Friday, September 4, 2009
Someone Make a Damn Decision!!!!
I was sitting down to dinner with the watch commander when she called. She was on a child custody dispute call. She sounded unsure because she was in uncharted territory. A woman had dropped her daughter off with grandparents and now returned to pick her up and they weren't there. The woman then demanded kidnapping charges and a supervisor make the scene. When the officer calls me I start quizzing her which she doesn't have all the answers. For one, I'm not going to go out there when she hasn't gotten the entire story. Two, it's clear to me she's wanting me to come take over the scene. Three, I'm hungry! So I tell her to do some more probing then call me back. During my dinner she's called twice and come to find out, mom is a meth addict who dropped her child off for a few days then went to God knows where doing God knows what and now wants her kid back. The grandparents claim Childrens Protective Services (CPS) placed the girl with them. Well, if we can confirm that then the problem is solved. We'll tell meth head mommy to get lost. I tell her to call CPS herself and see if we can verify the grandparents' claim. Low and behold there is no order. All we're told is there is an investigation into the meth head mom. They tell us they would prefer the kid stay with the grandparents but will not actually tell us we can make the kid stay with them (she wants to stay with her grandparents). We ask can we prevent the mother from taking her and they can't answer that. The way I see it, with CPS in the news over this fiasco they are hesitant in giving us a straight answer. We all feel bad for this girl. She's terribly upset and crying. She loves her mother but wants her to clean up first. Now when a 12-year old girl understands first hand the impact of drug abuse that is sad. To make matters even worse, the meth head mom, and her hoodlum boyfriend are telling her if CPS takes her she will be placed in an orphanage forever. This pisses off the watch commander (who I brought with me to the scene after dinner). This is the type of call where our decision can drastically affect many peoples' lives. This girl already has several strikes against her. She's still a good kid at this point, but can easily turn into a worthless piece of sh** like her meth head mom and her hoodlum boyfriend. The primary officer is lost and is too worried about making the wrong decision that she's having difficulty making one. Since everyone has a hard time making a decision I'll make one. It's a gamble but we got to do something and keep that girl from leaving with the meth head mother. So I instruct the officer to take the girl to CPS ourselves. Basically, we're going to take her there and give her to CPS and tell them they need to get their act together. I try explaining to the girl in my calmest voice what we are doing and why we are doing it. I tell her we're gonna try to tell CPS to give her back to her grandparents and that her mother lied when she said she was going to an orphanage. We cleared out the front seat for her (I felt putting her in the back seat wasn't the right thing to do) and I told her to play with the lights and siren if she wanted. We run off meth head mom and hoodlum boyfriend and the officer takes the girl to CPS. The officer sends me a message later on thanking me for the help and I tell her that sometimes we have to make hard choices involving children. Nobody else will do it. Later on she calls me from CPS and tells me she told them about the mom and they said that the girl's MOTHER will have to come there and tell them who SHE wants her daughter to stay with. Which means that she will come take her daughter back to their small residence that belongs to someone else and the girl won't even have her own room! So we probably just delayed the inevitable.