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August 08, 2013
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Andrew Hawkes Highway Drug Interdiction
with Andrew Hawkes

In a tough job, humor gets us through

Comic relief is the best form of relieving the stress of this job

You probably remember your favorite assignment. Maybe it was when you worked motors, or the warrant squad, or SRO, or K-9. That favorite assignment brought you many memories to tell the grandkids — the good, the bad and the funny.

For me, working highway interdiction and undercover narcotics brought many challenges and dangerous situations, but it sure had its funny moments as well.

I still laugh and reminisce about countless humorous scenarios me and my partner encountered during buy/busts, meth lab clean ups, and working snitches. Just when you think you’ve seen it all, something hilarious always happens.

Get Ready!
I can remember one hot, sunny August day while my partner and I were set up on the highway. A violator passed us and I decided to go after the car for a stop. We pull in behind him, called the stop in, and lit him up.

Then, of course, the furtive movement began to take place in the car ahead. 

I yelled to my partner, “Get ready!” 

A mile later, the suspect finally pulled over. 

The violator was trying to eat a quarter pound of marijuana before he was pulled over. Even as I was making contact with him, his cheeks were so full of skunk weed it is hanging out of his mouth. I’ll leave to your imagination what ensued shortly after that.

To this day, my old partner and I yell out “Get ready!” every time we see each other.

Super Genius
Then there was the time we had a meth cook in our interrogation room. We were playing good cop bad cop with her trying to get her to give up her sources and another lab location. After hours of resilience I busted back into the room and told her I had had enough (I was the bad cop).

I helped her out of the chair and was about to handcuff her and escort her back to the jail when something went horribly wrong. 

I hadn’t oiled my handcuffs in quite some time, so when I went to press one side against her wrist, it stuck. Being the genius I am, I pressed the cuff against my thumb on my other hand. Well, when it gave way my thumb slipped and I had perfectly handcuffed my other wrist, all while the female suspect was wondering what the hell was going on.  

Probably the most embarrassing moment of my career, but man do we laugh about it today.  

You have to be able to laugh at yourself in this business. Comedy is the best form of relieving the stress of this job.

Do you have a “funny” that you can remember? You’ve got one on me now, so even the playing field! Add your funny in the comments area below. 


About the author

Lt. Hawkes is a 23-year police veteran. In addition to his years of highway drug interdiction, Lt. Hawkes has worked in patrol, K9, investigations, narcotics, and administration. He holds a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from Dallas Baptist University and is a graduate of the Law Enforcement Management Institute of Texas. He is currently pursuing a Master’s degree in Justice Leadership and Administration from the University of Texas at Dallas.  He has been the recipient of both State and Local awards, including the Medal of Valor. His book, Secrets of Successful Highway Interdiction, which can be purchased here, contains eleven chapters on Highway Drug Interdiction.





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