Cardboard cop credited with collar; Recruit too smart for academy class

Editor’s Note:

Editor’s Note: Before you go writing me or the author of this column any angry emails, please note the date of publication — April 1, 2011. Now, enjoy a chortle or a chuckle courtesy of the PoliceOne Editorial Team. Happy April Fool’s Day!

PoliceOne today begins a new regular feature — the National Law Enforcement News Roundup — which summarizes some of the police-related headlines getting attention across the country. Check out today’s selection and let us know what you think.

Life-size Cardboard Cutout of Ohio Officer Makes Arrest
WORTHINGTON, Ohio — In an effort to curtail shoplifting at local stores, some of the merchants are utilizing the help of cardboard cutouts of uniformed police officers. Today, one of these self-standing, full-color, life-size law enforcers single-handedly arrested a shoplifter as he attempted to leave a poplar downtown boutique with expensive jewelry. The cardboard cop pulled out his UV-coated replica duty weapon and ordered the shoplifter to the ground and then placed cardboard handcuffs on the surprised perp.

As he was being placed in the backseat of a Worthington PD patrol car, the suspect, 25-year-old Bruce Crowder, exclaimed, “You should have seen the look that cop gave me — I was scared!” Worthington Police Chief Bud Abbott said, “Crowder is going to have a hard time in jail living this arrest down.” Abbott added, “Shoplifting is down 65 percent with the help of the cardboard Cops.”

Shop owner Vanetta Murphree commented, “Most shoplifters just leave the store when they see the full size reproduction cop.”

Adopt-A-Felon Program Replaces DARE
Austin, TX — The once popular DARE program is finally being phased out and replaced by the new innovated Adopt-A-Felon program. This highly-successful program is modeled after the one currently used in elementary schools in New Jersey, Minnesota, and Utah. Convicted felons currently on parole make weekly classroom visits to discuss popular topics such as gateway drugs, pyramid schemes, internet porn, chop shops, gangsta glamour, violent deaths, and joy rides. This unique program also allows hardened criminals to demonstrate their street talents, many of which were learned while serving prison terms in the state’s penal system.

School board superintendant Harold Morgan said, “The children get to see their adopted felon’s human side and in some cases even become ‘pen-pals’ with their felons, meeting them after school just to see how they’re doing.”

Many of these three-time losers live in nearby halfway houses and some have court-mandated ankle monitors. Morgan said that each year, students get a different felon for his or her respective grade level, thus allowing the students to get acquainted with several different felons throughout their elementary school education. At a recent press conference, State District Judge Carl Young said, “The partnership between convicted felons and elementary school children shows young people that felons are people too and as one third-grader put it, they probably had bad mommies and daddies who didn’t give them nice presents at Christmas or ice cream with their cake at birthday parties.”

Police Applicant’s IQ Too High for the Job
Fargo, ND — Police applicant Norman T. Griswald was told last week that he was rejected by the police department’s hiring board because his scores on the entry level police exam were too high. The results of Griswald’s IQ test indicated an IQ 155 — a full 15 points above what is commonly considered “genius.” The hiring board stated most law enforcement officers nation wide have an average IQ of between 98 and 105.

Lt. Jim Gamble, who sits on the board, said the police policy might be unwise but is a rational way to reduce employee turnover. “The department’s theory is that Mr. Griswald would get bored with police work and leave soon after undergoing intensive and costly police training,” Gamble said.

Griswald, who is 29 years old, has a photographic memory and still holds the State High School wrestling record for most pins. He currently works at City-Wide Pawn and moonlights part time at the Yellow Cab Company. He said he always wanted to be a Fargo cop but will now have to consider taking a job as a tower sniper presently being offered by the Dept. of Corrections.

About the author

Mike Peterson is a retired 23-year veteran of law enforcement. He served three years in the United States Military Police and then 20 years with the City of West University Place Police Department in Houston, Texas. Mike held a Master Peace Officer certification and was a Certified Instructor, Advanced Field Training Officer, Crime Prevention Inspector, and background investigator. He was certified in bicycle patrol, officer survival tactics, first line supervision, and City Manager Leadership Training. Mike is a graduate of Leadership Houston, Class XIV, Texas Law Enforcement Torch Run Top Fundraiser and Inductee into the Texas Special Olympics Hall of Fame (1996), three time Texas Torch Run representative for International Special Olympics torch run ‘Final Legs’ in Minnesota (1991), Austria (1993) and Connecticut (1995). Mike has received numerous Senate and House of Representative Resolutions and Proclamations for his fundraising with the Law Enforcement Torch Run as Texas’ Top Fundraiser.

Mike has appeared on ABC-TV’s ‘The View’, was a past finalist on Ed McMahon’s ‘Next Big Star’ contest and was a finalist in Houston Funniest Comedian contest. Mike has opened for such luminaries as Jay Leno, Robert Schimmel, Dave Attell, Richard Lewis, Kathleen Madigan, Jeff Dunham, Frank Caliendo, Michael Winslow, Anjelah Johnson, Ralphy May, and Alonzo Bodden to name a few. Mike has appeared numerous times on Houston’s local CBS ‘Great Day Houston’ and opened for four-Time Grammy Award Winner Glen Campbell as well as performing at police luncheons and banquets. Mike has also had the honor of performing for our Troops over in Iraq. You can see more of Mike on or

Contact Mike Peterson.

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