Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Chapter Sixteen: Police – My First Arrest

Chapter 16 of the Autobiography... Letter P, Police.


Chapter Sixteen
Police – My First Arrest

 When I was thirteen years old I was sneaking out of the house at night all the time. I had a paper delivery route for a few years and I was at that time where I wanted to give it up and pass it on to somebody else. Around this time my parents weren’t letting me hang out with my friend Travis. They thought he was a bad influence on me, but on the last night of my paper route I managed to talk my parents into thinking he wasn’t getting into any trouble anymore and they let him stay the night at my house that night. 

 That night we both went out and stole quite a few hood ornaments off of cars around our town. We didn’t get much sleep that night and had to fold and deliver papers by 5:30AM. I was passing the paper route onto my best friend who lived two houses away from me. He and I grew up together for the last eight years or so. He was a good kid and hadn’t been in any trouble so it was unfortunate that I involved him in what happened next. All three of us went off on the route to teach my best friend the layout of the route. We walked it for the purpose of learning it, but on a normal day I’d fly through and deliver the whole route on my bicycle in less than an hour. Walking it would take up to two hours. When we started walking the route we came across some cars with ornaments still attached to the hood. Some we pulled off, some we skipped by. But when we were nearly finished with the route I was showing my other friend where the deliveries went in the trailer park and I heard a “SNAP!” behind me. The next thing I knew was one of the people that lived there came outside yelling at us like crazy. Apparently he had seen Travis steal the ornament. So we took off running and we couldn’t think of anywhere to hide the ornaments, so I stuck them into my newspaper bag. A few blocks up the street a police officer pulled up next to us and asked us what we were doing. I told him that I was showing my friend how to deliver the papers on the route because he was taking it over. The officer asked us if we had anything on us we shouldn’t have and of course I said no. He looked through our pockets and when searching in my jacket he found an ornament I still had in my pocket from the night before. After that he told me I was under arrest and handcuffed me. I told him there was more in the bag and he took those too. All three of us were taken to the police department but I told the officer that the others didn’t have anything to do with it, that I had stolen them on my own. They took statements and my two friends were picked up by their parents. My parents were called down there as well and they said they were going to investigate it a little further. 

 A few days later I was at a track meet that I was participating in when four officers crossed the field and handcuffed me for the second time that week, only this time it was in front of five different schools and hundreds of parents. They took me to the police department again. This time they asked me if I had anything else I had stolen in my home and I told them I didn’t. They asked me if I had put anything in my attic that I had stolen and I again told them I didn’t. Then they pulled out a box of hood ornaments that I had stolen over the past month. It contained forty-six hood ornaments of all makes and models. I rode in a police car later that day and pointed out each house I could remember stealing an ornament off of a car at. There were too many to remember, and the rest were from cars in a municipal parking lot. 

 I was charged with multiple theft charges and was able to obtain a list of the confirmed victims of the thefts. I wrote letters of apology to all of the people on the list and all but two didn’t reply. The ones that didn’t reply ended up dropping the charges and the two that did reply accepted my apology and said I could do yard work for them as repayment for what I had done. I was still put on probation for something but don’t remember the details of the reasoning. Apparently they found cause to put me on probation, and I definitely needed it. 

 Only, when I was put on supervision they found I had been smoking marijuana, so they started drug testing me. I found out I could drink alcohol and it wouldn’t come up in the drug tests, so that was the beginning of my first stages of heavy drinking. I would drink almost every night for a while, just so I could sleep at night. It wasn’t long after that and I had a panic attack and finally broke down and told my mom everything. She had me see a psychiatrist who eventually started me on some medications that helped very little. But at least they got me started on something and recognized something was wrong with the way I was thinking and acting.

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