Tumbler Ridge Police Blotter

Hello Neighbor and welcome back the Blotter and what a week its been here in the Ridge. Has this winter been long, or is it just me? Snow, cold, more snow, boredom. Man alive, I think I?ve got cabin fever because no matter how hard I try, I have those thoughts that Jack Nicholson had in the Shining: All work and no play make makes Kurt a dull boy. March, in like lamb and out like a lion? Hmm, not this year.

This winter reminds me of the winter of 1985, January 2 to be exact. That was my first day at Depot. It was 6 AM and our whole troop was lined up outside, trying to make our way to the mess hall. I was wearing a suit and did I ever look good with my mullet. (Don?t laugh, it was the 80?s and big hair was all the rage.) After breakfast, our first stop was….the barbershop. At that point in my life, hair meant a lot. So I sat in the chair, and said to the barber, ?Just a little off the top please.? I thought that was a funny line, but the barber took it as a challenge. The barber put down his clippers and pulled out his cattle shears. At that point, all I could think of was the Bugs Bunny episode where Bugs was the barber. I closed my eyes and sang very quietly to myself, ?Welcome to my shop, let me cut your mop.? Well, the cattle shears were bulldozing their way through years of tender loving care, the scissors were just a flashing, and the barber was breathing last night?s booze all over me. ?Done!? he said after 30 seconds of sheer pleasure. I opened my eyes, looked into the mirror, and the only thing I could say was ?Baaa.? I thought that was a funny line, but the mean corporal took this as a challenge….and that?s when Depot really started.

Next week I?ll tell you about the troop?s first group shower. OK, OK, let?s get to work and see what?s been shaking in this fair abode.

As I?m writing this, we just hit 240 calls for the year. We are about a week ahead of last year, and all indications are that it will only get busier. At first glance, there has been a marked increase in the number of impaired drivers apprehended as well as an increase in the number of drivers who either do not possess a license, or who are prohibited from driving. This is a direct result of the increased traffic enforcement of late. Having said that, I?m still amazed at the number of people who continue to drive without their seatbelts. It seems that $138 fine for failing to wear a seatbelt is chump-change, and does little to change behavior. That is why there is a move-a-foot (at the provincial level) to have the seatbelt fines increased substantially. Not only are they talking about increasing the fines, they also want to add points to a person?s driver?s license for this offense. There is one way to avoid all this…click!

A guy came into the office the other day to report that, in the wee hours of the morning, he ran over a drive shaft that was laying in the middle of the road. As a result, his aluminum wheel was bent, and his tire was shredded. To put this into context, the pickup was brand new and the wheels were of the 22 inch variety. For those of you who don?t know the significance of a 22 inch wheel, let me explain. They are the latest, greatest, craze in fancy wheels. They are so expensive that your grandmother couldn?t afford one. The person who was missing the drive shaft, was sitting in his semi, and wouldn?t talk to the pickup driver. A phone call later and the company that owns the semi, will be paying for the replacement of the wheel and tire. Thank you.

What goes step, step, flop. Step, step, flop? A drunken teen, you?re correct. A quick ride home in her Majesty?s taxi and the teen was handed over to the parent.

Another cougar was spotted walking near town (again folks, were talking about the cat variety, not the other kind). The conservation officer was contacted and was very interested until he clued in that we were talking about a large cat. Seriously folks, here?s the drill. When we have a winter such as this, deep snow in the woods makes it very difficult for wildlife to get around. Usually the wildlife head to areas when the snow depth is manageable, thus they are seen on roads, trails and the like. By they way, when you see a large cat, please don?t say, ?Here kitty, kitty, kitty.? And please be careful when walking with small pets, cougars think that cats and dogs taste like chicken.

Multiple calls were received regarding a suspicious vehicle parked 20 kilometers north on Highway 29. The reports indicated that the pickup was parked on the wrong side of the road, that the signal light was on and that the driver was sleeping behind the wheel. When the officer arrived on the scene, the doors to the truck were locked and after banging on the window, he was unable to awaken the driver. A tow truck was called and entry was going to be gained with the use of their lock out tools. However, before the tow truck arrived, the driver woke up, refused to open the window for the officer and sped off. The officer pursued the vehicle for a short distance, however remained well back. The driver rounded a corner, lost control and hit the ditch. When the police arrived on scene, the driver was attempting to put the truck in 4 wheel drive and to drive away. The driver was subsequently taken into custody, provided breath samples well over the legal limit and had the vehicle impounded. Charges of Impaired Driving, Driving Over .08 and Cause a Pursuit. Court date yet to be set.

Do you know what I really hate about winter? All of the rock chips and dings to the front windshield of my vehicle. It?s a necessary evil, and that?s just the way it is. What?s even more aggravating is traveling behind a big vehicle and getting sprayed with rocks for kilometers on end. Just ask the guy who met an oncoming semi and got sprayed with rocks. After being showered with all sorts things, when the dust finally settled, he wound up with 7 new chips on his windshield. The semi was traveling at a high rate of speed and this seemed to be a contributing factor in the creation of a flying gravel pit. So is there anything that can be done in order to avoid being showered by rocks? Nope, all you can do is just grin and bear it.

Some other stuff happened, but it?s mostly small potatoes. We?ll talk again next week the good Lord willing.

Keep it between the ditches.

Cpl. Kurt Peats