Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Christmas Errand Ends in Hostility

We went to see Santa last night. It was just fine--short line, the boys were cooperative, good picture, etc. We head back to the car in the rain and dark (it's now about 6:30). The boys are buckling their belts and Jeff starts to pull out of the spot. We hit something. I look out the back window of the van and don't see anything. He stops, pulls up a bit and gets out.

We collided with another car backing out of a parking space--a Miata (aka jelly bean), which is why I cannot see it out the back window. Jeff comes back to the car and collects paper and a pen. He writes down all of his contact info--name, phone, address, driver's license number, insurance company name, etc.

"She was on the phone," he said. She told you that?! "Yes," he said. She apparently said she was on the phone to her insurance agent because she had an accident earlier in the day. Then, she said to him, "didn't you hear me scream?" Is she serious?!

We had no damage to our car (except maybe a little bumper pop out, which may be more from when I hit Jeff's police car last week than anything else). It was late. The kids were hungry. It was cold and dark and raining. He goes back out to hand her his information and I see him take hers. Then, he stays back there and I see him get a little "animated." He comes back in the car and says she won't let us leave and she says it's our fault. He reminders her that this is considered a "no fault" situation.

She won't listen and won't even move her car out of the parking isle (her totally drivable car with a dent). I can see her on her cell phone. I get out to find out what the problem is. "I am calling the police," she says. "You hit my wheel." I told her her car is most certainly drivable and that we have exchanged information, have a car full of three hungry children and it is late--and raining--and cold. She is shaking with angry. "Yes. Yes." she says to the 911--yes, I said 911--dispatcher. I said, "Seriously, the police have real business to take care of tonight, this is silly. Please move your car." No.

We were stuck. "If you leave, it's a hit and run," she threatened. "How is it a hit and run if I gave you all of my contact information?" Jeff asks. "I want the police to take a picture." "The police don't take pictures," Jeff said. "Yes they do," she said. "Trust me, they don't," he said.

Jeff tried to get out and she wouldn't let us out. Then, the car in front of us left and we pulled through the spot. We leave. I ask Jeff if he is confident in the law and he said yes, he knows what he did was legal. He had met his obligation. I asked him what he would do if he showed up to a run for a parking lot fender bender. He said he would make sure people exchanged information and then tell them to go.

We did all of that. No one was hurt, no one was hiding their identity, no one's car was not drivable. It's a dent in her jelly bean, people. A dent--from a parking lot collision. Andy, the whole ride home, was worried Jeff was going to get arrested. We kept reassuring him Jeff had done nothing wrong that he followed the law. Jeff emailed our insurance agent when he got home to tell him what had happened and give him a heads up, but said we had no damage to our car (which we didn't). Jeff never disclosed to this woman that he is a police officer. Never once showed his badge or challenged her with his authority--nothing.

So, today he is at work and guess who walks in to the police station? She does. She tells a supervisor that she "Googled" Jeff and found out he is a police officer and now wants to file a complaint against him. Is this fair? Should we track her employer down and file a complaint about her combative attitude and the fact that she confined us in a parking lot? I would never even consider doing that to someone.

What do you think? Is it fair that because he is a police officer she can go file a complaint about something that happened when he was off-duty, with his family--something where he wasn't even wrong?


Jill said...

oh for crying out loud! how lame!! she should be at fault because she was on the phone when it happened and she wasn't paying as much attention as she should have....ugh! so sorry, that is insane.

Anonymous said...

Jeff should have locked her up for 5 counts of criminal confinement for not allowing all of you to leave once he had fulfilled his legal obligation to exchange information.

What a tool?

I hope a supervisor told her to go pound sand.

Anonymous said...

She was probably on the phone to her psychiatrist because she obviously has issues! And, nothing better to do than stalk innocent citizens at their workplace. Tell us more about what happened at Jeff's office. How can a simple visit with Santa go so wrong? Merry Flipping Christmas.

Anonymous said...

he should target her for speeding! - mary

Anonymous said...

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Be Mindful Of Breakables!