It wasn't without problems. It was demanding and dangerous. Denver Stone and his team knew it, but did it anyway. Someone had to take the streets back from the drug runners, and his unsanctioned team of law enforcement officers stepped up. A story of action, intrigue, humor and romance. "Credible Justice."
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My apologies, for my lack of posts in recent times. For those who are not aware; let me explain. A few years ago, I was injured on duty, while serving as a police officer. Subsequently this resulted in surgery to the C5-C6 area of my spine. Although it was successful in many ways, it was deemed too much of a risk to continue in my job. I had the worst two years of my life post my retirement, because I couldn't accept what had happened. This coincided with, what I know now, to be a struggle with mental anguish.
Anyway, to cut a long story short, over the years, symptoms started to appear which has led to a big problem with typing. I get spasms in my right hand, which forces my fingers to kind of interlock. I never expected that a light venture of tapping keys could be such a literal pain in the neck. As it stands, some manipulation does help, but importantly, I have an appointment next month with a Neurosurgeon, whom I hope will be able to shed some light on where to go from here.
On the scale of things in the big bad world, I appreciate my situation is paltry. In my own little world, It is a big deal, because it affects my writing.
Onwards and upwards, and hopefully all will be good.
Take care everyone.
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My head hurts! For that matter, so does, my eyes, ears, neck, right arm and worst of all, pride.
A few weeks ago, while on holiday in Funchal, with my better half Fiona, we decided to jump on one of those double decker tourist buses that frequent many cities these days.
Naturally, on a hot sunny day, the view from the top open-deck was very appealing, so we trudged our way up the step. I was leading the way, which was a mistake. As my head popped up at deck level, I could see that seats were at a premium. Noisy tourists from all nationalities were already in the process of taking snapshots of the fine harbor and adjacent buildings. I moved up a couple more steps and concentrated at looking at the back of the bus for an available seat. Then it happened!
Believing I was more athletic than I am, I threw myself upward onto the last step and straightened up quickly.
BANG! I hit my hairless head against a canopy that covered the stairway, and the front section of that deck. It was metal and I knew it, because I felt it.
My head stopped, just to allow the rest of my body to concertina into it.
For a second or too, I didn't know where I was; awakened only by the gasps of the nearby seated tourists who witnessed the event. If they didn't see it, they heard it.
It isn't good form to cry in front of a crowd, so I did what was expected in this situation. I pretended nothing had happened, smiled and headed down the aisle to the back seats. Inside, I was shouting and cursing with the usual expletives, and a few more I had just made up.
It was a nerve jangler. It hurt then, and I am still paying the price now.
I guess I am talking about this with you, because I haven't been as active on the writing or social media front lately, and as you know, I like to be up-front with whats going on.
You may remember that many years ago, I had spinal damage in a work related incident that required surgery. The reality of my injury now, is one that was waiting to happen, and I managed to speed up the process. It's all connected to that incident from my police days. The symptoms I had anyway have been compounded, and worst of all, its affecting the time I can spend tapping the keys. Because of the trapped nerves, one of the significant drawbacks, is that the fingers on my right hand 'Claw-up' after only a short time. It eases off after a while, but it gets tiring eventually.
However, the good news (I think!) is that I have just had two M.R.I scans in quick time and fingers crossed, I expect to have more surgery to ease the pressure on the spinal cord, and therefore allowing me to engage in more activity, including keyboard stuff.
In the meantime, I will keep my head down ;) plod on, and do what I can, when I can.
Once again, thank you for your help in purchasing my books. Charity will be the beneficiary of any profits from Credible Justice: Fighting Back.
For a chance to read excerpts from the books, please click on the link below.
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In 2009, Cumbria in the U.K, suffered severe floods. Police Constable Bill Barker, a colleague and friend; prevented people crossing a bridge, which he knew was unstable from the battering torrent, that was previously a calm river. His tour of duty ended forever when the bridge collapsed under him. His wife Hazel and others are regularly raising funds for charity in his name. I am thrilled to supply copies of my book, personally signed to winners at the event; the BILL BARKER MEMORIAL RIDE. Good luck to all. Photos below, show the details.
Never forgotten Bill.
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Danger and Humour! How does that work?
Englishman Den Stone, and His American buddy, Ty Cross, typically find themselves in dangerous situations. The one thing that can be guaranteed in times of stress, for these two characters, is that somewhere, somehow, there is a breakout of humour at the strangest of times. Of course, this is very much the case in real life, for law enforcement agencies. Below, is an excerpt from "Credible Justice: Fighting Back."
Read it and I think you can guess how these guys work together.
"... Cross crawled across the seat that Stone had vacated and exited the passenger side, racing to his friend’s aid while retrieving his weapon from his shoulder holster. Stone’s arms were extended, his left hand wrapped around the wrist that held the Glock pistol, pushing through the door frame of the target car, so close to Grainger’s head that a needle couldn’t find the gap. “Good evening, guys,” Stone said.
Grainger was sweating, confused and frightened. “What do you want?”
“You,” Stone said. He looked at Mason, “And him too.”
“You’re not American,” Mason said.
“I am,” offered Cross.
“What the *uck do you want from us?” Mason said.
“Well, to start with, you can both get out the vehicle and assume the position.”
Stone threw a quick smile to Cross, who shook his head. He stepped back from the vehicle, but maintained a shooting stance as Cross moved to the front of the Ford, keeping intense eye contact with Grainger, who opened the door and gingerly stepped onto the grassed area beneath him, guided out by Stone.
“Okay, assume the position,” Stone said.
“I don’t know what you mean?” He was shaking. “Everyone knows what that means, okay, put your hands in the air, move to the hood, and put them on the vehicle; after that, you spread your legs for me to search. Does that make sense?” Grainger obeyed.
“What you want?” Grainger protested.
“You have a short memory.”
“One example comes to mind; Anna in London, does that ring a bell?”
Grainger turned his head.
“Don’t think about looking at me. You are not worthy. Stay put while we get your mate out.”
Cross swopped places with Stone to oversee Masons exit. Within a minute both men were detained, under control and assuming the position.
“Are you okay with them, Den, if I move our vehicle?”
Stone nodded: “Yeah, I’ve got them in the assuming position.” Cross laughed as he walked to their vehicle.
Cross reversed the BM away from the crash site and parked it on the verge, slightly off the road. He had a quick examination of any damage caused to it, but it was of no consequence. By the time he returned to the prisoners, Stone had moved them, forcing them face down to the ground, with their hands locked behind their heads. He gave thumbs up to Cross, now in the Ford and thirty seconds later, it was reversed twenty yards into the wooded area and slumped into a dip, covering its view from the highway. He returned to the prisoners.
Mason moved both his hands and sprawled them on the grass in front of him.
“Uncomfortable?” Cross said. “Let me help you with your hands.” He kneeled on Mason’s lower back, making him wince.
“Put your hands behind your back!”
Mason obeyed the instructions without a murmur, His hands secured with flexi cuffs. Grainger received the same treatment. Stone relaxed and harnessed his weapon.
“I’ll get the clothing out of our vehicle for you two. It’s getting bit cooler and dark.”
He returned with two hoods and they fitted perfectly over the detainees’ heads. Stone and Cross moved out of hearing distance to discuss their next move.
“Well that’s part one sorted, Ty. Have you any suggestions what we can do with them?”
“Well, it’s about dark now, so we need to get them sorted. I guess Judy and Steve will want to join us as soon as possible.”
“Good, okay, I’ll check in with Maria and the other two.” He slapped Cross on the back. “That was great driving by the way.”
“I kinda enjoyed that myself. Den, just one question.”
“Have you ever asked anybody back home to assume the position?”
Grainger turned his head from side to side to ease the discomfort of having the hood over his head. He could breathe through it, but the material gathered around his mouth and nose, making life awkward. He had no use of his hands to adjust the hood into a better position and although he couldn’t see a thing through the hood, he could make out the fading light. His senses heightened, when he heard a grunting noise, followed by Mason speaking.
“What are you doing with me?” No response.
“I want to know what you guys are doing,” Mason repeated. He felt pain in the right side of his head.
Grainger heard shuffling noises and assumed it was Mason being dragged somewhere; he listened intently for any clue to what was going on around him. Instinctively, even with his vision blocked, he turned his head in the direction the sounds were coming from, and knew it was the wooded area. He shivered.
Bang! Grainger’s head lifted off the ground when he heard the shot. “Oh my God! Oh my God,” he wondered about Anna and how she was connected to his imminent death. He had regrets, regrets that the current circumstances brought to the surface. He regretted meeting Anna; he regretted getting involved with the drugs on the cruise ships and cursed his decision in coming back to the States. He snapped out of his thoughts when he heard the shuffling of shoes in the grass. The noise was getting louder and louder as his heartbeat got faster and faster in time to the steps. The noise stopped, but his heart didn’t..."
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Bob Lowey is a friend and adviser from Illinois, U.S.A.
As you read on, I am sure you will understand why I respect his views and his friendship.
I first met Bob many moons ago, when he was visiting the U.K to track his ancestry, particularly on the Isle of Man and Scotland. He happened to make an appearance at the Police Social Club in Carlisle, Cumbria, where we met.
His visits have not gone without excitement. On one occasion, we crossed the border into Scotland because he wanted to buy a kilt and everything that matches the outfit. (It's the first time I have helped a man shop for a skirt ;)
As we relaxed in a restaurant, a diner next to us fell to the floor having great difficulty breathing. Bob and I were there in a flash, cleared his airway of obstructing food and gave as much aid as possible. He had a weak pulse, and erratic breathing, but he was still with us. Luckily the paramedics were on scene in good time, and after a quick brief, they went into action.
Bob and I sat down afterward to gain composure and were offered a meal on the house, but somehow it didn't feel appealing. Later, we attended the hospital where the gentleman was taken, but because we weren't relatives, the staff wouldn't tell us anything about his status. I understand, and I hoped for the best, but it didn't give us closure. To this day, we don't know if he made it.
We have attended a rugby game at Twickenham, London. My nephew was playing for England. Bob and I, have a photograph of us on Westminster Bridge, where the recent terrorist act occurred. It was a time of problems in the farming sector; foot and mouth disease had gripped parts of the country, including Cumbria. Bob must have found it very strange on the train journey to our city from London, because the predominant accent to be heard-was Australian!
The Aussies had supplied numerous veterinarians to the U.K. to assist in controlling the disease. Most of them were based in Cumbria, and most of them were in our carriage!!
To cap it all, we were in a bar, uptown in Carlisle and having a few drinks, when the doors were shut quickly by door staff, which trapped us inside.It was believed, some soccer hooligans were nearby and they didn't want them in. Bob and I revealed we were cops and ready to help. I think his American accent may have confused everyone, but there he was, ready to protect life and property, even in another country. In any case, it turned out to be nothing at all.
Bob started his career in law enforcement as an Auxiliary Police Officer in 1993 by the Bradley Police Department: Illinois. The equivalent In the U.K. are called Special Constables. In 1996 Bob was hired full time by the Bradley P.D and during his time there, he became a firearms instructor as well as a Crime Scene Technician (CST). Firearms is one of Bobs' passions, and some people would describe him as a gun nut.
At that time, one of the pre-qualifications for Detective was to be a CST, whose role is to process and secure evidence for the Detectives while they canvased the area for witnesses and talked to the victims. In addition to these duties, Bob was also one of the first members of the Honor guard. In 1999, he was assigned to a drug task force as a detective working as an undercover agent and In 2000, he became an OC instructor (pepper spray) and a Tazer Instructor.
In 2001, Bob felt a change of role was needed when internal politics hit the scene, and he began a process of adapting his career. In 2002, he was hired by the Kankakee County Sheriff's Police Department.
After His move to the Sheriff's Department (a term we Brits love to hear, because of the movies, I guess) Bob has worked on a variety of differing roles. One of the first assignments was the Marine Unit (more commonly River Patrol). It was one of the best assignments he had ever worked. During the summer months, he was in shorts and wearing polo shirts, riding around on jet skis and patrolling in the police boat. (Once again, we Brits get jealous) Unfortunately the unit is no more.
Next, Bob became a Field Training Officer (FTO) training the next generation of police officers. To date, he is still a FTO as well as the Coordinating supervisor. In 2010,he was assigned to the Stolen Auto Task Force again working in plain cloths and in some undercover capacity. While he was in this unit, he received training as an elderly service officer, then taking the promotion exam and was subsequently awarded the rank of Corporal in 2012. As a matter of interest, the Sheriff's Department has 3 tested ranks Corporal, Sergeant, and Lieutenant. Bob is currently assigned to midnight shift as a supervisor; still teaching firearms, and a member of the County Wide Honor Guard Unit.
We may not see Bob and his family so much, because of the distance and time related issues, but we aim to put that right in the future. It is no wonder I have a strong feeling of attachment to the U.S, when people like Bob and his family come to the fore.
Meanwhile Bob in his country, and my wife, Fiona in ours, carry out their duties on behalf of their respective communities.
Please click photos for best viewing.