Crime

Police beat: Teacher stopped for DUI flunks decorum test

Editor’s note: Compiled from reports to Tacoma police.

Sept. 3: The Tacoma teacher flunked every test in the book.

At 12:42 a.m., she drove a white 2006 Cadillac Escalade through the 3000 block of 6th Avenue with high beams blasting at oncoming traffic.

A Tacoma officer headed the opposite way flashed his own headlights at the driver: a signal to turn the beams down. The driver kept going.

The officer pulled a U-turn, activated his emergency lights and trailed the car, trying to pull it over. The Escalade kept going. The officer turned on the siren and activated the air horn. The message was clear: pull over.

The Escalade kept going, eventually pulling over after traveling five blocks. The officer walked to the driver’s window and caught a whiff of liquor.

The driver, a 37-year-old woman, demanded to know why she was being stopped. The officer mentioned the high beams, and asked for her license and registration.

The woman said she hadn’t driven past the officer and her high beams weren’t on. The officer pointed to the instrument panel, showing the high beams were still on.

“It’s a Cadillac Escalade!” the woman said, adding a profane adjective.

What did that mean?

The woman replied with insults backed by the same adjective.

“Are you stupid? What is wrong with you?”

She added that she was a teacher and named a Tacoma officer she knew. She still hadn’t provided the license and registration. The officer reminded her.

“Are you (adjective) for real?” the woman asked. “Are you (adjective) TPD? I’m a (adjective) teacher!”

“Are you (adjective) for real?” the woman asked. “Are you (adjective) TPD? I’m a (adjective) teacher!”

She handed over her car registration, but no license. The officer asked for it again. Eventually, the woman handed it over.

Was this her current address?

“I’m not telling you my address.”

How much had she had to drink?

“Are you for real?”

Again, the woman named the officer she knew, and demanded to know why she’d been stopped. Again the officer explained, and asked once more about drinking. The woman said she’d had a couple beers. Her voice slurred.

Any drugs or medication?

“What is wrong with you? Just give me a ride home!”

The officer told the woman she was under arrest for DUI. He told her to turn off the Escalade and step out.

“I’m leaving,” the woman said, and started to shift the car into drive.

The officer stopped her, opening the door and hooking her arm, eventually pulling her out of the car. Soon, she was cuffed. By this time, three more officers had arrived.

The woman shouted that she wasn’t under arrest. She told the officer she wasn’t an idiot like him. She said she was a school teacher and she knew her rights. She told the officer he would be fired.

A dog sat in the back of the car. The officer asked the woman if someone was available to pick it up. The woman cursed. She told the officer he must be new, because he didn’t know what he was doing.

On the way to police headquarters, the woman ranted. She said she wasn’t driving. She demanded a ride home. She said she wasn’t under arrest. She refused to submit to a breath test.

Eventually, she was transported to a nearby hospital, where the officer, now armed with a search warrant approved by a judge, arranged for a blood sample. The woman said she would mess the officer up.

On the way to the Pierce County Jail, she told the officer to find real criminals and get a real job. She told him she hoped he would die. He would be sued and his pathetic life would be ruined. He probably wasn’t having sex with anyone, she added.

The officer booked the woman into the jail on suspicion of drunken driving and interfering with an officer. The woman’s father, contacted by police, came to the scene and picked up the dog. The Escalade was towed.

Sept. 5: The dispatch call reported a break-in, but it was more of a breakout.

Officers drove to the 1400 block of South 56th Street, and stopped at a boarded-up house. Supposedly, someone was trying to get in, tearing off the boards placed by city code enforcement officials.

In reality, it was the former owner of the house, a 54-year-old man who had been staying inside and gotten stuck Winnie-the-Pooh style while trying to climb out through a window. His legs were out, but his head and shoulders were still in.

In reality, it was the former owner of the house, a 54-year-old man who had been staying inside and gotten stuck Winnie-the-Pooh style while trying to climb out through a window. His legs were out, but his head and shoulders were still in.

Officers rescued him and cuffed him. The man thanked them, and said he’d been stuck inside the house for five days.

Curses followed gratitude. The man said he had a right to be in his own house, and police had no right to arrest him. He’d tried to call the code enforcement officer and gotten no response, he said.

Officers said that was because the man had threatened to assault the code enforcement officer numerous times. The man cursed at them. He was booked into the Pierce County Jail on suspicion of obstructing a public servant.

Sept. 1: When the orange 2002 Chevrolet Avalanche reached the 1400 block of Martin Luther King Jr Way, the officer recognized it instantly.

The driver and the car had been pulled over multiple times since April. Each time, the driver had been cited for driving with a suspended license. The officer pulled the car over again.

The driver, a 33-year-old man, said his license wasn’t suspended. The officer said it was, and reminded him that he’d been involved in the last arrest.

The driver, a 33-year-old man, said his license wasn’t suspended. The officer said it was, and reminded him that he’d been involved in the last arrest.

Taken to a patrol car, the man conceded the point, and said he’d been trying to pay off his fines. The car belonged to his ex-girlfriend, who had an active no-contact order against him, but continued to let him use the car.

Officers spoke to the girlfriend, who said the man hadn’t violated the order. She couldn’t explain how the man had obtained the keys and her dog, which was sitting in the car.

Officers booked the man into the Pierce County Jail on suspicion of driving with a suspended license. The car was towed. The dog was taken to a kennel at police headquarters and given food and water.

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