Due to some technical glitches, the blog layout on my website http://www.thoniehevron.com didn’t work the way I hoped. So here’s Hal’s Ramblings installment for Sunday, December 6th, 2015. It’s also on my website but just barely readable. I’ll update my progress here. Until it’s fixed, come here for Hal’s Rambling.
With apologies for this nuisance, Thonie
By Hal Collier, Retired LAPD
Did you ever make an arrest that started out good but later turned to crap? This is that kind of arrest. As usual I’m working Hollywood Morning Watch (graveyard) and I get a radio call at the Bowl Motel at 2010 Highland Avenue.
“See the Man, Robbery just occurred. Suspect described as a female Caucasian, 5’10” 160 lbs.; Last seen running southbound on Highland Avenue toward Hollywood Boulevard. Property taken wallet and car keys.”
A little background. The Bowl Motel was a dirt-bag motel usually inhabited by prostitutes, hypes, drug dealers and the low life’s that frequent the entertainment capital of the world. I’m guessing the advertisement for the Bowl Motel stated, “We’re within walking distance to the Famous Hollywood Bowl.” Which it was, but it was also within running distance of Hollywood Boulevard! I’m guessing it was never on the Star Line celebrity tour. Any crime coming out of the Bowl Motel at 3 A. M. with a man and a female suspect had to be prostitution or drug related. Most female suspects 5’10” and 160 pounds are not female. That’s right, a man dressed as a woman. They were called Drag Queens, before the world became politically correct. I won’t go into whether the man knew he was dating a large-boned woman or just liked men dressed as females.
We meet the victim. A victimless crime as prostitution is often described! He’s a well-dressed, middle management type who stuns me with his honesty. He admits picking up the prostitute on Highland Avenue near Hollywood Boulevard and going back to the Bowl Motel. Once in the motel room, he was told to go into the bathroom and wash up. First mistake—he had removed his pants. When he exited the bathroom his wallet and car keys were missing. He confronted the female and she threatened him with a knife. She fled out the motel door and he said that girl could really run fast. At least his car was still parked outside the room.
We conducted a thorough interview and collection of evidence. Ok, we got the basics and had him sign the report. We use to have a saying for these types of crimes, “You came to Hollywood to get screwed and you got screwed!” I exchanged the word “screwed” for a better known word. Hint it starts with an “f—.”
We’re on our way back to the station to finish the report and we drive past Hollywood and Highland. Well, shit howdy, there’s our suspect. We handcuff him. Yes, she was a “he”. We have another unit pick up our victim for a field show-up, or what we use to call a one person line up!
Victim says, “That’s her!” We break the news that she’s a man. He didn’t act surprised. Our suspect admits to taking his wallet and still even has it.
We have the other officers transport the victim to the station while we take our suspect in our car. It’s not a good idea to transport them together unless you want to end up on one of those YouTube videos of stupid cops!
At the station the suspect tells us the victim’s car keys are in the bottom of the motel swimming pool. He didn’t want the victim following him in his car.
Ok, we conduct a more detailed interview of our victim. He asks for a ride back to the motel to get his keys out of the pool and drive home to his wife and three kids. I agree to take him back to the motel because I need some information from the motel manager. I leave my partner at the station to start writing the arrest report. I drive the victim back to the lovely Bowl Motel.
This is where this arrest turns to crap. I pull into the driveway of the Bowl Motel. I stop at the manager’s office.
My victim yells, “What are they doing to my car?” I look up and see four hypes with the victim’s hood up and they’re trying to hot wire the car. Guess they didn’t know the keys were in the bottom of the pool. The hypes don’t see me because I had my police car headlights on. I’m alone except for my less than smart victim who is now ducking down in the back seat. I request a backup.
I hear the sound that all LAPD officers in the 70’s knew. That’s the sound of a 1969 Plymouth engine as it races to your rescue. You can almost feel the earth shake as the four-barrel carburetor opens up with a familiar roar. I can tell it will only be seconds when I’ll have sufficient officers to make four more arrests.
One small problem, that Plymouth that is racing to my rescue is Sergeant Frank, the department mistake I described in an earlier Ramblings. Sergeant Frank sails past the Bowl Motel at 60 MPH and continues up Highland. This can’t get any worse. Two long minutes later another black and white police car pulls in behind me. It’s a good thing the car thieves were all hypes and loaded. We arrested all four and now we’re running low on hand cuffs.
We now have five arrestee’s, two separate arrest reports, two crime reports and an evidence report. Two of our arrestee’s have open oozing wounds from abusing drugs and will need MT (medical treatment) downtown. I’m guessing that we’ll finish up all the arrestee booking and reports by about three P.M.
Swell, this my only day off this week. By the way, it was fun watching the victim trying to fish his car keys out of the bottom of the pool!
Sergeant Frank is still at the Hollywood Bowl looking a police car.