Look out for undercover cops. Although, you don't know where they are because they are usually out of uniform and in regular looking cars. We guess what we're saying is, be aware that an undercover cop could be well...anywhere, so always be on your best behavior, just in case. These stories are all about when people do things that just don't make sense--whether or not a police officer is there or not. Prepare to ask yourself, "Are these guys serious?" Content has been edited for clarity.
When You Almost Kill A Cop, Things Get Heated
“I was fly fishing in the Big Thompson on the way up to Estes Park, CO in January, so it’s freezing cold and roads are dangerous as it is. I’m about 20 feet off the road when I hear screeching tires and sirens. I look up to see a car trying to get back in front of an unmarked cop car after passing him on double yellow and a semi truck locking its breaks to not hit the idiot. The cop pulled him over about 200 feet down the road in a pull-off and you could hear the screaming through the pass:
‘ARE YOU BRAIN DEAD?!?!? PASSING ON A FREAKING DOUBLE YELLOW? YOU TRYING TO DIE? YOU TRYING TO KILL ME OR THAT DRIVER? YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME! YOU ARE GETTING THE BIGGEST TICKET I CAN GIVE, YOU WILL BE COURT APPEARANCE ONLY, AND I WILL BE THERE TO TELL THE JUDGE HOW FREAKING DUMB YOU ARE!’
The three other fishermen there starting cheering like crazy.”
“We had a guy pull into a lot next to a marked squad car and light up a joint. My buddy sitting in the car had to look around to make sure he was—in fact—in a squad car and that he was —in fact—in uniform. He was.
The adage of ‘we don’t catch the smart ones’ never rang truer.”
The New Hire Didn’t Last Long
“We had a new hire who went twice the limit (160 in an 80 kilometers per hour zone) and then proceeded to cut off a policewoman in an unmarked car. As he was in a company vehicle with a visible logo (security company), she called us and spoke to my boss. We called in the guy to the office, and I fired him.
He could not believe that he was fired just for going twice the speed limit. He kept saying ‘but this is the first time I’ve done it!’ About a month later, he called my boss and asked him for bail money for driving under the influence. My boss just laughed and hung up on him (he was worried his parents would get angry). Moron.”
The Woman Who Cried Assault
“My dad was a detective in an unmarked car, coming back from a hearing. He was not in his jurisdiction and was going 35 to 40 in a 35 zone. There was a woman behind him riding his tail, which he mostly ignored because he wasn’t going painfully slow; in fact, he was a bit over the speed limit. She started beeping her horn and waving her arms, swerving side to side like she was trying to find a way to zoom around him.
He was also approaching the township line, putting him within his jurisdiction. Five seconds after he crossed the township line, the woman sped around him. Funny enough, at this township line the speed limit also dropped from 35 to 25. He clocks her going 55, put on his removable police light and pulled her over.
Now, this is where things get funky. His car had a dash cam and recorded everything. This detail will be important soon. As he walked up to her window, she was visibly shaking in anger. He showed her his badge, explained who he was (as he was in suit and tie, not standard police uniform), and told her he clocked her at 55 in a 25. He then asked her for her license and registration, and she responded by screaming about him intimately assaulting her out the window as loud as she could.
He ended up going to court for ‘assault.’ This woman was claiming my dad reached into her window, grabbed her chest, and said he wouldn’t write her a ticket if she were willing to ‘play ball.’ My dad was mildly stressed but reviewed the dash cam (full audio and good quality video) with his appointed lawyer, which showed none of that ever happened, and my father never even put his hand inside her car.
The judge heard the woman’s testimony and asked if she had told the truth. She claimed that she had. At that point, they brought out the TV and played the dash cam. The judge informed her she should ask for leniency, and maybe she would receive a break from false charges.
From my understanding, to avoid jail time, she agreed to a very long probation period and community service.”
Easiest Arrest They Ever Made
“In college, my buddies and I lived in an… especially affordable neighborhood. We all went to the bar one night but soon received a call that there was a break-in. Got home and the cop told us he and his partner were driving by our house in an unmarked car when they saw an individual struggling to carry digital cameras, a t-shirt full of spare change, and Xbox, plus controllers and games out of our house.
The cops stop to observe what appears to be a robbery in progress, but then the individual actually approached the unmarked car and attempted to sell the stolen Xbox to the cops on the sidewalk in front of our house that he had just robbed. They said it was the easiest arrest they ever made.”
Expect The Unexpected
“I’m a cop in Ohio, and I was driving a 2011 Hyundai Elantra. The police paid for it, so it was nice inside: leather, extra speakers, etc. One day when I was out on patrol listening to some cop rap, a guy drove past me with speakers so loud that I could hear the song (Reba McEntire) over the cop rap, so I blooped him with the siren and pulled him over. I walked up to the car and asked him what he was doing, and the tinted window rolled down, and it was Reba McEntire. I was stunned, and I said ‘I’m sorry, but a ticket’s a ticket.’
She grinned sheepishly and said, ‘That’s fine. You’re just doing your job.’ It was one of the highlights of my career before I retired.”
Let It Go While Driving
“My family member is a detective who drives an unmarked car, a crap-box, actually, to blend.
He has seen deals, crimes in progress, but this incident stands out best.
My cousin is a lousy driver by nature. One particular night he was being tailgated and high beamed by an unhappy motorist behind him. He pulled into a gas station to let him pass, but the unsuspecting jerk followed him.
‘You got a problem, buddy?!’ The guy yelled at my cousin with a thick accent.
My cousin got out, and the punk looked nervous while my cousin replied, ‘Nope, but it looks like you do now,’ and flashed his badge.
The guy was arrested for driving a car with a revoked registration and driving without a license, possession of substance paraphernalia, along with citations for his actions before the confrontation.
Lifehack: just let it go when driving.”
Play Games, Win Prizes
“I was sitting at a stop sign in front of a school when a lady sped through said stop sign doing 50 in a 15. I pulled her over and gave my usual line, ‘Is there perhaps a medical or other legally justifiable reason you ran that stop sign in front of a school doing 50 miles per hour?’
She said, ‘I’m having a miscarriage.’ No, she wasn’t but going along with her story, I told her that she was in luck and that I was a trained medic, and would get an ambulance. As the ambulance was en route, the dispatcher told me the ambulance crew wanted to know if she was bleeding. She heard this on my radio, and I told my dispatcher to ‘standby.’ It was hot, and we were in Texas. She was wearing very short-shorts, so I stuck my head all the way in her car, looked down at her crotch, then back at her and said, ‘I guess not, huh?’
The look on her face was priceless.
She was so upset. She got the ticket for speeding and the stop sign, and the ambulance bill, so it was about $1,500 in total.
If you play stupid games, you win stupid prizes.”
Flying On The Highway
“My second police job was as a deputy sheriff. I was sitting there with my partner off a highway exit at a scenic overlook eating some lunch and listening on the radio trying to corner two motorcyclists who were flying around the highway like idiots. No air support was available, so they terminated the pursuit for safety. About ten minutes later as I was polishing off my fourth taco, two bikes matching the description, and without any visible plates, exited the highway and pulled into the same overlook. They removed their helmets, listened for a few minutes, killed the bikes, and then the one walked over to start peeing behind a tree. We had them transported since that guy peed all over himself when we hit the siren.
We were in an unmarked Subaru at the time.”
Don’t Show Up To A Swap Meet With A Cop
“Besides seeing a lot of aggressive driving, the only one that stands out was when a man tried to mug me, and another attempted to sell me stolen weapons.
I’ll preface by saying that I shave my head bald and have a big black beard and when I’m in plain clothes for work, I wear Dickies pants and button up shirts. I’m also Hispanic, so when I dress like that, I fit the part. The first one I arrived at a staging area probably 15 minutes early. It was a neighborhood park and it was 1 am. I got out of my unmarked in plain clothes and had a smoke. About five minutes later, a guy came from behind some bushes with a baseball bat on his shoulder and calmly said, ‘Gimme your money and jewelry.’ I swear for a second I was stunned, but I drew my weapon and pulled my badge from under my shirt. He dropped the bat and threw himself on the ground. We needed a new staging area after that.
The second story. In an unmarked vehicle in plain clothes, I went to a convenience store in a not so good part of town. As I got out, a man approached me and said, ‘You tryna get strapped?’
So I said, ‘What’s good?’ He showed me to his car where he had about ten pieces under a towel. Normally this isn’t illegal where I work, but I saw in his center console a few used pieces that reeked of weed. I told him I had no cash but let me call someone. I called a marked unit so I didn’t bring attention to myself. They came while he was sitting in his car. The pieces and smell gave probable cause to search. They found the weapons, all stolen. Seriously, if you’re going to sell stolen weapons, don’t do it swap meet style in front of a convenience store.”
That Wasn’t Me, Officer
“One of the guys in my unit was a cop before he enlisted and a good story he told us was about a hit and run. So my buddy was sitting at a red light, and this little Toyota (Prius or Corolla, I can’t recall exactly) was on the other side of the intersection when a dude came in a pickup truck, ran the red light and just straight plowed into the little Toyota.
The dude then backed up and drove off like he didn’t just smash into him. He said the guy wasn’t going crazy fast but he left most of his bumper in the Toyota. He was caught shortly thereafter.”
His Biggest Bust Of His Career
“One of my friends was doing an undercover stakeout at night in an unmarked car in a bad part of town. This wasn’t just an unmarked Crown Vic, but a seized vehicle with heavy illegal tint, think like a ricer mobile. While he’s there looking for a person of interest in a homicide, this guy walks by a few times checking out the car and just looking super fishy. He comes back, stops by the car, tries the door, then pulls out a lockout tool and tries to unlock the car. The whole time my buddy is trying to keep it together as this guy is trying to jack a car with a cop in it. He cracks the window and flashes his weapon. The guy drops his tool and just starts running down the street. He radioed in a description of the guy (didn’t want to blow the stakeout with an arrest) and a uniformed unit picked him up two blocks away.
Guy ended up being involved in an auto theft ring and brought them all down in exchange for a deal. He had one of the biggest busts of his career just walk up and try to break into his car.”
“It was during a blizzard in NYC. It was a bad one. I lived near the Port Authority building, and the streets were almost empty.
There was one cab on the street and it slid out and hit a parked car so hard it popped it up onto the sidewalk. The cabbie backed out and started to drive off.
The only other car on the road was a black SUV that suddenly pulled in front of the cab. The guy got out and flashed his badge. The only other pedestrians yelled out, ‘Go five-oh!’
It was the only time I’ve ever heard people cheering for the police.”
He Almost Let The Guy Get Away With It
“I was out once and come across a disabled vehicle with a big Ford behind it. There’s lots of traffic and this Ford is trying to get around the disabled car but I can tell he is never getting around this car.
So I turn on my blue lights and stop traffic so he can get around safely. As I’m sitting there waving the guy through, this fellow comes up on my passenger side window says, ‘OFFICER, THAT GUY IN THE TRUCK JUST HIT THAT CAR, HE WAS GOING SERIOUSLY FAST WEAVING ALL OVER THE PLACE, THEN HE HIT THAT CAR RIGHT THERE, I THINK HE’S WASTED!’
At this point, I’m like wait, that guy? And I point to the guy I’m letting out. And he’s like that’s him. So I’m like, oh Jesus. Since I already have my lights on, I hit the siren, tone change and pull him over.
Long story short, I end up cuffing him and waiting for the local smokies to show up and transport him to jail because I don’t have a caged car.
Turns out he was driving down the street drinking out of a Grey Goose bottle and orange juice bottle, making little mouth-sized screwdrivers with his freaking 4-year-old in the car.
The upshot for the little 4-year-old was that one of the responding officers that showed up had a thick Liverpool accent. The little girl legit thought that she was speaking to the cop from Mary Poppins. Super cute.”
“I was driving from Indianapolis to Bloomington one day to visit a friend on the Indiana University campus. I was going around 70 miles per hour or so, running late, and I passed a cop in an unmarked Mustang on the side of the road. He pulled out, and I got ready to pull over. He got behind me and just as he lit me up a lady in a red convertible came flying past both of us. I looked in the rearview mirror and saw a completely stunned look on his face as if he was asking himself, ‘Did this car just blow by both of us?’
It took him a couple of seconds to recover, but then he pulled up beside me, pointed at me while laughing, and took off after the woman. I passed them as she was getting stopped and tooted the horn twice in thanks to her.”
Look Before You Give The Finger
“I am a cop (in training) but wasn’t in an unmarked car. This person was playing on their phone in the middle of traffic and didn’t realize what kind of car was beside him. He looks up to me, sees me, and just gives me the finger, apparently for looking at him.
Only then does he notice my uniform or perhaps the big white POLIZEI on the side of the car. My instructor didn’t believe it until I assured him I wasn’t making it up. That guy ended up admitting it to my instructor. It was probably the most expensive finger he ever gave someone. And the most expensive round of whatever game they were playing on the phone.”
They Ended Up With Egg On Their Face
“My dad is a state game warden. It was Halloween night when I was around 4 or 5 years old, and my dad received a call south of town. His normal marked patrol truck was in the shop for some reason, so he was driving an unmarked truck.
Another vehicle coming in the opposite direction passed by and proceeded to throw eggs at his windshield while he was responding to the call. So he blacked out the lights on the truck, turned around and followed them. He didn’t have takedown lights on the truck, so he radioed the sheriff and got a deputy to pull them over after a short little chase.
My dad walked up to these teenagers in the vehicle, and they started profusely apologizing, saying stuff like, ‘We’ll apologize to that guy we egged, we’ll go clean it up,’ not realizing that it was my dad they egged until he told them. Not the brightest group of kids.”
Regret In One’s Tears
“Most of the funny moments are working in plain clothes. I still walk around thinking, ‘Crap, I’m the police and if you people only knew.’ You see a lot more in plain clothes than in uniform. Recently, a couple of dealers asked me a number of times what I needed. I was doing something else, so I wasn’t going to bust them. They followed me down the street and kept asking me what I needed. I finally ended up telling one guy what I needed and he told me the price. He palmed me the baggie and I paid him by showing him with my badge. I think he regretted chasing me down the street asking me what I needed after that.”