I was driving one van and another couple was driving a second larger cargo van. Picked up the plants in the 'Peg, had lunch and while the other van went to pick up some other supplies, I was full of plants and set off for home (after a quick stop at a camera store
Coming across the Manitoba/Ontario border I made a mistake. Well, I failed to realize that the speed limit on highway 17 there is 90 km/h. I was going too fast. How fast? Fast enough to get pulled over by a member of the Ontario Provincial Police. Doh.
Now I learned a long time ago, that it's best to have the stuff you know you're going to need ready for an officer. So I got the rental papers and my license ready and opened the window. I left the motor running as I was concerned about all the plants in the van. As this officer approached the van I could hear her give the license plate to the dispatch officer on the other end of her radio. All of a sudden she turned and returned to her patrol car, and said to me as she went, "Just wait in the vehicle sir, I'll be with you in a minute" (or something to that effect). A short time later there was two other OPP cars very quickly approaching me and then boxing my van in. As if I intended on going anywhere.
Then they proceeded to ask me to exit the vehicle with my hands in plain sight. I did so. Then I was told to put my hands on my head and then the top of the van. Then I was quickly patted down for concealed weapons. I was then told I was being detained for possession of stolen property.
Detained for possession of stolen property. Turns out, this van was reported as stolen by the rental company who owns the van. I was then firmly, but not harshly, handcuffed and asked to sit in the back seat of a patrol car. The car I was in was then moved a short ways away as it was blocking the eastbound lane of the TransCanada. I could not see what they were doing as the car was facing away from the van, but at one point I turned (uncomfortably - I might add) and saw the back hatch of the van open. I counted 3 marked patrol cars and one unmarked patrol car. Apparently this is a big deal this thing I'm involved in is. So now, apparently, I was in possession of a stolen van, that was full to the roof with valuable plants. Plants intended for distribution and sale in the city of Dryden. I did not see them open any boxes, but I'm sure they felt compelled to check what kind of plants where in at least one or two of the 25+ large boxes of plants in the van.
In time, it was established that the van had been reported as stolen some time before. Except that the rental company had retrieved the vehicle back from another town four weeks previous and had failed to inform the OPP that the van was no longer stolen. So when they routinely ran the plates of the van I had rented with dispatch, it was flagged. They then responded as they are supposed to with a person with a stolen van. The were polite but firm. In the end they apologized, they did not give me the speeding ticket that I rightly deserved and sent me on my way. I believe I mumbled a "sorry" and "thankyou" and walked back the van stunned.
The speed limit the remainder of the drive home was 90 km/h, I had the cruise set at 88 km/h. So now I know, and have respect for, the way police around here deal with suspects with stolen property.
There are at least a few people I know that will find this story at least mildly amusing.
What did you do today?
For the record - Dale - I was detained, not arrested; and no I do not have any video, I thought it would rude to ask them to bring me my phone and undo my handcuffs to video the experience.