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The Off Duty Cop

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A laconic tale of our Beautiful USA and The Gun of Freedom and Justice that holds firmly behind the righteous and weary calloused hands of proud and stalwart Americans. 


"An American man armed with a gun enters a store, a sub-compact 9 tucked in the small of his back, no less no more… 10 in the magazine and 1 in the bore. He greets the employee behind the register, a small male white, late 70’s, a scraggly beard and mustache, thinning bright white hair, and a presence screaming stern and bold. He is frail yet tough, weathered skin and old. An old man that couldn’t make a living for his years left if he sold. The wind bounces back from the door he entered with an eager and bitter gust of cold. The night is dark, marked by soft echoes of a neglected dog’s lonely bark. The lights in the store cast a foggy yellow tint of rays. The American man buys a beer and some cigarettes, hence he surely has seen better days, and at the counter’s arrival, he cordially and patiently pays, throws some change in the tip jar, and he proceeds amongst his ways.


Two men in ski masks quickly enter; one casually opens and drinks a beer, the old man quickly realizes why the men are standing there, brandishing their weapons and fanning the flames of fear. He shuffles to his 38. revolver, that’s sitting close and near. One stands with a blue steel semi-auto, the other a shotgun with a sawed off stock. The American man casually meanders behind a stand of pastries, as the crooks scan the area like an Arizona hawk. The American man remains silent as the crooks make the old man talk. The American man covertly, gladly pulls his 9 millimeter Glock. The old man is face down at gun point, as the crooks rummage around. Hank Williams twang is singing on the radio, crackling upon the background. The American man pulls the trigger, and you can hear the bleeding sounds, the combustion and parade of 9 millimeter bullets, ohh of Winchester rounds. The American man’s face was like that of sun burn red, and when evil stood up he threw lots of led, like pounding nails into an old withered shed. Both crooks stumbled and tumbled for they were hit in the chest, and one in the head. The old man rose to his feet with a white knuckle fist and whispered “this here business is mine that I protect you see, time for bed!” a 38. from his waistband, he finished them off dead.


The cops showed up on scene, with flashing red and blue, sirens yelling and screaming, you could hear their big engines too. All guns blazing, the cops investigate the crime. They talked to the old man and American man, one person at a time. Over the police radio crackles a confident “Code Four”; the men protected themselves from the horror, of dying alone on the floor, as well as the cash and property, present in the store. A 9 millimeter and a 38. revolver, no less, no more. As the cops wrapped up the night, they looked at Heaven to pray, “Thank you God so much, for these men will see another day”. The cops then met with the old man and American man, and shook their hands to say “Nice guns boys, we could surely hear the noise” “Say, where the Hell did ya get that iron, those are some nice toys!” “Pull up some seats and get yourselves some drinks, we thank men like you for cleaning the streets.”


The old man was a retired military veteran, the American man, an off duty policeman. They had dinner later that night, lobster and steak, a few beers and threw some lures in the lake. They fashioned memories that photos couldn’t take. They spoke of wars and the everyday fight. They talked so much and all through the night, that the moon went asleep and the sun woke up and casted her light. They talked about our Country, our beloved red, white and blue, how beautiful it is and how idiots give us the flu, how today most things and people, to our flag just aren’t true. How so many aren’t proud to be, happy, safe and free, the ignorant mentality today, of it’s all about me. They hugged each other in celebration of making it home in one piece; for they as American strangers came together to make peace…oh the criminality they terminated, and subsequently ceased-all while deploying our 2nd Amendment …the heavy metal piece…God Bless America


About the Author

Detective Patrick Shrum began his law enforcement career as a police explorer.  He enlisted in the United States Marine Corps.  He became a military police officer and during his service he provided law enforcement and security for Marine One under both President Bush and Obama.  After his Marine Corps service, he became a Federal Police Officers; and, then a Los Angeles Police Officer; and, joined another Southern California Police Department where he has recently been promoted to Detective.  He is a recipient of the “Presidential Service Certificate Award for Honorable Service in the White House, and the highest civilian police award-The Medal of Valor”

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