This article could have just as easily been called “Workplace Violence is a Danger at Any Time and Age”, because it is really about an incidence of workplace violence. I could have also called it “Rot In Hell You Ignorant Scumbag”, as it is also the ranting of an angry son over the armed robbery of his 96 year old father. However, I've opted for the more positive route, singing the praises of both the Farmington, NM Police Department and the New Mexico State Police for their swift and effective response to the situation this post discusses.
I'll get back to that positive affirmation in a moment. First I have some angry ranting to do.
My father will probably never retire. He has never shown the slightest interest in “not working”. His 96th birthday will be in less than 3 weeks, and he still owns two businesses in Farmington, NM. One of them, thankfully, is under contract for sale, due in no small part to the urging of his family who are recognizing his physical limitations more than he likely does. The other business, a 10 bay self service car wash, remains his playground, allowing him to repair equipment, restock machines and conduct general maintenance. I am not intimating that he does these things particularly well, but it gives him purpose; a reason to get up in the morning.
The car wash, while not in a bad neighborhood, has proven to be a dangerous place at times. About a decade ago one of my fathers employees was badly beaten in a robbery there. This employee was never able to return to work as a result of the attack. The facility has also been burglarized numerous times over the years. This has remained a great source of concern for our family, as this is “no place for old men”.
Tuesday, October 20th our fears would be confirmed true, although he would not tell most of the family for several weeks. A 23 year old felon – a filthy piece of human excrement wanted for violation of the conditions of an early release – confronted my 96 year old father in the car wash equipment room with a gun. He demanded his cell phone, his wallet and his car keys. My father, who openly admits to being extremely frightened, thankfully complied with his demands. He watched this piece of human trash, this colossal waste of valuable oxygen, climb into his car and speed off. My father ran to a nearby church for help, where a maintenance man called 911.
My fathers' mobility has been severely hampered in recent years by an earlier break of his pelvis, so I initially thought the perpetrator would be in Arizona by the time the police were notified. That was not the case. According to an article appearing in the local Farmington Times, police were notified at 10:50AM. By 11:30, it was all over.
A Farmington police corporal spotted the vehicle at 11:05, as it was leaving town. He followed it while calling for backup from the New Mexico State Police. A high speed chase ensued, and the heavily tattooed reprobate was captured at 11:30.
I am so appreciative and thankful that law enforcement responded so capably in this incident. My father had 4 or 5 Farmington police officers with him, and he received a play by play as events went down. When told his vehicle was exceeding speeds of more than 100 miles an hour, he told them “I didn't think it could go that fast”.
His wallet and cell phone were returned to him within 2 hours. His car was unfortunately totaled. While it seems Cadillacs can indeed fly, they were not engineered to land. The car had been taken down a very rough and hilly county road, and went airborne numerous times during the chase.
That doesn't matter. Dad is safe. The police did an outstanding job. And the scumbag who did this will hopefully rot in jail for many years as a result, rueing the day his mother defecated him upon this earth.
I wrote an article a few months back called “Law Enforcement Lives Matter”. It was a criticism of the growing war on law enforcement, aided in my view by complicit politicians in Washington. I caught some flack for that article, as it is an emotional issue for many. Still, examples like this are why we need to support the good men and women of law enforcement. The work they do is vital in protecting society from people like the one who attacked my father.
And when they do something exceptionally well, they give us all something to be thankful for this holiday season. I am very grateful for the work done by the Farmington PD and the New Mexico State Police, and I thank them for being there for my father in his time of need.
And for the rest of the story, it is indeed a reminder that workplace violence and other dangers exist in any place, for people of any age. Remember that as the holidays approach, and be thankful for what you have.
I know I certainly am.