This past Sunday evening around seven o’clock, I walked up to the Walgreens on Madison Avenue here in Covington, Kentucky. Before I started to prepare my dinner, I needed to get some paper towels. Walking back and turning on my street, I noticed some drama happening. Hell, I was only gone ten minutes. In downtown Covington, a lot can change in that amount of time.
Three police cruisers were parked in front of my apartment building. On the lawn to the right of the building stood three Covington police officers talking to one another. As I started to go up the outside steps to my building, the tallest of the officers approached me.
“Do you live here?” the officer asked.
“Sure do,” I replied.
“Have you noticed a man with long, blonde hair around this property today—say within the last 45 minutes?”
“I think I know who you’re talking about,” I said, “but he hasn’t been here today.”
“Could you let us into the building?”
“What I’m I gonna do,” I said, as I put my roll of paper towels in my left hand and dug for my keys in my pants pocket with my right, “say no to a police officer?”
I unlocked the door to the building. My apartment is on the first floor. The three cops marched up the stairs. As I entered my living space, I heard a loud knock on a door. It sounded to me like the officers were on the third floor.
I heard nothing else for about half an hour—then looking outside my side window which faces the street, a fourth police cruiser rolled up. As the officer got out of his car, I went and opened the apartment building door for him.
“You probably want to get in,” I said as he approached the door. He said nothing—just gave me an icy stare as he walked upstairs.
Maybe another half an hour went by. I thought about fixing dinner, but I didn’t want to miss anything going on upstairs. With that thought, I heard steps coming down the stairwell. A lot of loud steps. Four cops and two people being arrested make a bunch of noise.
Looking out my side window again, all four police officers and the two suspects were standing around one of the police cruisers. If the suspects live in my building, I don’t know them. They were handcuffed. One was a young woman, the other a guy. The guy didn’t have long, blonde hair.
I decided to go outside and smoke a cigarette. The officers and suspects continued to stand around the cruiser. After finishing my smoke, one of the officers started to approach the building.
“What’s going on?” I asked. The cop said nothing.
“I’m a writer,” I said. “What can you tell me?”
“CityBeat,” I said, knowing this situation on my street in Covington wouldn’t be much of a news item for them.
“Two arrests on marijuana possession,” the officer said while heading back up the stairs.
“That’s it?” I asked.
“That’s it,” the officer replied.
Within another half an hour, the police officers were off with their suspects. This process of making two arrests on marijuana possession took over two hours.
It didn’t make any sense to me and I don’t think it made any sense to that last cop I talked to either. All that time and resources for what? Marijuana possession? And they had to handcuff the people?
How silly. How much pot the two people had I don’t know. It could have been an ounce or it could have been ten pounds. I don’t care. These people are not really criminals. Legalize the damn stuff already.
Unwrapping the plastic from around the paper towels I got from Walgreens, I started to prepare my very late dinner.