Listen: A Routine Incident (Police Arrest Sound Sequence master)

Content Warning: some content, language, and statements used in this story may be triggering to listeners.

MER’s Greg Barron rides along with Saint Paul Police Officers Joe Pelton and Keith Martenson as they patrol the streets of the city during the night watch. Barron captures events of the evening in dramatic fashion through sounds and actions that take place as they intervene in a domestic dispute.

A fascinating insight into the risks and routines encountered by policemen.


1974 Ohio State Award


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SPEAKER (ON RADIO): University Avenue. DP has a loaded gun. This call is not verified.

GREG BARRON: We've just pulled up on a call, something about somebody with a loaded gun. We just pulled up on the address, and there's a woman sitting up, in her bathrobe, on top of the roof. There goes Pelton around the back, running around the back, with Martenson covering the side of the house.


KEITH MARTENSON: Stay back there.

GREG BARRON: What happened?


KEITH MARTENSON: Just stay back there.

SPEAKER: Oh! He's out in the back.

GREG BARRON: Who's out in the back?

SPEAKER: Is that his girlfriend?

GREG BARRON: The girl up on top of the roof is crying. She said, the landlady's son is out in the back. She looked terribly frightened.

SPEAKER: [INAUDIBLE] getting back here.


GREG BARRON: OK, we've got about four or five officers now, up on a car that was just about to pull out, in the back of the house.

JOE PELTON: Hey, you stay out there.

GREG BARRON: All right. I've just been ordered back. I can see over the top of the car, though. I'm not moving all the way back here. They're interrogating the guy in the car and searching it right now. Two officers have been dispatched to the front of the house, to help the woman off the roof.

KEITH MARTENSON: Where you going?

GORDON: Well, I was going to go and get my coat.



SPEAKER: Who are you?

GREG BARRON: I'm with Pelton and Martenson.

SPEAKER: All right.

GREG BARRON: They ordered the guy to the back of the car. He's just standing there, with his hands in his pocket.


GORDON: Well, I showed my ma that.

SPEAKER: Let's go.

GORDON: I say, I showed my ma the gun. Yeah, I showed my ma the gun.


No, this is my .22.

GREG BARRON: I'm going to approach them now. It looks like it's all right.

KEITH MARTENSON: It's a Luger-- Luger. The witness said all that you had was a rifle, a 30-30 rifle.

GORDON: No. No, I got that up in the attic.

KEITH MARTENSON: You've got a pistol or two, huh?

GORDON: Yeah. No, I ain't do no wrong.

KEITH MARTENSON: You just showed it to her. You didn't point it at her or anything?

GORDON: No-- my mother? Are you kidding?

KEITH MARTENSON: Well, she seems pretty scared. She's sitting on the roof, in the front, on the snow there. She must be scared for some reason.

GORDON: Yeah, OK, I tried to shoot my ma. I'm just a guy-- that's the only person who loves me in the world. I don't see why I should have to shoot her. Honest to God.

KEITH MARTENSON: Well, we'll go in in a couple of minutes and find out exactly what the whole problem is here. But there's got to be some kind of a problem, obviously. She isn't sitting on the roof out there for nothing.

GORDON: Yeah, well, I got a little terrorized, because I get a little obnoxious, you know. I'm drinking, you know, and stuff like this.

KEITH MARTENSON: Yeah. That .20-- where's that .22 now?

GORDON: My .22 what?


GORDON: Oh, it's probably in a drawer.

KEITH MARTENSON: In a drawer in the house?

GORDON: Yeah. You know, we keep them for niggers and the rest of the stuff that's coming up there. I told my sister that they try to emasculate you. I got a dog too, up there. He's a German Shepherd, you know. And we gotta watch out for them. I mean, I'm drinking now, man. I mean, don't get me wrong. But--

KEITH MARTENSON: Yeah, I can tell that.

GORDON: [CHUCKLES] Yeah, I know you can. [LAUGHS] I'm sorry, sir. I'm being really honest with you, though.

KEITH MARTENSON: Well, you put--

GORDON: I don't mean no offense, though.

KEITH MARTENSON: You put the gun back in the house, though, right?

GORDON: Yeah, I did. I think. [LAUGHS]

KEITH MARTENSON: OK. Well, we'll make sure you did.

GORDON: Oh my God, my damn feet are freezing.

KEITH MARTENSON: Well, we'll be done here in just a minute.

GORDON: Did you find anything in there?

SPEAKER: You're doing it again.

GORDON: I didn't do nothing wrong. God damn man, I really didn't.

SPEAKER: All right, let's go in and talk to the ladies.

KEITH MARTENSON: Well, we're going to go in-- we're going to go in, and talk to your mother, and find out.

SPEAKER: Can I turn the lights off, or she's going to run dead?


SPEAKER: All right, how are you?

SPEAKER: We all good.

SPEAKER: Do you own a pistol?


SPEAKER: Where is it now?

GORDON: I don't know. I really don't know.

SPEAKER: Do you want to come in here and sit down?

GLEN: Yes, sir.

KEITH MARTENSON: Hey, ma'am, do you know which drawer that he keeps his gun in?

SPEAKER: Ma, do you know what drawer he keeps his gun in?

SPEAKER: No. He's got no drawer. I don't--

SPEAKER: I'm sure she don't know where.

KEITH MARTENSON: He puts it someplace that you wouldn't know. But he told me it was probably in the drawer in here.

SPEAKER: In a drawer. In the kitchen?

KEITH MARTENSON: Well, I don't know. Was he upstairs at all, ma'am?

SPEAKER: Mom, was he upstairs at all?


KEITH MARTENSON: No? Just down here, huh?

GREG BARRON: The kitchen's quite a mess. It looks like there's been a knock-down, drag-out brawl in here.

SPEAKER: He has a gun, I know. But it's registered.

KEITH MARTENSON: Is it a rifle or a pistol?

SPEAKER: No, it's just a pistol--


SPEAKER: --and it's registered. I know it's registered.

KEITH MARTENSON: Well, he said he had a pistol.


SPEAKER: I know my shotgun is here, and it's upstairs.

SPEAKER: But that's upstairs in the attic.

KEITH MARTENSON: Was she here tonight?


KEITH MARTENSON: Were you here when this happened?

SPEAKER (ON PHONE): Yeah, he's here and the police are here.


KEITH MARTENSON: Do you know what he did with his gun?

SPEAKER: No, I don't. As a matter of fact, I don't even-- I don't even know if he really had one.

KEITH MARTENSON: I see. Did he go upstairs at all?

SPEAKER: No. We were just hoping and praying that he wouldn't come from up there. That's why I was out there.

KEITH MARTENSON: Did he threaten you at all?

SPEAKER: No. But we were afraid maybe he would do something.

KEITH MARTENSON: What did he do? Just come in and break up the furniture and stuff? OK. He just came in and broke up all the furniture, huh?


SPEAKER: What does his mama have to say?

KEITH MARTENSON: Mama says he's got a gun, for sure. Where's the gun?

GORDON: Mama says I had a gun. OK, let me see--

KEITH MARTENSON: No, you said you had a gun too.

GORDON: I want to find it myself, because I don't even know what she's talking about. I had a 30-30. I've got my 30-30 there.

KEITH MARTENSON: You told me a few minutes ago that you had a gun.

GORDON: There's my 30-30. That's probably what she thought I had.


GORDON: But see, I was telling her about my girlfriend and stuff like this, how we had our little discrepancies, and arguing.

JOE PELTON: Gordon, do you want a smoke?


KEITH MARTENSON: Well, when we were standing outside, you told me that you had a gun, and you put it in a drawer in here. I'd like to know where it's at.

GORDON: Well, I'll look at it, honestly.

KEITH MARTENSON: Well, if you'd like to tell us where it's at, then we won't have to be looking for it.

SPEAKER: Where would you think it might be?


SPEAKER: Did you have a gun tonight?


SPEAKER: Did you have a gun tonight?

GORDON: Yeah, I think I did. I don't know though.

SPEAKER: What did you do with it?

GORDON: I'm telling the people this stuff. Jesus Christ Almighty, give me a chance, will ya?

SPEAKER: Where's mama anyway?

SISTER: Grandma! Grandma!

JOE PELTON: Gordon, hey, listen, buddy, will you do me a favor?

GORDON: Yeah, what?

JOE PELTON: Will you sit down here in the chair?

SPEAKER: They want to talk with you.

JOE PELTON: Did you have a pistol when you were in here tonight?

GORDON: I don't know.

JOE PELTON: Do you remember having one?

GORDON: Did I have a pistol, ma? Or what was that? I had my 30-30 or my pistol?

SPEAKER: I wasn't there. I don't know.

GORDON: I don't know either.

JOE PELTON: Who was there?

SPEAKER: I was laying down.

GORDON: Ma was here.

SPEAKER: I was here, yeah. But I was in there most of the time. I didn't know--

JOE PELTON: Who else was here?

SPEAKER: Nobody.

JOE PELTON: Just you and he.

SPEAKER: The two girls were upstairs.

GORDON: No, I had my 30-30 I know. Because, you see, these niggers get me so pissed off, ma, that I can't stand them. (STUTTERING) I-- I'm ready to blow their brains out. Honest to God, that's the truth.

SPEAKER: It's because you didn't have that, I didn't see that.

GORDON: I'm ready to blow their brains out, the niggers in this area. Because they're ready to kill the white people.

JOE PELTON: They are?

GORDON: Honest to God. You damn right. Say, I'll be out and I'll check it up on Piccadilly. I work for Yellow Cab part-time. You know, I know it. I know it all. I know--


JOE PELTON: Do you know why he broke the house up like this?


JOE PELTON: Do you know why he did this to the house?

SPEAKER: I don't know.

JOE PELTON: How did you happen to mention the gun? Did someone see the gun?

SPEAKER: It's what they said. Marlene is the one that called up.

JOE PELTON: But did you--

GORDON: She said that I-- that she's actually seen a gun? No, ma, I never had a gun.

SPEAKER: I don't know. I don't-- she-- ask her. I don't know.

GORDON: Ask her, yeah.

KEITH MARTENSON: He's got a pistol in here.

GREG BARRON: That's what he told you out there.

JOE PELTON: Who told you that?

KEITH MARTENSON: He did. He said he had a pistol, a .22 target pistol, that was in a drawer in here, is what he told me. I went through-- I went through all those drawers there. That's why I'm asking.


GORDON: Hey, that's my gun out there, and don't ever forget it. I never pulled that out, either.

JOE PELTON: Which one is that?

GORDON: The one behind the door.

JOE PELTON: Oh, yeah.

GORDON: I just get-- I get a little obnoxious, and I say a lot of things--

JOE PELTON: OK, what we want to know--

GORDON: --that don't mean nothing.

JOE PELTON: What we want to know, Gordon, is what happened to the pistol?

GORDON: I didn't have no pistol.

JOE PELTON: Well, somebody said you had a .22 pistol.

GORDON: No, I never did. It's my gun that they carry, uh--

JOE PELTON: Did you shoot that gun tonight?

GORDON: No, sir. Check it out. Go ahead, take it down there-- the pharmacy. I never shot nothing. I know it.

JOE PELTON: The what? The pharmacy?

GORDON: Honest to God. If I did, I'd shoot niggers, I'll tell you. [LAUGHS]

KEITH MARTENSON: Now, you told me that you had a gun.

GORDON: Yes, sir, I did.

KEITH MARTENSON: A .22 pistol.

GORDON: I had a .22 automatic. But that's a .22 30-30 is what I got, is what I meant.

KEITH MARTENSON: Right there. And then you told me that you had a .22 pistol, a target pistol, that you kept here in the drawer.

GORDON: That's the one I got right there.

KEITH MARTENSON: Before you told me you had two guns.

GORDON: No, sir. Check it out, I don't care. You can look all night long.

KEITH MARTENSON: Yeah, that's what we're doing.

GORDON: There ain't no-- there ain't no reason why I gotta lie. Because that's all I got.

KEITH MARTENSON: How come you broke up all this furniture?

GORDON: Because I was mad, man.

KEITH MARTENSON: What were you mad at?

GORDON: Well, I'll tell you-- if I thought it was any of your business, I'd tell you.


GORDON: Oh, no, no, sir. I mean, I don't mean no mistakes and all that. But it's my own front. You know, I'm drinking.

SPEAKER: This is ma's house.

GORDON: It's my mother's house and, uh--

SPEAKER: Yeah, so why wreck it for her?

GORDON: Give me a chance, will you?

SPEAKER: Give me a chance!

GORDON: Yeah. I didn't do nothing wrong.

SPEAKER: Oh, no. Uh-uh. It's all fine. It's like a bad dream, all of a sudden, what happened.

GORDON: Ma, what did you do? Ma, did you call the cops?


GORDON: I really didn't do nothing wrong, you know, and-- I mean, I'm drinking and all that, but I didn't do nothing wrong.

JOE PELTON: Are you going to show us where that pistol is?

GORDON: I don't have a pistol, sir.

JOE PELTON: Not at all.

GORDON: No, I don't. I was just kind of kidding. Because the thing is, what I wanted was not to know my ma, or my sister, or my girlfriend.

GREG BARRON: It looks like they just found the gun.

GORDON: Where was it at?

JOE PELTON: A .22 automatic.

GORDON: Where what was it?

GLEN: I want him arrested. And I want a court order to keep him out of this house and away from all of us. Can I do that?

GREG BARRON: The suspect's mother just said she did not want him arrested. Someone else now has asked for an arrest.

JOE PELTON: Right. We're going to ask Gordon--

GORDON: Thanks a lot, Glen.

GLEN: That's all right, Gordon. It's been a lot of times. It's about 20 years of it or more. That's enough. Your mother is too old for this kind of stuff.

GORDON: I understand that.

GLEN: And I'm getting too old for it, even. She don't need it.

GREG BARRON: Are you a relative of this gentleman here?

SPEAKER: I'm his sister.

GLEN: That's her brother, and that's his sister, and this is their mother.

GORDON: Can I ask you a question, sir?

GLEN: Don't sir me.


GLEN: Why should you?

GORDON: I know you dislike me a lot, but--

GLEN: I didn't dislike you, but I can't see any sense to this all the time, or anything like it at all.

GORDON: Do you think it's going to do any good for you to put me in jail?

GLEN: I don't care whether you go to jail or what, as long as you leave all of us alone, and your mother alone, and stay away from her. You're going to put her in a grave, that's what you're going to do.

GORDON: Well, why don't you do this for me? If I can ask you for one more chance. If I leave you alone, if I don't ever bother you, or your sister, or your bride, Annabelle-- give me one more chance, will you?

GLEN: How about your mother?

GORDON: Same way.

GLEN: That's all I want, is just to give her some peace.

GORDON: Will you give me one more chance?

SPEAKER: Ma's getting too old to go through this--

GORDON: Hey, did I ever ask you for a chance in the world?

GLEN: I didn't ask you to give me a chance, or--

GORDON: No, Glen, I--

GLEN: --for me to give you a chance. All I want you to do is leave your mother alone.

GORDON: No, Glen, you always was a pretty good person to me. But all I ask is-- I don't want to go to jail because I got a job to do yet today. And I'm a little drunk, and all that, and I'll admit it. But give me a chance, and I won't bother you, Annabelle, or ma, or nobody, OK?

GLEN: That's fine with me, Gordon.


GLEN: I don't want you to get hurt or anything else. And I--

GORDON: Don't worry about it.

GLEN: --don't want her to get hurt.

GORDON: Don't you worry about it.

GLEN: I have to worry about it, when it keeps on-- and then she goes to the hospital just because of it.

GORDON: Don't worry, ma loves me, and she always will. Now, what are you-- what are you doing? What are you all, people, looking at me for, like I'm a--

SPEAKER: Because I think it's a bad dream. That's what I think of it.

GORDON: All right, you look at it as a bad dream. But give me a chance, and I'll forget it is a bad dream. And the day the bad dream comes about, I'll forget it.

SPEAKER: He didn't do nothing.

SPEAKER: Yeah. But, I mean, what was he doing that made you afraid?

GORDON: As far as I'm concerned, jail ain't going to help me out at all.

SPEAKER: What's going to help you?

GORDON: It'll make me bitter.

SPEAKER: What's going to help you?

GORDON: It'll make me a lot bitter towards you people.

SPEAKER: You tell me what's going to help you.

GLEN: I think you're bitter towards me already.

GORDON: You damn right.

SPEAKER: Have you got one?


SPEAKER: I'm shaking.

KEITH MARTENSON: --I'll have to go out and get one. Joe, you got the truck locked?


GREG BARRON: Keith, what's been decided in there now? I was in the kitchen with them.

KEITH MARTENSON: Well, the two ladies are going to arrest him for disorderly conduct, for breaking up all that furniture and knocking the door down.

GREG BARRON: Were they in the house with him, or with friends, or what?

KEITH MARTENSON: They were in the house at the time. And one of them was the one that was on the roof when we pulled up. And we're going to confiscate his guns on the premise that he was intending to use them, we feel. And we're going to take them away.

I don't think the people in the house want the guns there anyway. And so consequently, we're going to take them with us and let the homicide division decide what to do about them, whether or not they're going to keep them or give them back to him. But that's all up to the division. We don't--

GREG BARRON: What exactly is the difference between a citizen's arrest and an arrest that an officer makes?

KEITH MARTENSON: As far as the arrest goes, there really is no difference, with the exception that a citizen's arrest has to be performed in a case of a misdemeanor, where the officer did not witness the misdemeanor.

If it was a-- if it was a case of a misdemeanor witnessed by the officer, then it would be legal. But a misdemeanor as told to an officer by another person has to have a citizen's arrest.

GREG BARRON: All right, so what we have going here is a misdemeanor, disorderly conduct. And because these other people witnessed it, the arrest has to be a citizen's arrest, and they've agreed to do that.

KEITH MARTENSON: They've agreed to sign the citizen's arrest, that's correct.

GREG BARRON: Well, it looks like the guy's just coming through the door. He's gotten awfully excited, and it's clear now that he's fully aware that he's going to be arrested. He has two officers holding him.

He's been handcuffed with his hands behind his back, and he's about to be placed in a patrol car. Officer Joe is one of the two officers holding him. He's going to go in the truck with us.

JOE PELTON: Sit on that stretcher back there.

GORDON: Yes, sir.

GREG BARRON: And in he goes.

JOE PELTON: Get up and get on the stretcher.

GORDON: I'm trying to. I thought you had a hold of my arms, and I didn't know what you had. It was my handcuffs.


GORDON: I really didn't mean no harm. I'm still trying to get over there.

JOE PELTON: Gordie, the people in the house have put you under arrest on a citizen's arrest, OK?

GORDON: OK, thank you.

JOE PELTON: You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say will be used against you.

GORDON: Yes, sir.

JOE PELTON: You have the right to an attorney and to have one present if we ask any questions. If you can't afford an attorney, one will be appointed for you. You understand your rights?

GORDON: Yes, sir.

JOE PELTON: OK, just sit back there on that stretcher, please. If you can get up there.

GORDON: I'm trying.

JOE PELTON: OK, do the best you can. You gotta get up there one way or the other. There you go. I'll ride back with him.

GREG BARRON: You've got an open window here.

JOE PELTON: Thank you.

GREG BARRON: All right, we're going to go back in the house and see what we can find out about the complaint that's being sworn by the two women.

KEITH MARTENSON: [INAUDIBLE] in the house. We'll take the guns, and the homicide division can decide whether or not they want to let him have the guns back. But at any rate, the guns will be out of here for tonight, if not longer. If you people just as soon have the guns--

SPEAKER: It's registered.

SPEAKER: Yeah, but let them keep the guns.

SPEAKER: All right.

SPEAKER: Because we don't need them.

GLEN: How many guns did he have, then?

KEITH MARTENSON: Well, he had that one pistol, and then he's got the rifle behind the door.



SPEAKER: Well, the rifle, I didn't see the rifle either. I don't think he had that, did he?

KEITH MARTENSON: Well, he wasn't using it at the time, probably, no. But what I'm saying is that we'll take it out of the house for you tonight. And then--

SPEAKER: The rifle too?

KEITH MARTENSON: Yeah. And then the homicide division can decide whether or not he should get the thing back, or--

SPEAKER: Yeah, but the rifle, he wasn't-- where was the rifle?


SPEAKER: Behind the door, ma.

KEITH MARTENSON: --behind the front door in there.


KEITH MARTENSON: It's up to you people. If you'd rather us take the things--

SPEAKER: Take the guns.


SPEAKER: Take them and keep them.

KEITH MARTENSON: No, we can't take them and keep them.

SPEAKER: Well, you can take them and get them out of the house.

GLEN: They'd still be his guns, aren't they?

KEITH MARTENSON: Right. And then the homicide division, you'll have to go through them to get the guns back is what it amounts to. We're going to take that pistol, because we feel it was involved in this deal tonight, somehow.

He was hesitant about saying where it was and everything. So we're going to take that with us anyway. We already have that out in the car, as a matter of fact. But whatever you want to do about the rifle--

GLEN: Well--

KEITH MARTENSON: What's his name?

GLEN: --I'd hate to see him have to go through a lot of red tape to get his rifle back, you know.

KEITH MARTENSON: Yeah. Well, it's up to you folks. If you want the guns out of the house, we'll take them. If not-- it's up to you.

SPEAKER: Do you want the guns out of the house, mom? Do you want the guns out of the house?

SPEAKER: Tonight?

SPEAKER: Well, I don't-- for a length of time. I don't know. Would you just soon have them out of the house?

SPEAKER: Well, I don't care to have a gun around.

SPEAKER: Well, why don't you take the other one too, then.

SPEAKER: But then I know he likes his gun. I mean, he likes his rifle.

SPEAKER: Yeah, I know he likes them.

SPEAKER: Give me the keys to the car, I'll put it in the back yard somewhere. Are you related to the gentleman, ma'am?

SPEAKER: Pardon?

SPEAKER: Are you related to him?

SPEAKER: This is his mother.

SPEAKER: Why don't you come out in the yard with me, will you?

SPEAKER: What, me?

SPEAKER: Yeah. I'm going to park the car in the back, and I'm going to let you lock it up, OK? And you can take the keys

SPEAKER: Can he go?


KEITH MARTENSON: What's his full name?

SPEAKER: Gordon--

GREG BARRON: OK, while they're filling out the form, it looks like a relatively short form, we'll walk back out to the truck here, and jump in, and see what we can see. All right, we're back in the truck now. What we'll do is just set up the tape machine, just behind the seat here, and let it roll.

GORDON: I haven't done nothing wrong, really.

JOE PELTON: You know what, Gordie? They always say, the customer is always right.

GORDON: [LAUGHS] That's really funny. Honest to God, I've got a lot of problems, but this has never had anything to do with it. I've never really done nothing wrong.

JOE PELTON: Well, what's with-- what's with all the gun fire tonight and all the other shit? Why was that? Why did you do that? I can't understand that. Does that accomplish anything, by firing a couple of rounds off? I just can't understand that. Did you fire that gun tonight?

GORDON: Yes, I did. Twice.

JOE PELTON: What for? What purpose did you--

GORDON: I don't know. I was in the basement, and I had my .22 down there. And my girlfriend, she was going to break up with me. I get out of the goddamn bed, and-- I just didn't know what to do. And I didn't fire that upstairs. I fired that downstairs. And I wish the bullets would have hit me, you know. But--

JOE PELTON: You mean you fired it in the basement?

GORDON: Yeah. Yeah, I didn't fire them upstairs, or nothing. And I was just so mad. And I had a couple of drinks, you know, sir. And like I say, I didn't-- I didn't think I did nothing wrong, but I guess I did. And I got my ma excited.

And then I come in there. And then when Carolyn told me that, well, this is the end of it. And then I took it out on my ma. And I'm-- oh my God, how sorry I am. And it don't make no difference, now, no more. But-- I just don't gain nothing by it, you know.

JOE PELTON: I think your mom understands, Gordie. But those people that-- you know, the boarders, they don't--

GORDON: They understand me, though, too, really.

JOE PELTON: Those boarders at the house, they don't--

GORDON: Yeah, but you ask my mom about them, and they'll understand.

JOE PELTON: They've been through this before, right? Slide back and make room for my partner there, will you?


GORDON: Yes, sir.

KEITH MARTENSON: --it's you and me, buddy.

GORDON: Yes, sir. What have we got cooking?

KEITH MARTENSON: Well, we got you arrested for disorderly conduct. Man, you really messed up the house in there.


KEITH MARTENSON: Messed up them people's minds.

JOE PELTON: Who assisted us on that? Do you know?

KEITH MARTENSON: Oh, I don't know. It could have been 430, with Rhoda on it, and Nord, whatever he is. Is he the lieutenant?

GORDON: Yeah, but what did ma say about it? That's my ma's house, you know.

KEITH MARTENSON: Right. Just a minute. Just a minute.

JOE PELTON: 05 and a delivery.

SPEAKER (ON RADIO): 05, the number is 283.


SPEAKER (ON RADIO): 05 correction. It's 783.

KEITH MARTENSON: It's 3012, then.


KEITH MARTENSON: Apparently, all those people want to see something done. They think that you're messing up, boy. You go in there, and you break up--

GORDON: What do I do now?

KEITH MARTENSON: Well, now, you're going to have to go to court.

JOE PELTON: You ever been in an institution for the treatment of alcoholism?

GORDON: No, sir. I've never been no place. And where I'm going to go is where I'm going to go. So that's my business.

JOE PELTON: No, I mean, have you had a problem with alcohol for quite some time?

GORDON: Are you out of your mind? What I believe, I'm 20 years-- as many drinks as I had, I was an alcoholic. [LAUGHS] No. Yeah, I had a little problem myself. The same as you did.

KEITH MARTENSON: The same as me?

GORDON: Hey, can I get a cigarette, sir?

KEITH MARTENSON: As soon as we get down to the station, we're going to fix you up. We can't let you smoke in here. You've got no hands and stuff.

GORDON: What am I charged with, by the way?

KEITH MARTENSON: Disorderly conduct.

JOE PELTON: Physical domestic problem.

GORDON: OK, I gotta call Tom Burke the minute I get down there.

JOE PELTON: Drinking involved, usually--

GORDON: I get one phone call.

KEITH MARTENSON: You get a phone call when you get up in the jail.

JOE PELTON: --has an argument with the family. People in the house are afraid of the man.

GORDON: How long do I gotta wait in jail?

JOE PELTON: They want to have something done with them, so that they don't--

KEITH MARTENSON: I don't know.

JOE PELTON: --don't cause any more problems for the rest of the night. They feel something should be done about it, because he's caused trouble before. So someone in the house has him arrested on a citizen's arrest. It's a very typical situation for a domestic.

GREG BARRON: What's going to happen now? What's the process at the station house?

JOE PELTON: We'll take him to the station, explain the situation to the captain, advise him that a citizen's arrest was signed. The captain will advise us as to what Miranda--

KEITH MARTENSON: You're an alcoholic now?

JOE PELTON: --should be set on him.

GORDON: No, I don't think so. But I drink a lot.

JOE PELTON: And he'll be brought upstairs and go through our normal booking procedures. Normally, where there's drinking involved, it appears that somebody is under the influence, we have a--


He's eligible to be released on his own recognizance. You know, that means without posting a bond and on his good Mirandas.

KEITH MARTENSON: When did-- when did you get out of the marines?

JOE PELTON: Either that he'll come to court in the morning--

GORDON: 1956.


JOE PELTON: --or they'll hold him for a minimum of four hours in the hopes that he will sober up by then, before they release him. And hopefully, he won't go back and cause any problems at the house.


KEITH MARTENSON: Well, see, you know, as long as you realize that you goofed up, that's why you're sitting here with your handcuffs on.

GORDON: I didn't do nothing wrong.



KEITH MARTENSON: You don't call breaking your mother's furniture, and knocking down her door, and all that-- you don't call that goofing up.

GORDON: She calls me for breaking up her furniture, which I'm sure she never did. I'm sure it was somebody else that done it.


GORDON: It wasn't her. Call me for breaking up her furniture.

KEITH MARTENSON: Let me reverse--

GORDON: Because ma would never do that.

KEITH MARTENSON: What if it was your house, and, let's say, your brother came in and broke up your furniture and kicked your door down, now, what would you do?

GORDON: It don't matter really.

KEITH MARTENSON: It don't matter?

GORDON: Because all I care about right now is--

JOE PELTON: Sleeping.

GORDON: And as far as I'm concerned, if I lose my job, it's going to-- I'm on to a lot of other people besides myself.

KEITH MARTENSON: What do you mean, you're on to a lot of other people?

GREG BARRON: We're at the station now. We've just pulled up in front. It looks like they're going to back into the garage.


All right, we're in the garage, getting out.

KEITH MARTENSON: Ooh! Can you make it?

GORDON: You're making my head [INAUDIBLE].

KEITH MARTENSON: We're trying to help you, you understand?


KEITH MARTENSON: OK, you just follow right there--

GORDON: Yes, sir. Thank you.

KEITH MARTENSON: Stay with him now. Don't let him get by.

GREG BARRON: Up and out of the garage and into the station house.

KEITH MARTENSON: Take a left, right in this door, right here. Right this way. Like, they have a chair and a bench right there. That bench disappeared. Take that one over there.

GREG BARRON: Oh, it's early. They've got him-- the officers have him sitting down now. What happens now, Keith?

KEITH MARTENSON: Now, we're going to book the guy for disorderly conduct.

SPEAKER: And captains were in shock. They were the boss of their district. From the slot machines to handcuffs.


KEITH MARTENSON: Are you the captain?

SPEAKER: What are you guys writing up?

GREG BARRON: We're in the station commander's office now.

KEITH MARTENSON: We've got a citizen's arrest on a DOC, domestic thing-- problems.

SPEAKER: $100 bail.

GREG BARRON: So you just tell him what it is, and he tells you how much the bail is, that's it.


GREG BARRON: That was the captain. It looks like a pretty routine affair. They just walked in there, told him what the charge was, and the captain said $100 bail.

JOE PELTON: It's standard. You know, you come in, and you tell them it's a citizen's arrest, and it's a disorderly conduct charge made by a citizen-- we have a set bail on that. And he just tells us what it is.

GREG BARRON: So it's pretty much routine, then.


GREG BARRON: All right, Pelton and Martenson have taken the prisoner to a little hallway here, where the elevator is, leading up to the jail.

GORDON: I'm going to go to jail. You know, the thing is, it's kind of a shame, because I'm kind of a hoodlum in a way.

JOE PELTON: You are not--

GORDON: But the thing is, is that the hoodlums that they should catch up, they don't. And they are robbing old ladies' purses, and getting away with murder, and cold-cocking, and--

GREG BARRON: And we're in the elevator.

JOE PELTON: Pushing dope.

GORDON 2: Yes, sir.

JOE PELTON: Peddling, burglary, robbery.

GORDON: Yeah, that's true.


GORDON: I smoke dope. I smoke marijuana myself. But I admit it, you know. But these cats, they get away with all this bullshit. And I don't mean nothing by it. You know, I'll protect them 100%, myself.

JOE PELTON: All right, that's it.

GORDON: Here, I'm a big cotton-picking crook and a half.

GREG BARRON: This is obviously the jail.

SPEAKER: Sir, if you could take off any watches--

GREG BARRON: The walls are painted--

SPEAKER: --rings, or belts, or anything you might have on you.

GORDON: Yeah, OK, here's--

KEITH MARTENSON: Stand right over here, buddy. Come on, stand over here.

SPEAKER: That's for the guys who are registered. You've got to stand on the other side.

GREG BARRON: The walls are painted two-tone institution brown, with green doors, and lots of bars.


As you heard, they're having the prisoner take everything out of his pockets, lay it on the desk top. The jailer's just come out.

GORDON: Wait a minute, I gotta-- one, I gotta pull out of my hand here.

SPEAKER: And I guess, we're back. We just left you a little while ago.

GREG BARRON: And you thought you had me there for a minute.

SPEAKER: Oh, absolutely, yeah. How you doing, Joe?

JOE PELTON: Not too bad, buddy.

SPEAKER: The first time he was in here, him and his son were here. They were out ice fishing--

GREG BARRON: Not too far from ending up in the clink myself.

GORDON: Hey, hot shot, that's enough of this stuff.


You would have to remember all of that.

SPEAKER: Yes. Yes. About five times.

GREG BARRON: One of the jailers--

GORDON: What? How many times?

GREG BARRON: Another jailer's just come out.

GORDON: Twice. The second time was--

GREG BARRON: One of the jailers recognized the prisoner. Apparently, he's been in here before.

GORDON: It's the second time I've been in here.

SPEAKER: You've been here so much, we're going to get you a time card.

GORDON: OK, you check my--

SPEAKER: Why don't you move around over here for me. You're moving our counter there, Gordon.

GORDON: This is the second time I've been in here.

SPEAKER: Yeah. Don't give me a whole lot of baloney.


JOE PELTON: Are you married?


GORDON: No, I'm divorced.

SPEAKER: Oh, did you get divorced, now? Last time you were here, you were married.

GORDON: (STUTTERING) Wait, what are you chickening out on? Like I'm a big hoodlum, or what?

SPEAKER: No, no, no.

GORDON: I don't leave nobody alone.


I'm supposed to [INAUDIBLE] in about two minutes.

SPEAKER: Go ahead. I'm gotta count your scratch here, watch.

GORDON: Hey, you want to arm wrestle, man?


SPEAKER: By, damn, look what I'm doing here--

JOE PELTON: Are you working, Gordon?

SPEAKER: --5 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12.

GORDON: Now, what do you want to know? I'm sorry.

JOE PELTON: I want to know-- I want to know if you're working or not.

GORDON: Sirs, can I tell you one thing? I think you're one heck of a good guy.

SPEAKER: Yeah, I've heard that.

GORDON: I really do.

SPEAKER: Most everybody we bring in here says that.

GORDON: Honest to God. Can I shake-- can I shake with you, sir. I really mean it. I think you're all right.

SPEAKER: Didn't you want to arm wrestle with me?

GORDON: I'm sorry for being obnoxious. Sir, I'm sorry for being obnoxious.

SPEAKER: Here, Gordie, sign this for me.

SPEAKER: Can I have your autograph?

GORDON: Oh, I suppose you-- would you like my picture too?

SPEAKER: Right there.

SPEAKER: The picture's a little later.


An 8 by 10 glossy.

GORDON: What did I do now?

SPEAKER: Hey, you were brought in with-- wait, you almost broke the wagon.

GORDON: I want to call a bondsman right now. I don't want to be in this--

SPEAKER: We've got to get your prints first.

SPEAKER: As soon as I get your fingerprints.


GORDON: I want to call my attorney right now.

SPEAKER: Yeah, but we've got to get your prints first.

GORDON: I ain't going to sit in this goddamn jail.

SPEAKER: Oh, you want to get out?


SPEAKER: We've got to get your prints first.

SPEAKER: Hang in there.

SPEAKER: We can't get you out, unless we get your prints.

GORDON: Sir, I ain't shot nobody in a long time.

SPEAKER: I know. Hang in there, buddy. The fingers are coming.

GREG BARRON: All right, now the fingerprints.

SPEAKER: Wait, wait, wait, I've got to go and get set up.

SPEAKER: Well, why don't you wait till he gets done, then.

SPEAKER: It's just going to take a few seconds here.

GORDON: How the hell you been? I ain't seen you in a long time.

SPEAKER: Here, give me your prints and your--


SPEAKER: --then you get done.

JOE PELTON: This is our fingerprinting process. He's fingerprinted on his slap sheet, on the booking sheet that we had him booked on. He's fingerprinted on that. When he's done here, he's taken back to our ident division.

He's photographed, and he's fingerprinted back there, and they do a record check on him to see if there's any current warrants, or anything like that. Now, he's eligible to bail out with a $100 bail, and that's it.

GREG BARRON: Well, this situation now has been really, in a way, kind of pleasant. Everybody seems to be having a relatively good time, as good a time as you can under the circumstances. How often does that happen? It's unusual?

JOE PELTON: It all depends on how you handle the individual. We don't-- Martenson and myself don't usually have too much trouble once we get them into the squad. You have more a hassle when you're placing them under arrest, and you tell them they're under arrest, and you give them their rights, and if you have to handcuff them, and so on, and so forth. It's more formal then.

But it can be a little bit less informal once you're on your way down here, and the guy knows that he's under arrest, and there's nothing he's going to be able to do about it. He might talk to you. He might feel a little bit more at ease. He knows he's got to go through the process of being booked, so he's not going to hassle you so much. And this is normally the case.

But then you might have an individual that's just plain-- doesn't like the idea he's being arrested. And no matter what you say to the guy, he's not going to talk to you, he's not going to tell you anything, and he's just going to hassle you.

SPEAKER: You've been here before, haven't you?

GREG BARRON: And there he goes, on into the clink. We're back in the elevator. Now, he went off down into what looked like a row of cells. He's headed for the identification division?

JOE PELTON: No, he's headed for a cell block right now. And then they notify identification that they have him down here, and then they'll send for him. They might have something else that they're processing right now, and they might not be able to get to them for a few minutes. Also, he has the opportunity to make a phone call and all this stuff.

GREG BARRON: All right. And if he can come up with 100 bucks, he's out.

JOE PELTON: Yeah. Now that we have him booked and he's out of the way, so to speak, for us, we don't have to be concerned with his whereabouts. We come back down here, and we finish our work. This involves writing reports as far as what occurred. We turn in evidence, like the pistol that we recovered. And basically, that's it.

GREG BARRON: This is the boring routine part.

JOE PELTON: This is the boring part. You come down here, and you write the reports, and it might take you 25, 30 minutes of your time. And you'd rather be out in the street, hitting it somewhere, and getting involved in something else.

SPEAKER (ON RADIO): AP has a loaded gun. This call is not verified.


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