Yesterday as part of the Citizen’s Leadership Academy, I got to ride along all day with City Marshal Brent Bucy. We started at 7 a.m. The marshal’s offices are at 417 N. 7th St., downtown, just a couple blocks from City Hall. Our first stop was Starbucks. I offered to buy his but he insisted on getting mine.
He told me that he basically patrolled the whole east part of the city. At that time we went out to one of the code response centers where a complaint had been lodged citing harassment of a co-worker. There was a separate discussion with each of the parties involved. One felt that it was just a misunderstanding and conflict of personality, however the other said that he had been threatened and wanted to press charges.
What resulted was a citizen’s arrest. The accused party was given a citation and a court date. It was similar to a traffic ticket. He wasn’t happy, but told the marshal that he would be talking to his union attorney which he was encouraged to do. Both of them seemed like nice guys and I couldn’t help wishing they had been able to settle the problem between themselves.
We checked out some parks in the area and then went back to the downtown station where Officer Bucy filed his report. After that we went to the human relations office at City Hall where a discussion was had with the diversity relations director. While there I noticed a fabulous poster on diversity and suggested that they provide the code office where the incident occurred with a similar one as it clearly stated the goals for the workers.
Again we drove out to check on some of the City parks and schools. At about 10:20 a.m. we were driving through a park when we both noticed a woman standing outside of the restroom building. The marshal parked and we just sat there for a few minutes. The woman eventually went into the restroom and then came back out with a jacket and a purse that she hadn’t been carrying before. She walked the other way and we drove off.
We went further around the park and turned down the street to leave when Officer Bucy again spotted the same woman outside the restroom. This time he drove up to where she was with the lights on the car flashing. He got out and told her to put her arms on the front of the car. He asked if she had any weapons. She said no and he started to pull out the contents of her purse. Immediately he found a 4 inch nail and a pair of box cutters with a 4 inch blade. He informed her that those were considered weapons. She said she used them to do her hair.
That’s when he placed her in hand cuffs and said she wasn’t under arrest but he wanted her to sit in the back of the car while he checked to see if she had any warrants. He asked for her name and social security number because she didn’t have any ID with her. He was told on the radio that she didn’t have any warrants but had a long history of arrests and the most recent were within the past month for prostitution and drugs.
About that time he shook her purse and out came several white rocks. I told him they looked like the bits of plaster I had seen fall off my bathroom ceiling the day before as I was re-doing it. He said he hoped they were just that but he had a drug testing kit and was going to test them and see if they were drugs. Unfortunately, two drug test kits proved that the “rocks” were indeed cocaine.
So then he told her she was going to jail and she asked why. He said for possession of dangerous drugs and having a weapon in a park. She began to cry and I felt badly for her since she was only about 30 years old and I figured she probably has children and I wondered how they would be. Anyway we drove to the Clark County Detention Center and she was booked for 1 felony for the drugs and 1 misdemeanor for the weapon in the park. It took quite a while to get the paper work done because they were busy and he had to write out a complete 4 page report. We didn’t leave there until about 1:45 p.m.
We went back to the downtown marshal’s station and he finished his paperwork. Then he placed the drugs in one evidence bag, threw away the nail and placed the boxcutters in another evidence bag. They were locked an evidence locker and he put the key to that locker in a separate vault.
It was getting close to 3p.m. so I thanked Officer Bucy for being so nice to me and allowing me to spend the whole day riding along with him and getting an inside view of what the marshals actually do. After that I went home.
These “hands on” experiences we get to have in the academy are so enlightening and educational. That coupled with the great dinner we get to have every Tuesday night make it totally enjoyable for me. MJ