Crazies on the road--using the police as weapons...


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JohnKSa
May 29, 2004, 01:18 AM
A person who is employed at my company had this experience.

Before work, this person was taking his children to school. He stopped at a four way stop sign, and since he had the right-of-way, he went on. The other person (I'll refer to him as "the crazy") at the stop sign took offense and began following him. "Riding his bumper" was the description.

The man continued to school and dropped off his kids. The crazy pulled into the school parking lot but then left without confronting the man.

The man then began to drive from the school to work. He passed a police car driving the opposite direction which immediately pulled a U-turn and began following him. This police car was quickly joined by a second and then a third police car.

Having sufficient numbers for a confrontation, in their reckoning, the police pulled him over and asked to search his vehicle. He gave them permission and after some time it became apparent that they weren't finding what they had hoped to find.

He started asking questions.

The crazy had called the police, given them the man's license plate and a description of his vehicle and told them that the man had waved a gun at him in the school parking lot.

Fortunately, the man was not carrying a pistol in his vehicle or things could have gotten VERY unpleasant for him. It wasn't exactly a walk in the park as it was.

I'm not sure what lessons are to be learned from this. I wonder if there is any way to protect against this kind of "attack." The only thing I can come up with is to install video cameras in your vehicle. That seems a bit over the edge.

I don't even think there is any recourse for the man in this situation. The crazy wins by using the cops to terrorize someone for him.

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P95Carry
May 29, 2004, 01:37 AM
John - the filing of false reports is one of the things I am most afraid of these days .. all manner of them.

I know cops have to take calls seriously but .. oh how easy it is for someone agrieved at you ... to call cops and spout all manner of lies.

''I saw a gun''
''I saw this man beating his child''.
''I saw a drug exchange''

I mean .... the possibilities are limited only by the imagination.

I wonder how many ''no-knocks'' might occur .... simply because someone's neighbor is pissed about something, and decides to ''stir the pot'' All sorts of grief can follow. ''Hey - my neighbor is drug dealing''.

I think sometimes cops forget that now and again ... they are being ''had'' ..... and I wish the come-back on the perpetrators of such false info was heavy and effective. Might make em think twice. it's no better than a kid calling 911 to report a fire .. which isn't!!

rayra
May 29, 2004, 03:23 AM
filing a false report.
a court proceeding where the re-telling of the stopsign circumstances establishes the matter AND the accuser's over-reaction sets the stage to impeach their testimony.
The timing of the school drop-off should be compared to the time of the 911 call / cell records of the accuser.
The audio recording of the 911 call itself would also add to the case, if the accuser's demeanor does NOT match the accusation.
The additional evidence of the search's negative results would help bolster the case.

There's a case there, if your co-worker has related the incident (and their part in it) honestly, and if they are upset enough to persue the matter.

And at the very least, it drags the sonofabitch into court.

entropy
May 29, 2004, 03:25 AM
Renaissance Italy had a cure for this: At the gate of the Doge's palace, there was a slot to drop accusations in. Only signed accusations were investigated, and if the accusation turned out to be false and/or unwarranted, the accuser was fined the equivalent amount that the crime would have been.
We used to have something called the Bill of Rights, and wasn't one of them the right to confront one's accuser?:cuss:

Alan Fud
May 29, 2004, 04:40 AM
A very interesting topic for discussion purposes as it may more than likely happen to others. Posted by rayra: ... a court proceeding where the re-telling of the stopsign circumstances establishes the matter AND the accuser's over-reaction sets the stage to impeach their testimony ... Chases are the caller didn't leave their name so there would be no testimony to impeach nor could it be proven to be related to the stopsign circumstances. Posted by rayra: ... The timing of the school drop-off should be compared to the time of the 911 call / cell records of the accuser ... I'm not sure how this would help things one way or the other. In all likelihood, the call was made shortly after the person left the school which would have been what would have happened if the story was true. Posted by rayra: ... The audio recording of the 911 call itself would also add to the case, if the accuser's demeanor does NOT match the accusation ... What does that mean :confused:

Kodiak
May 29, 2004, 05:02 AM
All calls (99.9+% made to 911 systems) will have delivered the ANI (Automatic Number Identification - the caller id) of the phone that placed the call to the 911 system. So the police know who made the call. They can find out who, when, and from where. Now they just need to prosecute that person for placing a invalid police report.

P95Carry
May 29, 2004, 09:31 AM
Just to add, after further thought ........ OK, so maybe the initiator gets caught ... that'd always be good.

BUT .... and here's the rub ... seems in so many cases that even if a report is false, the ''ball is set rolling'' ... and the innocent does not necessarily get cleared immediately. It's like sometimes the ''authorities'' follow a ''no smoke without fire'' policy.

This is where things can get ugly and give someone unwanted grief - perhaps for some while, thus making it even a life-altering event. Not to mention cases where the report leads to an armed confrontation, where the innocent defends himself and gets shot for his trouble.

False reporting for malicious purposes is potentially IMO a much under-rated crime.

WilderBill
May 29, 2004, 09:49 AM
There is indeed a great deal of potential for trouble.
Since the police seem to be obligated to investigate any call they get, you can be harrased almost indefinately.
Since there seems to be very little interest in finding out who is behind false reports and prosecuting them, it's great fun for them at taxpayers expense.
Also, if the police are busy following up on BS, they can't be protecting the public at the same time.

The only good side is that, once you know who is behind all the unwanted attention, you can return the favor from a pay phone.

Jeff White
May 29, 2004, 03:40 PM
Kodiak,
The only problem is that there are still lots of cell phones out there that won't show up on caller ID. One of the PSAPs for my county is the dispatch center for my PD. We get a lot of unidentified cellular calls.

Jeff

Standing Wolf
May 29, 2004, 09:56 PM
We used to have something called the Bill of Rights, and wasn't one of them the right to confront one's accuser?

That was a long, long time ago, sad to say.

Josey
May 29, 2004, 11:51 PM
ANI is NOT as good as you may think. The call could come from a public payphone or from a private phone system. We used to get a number of false alarms from a university phone system. The ANI was the campus police. False reports are gaining popularity in divorce cases also. Custody of children is affected by a molestation or drug abuse allegation.

nero45acp
May 30, 2004, 08:24 AM
In an eye for an eye world, a false accuser should receive the exact same punishment that the falsely accused would have received if they had in fact been guilty of the false accusation.

Sounds fair to me.





nero

P95Carry
May 30, 2004, 03:02 PM
Nero - I'll drink to that - 110%.

(if only).

Kodiak
May 31, 2004, 02:42 AM
Jeff:

You need to really start complaining about that to your local providers. If they can bill the call they can provide ANI to a PSAP. My guess is one or more of the paths from one or more cell towers to the PSAP is misconfigured. It's really easy to do. Especially, if one of the carriers is using a DMS configured as say a 100 and a 250. The problem is going to be finding the right person in the phone company/companies who actually gives a hoot about the problem enough to start tracking the problem for you. One thing that might help is to find a specific cell phone in a specific physical location at a specific time (hours/minutes/seconds/day of week/etc) that causes the problem. Then start complaing like crazy to the phone companies. These problems can be difficult to find and fix but if your persistent the carriers can fix the problem.

Also, don't give up after finding the first 'misconfigure. Many times there's more then one.

Kodiak

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