The cars that get stolen on a regular basis in our area seem to turn up discarded around the Britannia Estate with an alarming and monotonous regularity. Most of them damaged, some of them torched. Almost every STOVEC that is seen ends up at one of the strategically placed decamp spots where lanes, footpaths or cycleways offer the increasingly irritating young vehicle thieves the ease of concealment and invisibility within the myriad of hidey holes on offer. Despite our efforts to plug some of the gaps we simply haven’t got enough available resources to cover every spot.
Unless, they f+#* up big time and prang someones pride & joy, get forced into an area they cannot get out of or we get lucky, or perhaps make our own luck.
One thing is for certain. We have to play exactly by the rules and they can ignore every rule as if it never, ever existed. So you can see who has all the aces up their sleeves. In times when it goes wrong it-is always the fault of the Police and never, ever of the scroats who steal the cars to drive them and their mates about. They are being cool and performing to acceptable standards. In their eyes at least. They have the support and backing of their scroat comrades who see the Police as merely an interference and also the growth industry that has spawned from community spokespersons who err on the side of the lawless (at least some of them) the limp wristed liberalists, those who despise the Police and hide behind the perceived respectability of some organisation and lastly, the Police managers who make policy and seem to be happy to berate the efforts of those who try to remove the scroats from the streets when the machinery is designed to return them as quickly as they left. Sometimes this seems like an unfair contest and we are always the underdog.
The ears of the minions prick up when they hear that the dark coloured astra circulated earlier is being followed by a marked unit through the town. Speed, direction of travel given and heard by those who depend on this type of info. Several single crewed units begin to make before comms ask the last unit for their call-sign, again, details of the vehicle again, and any other unit to respond, again, apparently unaware that the three other units are already making.
This is not a dig at comms but the two groups I work with have differing amounts of interest, reaction time and motivation. This is a shame, for the response units, but so is the difference between sh*t and sugar.
The vehicle is followed around the town, into and out of the Britannia Estate on several occasions because of forward thinking response who understand the right things. The lively “chase me round the town” has now become “I must find one of the decamp spots to get away”. For many minutes, collectively, we have managed to prevent this by careful repositioning and by a great deal of common sense. We even manage to get the vehicle to abandon the area where the driver is most comfortable and get the car off the estate and around a different area of the town. By more astute reaction we have got the car into the better off areas around the large cemetery where the amount of junctions has reduce and we can block or guide the route. I would say that this is the dead centre of town but would not wish to cause offence.
Traffic are all committed with yet another multi-pile up and the helicopter is having sweet dreams on its concrete mattress. Itis beyond the hour after which guilded carriages turn into pumpkins.
Then come the words that we dread, but might give us a chance at some redress.
The vehicle has lost control and hit a wall, no one appears injured, 4 persons have decamped and are off on foot. The blockers now become the extra eyes and close in on the area, still hearing the radio location updates. For some reason the four remain together and are lost after 3 or 4 roads in a series of gardens. We are lucky. We have Marvelous Marvin the marathon man in pursuit. Not very speedy but very fit and possessing the stamina levels of someone with an awful lot of stamina, far too much for the normal man but easily sufficient to chase the likes of the twockers relay team. He is able to keep within 50 or so yards of the twockers relay team as they fumble the batten change, lose any sensible evasion plan in their panic at being off their familiar turf and all pile into gardens, then after the first crash and a bit of ruffling…………………..nothing. Not a sound. They have gone to ground. Suddenly my emotions leap from excited to bloody game on. I have a chance.
Within a minute I arrive. Marvelous Marvin is stood on a garden wall, about three gardens in, surveying the scene. Two more gardens on, there is another response up on a stair case at the back of another house that is split into flats. He has a far better oversight. we have one more back on the junction and another fifty yards down the road in case they come out further along the road. And we have me. And I have my friend. That makes six of us. This is a luxury we simply cannot afford to waste.
I find out from Marvin exactly where they relay team have crossed the start line and I begin. No one wants to come out after my shout so I release the boy. He begins to ferret around, his urgency is clear and he takes off towards Marvin. Upon his arrival he suddenly veers away and down the garden towards………..nowhere. A shed with a padlock, a greenhouse with all the glass intact. A gap of no more than a sveral inches. Both are tight against the garden fencing.
There is someone there, somewhere, his deep guttural growling tells me this, he does not make mistakes. The aggressive barks that accompany the growling leave me in no doubt. They are there. As I join him, I tell him he is a good boy. He knows this but continues to growl and bark in a fashion that many people find a bit uncomfortable.
In my torch light, in the gap between the shed and the greenhouse I see the reason for his discontent. Two forlorn and pathetic shapes huddled down with terror, and I mean real terror, in their eyes.
They might not be afraid of incarceration, they may not fear or respect the legal process, but now, at this instant I know that my boy has their complete and utter attention and respect. They have no-where to go, there is no way out, except for the way they went in. they do not want to come out to try to evade capture because they are afraid, for one of the few times in their lives, that the consequences of their action will face something unpleasant. They cannot reason with my boy like they can reason, threaten or intimidate another weaker easy target.
I tell them what will happen if they try to escape, threaten or assault anyone or foolishly try to kick the dog. I suspect they already know this.
The troops converge. Out come one then two, the at the back of the small hiding place there are two more and one of them, pinch me, is Schumacher. I have written about him before.
I don’t want to paint the wrong picture that we have regular and repeat offenders…………but we do………..and itis Schumacher, again. We have met before. The legal processes fail to deal with people like Schumacher.
Schumacher comes out eventually, last, funny how the bravest and hardest can be the first to hit the hidey hole. Suddenly my night has really warmed up. This cowardly pathetic figure who claims he would have done me or my boy serious injury under the bravado that existed simply because he was cuffed last time.
He fails to live up to his earlier claims and I know that he will only begin this again when he is safe in the knowledge that the quickcuff shield of invincibility protects him and he can resume the petulant ramblings that endear him to us so much.
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