Happened to be out at night when Patrol got a call of a burglary in progress at a local bar, the “Louisville Tavern.” We all called it the “Louieville Tavern”. One of my coworkers, Officer Preston, would get indignant at what he perceived as “Slaughtering the Queen’s English” and correct us all the time; “It’s the LOUISville Tavern”. I guess he thought Merryweather would be spinning in his grave to be called “Captain Louie”. I was close so I rolled on the alarm.
I pulled up to see Officer Rick on the west side next to a kicked-in door, and Officer Mel on the east side. Rick radioed that a suspect was running to the east inside the tavern, so I went to where Mel was. I got there about the same time as a chair crashed through an east window and a skinny guy started climbing through. Mel put his gun right between the skinny guy’s eyes and yelled “FREEZE!” so loud that I’m sure seismologists in California registered it on the Richter scale. The suspect screamed like a girl and ran back to the west, so I ran over to where Rick was standing by just in time to grab the suspects’ right arm.
Just then a weird thing happened: as Rick cranked this guys' right arm around, it didn’t just bend at the elbow, the whole arm arced around like a wet noodle. Rick let go it so fast, I thought that the guy had broken out of his grasp, so I grabbed the wrist, and felt that there was no bone, just flaccid flesh making up his arm. The sensation made me let go fast too, Rick just looked at me and said, “Weird, Huh?” The suspect told us he had a degenerative bone disorder, which had dissolved the bones in his right arm.
Rick looked at me and asked, “What do we do?” The suspect thought that we were talking to him, so he said, “Well, the cop on the other side (Officer Mel) freaked me out when he yelled at me and I, well, I dumped a load in my pants; could you take me to my apartment so I can clean up?” We felt so bad for the guy that we did. He thought we were so nice for letting him shower before he went to jail, he told us about all the other burglaries he had committed, all of them mini marts and taverns, just to get beer.
As for me, I just need to remember not to frighten Mel… my ears are still ringing.