Wednesday, August 22, 2007
I was heading out to dinner at the new Ravi Kabob next to the CVS, so when I saw the cars in Buckingham, I approached the officers and asked what’s up.
If you’re a journalist reading this (or any person who wants info out of someone else) you might see a problem right away—I didn’t introduce myself. In my journalism classes we have “the mantra” which I force my students to memorize and use—“Hello, my name is ________, and I’m writing a story for my journalism class and for possible publication in the Montgomery Advocate newspaper.” I use a similar version for this blog.
See, but I was forced off my game just as I was to say “Hello—” when Ofr. Mike Florio, a tall intimidating man, asked me if I always came up from behind people when approaching them.
Now, he was standing on the edge of the sidewalk directly in front of the Glebe Road side of the CVS. When I had approached from the south, a small group of people approached from the north, forcing me to walk up behind the officer before circling around to his front.
I understand that police officers must be careful of their surroundings and that they never know who is about to slide a shiv between their ribs and into their lungs. My brother-in-law is a county sheriff in New York, and he tells me stories.
However, given that the two officers with Ofr. Florio could see me clearly as I approached and neither said, “MIKE WATCH OUT!” probably I was not too big a threat.
So his question threw me off—I was not ready for attitude even before I’d said hello—so, without my standard introduction, I explained what I just wrote—the approaching people forced me to walk up behind him, and I ended it with, “I just wondered what was going on?” (Or words to that effect.)
Ofr. Florio said that nothing was going on. Absolutely nothing. “We’re just standing around wasting taxpayer money,” he said curtly. “Any other questions?” He asked it in such a way that he clearly did not want any other questions.
I asked if I should just check with Det. Gomez, the police officer in the public relations department who I often consult for police notes stories. Ofr. Florio either did not hear me or did not care to answer, and I walked away, annoyed.
It’s funny because I spoke with Ofr. Murphy later that evening. He was standing around talking to other officers and paramedics in the Glebe Market parking lot across the street from the CVS. I approached him, and his attitude was a little tense, but friendly enough, especially given the half-dozen police cars, Fire Engine 101 and a paramedic's truck all standing at-the-ready nearby. It was clear the excitement was over, but no one had left the party yet.
I introduced myself, and asked what was going on and he told me there’d been a stabbing.
Now, here was an officer who, given that one stabbing had just occurred, could reasonably be on the lookout for the shiv with his name on it. Instead of attitude, I got answers. Kudos to him!
Good day, sir! First off, I find this blog to be a joke. I find it funny how you know little if anything about law enforcement. If I were a police officer, and you were to walk up behind me, I would put a bullet in your head-safety first, right?.
Why does a police offiver have to explain their actions to a community blogger?
Mr. Thurston keep up the good work.
-your fellow neighbor
Links to this post: