Friday, August 28, 2009

Th Doldrums

OK, so the term might not actually apply to my life currently, as it's pretty hectic, but the blog is definitely going through a period of the Doldrums.

Since returning from my brief vacation in the frigid North, where they have to write the current water temperature on a board at the entrance to the beach so you can decide if you really want to risk hypothermia for a chance to say you went swimming, things have been a little hectic. The trip it self was a lot of fun. We hit the beach almost everyday. The water was not unbearably frigid, though it was cold. To a good Southern boy, it was down right freezing, however, the temp board did say it got up to 70 degrees Fahrenheit one day. I don't know if I wholly believe that, because I swear there was ice in the water, but whatever, it was a good time.

Since being back to work, I have literally had to hit the ground running, and not really let up much. I've written out at least twenty warrants in the last two weeks. It seems like the majority of my knuckleheads who were going to give in to that summer madness, gave in while I was on vacation, so I'm playing catch up, trying to track them down and get them in front of a judge.

My supervisor is taking a personal interest in my caseload, she eyes it with a goal of reducing the numbers, and is finding all sorts of violations to write people up on. On the one hand, it's really nice having someone go behind and pick up all of the small details I don't have time to delve in to as much as I should. It's also nice to see my caseload numbers dropping below 170 for the first time in almost two years. On the downside, I now have hearings scheduled for offenders at least 2 days a week, every week from now until Thanksgiving, with some weeks having hearings scheduled on 4 consecutive days.

While this will definitely assist in reducing my caseload, it just liable to break this camel's back. I'm trying to get everything organized in advance, but will likely be scrambling to have all the paperwork in order, and forms filled out, and ducks in a row for the next couple of months, scrambling from one hearing day to the next. The organization is where I'm lacking. Luckily, my supervisor excels in that department, and will hopefully be able to help keep me sane :)

With all the scrambling, I've really only gotten out into the field one good day since returning from vacation. I had to drive all over creation, but nothing really interesting occurred. A few houses with dogs, one with a menagerie of dogs, cats, goats, and horses, but nothing really noteworthy. Well, except maybe for the burn pile out back of the menagerie house with a lot of aerosol cans in it. Nothing else obvious, but that pile will keep us on the look out for some other things.

I try to keep up on things when I come up for air, and I see that MaryJo's killer is finally having to face justice for that horrific act. Via the Coroner, and Wiki, I see that the horrific act may have been even more terrible than I thought. Drowning would be bad enough, but struggling in an air pocket, hoping for a rescue, and having it never materialize, seems to make it just that much worse.

I guess it's at least a break from the Pedophile Lovefest on the news anyway.

I guess I'm going to try and hold back this mountain of paperwork that's threatening to overwhelm my desk, and also try to catch up on all the blog posts I've missed reading recently. Hope everyone has a great weekend!


Friday, August 14, 2009

What we do...

Ranked in order on the Fun-O-Meter :)

My friend and partner, the Gunslinger, has an fun post up listing the things we do, in order of how much fun they are, most to least. I'd have to say I agree with his ranking, except for maybe the time spent in Court. I would move it up in the rankings a couple of notches, being, in my mind, more fun than Office Duty, or Reports. However, I also have a slightly different law enforcement background, that had me in a shirt and tie daily, and dealing with judges on a regular basis, so it doesn't really bother me. The only bad thing about court, is the down time, waiting for your case to be called, so you can present the State's side, and hopefully get a knuckle-head sent down the road and off of your caseload.

Wander over and give it the once-over :)


Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Yankee Laws

Specifically, those related to the VolksRepublik of Massachusetts. Is anyone familiar with them that can enlighten me? We're up visiting the In-Laws, and I had an interesting discussion with my Father-In-Law regarding gun rights here. My FIL owns a rifle, which he apparently cannot use in this state, with only shotguns being allowed, and a German P38, that his father brought back from WWII. Oddly enough, he also maintains a Concealed Weapons Permit, though I don't think that's exactly what they call them here, even though he doesn't carry or even own a carry gun, and that is the crux of my question.

My FIL tells me that the CWP, or whatever you call the local variant, is required of anyone in the state who owns a firearm of any sort. That it is not just a carry permit, but a permit that allows state residents to own firearms at all. He also informs me, that even the sale and purchase of airguns, from target pellet guns right on down to the Daisy Red Ryder BB gun, is controlled, and restricted to those who own such permits. He does say that he's not certain about the permit being required to purchase the air guns, however, he does state that you can only purchase them at an actual gun store. No BB or Pellet weapons or accoutrement's in the local Wal-Mart or it's Yankee equivalent.

Can this really be true? Are the people of this unfortunate state required to obtain a permit before they can even own a weapon, much less carry it? Also, is it true about the restrictions on air-powered weapons? If so, how do little boys play at cowboys or army with out BB guns to fight off the enemy and their ever encroaching horde of soda cans and Neco wafers?

If anyone can enlighten and educate me on this, it would be greatly appreciated. I may have to reconsider how much time I let my girls spend with their grandparents up here in this bastion of liberal ignorance. I already have their first rifles picked out and the oldest isn't even three years old yet :p


Friday, August 7, 2009

The Sly Dog

When out in the field, doing Home Visits, or serving warrants, you always have to keep your eyes open for dogs. One of the things I've learned, is to watch out for the sly or sneaky dog. You sometimes see the dogs that are rabidly aggressive, snarling and barking and doing their best to get at you from whatever is restraining them, be it a fence, chain, rope, etc. Those are good, because you know exactly where you stand with them.

Then there are the ones who are barking at you, protecting their property, but are also wagging their tails. Those can be difficult, because they may come up and just sniff you, and be happy to have someone near, or they may be wagging their tales at the thought of getting to bite someone. I generally notate them as 'moderately aggressive' when I'm writing things up, because they can go either way, despite the wagging of tails.

There are also the ones who are just happy to see anyone when you pull up into the yard, and you can see that plain as day in their posture. There are also the ones who go slinking off as soon as you pull in, who seem scared of human contact. I feel bad for these, because who knows what has happened to them that caused them to fear people so much, yet still stay with their owners.

The last, I was reminded of this week, are the sly dogs, or sneaky dogs. I pulled into the driveway to check on one of my people, and beeped the horn. Now, my guy has three dogs, two big ones inside of a small fenced in area in the front yard, and a small chihuahua type, that stays inside. So why do I beep the horn? Because this is a neighborhood, and I use the term loosely, that is known for dogs running loose. At the beep of the horn, I get no response from the house, however, 6-8 loose dogs do respond, with lots of barking and wagging of tails. I remain in my car, reach over and flip on the power to my siren bank, and hit the air horn a couple of times. The dogs that are running loose start adding jumping to the mix of barking and wagging of tails at the sound of the air horn. I see a curtain move inside the house, and know that my guys now knows I'm out here waiting for him to come out to the driveway.

However, the most important thing comes not from the dogs I see, or the folks coming out of the trailer I'm parked in front of. It comes from my left, from underneath the little pick-up truck I'm parked next to. It's a deep, angry, rumbling growl that just about sets the truck to vibrating it's so intense. I lean over out of the window, and try to get a better look, and sure enough, there's a sly dog, or sneaky dog, that wasn't under the truck when I pulled in, but is there now, just waiting for my door to open, and my left foot to stick out from under it as I try to get out of the car. Apparently, the air horn has pissed him off enough that he unintentionally gave away his position. Once he sees me looking at him, he growls a bit more, then eases further back under the truck, until I can't see him anymore, and slinks off to what is undoubtedly, another ambush position.

My guy comes out, we chat, I get my business done, all through the open window of my cruiser. My guy comments that "...yeah, that one's a sneaky bastard, you gotta keep yer eyes on him. If he gets round behind ya, he'll git ya sure..."

So, keep your eyes open. The overtly aggressive and friendly dogs will be easy to spot, but it's the sneaky ones you have to keep an eye out for.