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Along for the ride

Sandusky Register Staff • Jun 16, 2014 at 12:54 PM

The Sandusky Police Department is asking residents to ride along with them and we took them up on their offer Friday night.

A trail of blood, a suicidal female, a scuffle in the emergency room and a parking ticket. Just another night in the city of Sandusky for the police department and officer John Powell.

The Sandusky police department has once again made their cruisers and officers available for their ride along program. The department has had a dozen requests since a story published last week in the Register.

I decided what better night could be had than a Friday the 13th and a full moon. After communication with Chief John Orzech, I was assigned to officer John Powell’s shift. Powell, a veteran on the force, showed me the ins and outs of the cruiser and gave me instructions on what to do if things became unsafe at any point throughout the night.

Our shift started out slow as we made our way from 222 Meigs Street at dusk. Powell wrote a parking ticket for a car parked next to a yellow curb, we checked speeding radar on cars going over the new Ohio 101 overpass and a warning was given to a Venice Road driver who was trying to get back home to Toledo after a visit to Toft’s Dairy.

The night became more interesting just after 10 p.m. when a call came over the radio of a large fight in a neighborhood. When officers arrived, including Powell and the cruiser I was riding in, there was no fight, but several people were leaving the scene including a juvenile. He was bleeding badly from his hand, but kept saying he was ok and didn’t need medical attention. He was wrong. The cut he had received after allegedly breaking a mirror and possibly a window had left a trail of blood from the home to where he was found by police several blocks away.

Officers were called to a home for trouble related to the incident and entered the home to a caller who said they had just arrived home following the disturbance. During a conversation with the resident the officers heard people moving around upstairs and ordered them downstairs. When those upstairs did not comply, officers went upstairs and found several people ranging from their late teens to early 20’s who claimed to be sleeping and didn’t know anything. 

The juvenile and two others were taken into custody after not cooperating with police among other charges.Powell and other officers assisted the medical staff at Firelands Regional Medical Center with the uncooperative juvenile as his hand needed stitches to stop the bleeding. The juvenile eventually had to be sedated for medical staff to tend to his wound and he spent the night in the Juvenile Detention Center.

Powell had a return trip to the ER later that night with a woman with an alleged self-inflicted cut to her wrist.

By this point it was no longer Friday the 13th as it was after midnight, but the moon was still full. The weekly party cruise had not returned to the downtown Sandusky dock and the downtown bars had yet to close.

As Powell and I drove around downtown Sandusky we saw a male in the drivers seat of a vehicle, but not driving. Upon a closer look the man was slumped over his seat and was getting sick on the pavement outside the driver’s door. Powell approached him to see if the male was alright and it was obvious from his speech and odor of alcohol that he was highly intoxicated. Powell and Sgt. Ron Snyder took the man into custody for his own safety and he spent a night in the Erie County Jail to sober up.

Our newsroom listens to scanner calls throughout the day and night, anything from medical calls to domestic disturbances to crashes. One night with the Sandusky police department put faces with these calls. Not just the faces of those responding in our law enforcement and emergency medical fields, but the members of our public who are either victims or assailants in these calls. Just listening to the scanner doesn’t give justice to the full-time jobs our police and fire personnel dedicate their lives to on a given basis.

There aren’t many full moons that fall on a Friday the 13th, but you don’t have to wait for that event to happen again to gain appreciation for those who protect and serve.

Thank you to the Sandusky police department for the opportunity to ride along with them and I look forward to another opportunity in the future.

Watch a live blog as the night progressed in the player below

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