Whackers gotta whack.

mmckenna

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"The driver's door also sported a decal saying "emergency response," which Bouchard found odd."
...
"His initial response was that he helped police sometimes, but I don't know what that means, so we are going to have detectives running this down a bit more."
 

trentbob

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Interesting story. We have our share of wackers in my area.

Being a newspaper reporter, the first thing I noticed was... how very very poorly the story was written and really left me wanting to know more info that could have simply been obtained by the reporter. It looks like it was written straight from a press release without any investigation by the reporter whatsoever.

He was in possession of a loaded handgun without a license to carry so was he arrested and put in front of a district justice that night then released? It said that he was not being held and was awaiting charges. They let him go? I guess without his gun, LOL.

Sounds like it was a used Ford police interceptor SUV which can be purchased in auctions and certain car dealers sell them used. Not against the law. As far as the flashing lights, it looks like they were Orange. In my State, Department of Transportation motor vehicle regs allow for only certain vehicles like tow trucks, snow plows, mail trucks, construction vehicles and legitimate credentialed news media to have those.

I often see decals emergency response on plumbers/ Heating Repair trucks. LOL.

So here's the big question I would have asked the sheriff, who oddly enough attached an irrelevant professional portrait of himself to the press release, did the truck have any police scanners in it or antennas that were the same as what the county uses?. That I'm curious about.

Thanks for posting this, I would love to know the disposition of the case but I have a feeling there will be no follow-up by this newspaper.
 

slicerwizard

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"State trooper tried to pull me over and I kept going for a while and eventually pulled over. He walked up to my window and said I'm about to get off work so tell me a story I've never heard. I told him my wife had run off with a state trooper and I thought it was him trying to bring her back."
 

trentbob

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:ROFLMAO:...oooookaaaaay. LMAO ... in my state you would have better luck being me. He would have come up to the window and said... oh, geez.

Because I'm on the I-95 corridor in the Northeast and the Pennsylvania state troopers are so spread out, I've gotten to know them all, even the new batch. LOL. I don't drive a police car look alike....... but then again, they don't either, all kinds of unmarked cars... Lots of Lights though, when they need them.
 

mmckenna

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Yeah, oddly written article, but an interesting point of view.

Got a few in my area running old police cars. Nothing wrong with it, until they start tailgating people in the fast lane because they don't jump out of the way for them.

As for the radio/antennas, it's usually easy to know which ones are legit and which ones are whacking by the antennas.
 

W9BU

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OTOH, I drive a vehicle that unintentionally looks like a police vehicle. It's a Ford Expedition (previous generation), dark blue metallic, with two VHF/UHF antennas. I usually drive about 5 over on the interstate highways. It's not unusual for someone to come up behind me in an adjacent lane and slow down all of a sudden when they get suspicious about my vehicle.
 

mmckenna

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OTOH, I drive a vehicle that unintentionally looks like a police vehicle. It's a Ford Expedition (previous generation), dark blue metallic, with two VHF/UHF antennas. I usually drive about 5 over on the interstate highways. It's not unusual for someone to come up behind me in an adjacent lane and slow down all of a sudden when they get suspicious about my vehicle.
My uncle was a city cop for a long time. He used tell his guys to either stay off the highway, or at least keep up with traffic. None of this driving 55 in the fast lane crap. It usually causes accidents or big traffic backups.
 

trentbob

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Yeah, oddly written article, but an interesting point of view.

Got a few in my area running old police cars. Nothing wrong with it, until they start tailgating people in the fast lane because they don't jump out of the way for them.

As for the radio/antennas, it's usually easy to know which ones are legit and which ones are whacking by the antennas.
Yep that's what makes a true wacker. They buy the used police interceptor and then stick on magnetic mount CB antennas with the coax going into the trunk.

I always got a kick out of The Blues Brothers driving the used black and white. LOL.
 

mmckenna

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Not saying this guy is a whacker, but it's getting close. Stuff like this makes me cringe. "roadside assistance" I can understand, if he's contracted with someone, but I'd expect some better identification on the vehicle. Search and Rescue, well, maybe.

The cringe factor is high with the gasoline stored in the van, the wiring (oh, jeeze, the wiring….) and the amber lights.

I get being interested in this stuff. I get being a contractor for roadside assistance. I get wanting to help others. But the 20 year old mini van with TV and bed in the back just sort of gives me the heebie-jeebies. Not everyone can afford a new vehicle, but for roadside assistance, I'd expect something a bit different.

Reminds me of a guy we had locally here back in the early 80's. Road ranger, I think was his name. He was a volunteer roadside assistance guy on a twisty mountain highway. Got some pretty good press for a while. He was using a small white pickup, carried some gas, jumper cables, basic tools, but that was about it. But back then, CB was the thing, and you could reach him on channel 9 if needed.
 

trentbob

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Wouldn't want to criticize anybody, a hobby is a hobby.

I don't know about your neck of the woods but where I live he would be shut down immediately by the police and if he persisted he would start getting tagged pretty hard, then towed. Total Hazard on the highway. I don't think the police would consider him a good samaritan helping out, they would consider him a hazard and interfering with their rendering of assistance not to mention a burden as they have to protect his safety... from himself.

Whether it be the locals on Township roads or staties on the interstate, that would not fly.

I guess if he wanted to start a business with a business license and get all the permits and meet all the regulations and didn't interfere with police duty tow and worked arrangements out with repair shops etc etc he might get away with it as a business but he would have to make serious changes to his MO.

Thanks for posting another interesting story. This is a good thread!
 

mmckenna

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Wouldn't want to criticize anybody, a hobby is a hobby.
Yeah, I avoid making negative comments directly on posts. Doesn't really help, and as you say, it's a hobby. I try not to judge. My first installs were a bit shaky, but at least wiring was routed properly and I had fuses installed.

I see a lot of posts on here with people showing their radio installs. Some of it is pretty scary. I don't comment on them. I've seen some great installs, too, and I'll usually make a point of posting something.

But loose wiring and gas cans….. There's a failure to understand the risks involved. Adding that to being on the side of a highway with blinky lights and assisting others raises some concerns. Rule # 1 was always "Don't add to the victim count".
I'm fortunate that I've never needed roadside assistance, been able to take care of everything on my own. My wife has never needed it, either. But I'd be pretty concerned if that van showed up to assist.

At work, I have one amber 360º beacon on top of the work truck. I hate using it since it seems to have the opposite effect of what they intend. Usually it causes more distraction than anything. I get concerned when I see people running a lot of lights on their vehicles. Too much can be a distraction and cause issues. I always felt that the light laws were there for a good reason.
 

trentbob

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Yep, I think I used to be a lot more ornery years ago on RR. Getting older now.

When I saw that gas can and then saw him lying on the couch watching TV in such close proximity to the venting tank I was wondering what the fumes might be doing in that closed space LOL.

So I'm 66 but didn't get AAA until my late twenties and have used it a few times. Worth every dime.

For most of the years I worked at my newspaper I was given a car. When I got promoted high enough and was allowed to use my own car and get mileage they told me I would need a yellow light to be on the highway covering news stories as a class 4 official vehicle with the Department of Transportation, it allows you to do certain things where the sign says authorized Vehicles only like ride on the shoulder or use crossovers. I had a Amber bubble with a magnet that could go on the drivers roof. It always stayed on the floor behind my seat.

One thing you learn pretty fast is you don't want to park nearby any kind of an incident involving injury, extrication or fire as you surely will get locked in by vehicles or charged hoses, I always Park far away and in a safe place anyway.

The New Jersey Turnpike actually requires a special pass for the media giving you permission to gather news while on the turnpike. I always had one of the dozen or so they issued.

I can't imagine what my first install looked like when I was 16 and had a RS pro 1 slide rule dial monitor under the dash I'm sure it wasn't pretty, and of course plugged into lighter LOL.

One thing I did do though was... Drill a hole :p
 

mmckenna

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Thinking back to my first install, a CB and scanner, I'm pretty sure I tapped into the cigarette lighter plug for power and had a cheap radio shack antenna bolted on the back. After having intermittent power issues, I realized that wasn't the way to go. Installs improved from there. I think every install I do gets a bit better.

We had AAA for about 20 years, and finally decided it just wasn't worth it anymore. The prices kept going up and we just were not using any of their services. I had insurance through AAA, but it was getting expensive also. I found a different insurance company that included a road side assistance service that would cover me and the trailer, just in case. Still haven't used it. But at least I'm not paying $85/year for it.
 

trentbob

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Yep I think a lot of it has to do with where you live. My AAA roadside assistance is less than $85 a year. All of the other Roadside Assistance programs with insurance companies, car dealers excetera is handled by the same vendor as AAA. They are a heavy duty tow company licensed to operate on the turnpike with 24-hour service and are always the backup for the police Duty tow when it is not actually their turn. Big business but they have cranes and trucks that can handle the most worst of accidents including overturned 18 wheelers in deep crevices. I've seen my share of those.

I always had intermittent power problems, no doubt due to my cigarette plug adapter. I was 16, I was not thinking about those kind of things as I was actually stringing for a local newspaper taking spaghetti shots of wrecks, police action and such. I owe it all to a hobby I had as a young kid. It led me to a career as a senior newspaper editor who always had his ear to the scanner.
 

W9BU

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My first CB install was in 1977. I don't recall where I got power, but the cigarette lighter would be a good guess. The antenna was a very short (about 30 inches) multi-section whip on a cheap mag-mount that left marks on my paint. As you can imagine, it didn't work very well. But, it allowed me to monitor nearby CB traffic for those "smokey reports".

@mmckenna Does your insurance company provide actual roadside assistance or does the coverage just reimburse you for roadside assistance expenses? I wasn't aware of any car insurance company providing actual roadside assistance other than AAA. But, the insurance market in IN is, no doubt, different from CA.
 

mmckenna

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@mmckenna Does your insurance company provide actual roadside assistance or does the coverage just reimburse you for roadside assistance expenses? I wasn't aware of any car insurance company providing actual roadside assistance other than AAA. But, the insurance market in IN is, no doubt, different from CA.
I don't know, never needed it. I have a toll free number on the back of my insurance card. Not sure who/where it goes. I'm suspecting a centralized point where they work with contracted towing companies.
To be fair, most of the vehicles I've purchased new in the last 20 years have included some level of roadside assistance from the manufacturer for a few years. But again, never used it so don't know how well it works.

Figured for the places I go, I'd better be able to take care of myself. Anything like a flat tire, broken belt, etc. I'd fix myself. My only real need for the roadside assistance was in case my wife was on her own somewhere and needed it. I do all my own vehicle maintenance, so most things I can handle. Both vehicles have basic tools in them, as well as spare accessory drive belt, tire plug kit, fuses, and odds and ends.
Knock on wood, It's been a very long time since I had a flat tire that I couldn't fix on the road, or other issue that required anyone else's assistance.

As for the original CB install, I bought my dad's old car when I was 18, and he helped me put a CB in it with a trunk lip mount antenna. The trunk lip mount did its damage. Later when I bought my own pickup, I put the antenna in myself, 102" whip off the back of the bed, CB tapped into ciggy lighter power with insulation piercing connectors. Tapped a scanner off that later. Worked OK, until the connectors got wonky.
Eventually did a Larsen LM mount off the tool box. When I wanted to add a 2 meter antenna, I realized NMO was the way to go. Taught myself to do NMO mounts. For power, I ran a feed off the battery to a terminal block. Just sort of snowballed from there.
Slowly, through experience, trial and error, and learning from others, the installs got better. Then got into the stuff and work and started seeing how bad some of the upfitters do. Realized it wasn't hard to do better than most of them. At one point someone tried to talk me into doing upfitter installs as a business, but I knew the aches and pains of crawling under dashboards, getting my hands all cut up, knew that wasn't something I wanted to get into.
 

trentbob

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Yep I've been following this on Real World Police on YouTube.

Pretty good site that has recent body cam footage of police involved shootings.

This guy seems to be quite mentally ill, I can never figure out how he was able to continue to operate for so long. I would have thought they would have thrown a net over him quicker than they did.
 

trentbob

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I don't know, never needed it. I have a toll free number on the back of my insurance card. Not sure who/where it goes. I'm suspecting a centralized point where they work with contracted towing companies.
To be fair, most of the vehicles I've purchased new in the last 20 years have included some level of roadside assistance from the manufacturer for a few years. But again, never used it so don't know how well it works.

Figured for the places I go, I'd better be able to take care of myself. Anything like a flat tire, broken belt, etc. I'd fix myself. My only real need for the roadside assistance was in case my wife was on her own somewhere and needed it. I do all my own vehicle maintenance, so most things I can handle. Both vehicles have basic tools in them, as well as spare accessory drive belt, tire plug kit, fuses, and odds and ends.
Knock on wood, It's been a very long time since I had a flat tire that I couldn't fix on the road, or other issue that required anyone else's assistance.

As for the original CB install, I bought my dad's old car when I was 18, and he helped me put a CB in it with a trunk lip mount antenna. The trunk lip mount did its damage. Later when I bought my own pickup, I put the antenna in myself, 102" whip off the back of the bed, CB tapped into ciggy lighter power with insulation piercing connectors. Tapped a scanner off that later. Worked OK, until the connectors got wonky.
Eventually did a Larsen LM mount off the tool box. When I wanted to add a 2 meter antenna, I realized NMO was the way to go. Taught myself to do NMO mounts. For power, I ran a feed off the battery to a terminal block. Just sort of snowballed from there.
Slowly, through experience, trial and error, and learning from others, the installs got better. Then got into the stuff and work and started seeing how bad some of the upfitters do. Realized it wasn't hard to do better than most of them. At one point someone tried to talk me into doing upfitter installs as a business, but I knew the aches and pains of crawling under dashboards, getting my hands all cut up, knew that wasn't something I wanted to get into.
I started driving in my last year of high school, I graduated 1971. I'm sure my installs, tunable monitors and CBs we're pretty sloppy in the beaters I was driving then.

At that time I was definitely into the 102 inch quarter wave whip and had discovered the nmo mount. Always drilled holes.

Got my first new car in 74 and had to decide about drilling holes, I did LOL. That's when I started tightening up my installations and taking the time to do it right. Your description of crawling under the dash, scraping my hands and contorting my body sounds very familiar and brought back those memories. I discovered double-sided tape and Gaffers tape could damage a car also.

A challenge that I had was in 74 I got a Electra bearcat 101 which was 1 of the first programmable scanners and was a heavy brick. It was not made for Mobile Installation and was an AC only radio.

I marched right down to my rat Shack and got a converter which in those days was larger than a breadbox and installed it on the back seat floor behind the driver's seat so I could reach the on and off toggle switch. Plugged the 101 in and carefully installed it under the dash using 3M double-sided tape, luckily it wedged very nicely into a good spot. Gave me enough room for my Lafayette he whatever CB also. It was nice and tight, no wires showing.

My installs only got better from there to what they are today.

You know I think my family thought I was a bit of a wacker but everybody else I knew was doing it too. Using base loaded shorter CB whips and Center loaded scanner antennas looked better on the car also.
 

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BTW, gotta mention this mega whacker who's now looking at a long vacation

At least 8 videos of him near the top of the list: Real World Police
Dewitte is a true sociopath. His intention is clear, to impersonate police/law enforcement for profit. In the video above, he actually states "This is a POLICE escort". Combined with the overall appearance, actions, and statements, a jury of 12 should have no problem convicting him on the charge of impersonation, unless they are asleep.

His criminal history of theft, child molestation, and posing as law enforcement for profit all point to him being a threat to society if not dealt with. His demeanor in his latest court appearance for bond revocation is telling: he craves absolute power and authority over others. He's clearly delusional, and on the edge. Only a matter of time before his "replica" Glock is replaced with a real one and he pops off and hurts/kills someone or dies of lead poisoning himself at the hands of someone who isn't going to suffer fools gladly.
 
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