Behind the Badge

"If you have come to me in peace, to help me, I am ready to have you unite with me. But if you have come to betray me to my enemies when my hands are free from violence, may the God of our fathers see it and judge you."
1 Chronicles 12:17

Wait Right Here...

Once in a while an Officer gets involved in a situation where he has to be creative. Sometimes he has to bluff his way through. The important thing is to make sure no one realizes he is bluffing. The Officer must project confidence, if he seems just the least bit unsure of himself he could find himself in deep trouble.

There are several different ways to bluff your way out of a sticky situation. One way is to act crazy, so that no one is sure what you're likely to do, or act as if you are really tough. Acting tough is probably the hardest since you have to make people back down, not try to see if you are really as tough as you think you are.

I found for me a combination of the two worked best. Often the very reason you have to bluff will make the bluff easier. Soon after I got my own patrol car and started riding by myself, there were nights on Hilton Head when there were only two of us working.

On one of these nights the other Officer was out of the car on another call when I received a report of a fight. The fight was at a hole-in-the-wall club way out in the woods. When I got to the club I found it packed. As I got out of my patrol car I really wondered if I were being paid enough for these kinds of risks. I had two choices, to get back into my car and leave, or go do the best I could. I loved being a Deputy and this was part of it so I headed for the front door.

I took a deep breath and stepped into the club. There was a crowd of people with their backs to me right inside the door so I started pushing my way through. I hadn't gotten more then a couple feet when two men stopped me and asked, "Aren't you going to wait for some help?"

I tried to look calm as I said, "There's no one else coming, I can handle this myself. Can you tell me what's going on?"

One of the guys said, "Ya, there's a drunk over in the corner who keeps throwing his empty beer bottles at people."

I said, "Thanks," and started through the crowd again.

I felt someone grab my arm, I figured this was it, I was about to get my clock cleaned. To my relief it was one of the guys who had talked to me at the door. "Officer, we know you don't need any help, but we come to this club all the time and we would like to help. If you don't mind, we know exactly who the guy is, so if you will stand outside the front door we'll throw him out to you."

Well that sounded good to me, so I waited outside and they did throw him out to me. As I walked him to my car they both came out and thanked me for letting them help.

by R.L. Dettwiler


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