Wednesday, March 24, 2004
Upon further consideration, deputy gets apology
I was stuck in my car on Ga. Highway 92 in Inman at a horrible car wreck. They even had a helicopter land and take someone from the car away. After a while, the officers at the wreck began to direct us around the wreck by going through a parking lot. As I was coming back out onto Hwy. 92, one of the officers yelled at me to stop.
I have never been yelled at before in my life and have never been more embarrassed in all my life.
I called the Sheriffs Department as soon as I got home to complain. After a few minutes I was connected with Captain Woodie of the traffic section. He was pleasant and listened to me complain for what must have been five minutes. After I finished, he started asking me questions.
He asked me when was the first time I saw the office who yelled at me. I told him I saw him for the first time when he yelled at me.
He asked me what was the last thing I remembered seeing before the yelling happened. I told him the gold car that had been wrecked.
He then asked me what did I do after I was yelled at. I told him that I stopped and then I had to back up so that could finish my left turn.
Why did I have to back up? he asked. Because there was a sheriffs car with its lights flashing about two feet in front of my car, I said.
I began to see where he was going with these questions but he had more.
Captain Woodie asked me to tell him where the officer who yelled at me was standing at when I saw him. Then the light began to come on for me. The officer was standing between the front of my car and the sheriffs car.
After Captain Woodie asked me that last question, he started talking again. He said that Sheriff Johnson doesnt like for his people to yell at citizens. He said that it wasnt professional and if he had been in my place he would not have liked it either.
He said he said he was sorry for yelling. He couldnt get to his whistle fast enough. He said he just knew that he was going to get crushed between my car and the sheriffs car and he had to get my attention.
He said that he was the one who yelled at me and that he really was very sorry. He gave me the telephone number for both his boss and Sheriff Johnson and encouraged me to call both of them to make a formal complaint. I think Ill write them instead.
I know now I wasnt looking at him directing me around the wreck but looking at the wreck. He was only trying to stop me and save himself.
Thank you, Sheriff Johnson, for having such people working for you that can say they are sorry when they might not be right and they might not be wrong. I know Ill be a better driver because of my talk with Captain Woodie.
Captain Woodie, I am the one who is sorry.