Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Tear Gas is Unfriendly

I rode along with the crime scene unit today as part of the 2007 trace section project to get us thinking more about case assessment and the importance of each item of evidence in a case. Unfortunately, you can't really schedule homicides, so I went out on two different robbery cases instead of something truly uber-cool.

Nevertheless, something interesting did occur... A pawn shopped was robbed - and it was the third time the CST I was riding along with had actually been to this place. Two dudes smashed up the glass jewelery counter and stole the money from the registers and ran out. Just a short while down the road, the dye pack planted in with their stolen goods exploded. They chucked it from their car and the manager of the pawn shop walked down the street and recovered it, bringing it back to the store for our arrival.

Now, these dye packs are made of real (likely out of circulation) money. They look like real money and are all bundled up together like real money. But I'm not quite sure what makes them detonate and make the dye go all over the place... oh, and there's something else I didn't know about them: they also contain mace or pepper spray or tear gas or something. I see how that is an effective tool in a car with closed windows, and I totally know why these dudes threw it out of their car.

I didn't really come within four feet of the dumb thing and I can still sort of taste it and feel the back of my throat being all itchy and burning. Now, this is not my sore throat acting up - it's healed itself and hasn't been bothering me the last two days. And it's not so much my throat, but the very back of my nose, right above my throat, going into my sinuses or whatever the heck is back there. (If that makes any sense.) Anyway, I'm glad I wasn't technically the CST in this case because she was feeling a lot more from this than I was.

So, the lesson here is, don't steal stuff. (It's not just banks, this came from a pawn shop!) Trust me, you seriously don't want to come anywhere close to whatever they release from those things in any sort of concentrated form. It is not pleasant. I was barely exposed and and hour later, I can still feel its effects.

And all this time I thought it was just dye in those things. Who knew? Movies really don't educate you very well, do they?

End Blog.

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