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Flat Tire Opportunity

Blog Team member Sgt. Eric Nester shares a story about assisting a motorist and changing more than just a tire.

Several years ago, as a deputy, I was working patrol for the city of Mission Viejo when I came across a stranded motorist on La Paz Road near the I-5 freeway.

I noticed a middle-aged lady who was struggling to try and change a tire by the side of the road. I got out of my patrol unit and asked her if I could help her or if she needed a tow truck? She said “No I don’t need any help deputy… especially from the police!!!”

Well, I was a little puzzled at her statement, so I asked her about what had happened to make her feel that way. She told me she felt like her son had been treated badly by the police in the past and ever since that time she tried not to have any contact with the police at all. Well I guess I could have been on my way. But I could see that she was clearly having a rough go at it, so I went ahead changed the tire for her.

Helping her wasn’t about looking for any type of recognition, or hoping she would write a thank you letter, and it wasn’t even really about helping a lady in distress. Why do it then? Because I wanted her to be able to say to herself at the end of the day- “Maybe the police aren’t that bad after all” and hopefully in the future, the next time she needed help, she might call on us for police assistance.

Remember, members of law enforcement are human too and yes, believe it or not, we sometimes have our tough days. However, in essence, police work is about being a public servant by providing people with the same kind of service we would want to receive if we were calling for assistance. If we strive to do this, we are always going to be on the right track.

Bottom line: If you need police assistance, don’t hesitate to call us. We are here to help you!