It does not get any better than working night watch during Summer time. The heat of the day is gone, people stay out longer and low life scumbags seem to come out to caper their dastardly deeds.
We were cruising slowly down the streets with the windows down listening to the sounds of the city to try to hear anything out of the ordinary. “For as many people that are out tonight it sure is quiet,” I said to my partner who was driving. “Yeah, it’s a little too quiet,” my partner countered with a suspicious tone. The dispatcher interrupted the lull to give us a radio call, “Units, respond to the 7-11 Store on a shoplifting suspect, male, approximately thirty years old still inside the store.” I looked at my partner,“Dispatch, requesting further information,” I asked into the radio sounding like, what is the crime if the suspect is still inside the store.
Upon our arrival, we pulled into the parking lot blacked out and stayed back to watch for a few minutes. We could see through the front enormous plate glass windows the suspect inside the store reading magazines but every time the store clerk would turn away, he would stuff another item in his coat. “Its ninety degrees outside… why is he wearing a coat,” I asked. “Let’s go find out,” my partner said getting out of the car.
We walked into the store and the suspect looked up, put his magazine down and began to walk out of the store. “Excuse me,” I said putting my hand on the suspects shoulder as he tried to walk past me and out the door. “Forget to pay for anything?”
For a moment, the suspect stopped, said nothing and had that look in his eyes that every Officer is aware of, that look of, “I’m going to run and try to get away” look. Before the suspect could run, I grabbed hold of his jacket and that is when it happened. He made a mad dash to try to get out of the door and the fight was on.
It happened so fast. The suspect and I began twisting around and around as I was trying to get a better grip on him and he was trying to get away. During one of the twists, the suspect turned and grabbed me by the uniform shirt and pushed me right into one of the over sized front plate glass store windows. My butt hit the widow first and went right threw. I somewhat sat down on the window frame so I was half in the store and half outside, still holding onto the suspect and my partner had hold of the suspect from behind. All I heard was a big, “CRASHING SHATTER!” All of the glass from the massive window began falling, hitting me directly in the back of the head, neck, and shoulders. The full brunt of the entire window of large chunks of glass seemed to search me out. It felt like glass was falling forever but finally, there was silence. I looked around and saw a lot of blood everywhere. The suspect’s face was gashed open to the bone bleeding profusely and my partners hand cut severely. I handcuffed the suspect, sat him down, and asked the dispatcher to send an ambulance.
“Are you alright?” I asked my partner who was holding his right hand together. “I’m cut pretty bad,” he said gritting his teeth. “What about you?” he grimaced, “You were in the window and all the glass was falling on top of you… I thought your head was going to get cut off.” I started to check myself looking at each arm, leg and feeling around my head and neck. “Me? I’m good, I’m good… Not one scratch.” I turned and took a sigh of relief, smiled and looked towards heaven.