Author – Unlucky Lad
Kev left school at sixteen and as soon as he could he left home. Now at nineteen he lives in a neighbouring town in a bedsit, working at a DIY store, pay isn’t good but he manages and importantly he has his independence. To save money he walks to work and frequently cuts through the local park as a short cut.
One day whilst walking to work through the park he got stopped by a young man in his early twenties who asked what size where his shoes. Kev said they where a size 9 and asked him why? Do you fancy swapping shoes asked the man who was wearing a fairly new pair of Reebok classics, this puzzled Kev as his where an old pair of white Nikes which where well worn. The guy was quite insistent and seemed quite hurried, not to miss an opportunity and no money to buy a new pair Kev agreed. They sat on a bench and kicked off their shoes and swapped. The guy quickly put on Kevs trashed trainers, he said ‘cheers mate’ and ran off. Kev put on his newly acquired pair of trainers, they looked quite new except for the thin layer of mud around the soles, he could not believe his luck and continued his walk to work.
It was nearing the end of a long day at work. Regularly the store got shoplifters and today was no exception. He caught sight of a lad acting suspiciously in the tool section of the store and noticed him placing an expensive set of drill bits down the back of his jeans. He was slightly older but that didn’t deter Kev from stopping him if he attempted to leave without paying. He followed the suspected shoplifter to the exit doors, the lad looked back and seen Kev behind him and started to run, Kev gave chase and quickly rugby tackled the lad to the ground in the car park. After a struggle he took the lad back inside to the managers office. The manager phoned the police and they detained the lad until they arrived. A policeman arrived and arrested the lad, Kev was asked if he could go to the police station with them to make a statement and retrieve the stolen item. The manager said to just bring it back tomorrow and get off home after attending the police station. This suited Kev as the police station was on the way home meaning a shorter walk, he quickly went to the staff room, removed his overalls and put his coat on over his white T shirt and jeans and changed out of his work shoes into his newly acquired trainers. He had to get in the back of the police car with the shoplifter. The policeman couldn’t use his radio as there was a problem with police communications and computer equipment. Upon arrival at the station the gate was opened manually by another police officer. The PC got out of the car and spoke to the other officer, he then opened the car door and both Kev and the shoplifter got out. He said that he needed to go straight out again on an emergency and the other officer would take over. ‘Shoplifting at the DIY store’ he said to the other officer as he jumped back in his car and drove off.
‘Follow me’ said the new officer, Kev had never been in a police station before and was excited to see what happens inside. They went to a door that displayed ‘Custody Suite’ on a sign. Kev was told to wait outside in a holding area while the shoplifter continued through the door. Ten minutes later Kev was asked to follow the officer through the same door as the shoplifter previously. They walked to a counter, on the other side a police sergeant asked Kev if he knew why he was here, ‘Of course’ said Kev. He was asked to empty his pockets onto the counter and remove his coat and belt, it was a bit unusual thought Kev but assumed it was for security reasons. He was then told to remove his shoes so he could be searched, he kicked of his shoes and felt the cold floor through his socks, he obeyed an instruction to lean forward with hands on the counter while the officer did a pat down of his body including his socked feet. Kev said ‘It’s a bit over the top for just making a statement’ He put his shoes back on and was told he’d been arrested for shoplifting. ‘No, I work at the store and caught the other guy, I’m here to make a statement and take back the stolen goods’ said Kev ‘Ask the officer who brought us here’. He’s out on an emergency and our radios are down. We are having to manually book detainees in also as the computer system is down’ said the sergeant. ‘Ring the store and my boss will tell you who I am’ begged Kev. The sergeant tried, ‘no answer’ he said. The store was now closed. You’ll have to stay here until the arresting PC returns. ‘What’ said Kev, ‘I’ve never been arrested before’, ‘we don’t know that without a computer’ said the sergeant. He was taken to the cells, walking along the detention block corridor he could see shoes outside each cell door, he recognised the Adidas trainers the shoplifter had been wearing, further along he recognised another pair, a trashed pair of white Nikes, his Nikes he’d swapped earlier today. He was stopped outside an open cell and was told to remove his shoes, he did so, again feeling the cold floor as walked inside the cell in his socked feet and the door locked behind him. In the cell was a blue mat on the floor and a toilet. He sat on the mat and thought, what on earth has just happened, arrested and sat in a locked cell with all my belongings and shoes confiscated. He stared at his socked feet and began to find it all thrilling and exciting being detained in a police cell against his will. At least he’d be freed in the morning and perhaps he might get the day off work for his troubles. He smiled as he fell asleep.
The next morning he heard the cell door open, he’d not slept much by the excitement of being ‘locked up’. The officer told him to follow him back to the custody desk. He left the cell, his shoes where missing from outside so followed the officer in his socks to the desk noticing half the shoes that where outside cells where gone, presumably their owners had been released including the shoplifter as his shoes where gone also. But his old white Nikes where still there outside a locked cell. At the desk he anticipated an apology but it did not come. The sergeant said ‘As per police procedure all prisoners shoes are checked against any shoeprints found at any crime scene. He lifted up a clear plastic bag with evidence written on it and inside where Kevs trainers. Your shoes where found to match footprints at a dwelling where a serious incident occurred yesterday morning. You are therefore arrested on suspicion of burglary and serious assault. Take him back to the cells. The door locked behind him, he sat on the mat and stared at his shoeless feet only this time he wasn’t thrilled and excited about being locked up he was petrified.