My LEO Experience - Springfield, MO
I've read all the previous experiences by folks here in their encounter w/LEO from various areas of the country. I thought that I'd share my pleasant experience.
I'm an Arkansas resident who drove up to see my folks near Wheatland, MO. My three kids were with me, w/Wife staying behind for a wedding of a former student to which she'd been invited to attend. I drove up US65 from the Little Rock area and made pretty good time. I usually drive the speed limit plus 5 to 7 over, depending on the roads and traffic. Most of the drive thru Arkansas is on single-lane roads thru heavy hill country, so whenever it's safe to do so, I'll go a bit over, as mentioned.
Anyhow, once I got up to the Branson area, I ended up getting slowed down a bit due to the volume of traffic. The slow-down frustrated me somewhat, but once we got thru to the North end of Springfield, traffic lightened up so I was able to get back up to the speed limit, plus 5 to 7. However, once I got clear of the bulk of traffic, I sped up a bit more than that w/o realizing it.
So, I'm cruising along and spy a black & white in the oncoming lane of traffic (this is two-lane). He immediately shifts lanes to the inside land, which tips me off that something wasn't quite right - and so I looked down at my speed-o-meter. I was gover right about 80mph. :embarassed:
So, w/a target aspect change and me going around the curve of the road, I slowed down to right at 65 - the current speed limit - and waited to see if he was going to come up fast astern. He did, so I slowed down even more and put my turn signal on to pull over to the shoulder. He popped his lights for about five seconds, shut them off and came in behind me. By the time he'd pulled up, I had my registration, insurance, Drivers License and CHCL in-hand. I knew that Missouri wasn't a Shall Inform state, but I had already decided to inform. I had my wallet on my left leg w/my US Military ID in the outer clear window so that it would be easy enough to see.
The officer was a Sergeant and as he came up, I kept both hands out on the steering wheel, w/my paperwork in my left hand. As soon as he asked for it, I handed it over, explained that the card on top was my CHCL and that I was indeed armed. He asked "Are you LEO?" and I said, "No, sir, US Military and pointed to my ID card. He glanced at it, said "OK, are you armed right now?"
"Yes, sir, I am."
"OK, thanks for letting me know," he said. I'll be right back, please sit tight."
Three or four minutes later he came back. He handed me my paperwork, smiled at my youngest (4 yoa) who was waving at him thru the window and told me "Here's your paperwork back. I don't normally do this, but I'm going to just give you a verbal warning. I need you to slow it down. The speed limit is 65 and that's what you should be driving."
I thanked him for his kindness, assured him that I would indeed drop my speed down. Then I told him thank you for the job that he performs - something I hear occasionally in the form of "Thank you for your Service" and something I don't think that most First Responders, be they LEO, Fire or EMT don't hear enough. He thanked me in return and said "Just make sure you keep it to the speed limit."
Which I did the rest of the drive up. I intend to do the same thing on my way home. It's only about 300 miles, I'm not in a major big hurry to get back home by a certain time and so there's really no reason to do so.
I have no clue if it was
So, there you go. Sometimes the those Evile, Nasty LEO Types aren't quite so bad, are they...?
All said with a heavy dose of sarcasm. :duh: I really do have a lot of respect for all First Responders, particularly our nation's LEO. I know that most of them are treated poorly or indifferently by civilians and go out of my way to be courteous to them - even those who are real jerks about their job.