72 - November 2012
Taxi Drivers and Tasers
A policeman in England tasered a blind man, mistaking his white cane for a Samurai sword. The police do not always get it right.
Recently, a taxi driver drove off with my bag. The cab company sent texts to the driver who did not reply. As the days passed, I advised myself that even if it wasn't returned, it contained little of value and to pursue it was a waste of my time and energy. However, despite my advice I decided to pursue this matter as one of principle. Lawyers ignore irritatingly, sensible legal advice too.
Now, if you have seen the film Saving Private Ryan you will know how important it became for me to get that bag back home and the lengths to which I was prepared to go.
The industry’s Taxi Complaint Line promised an investigation would begin within 14 days. In these days of privacy no one could divulge to me the driver’s name, cab rank or even his number. In fact, taxi drivers use numbers rather than names to protect them from harassment/violence by their passengers. I had not realized how important this was to them.
The Police Complaint Line were determined to keep the crime rate down by recording this as an incident rather than a crime. They suggested that the driver may have forgotten the destination address, or he left the bag in the cab where it was stolen by person or persons unknown. I found myself thinking that he may have failed to read the label with my name and telephone number (possibly due to illiteracy).
On day five, two police officers confronted the driver at his home and seized the bag. The driver was as surprised as I was.
Could the police have done this any better? What, with a taser you mean?
(c) Paul Brennan 2011 All rights reserved.
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Disclaimer: The content of the Law & Disorder eZine is to give you legal basics and in some instances, included unashamedly to try and make you laugh. In law, it is sometimes difficult to work out what is serious and what is just for fun. Therefore, if you plan to do anything legal, rely on your own lawyer’s advice or instruct me to look at the particular facts of your case. Not only will I deny responsibility for the legal content but also for some of the jokes.