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Hassled by Sheriff's deputy

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Hassled by Sheriff's deputy

Old 12-10-16, 10:25 PM
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Hassled by Sheriff's deputy

Irksome that while I was waiting for my child at high school (on the cargo bike - Big Dummy with Bionix kit that we use often for transporting others) and the deputy sternly asked me if I had business at the school. I simply and coldly said yes (I do not like to explain my innocence), as his questioning quickly got me off center. He said I needed to sign in at the front office (I was waiting in the parking lot with others in their idling cars and SUVs), which was ridiculous. I forgot what he asked me next, but I asked him if I was in a car would the requirement be any different. His response was something that didn't make sense, something about him checking the parking lot regularly??? Whatev.

Hardly anyone walks or rides to school. Thankfully my kids don't baulk at getting a lift to or from with the BD (or the Xtracycle). They walk sometimes as well. Surprised I don't get written up or arrested (I'm being sarcastic here). Sadly, we don't even qualify as a minority, we are the oddballs. I wish it was the other way around.

(before anyone shoots or gets their panties in a wad, I understand the issues surrounding security around schools and I appreciate law enforcement)

Edit to clarify where I was sarcastic.
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Old 12-10-16, 10:41 PM
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I would think the school would have some counsellor or school administrator that would hang out in the parking lot before and after school to get to know the parents who show up to drop off and pick up kids.

Assuming this wasn't your first day, you're probably the most recognizable parent. That crazy dude with the cargo bike (& extra helmets for all the kids). Does anybody show up in a red Ferrari? All the other mini-vans just blend in. But, a few people will stick out.

When in Missouri, I was stopped at least 3 times for legally walking in St. Louis suburbs. Twice near the airport with a suitcase. Apparently the police officer thought the person walking with a suitcase was a greater security risk than someone driving off with a car full of suitcases.
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Old 12-10-16, 11:01 PM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
I would think the school would have some counsellor or school administrator that would hang out in the parking lot before and after school to get to know the parents who show up to drop off and pick up kids.

Assuming this wasn't your first day, you're probably the most recognizable parent. That crazy dude with the cargo bike (& extra helmets for all the kids). Does anybody show up in a red Ferrari? All the other mini-vans just blend in. But, a few people will stick out.

When in Missouri, I was stopped at least 3 times for legally walking in St. Louis suburbs. Twice near the airport with a suitcase. Apparently the police officer thought the person walking with a suitcase was a greater security risk than someone driving off with a car full of suitcases.
Your comment brought another thought to mind. I was going to tell him that the chances of someone on a bicycle committing a crime at the school, in broad daylight, while wearing a bright neon green jacket and helmet is less than nil (not in list) compared to someone in a vehicle.
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Old 12-10-16, 11:17 PM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post

...When in Missouri, I was stopped at least 3 times for legally walking in St. Louis suburbs. Twice near the airport with a suitcase. Apparently the police officer thought the person walking with a suitcase was a greater security risk than someone driving off with a car full of suitcases.
Funny. While living in Lubbock, TX, my family and I walked to the grocery store. For us, that's a normal thing. Apparently it was so odd in Lubbock that someone I had just met a few hours earlier stopped her Suburban (everyone there owns one of those) in the middle of a seven lane road to ask if we were okay or if we needed a ride. I was pleased with how friendly everyone was, but it was like living in a twilight zone episode for us. At least the police ignored us.
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Old 12-10-16, 11:21 PM
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Gee, I wonder why the rate of stroke in people under age 50 is more than double what it was a decade ago? I also wonder why American life expectancy dropped in 2015 overall. (While it was "only" a loss of 0.1 year, that is actually a lot when taken over the entire population and considering all other advanced nations are increasing their life expectancies.)

It couldn't have anything to do with the fact that being in a car is so normalized that anyone who dares to move about under their own power is immediately suspect, could it?
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Old 12-11-16, 12:30 AM
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Originally Posted by B. Carfree View Post
Funny. While living in Lubbock, TX, my family and I walked to the grocery store. For us, that's a normal thing. Apparently it was so odd in Lubbock that someone I had just met a few hours earlier stopped her Suburban (everyone there owns one of those) in the middle of a seven lane road to ask if we were okay or if we needed a ride. I was pleased with how friendly everyone was, but it was like living in a twilight zone episode for us. At least the police ignored us.
This made me laugh because we had a similar experience in Mobile, AL. Got tailed around the grocery store by the cops quite a few times when I showed up on foot or bike, and the employees were delightfully friendly asking if we needed assistance in every aisle! We also confused our neighbors with the late night walks to Krispy Kreme, and were on several occasions offered rides to...the Art Walk.
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Old 12-11-16, 01:14 AM
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I've been "pulled over" by cops a few times while safely and legally riding my bike. One time the officer told me she was checking me because several houses had been burglarized in that rather nice area. I asked her what was taken and she said mainly TVs and computers. I said she was welcome to search my "vehicle". She laughed and told me I could take off. It was funny, but also a bit annoying.
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Old 12-11-16, 04:25 AM
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The cops don't look twice at me anymore. I think it may be age-related. I hear about young people getting hassled by the cops all the time. If you look to be low-30s or less, watch out. If you look well over 40 you're OK.

Look odd, like the only dude on a bicycle and you attract more attention. It doesn't make sense because the criminals are trying to blend in. But you can't pay a lot of attention to everybody because that's not practical. So the police keep busy to feel like they're doing something important.
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Old 12-11-16, 07:11 AM
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I never had any issues with cops...The only thing OP needed to do was to say that he was picking up his kid from school and all the drama would of been avoided.
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Old 12-11-16, 07:45 AM
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Originally Posted by wolfchild View Post
I never had any issues with cops...The only thing OP needed to do was to say that he was picking up his kid from school and all the drama would of been avoided.
Sorry, no drama here. I didn't like being questioned when I was totally legit in waiting for and then picking up my child. What I don't want to do is explain my innocence just because I stand out. I could have made some drama though and voiced the thought that came to mind when he stared at me and then questioned me (I filter those). I feel that is an invasion of my privacy and right to do as I need and move about my town, within the law of course. The fact that I was on my bicycle made me stand out and trigger the deputy's suspicion. He might have been better just to observe me and then move on when I picked up my child. Or, he could have came over to me (he questioned me from afar) and asked if I was picking up a child. It was BS that I had to sign in, because every person picking up a kid would have to do that as well. Boy, wouldn't that be a treat for the front office every day.

There was a panel van behind me that I guess was also picking up. If I were to suspect anyone it would be a panel van, but that person was completely ignored.

BTW - it was just my ego that got the best of me, I understand that. However, for some reason I wanted to write about it. Hmmmm...
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Old 12-11-16, 10:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Ridefreemc View Post
I didn't like being questioned ...
I agree that it's inherently offensive without just cause.
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Old 12-11-16, 11:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Ridefreemc View Post
Your comment brought another thought to mind. I was going to tell him that the chances of someone on a bicycle committing a crime at the school, in broad daylight, while wearing a bright neon green jacket and helmet is less than nil (not in list) compared to someone in a vehicle.
I routinely cut across a community college commuting or going to/from running errands. A security guard stopped me once and asked what I was up to on the deserted campus after dark. I was fine with answering his questions and made the point that I have "aircraft quality" lighting front and rear and not like I am sneaking around with a crowbar of can of spray paint. Me being "old" probably didn't hurt either.

Now I know all the security people by sight and they just ignore me. Having an attitude would not have achieved my goal - free access to the campus sidewalk network after dark. Everyone was polite, we exchanged information, things made sense to The Badge, and now I can "trespass" all I want to. Guy is just doing his job and like it or not, profiling is part of police work.
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Old 12-11-16, 12:11 PM
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Originally Posted by JoeyBike View Post
I routinely cut across a community college commuting or going to/from running errands. A security guard stopped me once and asked what I was up to on the deserted campus after dark. I was fine with answering his questions and made the point that I have "aircraft quality" lighting front and rear and not like I am sneaking around with a crowbar of can of spray paint. Me being "old" probably didn't hurt either.

Now I know all the security people by sight and they just ignore me. Having an attitude would not have achieved my goal - free access to the campus sidewalk network after dark. Everyone was polite, we exchanged information, things made sense to The Badge, and now I can "trespass" all I want to. Guy is just doing his job and like it or not, profiling is part of police work.
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I would certainly expect to be questioned if I were to have been trespassing. I've cut through schools at night (can't now as they have secured the fences with no access) and understood that I could have been stopped and would answer any questions about why I was there, etc.
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Old 12-11-16, 12:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Ridefreemc View Post
I would certainly expect to be questioned if I were to have been trespassing. I've cut through schools at night (can't now as they have secured the fences with no access) and understood that I could have been stopped and would answer any questions about why I was there, etc.
I suspect that interest in strangers or someone/something that appears unusual in the proximity of elementary schools is more of a concern to security personnel during school hours, rather than late at night.
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Old 12-18-16, 01:42 AM
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Originally Posted by jon c. View Post
I agree that it's inherently offensive without just cause.
And unconstitutional as well. But all too common. I applaud the OP for speaking up for his rights as an American. It would have been easier to just bow down before the officer but if we don't exercise our rights, we deserve to lose them.
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Old 12-19-16, 01:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Ridefreemc View Post
There was a panel van behind me that I guess was also picking up. If I were to suspect anyone it would be a panel van, but that person was completely ignored.
Lolz: van-bigot complaining about bike-bigots...
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Old 12-19-16, 06:06 PM
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Originally Posted by mconlonx View Post
Lolz: van-bigot complaining about bike-bigots...
I guess I've watched too many movies. Always seems like the panel van has the bad guy(s) in it.

And yes, we all generalize and stereotype don't we?
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Old 12-19-16, 10:02 PM
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Originally Posted by mconlonx View Post
Lolz: van-bigot complaining about bike-bigots...
If I was going to abduct a kid, I would use a van, not a bike. So if a cop was on the ball, that's the vehicle he should check.
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Old 12-19-16, 10:30 PM
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Originally Posted by cooker View Post
If I was going to abduct a kid, I would use a van, not a bike. So if a cop was on the ball, that's the vehicle he should check.
Frankly, I'm just not sure why he even bothered with me. Trying to thwart a crime like he did would be like jumping from a moving boat and expecting to catch a fish when you hit the water.
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Old 12-20-16, 09:59 AM
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Originally Posted by cooker View Post
If I was going to abduct a kid, I would use a van, not a bike. So if a cop was on the ball, that's the vehicle he should check.
I'd use a higher-end euro SUV/Crossover/minivan/wagon with tinted windows. Or the sedan with the biggest trunk I could find. Knowing that panel vans are routinely and unfairly profiled...



But certainly not a cargo bike.
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Old 12-20-16, 03:42 PM
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Originally Posted by mconlonx View Post
I'd use a higher-end euro SUV/Crossover/minivan/wagon with tinted windows. Or the sedan with the biggest trunk I could find. Knowing that panel vans are routinely and unfairly profiled...



But certainly not a cargo bike.
I'd love to experiment. I'll show up on the Big Dummy, and you take the van. I have an idea that you'd still get through without questioning.

Great pic by the way
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Old 12-20-16, 07:00 PM
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You should dress as a clown complete with evil clown face painted on.

What is perhaps being missed is that a large swath of the populace that ride in those SUVs cannot fathom otherwise and think (yes even know) that those on bicycles are indigents and nar'do'wells up to possible no good.
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Old 12-21-16, 04:51 AM
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Well, at least he didn't take you in for having "retrograde tendencies".
see: Ray Bradbury's "The Pedestrian".
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Old 12-21-16, 05:40 AM
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Originally Posted by ironwood View Post
Well, at least he didn't take you in for having "retrograde tendencies".
see: Ray Bradbury's "The Pedestrian".
Good god, that could be me! I rode to a business meeting yesterday (I am retired, but substituted) and was really really the odd man out. So I say, "so what", I had other errands to run and it was a nice day. Actually, everywhere I went besides the bike shop I was him!

"His behavior is not acceptable in society - no one walks anymore and it is queer that he continues to do so as his primary hobby."

Ray Bradbury: Short Stories ?The Pedestrian? Summary and Analysis | GradeSaver
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Old 12-21-16, 05:41 AM
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Originally Posted by ironwood View Post
Well, at least he didn't take you in for having "retrograde tendencies".
see: Ray Bradbury's "The Pedestrian".
That's a good story. It's gotten to the point in some places that moving around without a car is looked upon as suspicious behavior. Bradbury would know; he lived in L.A. and was car-free. I had the pleasure of meeting him one time at a production of one of his plays, The Wonderful Ice-cream Suit, which a friend of mine was acting in in San Diego. He took the train down from La La Land.

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