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No excuse justifies breaking laws

What day is it? Where does the time go? The stopwatch of time has no pause button. As we hurry through our day we sometimes rationalize reasons to justify our actions. This week’s observations come after rather an unpretentious DUI arrest. The arrested driver asked repeatedly to be released.

The officer says, “Hi, license, registration, proof of insurance, please.” Many respond with a question, “Why did you pull me over?” I wonder, is this a question of a rhetorical nature? Traffic safety is an important function within every community.

“The reason you were pulled over is the speed limit in the school zone is 15 mph and you’re driving at 28 mph, or the light was red or you failed to make a complete stop.” In any case, many times drivers respond with a justification for their action.

We are entrusted to protect and serve Boulder City. We often receive recognition, but at times, an uninformed person’s facetious commentary skews perception. The laws are clear-cut most of the time. However, on occasion, we depend on our training and experience to use discretion.

If someone is on the receiving end of a criminal complaint (i.e., ticket or arrest), there are remedies. Everyone has a right to enter a plea of “not guilty” with the court. If the courts find guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, then the courts assess a sanction, not the police.

The court sanctions impose a pecuniary liability or incarceration, not the police. The bill is paid in full or a custodial organization provides housing, not the police. That is our judicial system.

A colleague shared this comment with me, “Life has a wall of crutches and people are free to use any one of those crutches for support — excuses — to validate their criminal behavior.” Everyone is responsible for their actions, not a brace off the wall of mitigation.

Let’s move out, “Control, 269 I’ll be 10-8 with the crew.”

Jan. 20. A driver on his way back to Las Vegas gets stopped on U.S. Highway 93 and Ville Drive. He had just left the casino by the lake. Fortunately, the driver was sober! However, that last speeding ticket caught up with him, no pun intended. The Las Vegas court now wants to know why he didn’t answer the ticket. The driver is placed under arrest for that warrant.

Jan. 21. Officer locates a residentially challenged individual wandering around our humble town. The apparent nomad says he’s OK; but I guess North Las Vegas has an issue with the subject. So, officers take him into custody and deliver him to North Las Vegas. Are we friendlier than North Las Vegas?

Jan. 22. Officers are dispatched when a homeowner claims to have two subjects in his house, at gunpoint, sitting on the couch. Apparently, the subjects had broken in. Officers arrive to find the homeowner pointing a shotgun at an empty couch. Officers were able to calm the subject down without incident. They learn the subject was taking some new medication. The subject was taken to the hospital for evaluation. Now that could have turned out bad; thank goodness for the experienced officers we have!

Jan. 23. Officers get dispatched to Irene Drive regarding a vehicle accident. The driver backed up into someone’s front yard and is slumped over the wheel. The subject has no clue where he is or how he got there. Thank goodness no one was hurt, just some property damaged. The driver is arrested for DUI. Interestingly, this is the driver’s second DUI and he pleaded with officers to let him go because he wasn’t on drugs and had nothing to drink.

Jan. 24. Officers get dispatched about three miles out in the desert, regarding a hiker who apparently found bones. The area of the desert where the remains were found ends up being incorporated Clark County. Metropolitan Police Department in Las Vegas and the Clark County coroner respond to assess and investigate.

Jan. 25. A resident near Christina Drive reports the front door to his residence was pried opened. A TV and Xbox were stolen. Officers process the scene and investigate concrete leads.

This week I was approached by a concerned resident asking about bicycle safety. Section 484B.760 “Rules of the Road” of the Nevada Revised Statues covers the law as it applies to bicycles. In addition, it also helps when parents speak with their children about how to safely operate bicycles or other permitted wheeled devices.

Thanks for riding with us again. Until next week Boulder City, have a safe one and don’t forget to Bluetooth it while driving.

Officer Jeffrey Grasso is a 10-year veteran of the Boulder City Police Department. He previously served as a police officer in south Florida for four years.

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