seriously,” Carson called. He strobed his light in her direction to get her attention but was only successful in getting her to turn off the path and head straight toward the Harmon’s home. Collins noticed Kyler watching in awe from his perch. Collins had to sidestep as she came in at barely a crawl, a dying battery struggled to keep the thing moving. She had a vacant look in her eyes, hammered or high, Collins couldn’t tell which. Carson trailed her, his hands jutting out from his sides, exasperated.

“You fucking kidding me?” Maxwell hopped aboard as she passed and ripped the key out of the ignition. Collins put an eye on Kyler to make sure he wasn’t sliding any further down the spectrum of stupid than the level he’d already achieved tonight. The kid stood stock still watching the goings-on below. Now would be the perfect time for the bean bag, Collins thought.

“’ss there a prob’em officer?” the woman asked from behind the wheel of the golf cart. Her words slurred, her eyes mere slits.

“I could ask you the same thing,” answered Maxwell. He gently pulled her from the cart by the wrist. Unsure if she would be able to stand on her own. He looked at Collins.

“cover her up, book her for Obstruction,” Collins had seen a lot over the years, and this wasn’t his first drunk, naked suspect. But the absurdity of seeing a naked woman bust into his scene riding a golf cart was a new one on him. He surveyed the scene again to see if there was anything else, maybe bigfoot was going to make an appearance too. He accounted for everyone, Kyler, his cops, the new drunk chick, mom…

“Where’s the dad?” he asked.

Sandra started as if she were entranced by what was going on around her. She pivoted in her fluffy slippers like she was looking for her reading glasses.

“Dad! Don’t” Kyler screamed.

“There he is,” said Carson.

Collins and the others watched Kyler jumping and stumbling under an onslaught of cold water lancing at him from the garden hose in Jim Harmon’s fist.

“Get off the Goddamned roof, Kyler!” Jim bellowed.

“Why didn’t we think about that earlier?” Maxwell asked. Collins couldn’t help but notice the drunk in custody was leaning her sleepy head against Maxwell’s shoulder as he watched their disturbed subject call devolve before their eyes. Above them, Kyler was shivering as his father chased him back and forth from the ground soaking him.

“Okay! Okay! Stop!” the boy said, tossing the butter knife and his now waterlogged phone to the ground. He watched as Jim Harmon raised a ladder for his son to climb down and sighed. There was no amount of paperwork that was going to explain what just happened.

Probably didn’t go down that way but however the incident went, that story will be repeated at the bar for years to come.

References:

Naked Woman, 28, Drove Golf Cart Through Scene Of Armed Standoff, Cops Say | The Smoking Gun

Don’t forget to check out my newest releases in the Jackson Cole Series.

Jackson Cole is a newly minted homicide detective thrown head first into the grinder when he is ordered to investigate the grisly murder of three women.

The victims are marked with odd, occult symbols and the press is stirring up a killer cult frenzy in the media. The mayor, the Chief of Police, and Cole’s Captain want results to calm an increasingly fearful public; and Cole’s supposed partner is nowhere to be found. Cole has zero leads, he’s floundering under the scrutiny of his entire command staff until a stranger shows up spouting a wild theory: blood magic.

Floundering or not Cole won’t even consider it. There is no such thing as magic, no such thing as voodoo; and there are no demons roaming the Charleston Peninsula. There’s always a rational explanation for the evil humans commit upon one another. Then a demon tries to take Cole’s head off.

How do you stop a supernatural evil, something ancient and unencumbered by the laws of either physics or man? Especially when all you bring to the fight is a pistol and a pair of handcuffs. If Jackson Cole wants this case to close, he will have to take on a world of the impossible. Then he’ll have to survive it.

Detective Miles Otis pointed, “That’s an arm…”

Detective Jackson Cole sighed, “Yeah.”

Otis studied the random severed limb for moment, “You ever miss the good old days, dope and drive bys…?”

You catch one strange case and suddenly they call you the Freak Police behind your back. If the case is even remotely weird Cole and Otis get the call. Now they find themselves in a vacant lot staring at a forearm.

Fingerprints give them a name. Hardnosed police work generates a suspect. She’s a witch, so was the guy who’s forearm sits in a cooler at the coroner’s office. The witch says a hellhound killed her friend. And its hunting the homeless of Charleston.

Witches, magic, and a…hellhound?

Any other two detectives would laugh at a story like that. But Cole and Otis have faced the supernatural before. It almost killed them.

There’s a reason they call them Freak Police.

But can they face the darkness again?

New Book Release! Acquisitor-A Jackson Cole Novel

I know this is supposed to be a crime blog. But I got a new book coming out!

Acquisitor, A Jackson Cole Novel, preorder now (https://amzn.to/3zhtIGj) arrives September 3rd, 2021. Just in time for a long Labor Day weekend. Acquisitor picks up about a year after the events of Shattered Circle. In Shattered Circle, Detective Jackson Cole came face to face with supernatural evil. A blood cult sacrificing women and using powerful demonic forces to wreak havoc around the City of Charleston. He put a stop to them. It almost cost him his life.

In Acquisitor, something is killing the homeless around Charleston, SC. Cole, and his Partner Miles Otis’ only witness is also their only suspect in a bizarre homicide. She says she’s a witch, and that a hellhound is hunting people. Any other two cops would laugh and lock her up in a padded room. Unfortunately, Cole and Otis have seen a hellhound at work before. Something tore a suspect apart in his own interrogation room a year earlier. Cole and Otis want nothing to do with evil like that again. They just want to work cases and solve crimes like normal police. But if they don’t take it on, who will?

Acquisitor blends the gritty police procedural with a dark urban fantasy. Trying to make sense of the supernatural through the lens of pragmatic police work creates something unique to both the crime and the fantasy genres. These two books have been an absolute blast to write. I don’t want to say any more because I don’t want to give anything away. I will say though, I am thrilled to introduce Natalie King to the Shattered Circle universe. She’s the witch I was talking about earlier. I think your going to like her.

Here is the back cover blurb about Acquisitor:

Detective Miles Otis pointed, “That’s an arm.”

Jackson Cole sighed, “Yeah.”

Otis studied the random severed limb for moment, “You ever miss the good old days, dope and drive bys…?”

You catch one strange case and suddenly they call you the Freak Police behind your back. If its anything even remotely weird, Cole and Otis get the call. Now they find themselves in a vacant lot staring at a forearm.

Fingerprints give them a name. Hardnosed police work generates a suspect. She’s a witch, so was the guy who’s forearm sits in a cooler at the coroner’s office. The witch says a hellhound killed her friend. And it’s hunting the homeless of Charleston.

Witches, magic…a hellhound? 

Any other two detectives would laugh at a story like that and lock that crazy witch up. But Cole and Otis have faced the supernatural before. It almost killed them. 

There’s a reason they call them Freak Police.

Here are what readers say about Shattered Circle :

“Although this book is crime thriller, it has a supernatural twist to it. If you like a crime triller and/or like supernatural, you cannot go wrong reading this book.”

“Shattered Circle This is an excellent book. I want more. I want to see it on the big screen!! John Stamp is a wonderful author, who takes you with him on a journey into an amazing world that did not allow me to put the book down.”

“Your attention to detail and knowledge of the occult is wonderful and spelling binding. Thank you for a great read.”

Can’t wait to hear what you all think of Acquisitor. More to come.

Triathlon of Crime

What do you get when you steal a truck, a tractor, and a kayak all in the same day?

Aside from, I’m guessing, a possible meth intervention, you have possibly your first criminal triathlete.

Tina Duncan. I’m impressed with your willingness to do whatever it takes to do whatever the hell it was you thought you were doing.

According to the report (See Above) Ms. Duncan broke into three houses in Greenville, KY. While at the last house she found a truck she absolutely could not live without. She fired it up, crashed through a garage door and went “muddin” until burying the thing in a field on a nearby farm. She bailed on the truck and tried to steal a kayak to escape and evade capture via a small creek. Some how the kayak thwarted her attempted theft where the truck did not. Not to be deterred, she found a shiny green John Deere tractor. Despite not knowing how to drive a kayak, she successfully made off with the tractor. Until that is she dropped the bucket and ground through three driveways before crashing the big green tractor into a culvert.

Apparently, all that action wore Tina out, or she ran out of random vehicles to steal, and got pinched.

Not to mention the fact that Tina sounds like she could be an absolute blast to go on a bender with, can you imagine being the deputy who had to take that report? Complainants, victims, and witnesses coming out of the woodwork while you scribble furiously into your notebook,

“Okay she did what? And then what? And…really?” The deputy takes a moment to look in awe at Tina Duncan.

From her cramped seat in the back of his cruiser she bounces her shoulders, a wry grin plain on her face. Her voice is a sort of muted and she slurs a little bit as she tells him,

“I know, I’m just as surprised as you are. I don’t remember doing any of that shit,”

Reference:

https://www.iheart.com/content/2021-07-26-kentucky-woman-tries-to-steal-truck-trailer-kayak-while-on-crime-spree/

“Twenty Bucks Says…”

I’ve never done meth but the look on this guy’s face is exactly what I would expect once he realized what he had tweaked himself into.

According to the Smoking Gun referenced below, Mr. Kelly, Doug to his friends, called the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office, Florida (of course) because he thought his methamphetamine dealer, lets call him Kevin, sold him some bad shit. He called the cops after having a bad reaction to his score and wanted his stash tested to make sure it wasn’t something dangerous…that’s something more dangerous than methamphetamines… Kelly is forty-nine years old. At his age, a strong cup of coffee could make his heart explode…

I doubt this is in any way how the real story went down but if it were me; this is how I would want to tell it once we started sharing war stories at the bar.

Detectives Penhall and Hanson (Names changed to protect the innocent) were in the office cleaning up some reports when the phone rang. Penhall picked it up,

“Narcotics, Penhall?” the call was from dispatch. Penhall listened for almost thirty seconds before laughing, “Oh absolutely put him through,” He picked up a paper clip and threw it at Hanson.

Hanson looked up about to say, “What the fuck?” but Penhall had his index finger to his lips.

Penhall put the desk phone on speaker, “This is Detective Doug Penhall, how can I help you?”

The caller’s breath was clipped and heavy in the phone, “Uhh, yeah, uhh, can you guys help me? I’m not feelin too good, I think my guy screwed me,”

“What do you mean Sir?”

“I bought some crank from him last week, I think he gave me some bad shit, Flacca maybe. My freakin heart is beating like crazy,”

Penhall bounces his eyebrows toward Hanson who immediately threw crossed forearms over his chest. Penhall’s eyebrows scrunched as he put the guy on mute, “What?”

Hanson jabbed his finger at the phone, “Twenty bucks says you can’t talk that guy into bringing his shit to us,” he slid back in his chair to relish in the challenge.

“Fifty says I can,” Penhall shot back, grinning. He took the phone off mute, “That’s not good Sir, that Flacca is nothing to mess with. How much have you done?”

“Umm, only one quick hit. I knew it was off, now I can’t freaking keep my hands from shaking,”

“How much you got left?”

“Couple ounces,”

“It’s a good thing you called; we’ve been having trouble with some bad reactions lately. You should really get that stuff checked out. I got a test right here. I don’t mind doing it, better safe than sorry,”

The caller sighed, “That’d be real cool of you man,”

“Yeah, I’m right downtown, you know how to get here?”

“I do,” the caller sounded excited to answer the question correctly.

“Great, what’s your name so I can come down and meet you,”

The caller paused, “Uh, well, I don’t know if I should give you my name,”

“Why not?”

“Cause I’m talking about drugs with you…um,”

Hanson was grinning, flapping his hands together like he was making it rain.

Penhall shot him the finger.

“Oh that,” he said, “Don’t worry about that I don’t need your name, just ask for me when you get here,”

Another pause, “Uh-okay,”

“Ok, you good to drive?”

“My mom said she’d drive me,” Penhall had to gulp air to keep from losing it, “That’s a great lady right there, Sir,”

“She is,”

“Ok, you on your way,”

“Be there in a little while,”

When the line went dead Penhall stood and took a bow before holding out his waiting hand palm up.

“He’s not here yet,” warned Hanson.

“Money in the bank,” said Penhall.

“You really think some dipshit, even that one, or his mom is going to deliver us a couple of ounces of meth?”

Penhall interlocked his fingers behind his head and leaned back in his chair, “I do, he will,” he said confidently.

“Better be good for it,”

They had paperwork to finish but all the expectant, and or suspicious, cops did for the next twenty-five minutes was watch the cheap clock hanging over the door to the squad bay. When the phone rang Hanson leaped at it, but Penhall was faster, “Just not your day bro,” he quipped, “this is Penhall,” he listened, “Yeah Sarge, I’ll be right down,” Penhall hung up the phone then spun gracefully in his chair to face his partner, “You need to stop at the ATM on the way down?” he asked.

Hanson was smiling now too, “Let’s see what we got,”

In the lobby of the Sheriff’s Office Penhall and Hanson found a middle-aged man with salt and pepper hair and shifty feet looking around like a prairie dog popping out of his hole to check for hawks.

“He’s gonna bolt,” said Hanson.

“He still brought it,”

“Deals not done until it’s in your hands,”

“Deals done,” Penhall smiled broadly, “Sir, you the one that needed our help?” he asked.

“You Penhall,” the guy’s pupils were big as saucers and his eyes darted back and forth between the two detectives like he was watching the fastest ping pong game in history.

“I am, lets go back and see if we can’t figure out what you’ve got,”

Penhall started leading the man back to the office.

“Where’s mom?” asked Hanson drawing a low growl from his partner.

The guy looked at him suspiciously.

Too late for second thoughts now, numnuts, Hanson kept that comment to himself.

“Waiting in the car,” he finally said.

“Smart, I’m Tom,” Hanson stuck out his hand.

Eyes darted again, “Doug,”

The two shook hands and left the lobby for the Narcotics Unit office space. Once inside Penhall motioned for Doug to take a seat. Hanson went to his go-bag and pulled out a box of methamphetamine field kits. Doug watched them closely as he withdrew a crumpled-up wad of tin foil from his pants. He handed it to Penhall and Hanson realized he was fifty bucks poorer, but also extremely entertained. Penhall stared at his partner as he placed the foil on the desk in front of him,

“Detective Hanson will do the honors,” Penhall held an odd, Joker-esque, sneer as he spoke.

Hanson opened the foil to reveal a clear plastic bag with a little less than a cup of white powder. He took a tiny sample and dropped it in the plastic test pouch. One by one he broke three glass ampules releasing chemicals to mix with the dope. The contents of the pouch turned blue as the liquid reacted with the Amines present in the meth.

Penhall couldn’t resist, “It’s a boy,” he cheered.

“Its not Flacca?” asked Doug.

“No, it’s a felony,”

Doug blinked, “A what?” he asked, a tone of sobriety calming his features,”

Hanson pulled his cuffs from his back pocket, and held them out to Doug, “It’s a felony Doug, better call your mom, turns out you’re not going to need a ride home,”

“Fffuuu…” he stuttered.

“Yep,” answered Penhall, smiling as Hanson slid a fifty across his waiting palm.

Reference:

http://www.thesmokinggun.com/buster/dumbass/man-seeks-meth-test-563914

Work Smarter Not Harder, Right?

“Sly smuggler uses Border Patrol for free trips home,”

Time is money.

I’m not a businessman but I’ve seen Shark Tank enough to understand the phrase.

In law enforcement we have another phrase, “You don’t catch the smart ones,”

That’s usually because the would-be criminal mastermind failed to see a weakness in their particular scheme and it got him caught. Maybe a drug dealer didn’t quite know his customers as well as they should have and ended up ripped or selling to an undercover cop, something like that.

More often than not, criminals commit crime because of greed. People sell dope, commit fraud, rob banks, or in this case guide people across the U.S.-Mexico border for profit, as a way of bypassing the career ladder on the way to wealth. When some meth dealer with no job, living in the back room of grandma’s trailer is suddenly driving an eighty-thousand-dollar pick-up truck, police tend to notice. When the dude gets wrapped up because he didn’t have the patience to keep driving a shitty 1995 Honda Civic while setting up a fake auto detail business or some other way to hide his money we say,

“Well, you don’t catch the smart ones,”

While I can’t speak for every cop, and my frame of reference is dated, I always bet that there was some guy or girl out there, probably an army of them, who had the simple discipline to stay off the radar, live humbly, run their schemes, be patient, and cash out down the road. Like Andy in The Shawshank Redemption. In fact, I always wanted to meet one of them, and by meet, I mean arrest. Mostly because I wanted to be able to point to her (It would be a her because chicks are way smarter and patient than dudes) and say,

“Look! We got a smart one!”

I even wrote a disciplined drug kingpin into one of my books, Where Angels Sing. The guy’s name was Harold Washington. He owned a laundry mat, drove a crappy old truck, and just so happened to be the invisible force controlling all the illicit drug trade on the west side of Charleston, SC. I’m not going to say anymore on the off chance you haven’t scratched Where Angels Sing off your summer reading list yet, no spoilers, but worth the read.

Anyway, when I look at this story, it’s one of those where, if I was the Border Patrol guy making the arrest, I’d be hard pressed not to give Mr. Javier Ernesto Ayala-Osuna a little fist bump. If for nothing else then to say,

“Glad we caught you, but, good scam amigo,”

Not to get political, but our border is a shit show. Mr. Ayala brought illegals over the line then turned himself in to the Border Patrol for a free ride home. That’s not only brilliant, it’s a hilarious bit of ingenuity. It makes you wonder how he came to take the chance on a free ride home in the first place.

Maybe one hot, arid, desert day, he was out of water, or running late for a date back in Mexico, who knows. Either way Ayala finds himself hiding out in the bushes ducking patrols when he says to himself,  

“Fuck it, what’s the worst that could happen?”

He turns himself in, a little apprehensive about the gamble. But then he gets some water, hot food, and a free trip home to not only in time to make his date, but also get a head start on his next adventure leading illegal aliens through the United States backdoor. Like I said, brilliant, maximizing efficiency of operation while at the same time tricking your adversaries into taking some of the burden off your shoulders.

According to the story he did it six times. That’s six trips, $8,000 per head, four to six people at a time for a total of around $288,000 give or take. Can’t hold it against the guy for giving that career path a hard look. Don’t get me wrong coyotes should go to jail, along with the people who pay to be smuggled over the border. But if we as a nation are going to have such senseless policies as catch and release and leave the barn door wide open, you can’t hold it against a good capitalist for trying to get his.

The story notes that Mr. Ayala was only caught because his charges (so to speak) turned him in when they got stopped as a group by the border patrol. That brings me back to my initial rant. “We don’t catch the smart ones,” we do catch the coyotes who decide to let themselves get caught with the people they are smuggling. I guess it never occurred to Ayala that they would turn him in once they realized their journey to the land o’ plenty would hook a hard detour into a DHS detention center. Oh, and that they were out a few thousand dollars for their troubles. In the end it reads like Mr. Ayala got a little too complacent in his scheme. That being said, he did get away with it six times before getting caught so maybe we do catch the smart ones. We just have to wait and catch’em when their guards down.

Reference:

Sly smuggler uses Border Patrol for free trips home – Washington Times