Besides working half an hour closer to home than usual and getting off at 3 rather than 4, my day was pretty normal – Nothing too exciting or out of the ordinary had happened. As I drove home, rather than taking the normal route home from Princeville I decided to go down a road I’d never been down before. I cruised down the narrow, pothole riddled road wondering just where it would let out. I had an idea of where the road might come out, but I soon found out that I was wrong – the road was a dead end.
I turned around and started heading back to the main road. Not even a mile back down the road, I noticed a police car parked at the end of a driveway. As soon as I passed him, he pulled out and started following me (with his lights off); Odd, since I wasn’t doing anything illegal. At least, not to my knowledge.
I made a couple turns, and found a road that I knew would lead me home; all the while the police car followed closely. As crested the next to the last hill before the Spoon River (and the end of Peoria County/Beginning of Stark County) he flipped his lights on. Just a little ways down the road was the entrance to a field, so I pulled in there. The police man got out of his car and walked up to my window.
“What were you doing driving down that road?”
I told him that I was on my way home from work, and that I was just exploring to see if I could find a new route home.
“Hmm… okay. Can I see some identification please?”
I pulled out my wallet and handed him my license.
“And do you have the registration papers for the car?”
I reached into the glovebox and handed him the card.
“Alrighty. I’m going to go check these out really quick.”
He went back to his car, and was back in a couple minutes.
“Okay. The reason I stopped you is because there was a robbery at a house down that road – I didn’t recognize you or your car; a little odd to see a new face driving down a dead end road. Just to be safe, I’m going to need to ask you to get out of the car so I can search you.”
I shut the engine down, and climbed out. After a quick pat-down (and after confiscating my knife for the time being), he asked if I would mind if he searched my car. I gave the okay, and he did. Of course, he didn’t find anything and let me be on my way.
That is the true story of my very first encounter with the police.