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Saturday, November 25, 2006

Scary Saturday! Guns drawn, police stop man for stealing his own car

posted by on November 25 at 13:27 PM

I just walked up to the intersection of Pine and Broadway to see seven cop cars, their occupants on the street in defensive positions, guns drawn and aimed at a little black hatch-back. The driver, a white guy with a black hat and a goatee, was already handcuffed and getting frisked. Then police shouted orders for the passenger to get out, hands in the air, walking backwards. It was all very dramatic. Police approached the empty car like it might jump up and punch them in the nose. On the street, we speculated the car had just been in a hit and run, or maybe held a few pounds of BC Bud. Alas. No. Twenty minutes passed and the cruisers cruised away, leaving the driver and his passenger chatting, un-hand-cuffed, with a lady cop on the sidewalk. I walked over and asked if they could tell me what happened. The driver said, “Yeah, actually. I’m starting to get pretty mad.” Jim Cross, 31, had had his ‘88 Ford Festiva stolen about a month ago from the lot outside a club. He reported it and a few days later the police called and told him they’d found his ride a few blocks away. He retrieved the car and went on with his life. This morning, he was headed to breakfast when he noticed police following him all the way from First Hill to Capitol Hill. One car pulled him over when he reached Broadway, and was quickly joined by six others, plus two bike cops. Then the guns, the orders, the frisking. “We were just hungover and going to Glo’s for breakfast,” Cross told me. “We just wanted some biscuits and gravy.” The officer who took Cross in her car told him he could have gotten shot or “knocked up the side of his head” by not cooperating. Cross said he tried to cooperate but couldn’t understand what was going on. By the end, it was the police who were applogizing. The officer talking to him on the street admitted the incident was embarrassing. She said the mixup probably stemmed from the fact that Cross hadn’t affixed a license plate to the front of his car, so instead of telling him to attach it, the police who found his stolen car reported the license plate stolen as well. Cross, however, points out that the officers who pulled him over should have noticed that the plates were registered to a black Festiva.

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The SPD is a fucking embarrassment to this city. What a joke they are.

Posted by Gomez | November 25, 2006 2:11 PM

Obviously not on the same scale, but similar: My housemate got his car impounded a week ago because the outstanding tickets from a previous owner which were supposedly stricken from the record six months ago were not. He first noticed when he got a parking ticket back in the spring that mentioned earlier violations about which he knew nothing and classified him as a "scofflaw" (which is his new nickname around here.) He called the City and the helpful clerk said it was a mistake and that the tickets from before the date when the registration switched to his name would be removed from the record. But they weren't.

So he had to miss two days of work to get his car out of impound because the City of Seattle and the Dept of Licensing (which should have issued him a new license plate as soon as the car changed hands) apparently do not communicate at all.

There's no real downside for the police or the city for fucking up like this either. They just shrug, say "oops" and that's that. Sucks to be you.

Posted by flamingbanjo | November 25, 2006 2:12 PM

Okay, here's another one:

My scooter was rear-ended over a month ago about 150 feet from my driveway. The driver got out of his car just long enough to tell me he didn't have insurance before driving away from the scene - but not before I took a picture of his license plate with my PDA. All this was reported to the officer who eventually showed up to take my statement. Naturally, he wrote down the wrong license number on his report, which took me nearly two weeks to correct.

About a week after the incident, I happened to be on the #3 bus when I saw the same car with same plates parked about five blocks from where I live. I duly reported its locaction to SPD.

Since then, I've actually seen the same car drive down my street on two subsequent occasions. Evidentally, even giving SPD the plate # & probable residence of the perp isn't sufficient for them to dredge up enough energy to drive over to the location and bother to investigate a rear-ending, uninsured, hit-and-run driver.

Posted by COMTE | November 25, 2006 2:58 PM

Did Cross ever get his biscuits and gravy?

Posted by Brandon Dismuke | November 25, 2006 3:21 PM

Years ago, I was rousted out of bed in the middle of the night at my Capitol Hill studio by my door intercom buzzing. I wasn't expecting anyone, so I just ignored it, figuring it was drunks.

A few minutes later, I heard the elevator start up, and then heard it stop on my floor.

Seconds later, there was a pounding on my door "SEATTLE POLICE! OPEN UP!"

Too groggy to protest (but at least not too groggy to first make sure they really were cops by asking them to show their badge through the peephole) I let them in.

"Where's Ephram?" they demanded, barging in. I told them I didn't know an Ephram. "Mind if we look around?" they asked. I told them sure, and they quickly cased my living room, kitchen, bathroom and closet.

"We had a report that an Ephram was attempting suicide in apartment 602 at XXX Bellevue Avenue East."

"The is XXX Bellevue Avenue. XXX Bellevue Avenue East is north of Denny" I told them.

(pause. the copps look at each other.)

"Thank you very much. Sorry to have bothered you" they replied, and beat a hasty retreat, hopefully in time to save poor Ephram.

Posted by Catalina Vel-DuRay | November 25, 2006 3:26 PM

Many SPD cops are overweight, too.

Posted by some deaths take forever | November 25, 2006 3:55 PM

And white.

Posted by Where's Racist Watch ? | November 25, 2006 5:49 PM

And their mustaches always tickle my penis when they give me BJs.

Posted by dzienkowski | November 25, 2006 8:04 PM

Jesus. What a cluster fuck.

The SPD is out of control.

Posted by Ryan | November 25, 2006 11:15 PM

About 10 years ago, on Christmas Eve, I was working in the Westin office tower and walking towards Pine to grab the bus home. i walked past the Seafirst (Bank of America) and there were a lot of cop cars around it. About a block away I heard a voice say "Stop right there!' i turned around and there was a cop with his Glock pointed right at my face. He made me walk slowly to his car and bend over the trunk of his car. he handcuffed me and ten minutes later he let me go saying I matched the description of one of the robbers a "white gut in a black trench coat." He said it was "a strange way to dress." He must have been new to the big city. he didn't say he was sorry, he Just said "you can go."

Posted by elswinger | November 25, 2006 11:16 PM


Posted by neologism | November 26, 2006 1:42 AM

hahahah applogizing. It's like apologizing, except the person doesn't really mean it and is just doing it save face.

Posted by Damien | November 26, 2006 6:30 AM

still this guy was lucky compared to0 this story of a groom who was to be married today to his sweetheart but got killed by police this morning in New Yorks Jamaica Queens. This is even more outrageous. Al Sharpton "we don't hate the police...We hate police Brutality" see full story

Posted by sputnik | November 26, 2006 7:29 AM


"That's why I'm shattered by it. The way this came through me was like a freight train. After it was over, when I went to look for them, they had gone. And I've tried to meet them, to talk to them, to get some healing," he said.

He sounds like your typical overzealous (and later, sympathatic) cop. Better yet, a former Priest molester could have issued this statement. All fine and enriching, except Richards will come out of this smiling, just like his smarmy yahoo picture in June.

Posted by Yahoo News | November 26, 2006 9:02 AM

I love how convoluted the SPD website is. They intentionally make it hard to contact someone directly (especially the chief), let alone have anything come of it.

It's clear that the shortage of officers is the blanket excuse for not properly punishing the pigs in their department that do terrible things like this (and the incident elswinger recounts) to citizens for no damn reason, and give the rest of the good officers in SPD a bad name. They don't want to drop any officers and end up even more shorthanded.

Posted by Gomez | November 26, 2006 12:11 PM


Posted by Jay | November 26, 2006 3:12 PM

I'm sorry, but if Al Sharpton is there, it's a lie.

What amazes me about this new Seattle story is that SPD traditionally doesn't know or care a damn thing about car theft. Comte's story is much more typical. They never investigate car theft; they'll take a report, but that's the extent of it.

Posted by Fnarf | November 26, 2006 3:53 PM

accountability may be suffering as a result of a cop drought, but the new city council plan to increase the cop presence (50 per year for 5 years) scares the shit out of me.

several capitol hill neighborhood watch groups are concerned with the growing crime rate. i'm more concerned with the consequent increase in police brutality.

when the spd gets a call about african american youth in cal andersen park, every brown person in a 2 mile radius will be harrassed. and when the po-po gets a call about homeless youth shooting up on 12th and Republican, every brown person in the area will be a suspect--never mind that 95 percent of the people on the hill are white.

without the proper training, more cops equals an unsafe neighborhood. why don't we just increase the spd by 25 cops per year and take the salaries of the other 25 and invest them into transitional housing for the homeless and/or home ownership programs. let's buck gentrification.

Posted by fat pants | November 27, 2006 6:23 AM

home insurance rate

Posted by home insurance rate | December 3, 2006 3:38 PM

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