Look Out the Window


During a recent shift, one of my co-workers was sorting through an old binder that held her notes, cheat sheets and contact numbers from approximately 8-10 years ago. Reading over them, we realized that a lot has changed over the last eleven years plus years that we have been on this job. It was interesting to hear names of co-workers long retired, or moved on, stories and other reminders of dispatch days gone by.

One such story, was a call for assistance that my co-worker had taken a number of years ago; the outcome of which was rather humorous. The story starts with an intoxicated male calling for help, because he was lost. Unfortunately, back in those days our 911 call info came off on a printer and did not include GPS locations for the phones. So, the call-takers were having to rely on this fellow’s directions which were very sketchy at best, as he was giving road names that didn’t actually exist. Needless to say, the caller’s “unintentional” misdirection was making it very difficult for our officers to locate him. Plus, as the night wore on, he was becoming more and more intoxicated, because he was drinking as he walked.

Fast forward to much later in the shift; a new call for help is received. It came from a farmer, who had an unknown intoxicated male enter his home to ask for help. My co-worker and the dispatched officer quickly determined that there was likely a correlation between the suspicious male and the intoxicated male. So, the officer heads on over to the farmer’s residence and does indeed discover that the subjects are one in the same.

Shortly before shift end, my co-worker received a message from the officer that had dealt with the call. He informed her that the intoxicated male, had earlier been involved in a collision on the highway. Officers attended to that scene and at the time the male had not been drinking and told the officer that he had a ride on the way. So, the officer left him while he waited. After a while, the caller got bored waiting in his truck and decided to get drunk, really drunk. Some time had passed and when his ride didn’t show, he was feeling cold and decided to start looking for help. This ultimately led to the predicament of him walking into the farmer’s house and scaring them half to death.

The officer said “Too bad the alcohol had dulled his sense of sight…a half a mile away, was a gas station”. He explained further that they had three helicopters, officers from multiple jurisdictions, ems and fire all looking for the guy, “When all he had to do was…..Look out the window!”


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