Scott Johnson

At the police department, we can tell when summer arrives. The number of calls increases significantly and the nature of the calls change a bit. With summer now here, this weekend was no exception. Here are examples of a few of the calls officers handled this weekend:

A firefighter attending the annual one-week Wildfire Academy reported that his ex-landlord was harassing him regarding a civil matter by phoning him repeatedly. The firefighter lives in Morrison County. The ex-landlord lives in Todd County. The Grand Rapids police officer explained that despite what he claimed a Morrison County Deputy told him, our department does not have jurisdiction in the matter. He was referred back to the Morrison County Sheriff’s Department.

A local counseling service called, stating that they have a client that they no longer want at their facility. They requested that an officer transport her to the Grace House, a homeless shelter. The woman is from Cass County. When the officer arrived, the woman announced that she didn’t want to go to the Grace House but rather to the Emeralds assisted living facility to visit her sister. The officer transported her there. I hope our local taxi service does not mind.  

A man called from a gas station to report that his neighbor is “nuts.” He said he believes that his neighbor is responsible for putting glue in the door locks at the apartment complex where they both live. He did not witness this; however, officers didn’t doubt it. You see, officers arrested and jailed the neighbor the week before for cutting the cable television feed into the apartment building.

A woman called for help on Friday night when her ex-boyfriend forced his way into her motel room by climbing through an unlocked window. He then began going through her clothing, asking her who the clothing items belonged to. She hollered for help and the ex-boyfriend fled back out the window. Police found his truck parked a couple blocks away and he was located nearby. He is now a guest of the county jail.

Officers responded to a local convenience store after a motorist reported that he witnessed a pickup truck being driven erratically. The truck was now parked in the parking lot. The driver had entered the store. Police arrived just as the driver, a local teenage boy, walked out of the store.  As it turned out, he ran away from home and stole the pickup truck in Cohasset. Officers placed him in a juvenile detention center.

A woman reported that a friend sent her a video in which he filmed himself making cut marks on his wrists. She told the man’s sister about the video, who then told her mother, who called police. The man’s cell phone was traced to a location in Itasca County. It was then learned that this was not the cell phone he was using. A different cell phone was traced to Stearns County, then back again to Itasca County and yet another cell phone again to Stearns County. Finally, officers of the Saint Cloud Police Department managed to locate the man. They took him to a hospital for evaluation. Overall, this call took six hours and involved a half dozen law enforcement agencies.  

Sometimes, officers are dispatched to one call and find that they are expected to handle yet another unrelated call at the same time. On Sunday morning, officers took a report that a woman had walked away from a group home the morning before. She had not returned. They learned that she is on medication and suffers from alcoholism. Officers notified surrounding law enforcement agencies and began checking town for her. They were not able to locate her.

That afternoon, officers received a call from the manager of a big box store. There was a woman in the store who appeared to be intoxicated and causing problems within the store. She had locked herself in the bathroom and was smoking. Officer Timothy Dirkes arrived and met with the manger.

The second officer assigned to this call, Bill Saw, arrived and started to make his way to where the woman was. At that time, store employees approached him telling him about a man that was acting strangely and appeared to be high on drugs. When Bill attempted to speak with the man, he became upset and disorderly. A straw commonly used to snort meth was found in one of his pockets.

The man had a warrant out for his arrest from Cass County. He was taken to the Itasca County Jail. The woman was the same one that had walked away from the group home the day before. She was taken to detox.

It is going to be a long summer.

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