2016-05-10 – The other day, a friend of the family had his cell phone stolen on a train here in Chicago. He had a few IDs and credit cards attached to the phone. After this occurred, I went with him to the police station so he could report the theft. The police refused to take the report.
Because he didn’t have an ID.
So here’s a tip for all you would-be criminals: always make sure to take your victim’s ID. That way, the police will not accept a report of the crime from the victim.
Either the police were lazy and lying to us when we went in or the rules they operate under are insane. Either way, we as citizens ought to be upset.
I’ve had things like this happen to me before.
A couple of years ago, my son Nat was pulling into a street parking space when a city truck made a turn into an alley in front of him and hit him, having cut the turn too short. I was in the car. Police do not come to the scene of these types of accidents, so we went to the closest police station to report the accident. Insurance companies like to see these. But the police would not make the report. They said that the supervisor of the city driver had to be present. If that was true (which I doubt), then the city has put in place a policy to cover up the bad driving of its employees. (Then again, maybe that’s possible. This is Chicago.)
Many years ago, my car was stolen from a health club parking lot. The club called the police and a car pulled up. The police officer asked for my registration. I said that the registration was in the glove compartment of the stolen car—as they advise you to do. The cop then said, “well, I can’t do anything without it.” I asked him if he couldn’t call it in so they could look it up (pre-internet days). He said he couldn’t. I said that, if he stopped me and wanted to check my registration, he would certainly be able to do that. The cop said, “oh, yeah,” and he went to his car and got my registration information so he could make the report.
Now, I know that policing can be dangerous, though statistically, cops are more in danger from heart attacks from their sedentary life style and donuts than they are from violence. Still, I wouldn’t have their job.
There’s lots of justifiable complaint these days about police violence. And all the commissions recommend that police departments cultivate better relationships with their communities. Refusing to take reports of crimes is not a way to cultivate good relationships.
First they want ID if you want to vote. Now you need ID to report a crime.