By Officer Doppels
There are a lot of things that can be experienced, or things can that just happen, at the Hampton Jail. As any good guard will know, it is the anticipation of not knowing what may occur, which keeps the inmates on their toes and focused. As a guard at the jail, I am committed to making it a good experience for all the inmates. We are awake and ready to go before the inmates are rousted in the morning, and we are there when we switch the lights out for the night and securely slam the steel doors of control.
However, regardless of what may happen in the jail, everyone starts out from the outside with an arrest and properly taken into custody. I was reflecting on a recent arrestee whose wide-eyed expression sticks with me and always brings a smile to my face.
As the car pulled in, the Sheriff pointed to where the driver was to park the car. The new inmate (to be) stepped out of the passenger side of the car with a rather nonchalant swager — as if all of this might be a walk in the park. The Sheriff barked the order to new guy to put his hands on the car. This was not some sort of comedy bit where we might lyrically call out “fingers on the fender, boy,” but the full force of a more “assume the position” and do it now approach to things.
The arrestee’s body language suggesting a bit of surprise with the directness of the Sheriff’s command did not last long. I grabbed his right wrist with my right hand and I secured his open palm to the side of the car. In the same process from this right-side I wrapped my muscular left leg around his right leg to keep him just a bit off balance, but firmly in place. My height being 5 to 6 inches taller than his made my presence much more “oh so clear” and unmistakable. As with most new inmates, there was some element of protest as the sheriff grabbed this left hand to bring his hand securely and irrevocably into the steel control of the handcuff, but as one might expect, such protests are ignored.
As I pulled the other hand around to allow the Sheriff to join them together, I could see the expression on his face reflected in the side window of the car. Words seem illusive to describe what his face was trying to say, but I think it was somewhere between “Holy Yikes, Batman” and “Fuck, these guys are serious and they play for keeps.”
And, while words might fail to communicate clearly, the facial expression was more than enough to bring a smile to my face, and a small quiet sense of satisfaction to my heart — and elsewhere.
And this was only the start.
The Hampton Jail is now closed for the season and will reopen in the Spring. I have already told the Sheriff that I am looking forward to coming back to help him do his work and keep the inmates in line.
Metal would like to thank Officer Doppels for this report!