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Tables turned and twisted.
When Lloyd crossed the street halfway between two cross walks, he saw a man with his pad out writing.
“You know, sir,” the man said before Lloyd stepped on the curb. “It’s against the law to cross the street away from the crosswalks?” The police officer reached in his pocket and flashed his badge.
“Against the law? Bad practice, maybe, but against the law, Officer?” Lloyd said as he looked at his watch.
“Sure, against the law. Didn’t you see the signs posted here and the one right where you stepped off the curb there?”
Lloyd turned to see a sign, but couldn’t make it out. Officer Kellerman was leaning against the near sign post. It was hard to miss.
“So it does. So it does.”
“Can I see some identification?” Officer Kellerman asked.
“No. I don’t have any ID on me and I’m late for an appointment, so if you don’t mind…”
“Oh, but I do mind. ID please?” Kellerman said with his hand out waiting for the ID.
Lloyd pulled out his wallet, took out his driver’s license and wrapped it with the largest bill he had in his wallet.
“Thank you, Mr. Renke,” Officer Kellerman said as he continued to write out the ticket. He scanned the back of the license with a portable scanner and checked his phone for the results. A minute later, he tore off the ticket, handed it and the license to Lloyd, and warned Lloyd again against jaywalking.
Renke looked down at the $200 fine for jaywalking and said, “Two hundred dollars?”
“Did you expect to pay more or less than that for jaywalking?”
“Did I not just slip you a $50 bill?”
Kellerman squinted and said, “Are you suggesting that you tried to bribe me, an Officer of the Law?”
“Well, I did just hand you fifty bucks, and you didn’t hand it back to me.”
Kellerman leaned into his microphone clipped to his collar, “Headquarters, this is Badge 2382. Please send over a squad. Perp has admitted to a bribe of a sworn peace officer. Repeat, bribe in progress.”
Lloyd Renke shouted, “What? What are you doing?”
“You tried to bribe me, right?”
“A bribe is illegal, right?” asked Kellerman.
“Well nothing. You’re busted for…”
“But you forgot one thing, Officer. You still have my fifty dollars.”
“That’s the problem then. I wrapped your bill around the license, much like you handed it to me. My word against your word. And fortunately for me, the Department hasn’t sprung for body cameras yet. See how this works, Mr. Renke?”
Renke checked his watch for the fourth time. “I kinda understand, but you see, Officer Kellerman, I’m the host of ‘Shh! Don’t Give it Away’ a weekly nationwide pranks show. See my crew in the window of the brownstone over there?” Renke paused and watched three men in a window wave. “They’ve heard everything we’ve said, and see this button here on my suit? It’s recorded everything we’ve done.”
“So, you probably want your 50 bucks back.”
“That’d be nice, at the very least.”
“On one condition…” Officer Kellerman said.
“You’re not in a position to bargain, Officer, but I’ll humor you.”
“You don’t use this video in your segment.”
Renke looked over at his crew. All three gave him thumbs up.
“Deal,” Renke said. “I’m sure you wouldn’t sign the release anyhow.”
“Thank you,” Kellerman said reaching into his pocket and pulled out Renke’s bill and handed it to him. “Thank you very much. Have a nice day.”
“Uh, Officer Kellerman. Aren’t you forgetting something?”
The police officer blinked a few times. “No, I don’t think so.”
“Aren’t you going to try to bribe me so we don’t show your superiors this footage?”
Kellerman looked at Renke and then over at Renke’s crew in the brownstone.
He then pursed his lips and said, “No, I’ve compromised enough for one day as it is,” Kellerman said as he reached for his microphone to call off the squad car.
“You’re right, sir. Probably more than you realize.”
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