Space? No, not the one above the clouds. I’m talking about the space most of us work in. From cubicles and warehouses to storefronts or window offices, most jobs demand being at a fixed location or position within a building.
With a bit more than 3 feet of head room, almost 4 feet of leg room and almost 2 feet worth of seat, our office provides a window into our daily life. Our patrol cars’ spatial configuration also provides an eye in the sky camera, a GPS tracker, computer, speed radar, aviationlike control button, lights, sirens, a radio, public address system, trauma packs and additional firearms, not to mention what we lug around in our trunk. Believe it when I tell you our office space is at a premium.
Let’s not forget our back seat, which has cramped room for two.
During our 12-hour shifts we are constantly moving. In, out, stand up, sit down, left, right, stop, listen, look, analyze and act. Act? Yes, our law enforcement action comes by educating, citing or arresting law breakers. All this from our confined cockpit.
There is no such thing as routine or mundane in our travels. When you call 911, you want us there now! Our distinctively marked, black-and-white chariots provide us with shuttlelike accommodations to better serve you. Although it may seem like we have many of these sleds, we could actually use more. Our patrol cars must be highly tuned and well-functioning, dependable machines.
With steering wheel in hand and the police radio on, hop in, we have some work to do! “Control, 269, 10-8 (in-service), what do you have for us?”
March 16. A driver heading out of town sees the moonlight glistening off Lake Mead. The red and blue lights finally catch his attention. Mr. “Inebriated’s” standardized field sobriety performance was an Oscar nomination. Fortunately, we caught him before any one got hurt. The driver didn’t get the Oscar, but he did win overnight lodging at Henderson Detention Center.
March 17. A caller reports finding narcotics paraphernalia on the apartment’s stairwell located off Capri Drive. We arrive, locate the drug kit and take it for destruction. The drug kit’s destruction is done by one officer, witnessed by another. It doesn’t seem like a big deal, but finding needles or drug kits can be an indication of a larger problem.
March 18. Officer pulls over a speeding truck coming into town. When the officer approaches, the driver lowers the window. The skunk smell is unmistakable. The driver admits to some Maui wowie and some crystal, (crystal methamphetamine that is). After arresting the subject and conducting an inventory search, the pipes are located. You know the drill; Clark County Detention always has vacancies.
March 19. Officers are dispatched to the area of Marina Drive, on the lake side, regarding a domestic incident. One of the parties failed to keep cool and allegedly committed an act we can’t overlook. Henderson Detention Center will be plus one. Arguments happen, but please don’t do something that will require us to take enforcement action.
March 20. Officers are summoned to a local motel regarding a few high school kids allegedly “partying” in a motel room. Officers arrive and locate two kids skipping school. Offices did not find any evidence of a party and take the kids back to school. Boulder City High School staff will be making some calls and administering consequences.
March 21. An alert officer sees a speeding car come into town. It’s the witching hour. After the car stops, the officer investigates why the 39-year-old male driver has a 16-year-old passenger. They’re a long way from her home in California. The officer learns the car is driven by a felon and is reported stolen out of California. The driver is arrested for possession of a stolen vehicle, DUI and narcotics charges. The young lady is taken to juvenile hall on narcotics charges. Mom’s on her way from California to pick up missy. Good job Boulder City Police Department.
March 22. A beautiful day provided a whole bunch of drivers an opportunity to get out and enjoy a nice drive with the top down. However, they forgot that the speed limit is the speed limit. Many tickets were issued. The day kept being beautiful for good drivers.
Next time you get to work, think. Hey, I have the best job in the world, especially if you work and live in Boulder City. Remember to pay it forward; in our line of work we see a whole bunch of need out there. Keep it real Boulder City.
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.