Machete Madness! Goodbye Ruby Tuesday

It was just another day watch routine 911 call to the Santa Ana Police Dispatcher.

The bar manager at Ruby Tuesdays wanted to report a malicious mischief (PC 594 in police parlance) that just occurred by an unhappy patron who had fled in a battered old faded green pickup truck with a bunch of lawn service equipment in its bed. No further information was provided to me regarding the last direction of travel nor a license plate number.

Gumshoe acknowledged the assigned radio call and made a cursory area search in the vicinity of Ruby Tuesday’s for this “Sanford & Sons” pickup truck with negative results.

Gumshoe arrived at the bar and met the irate manager.  I learned that the barmaid had refused to serve any further firewater to this patron because he appeared intoxicated.   She notified her boss manager who tried to explain to this inebriated client the civil liability to the bar for “over-serving”.

Note:  Attempting to explain anything to a drunk is definitely a fool’s errand.

The already “over-served” customer apparently did not agree with being cut off.

Did Gumshoe mention that this alcohol-fueled and angry patron was described as a 40-some, 300-pound, 6-foot-plus Samoan?

Gumshoe then learned that this “King Kong” humanoid promptly flipped over the bar table and entered the men’s room. Loud sounds of shattering glass and stuff quickly echoed from within this restroom of doom.

Momentarily, this enraged behemoth emerged from his lair and beat feet out of the bar to his truck without any goodbyes nor “come back agains” from the frightened service staff. Go figure?

The manager entered the men’s room and he discovered a Hiroshima-like atmosphere.  The porcelain pieces from the urinal, toilet, and sink formed a mixed mosaic of madness along the linoleum floor that was slowly being flooded by the ruptured water pipes.

A large fist-sized hole with outer spiderwebbed cracked glass gave a kaleidoscope reflection from the wall mirror. Another fist-size hole punctured the plasterboard wall adjacent to the damaged mirror just as an afterthought.

Surprisingly, the toilet stall was still intact. Gumshoe surmised that even this human Godzilla had his personal renovation limits.

Gumshoe learned from another shocked and bewildered bar hostess that she scribbled down the rear California license plate number from this slightly upset Samoan’s getaway vehicle. In police work folks, this clue would break this case wide open for Gumshoe who quickly entered this number into his unit’s computer and quickly discovered the registered owner as well as his Santa Ana address.

Gumshoe proceeded to this malcontent’s abode and through simple serendipity, Godzilla‘s truck arrived home simultaneously with Gumshoe’s black & white pulling behind him. Now the fun and thrills of street police work!

The Samoan behemoth quickly exited his ride and grabbed a chainsaw from the truck bed. Yikes! Gumshoe adroitly grabbed his Remington model 870 12-gauge shotgun from its rack simply because Gumshoe did not have an elephant gun.  You go to war with the equipment who have folks.

Gumshoe shouted out in his official U.S. Marine Corps voice commands to drop the saw and put his massive arms up.  No luck! Mr. Godzilla shouted loudly in some Samoan dialect as he pulled the chainsaw cord.  He quickly started to cut into the outer roof of his truck. Gumshoe just calmly watched in amazement.

Godzilla’s chainsaw got stuck and sputtered out. Godzilla then immediately armed himself with a shiny machete and he continued in his boisterous Samoan dialect as he ran to a Mexican Fan Palm Tree in his front yard. Godzilla started to decapitate this rather large palm tree with an uninterrupted and savage attack.  Talk about destroying a rainforest!

Gumshoe merely watched this awesome display of raw power and physical energy as the palm fronds flew every which way in this tornado of fury.  (I just love this hyperbole)

Gumshoe pumped a double-aught round into the Remington 870 and took a cover position from the outer driver’s side door while observing this “Cry Havoc” afternoon road show.

Gumshoe’s shouted pleas to this gargantuan gardener, gardened no response.  No surprise, sometimes people just have to work out their frustrations. Gumshoe keyed his shoulder-attached radio microphone and advised the 911 dispatcher to clear the air.   Gumshoe then advised the dispatcher that they should roll a field supervisor along with a fire department paramedic unit because Gumshoe was anticipating shooting someone momentarily.

You see folks that just as long as this prior Ruby Tuesday patron did not approach Gumshoe, he did not pose a threat to Gumshoe nor anyone else.

However, if this liquor fire-up denizens of destruction decided to make a “Charge of the Light Brigade” towards Gumshoe; his half-a-league forward would be met with a rainstorm of double-aught pellets.

I guess the Great Samoan entity in the sky was looking down that afternoon and commanded his subject to just drop the machete and sit down among the fronds and chill.

Gumshoe was relieved that the only paperwork necessary was a simple malicious mischief report accompanied by an arrest for DUI.  No assault charge and thank God no officer involved shooting investigation.  Film at 11 on your Action News TV channel.

The following afternoon, Gumshoe drove by Godzilla’s residence and saw him meekly cleaning up the harvested palm fronds from his front yard. Gumshoe stopped and approached this now-appearing “Gentle Ben” who was singing and humming probably a Samoan Island Tribal Song. He abruptly stopped raking and gave Gumshoe a shy look of embarrassment as I walked closer to him.  He started to apologize to me and profoundly thanked me for not shooting him.  I told him that I too was glad I did not have to shoot him.  He still had bruised knuckles from his men’s room massacre.  Ouch!

He explained to me that he had had a hard day of gardening work and that the cold beer at Ruby Tuesday’s was tasting soooo good that he could not drink enough.  Know when to say no I guess? He told me in a sincere voice that he had no memory of destroying the men’s room.   He did clearly recall me pulling up behind his truck and he definitely remembered the sound of my racking the pump of my shotgun.   Funny how some sounds are retained inside your memory bank. He promised me that there would be no more too much happy juice drinking in his life.  We both shared a laugh as I noticed the protruding still stuck chain saw in the roof of his battered green truck.  It would definitely make a branding symbol for his lawn service business.

Well, dear readers, that’s the tale from yesteryear from Gumshoe’s gypsy police career. Until next time, always remember to love the ones who love you and even try to love the ones who don’t.

Coram Deo!

PS:  The palm tree survived.


Danny Pitocco
Danny Pitocco
RETIRED (as a Detective with the Snohomish County Sherriff’s Department, Washington State), Danny has over forty years of law enforcement experience across city, county, state and federal levels of government, including service as a Special Agent for the DEA, US Department of Justice. He’s a decorated law enforcement veteran, and recipient of the "Detective of the Year" award for Snohomish County, Danny is a certified composite artist and has testified as an expert witness in the field of narcotics and modus operandi of particular crimes in state and federal courts in California, and has given testimony before federal grand juries. Danny served four years of active duty in the US Marine Corps and loves Jesus as his personal savior.

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  1. Great article Gumshoe. Brings me back to my Marine Corps Days. After getting back from across the pond I decided to sign on for a Caribbean Deployment.
    We trained on the Island of Viegas. Our first Liberty Port was San Juan. Anyway we had a great Gunny Sgt., Gunny Gladney. Corps Lifer. Before we get off the ship he calls the Platoon together for some words of wisdom for his Marines. #1. Don’t fall in love with the women. They will tell you how much they love Marines. They want you to spend your money. #2 You Marines are going to get drunk. Just remember this. The problems you leave with tonight will be the same problems you will wake up to tomorrow and with a hangover to boot.
    He was right. I used that second philosophy when dealing with domestic calls when I was on the job. Drunks were the hardest individuals to deal with. Most often than not one could empathize with what they thought were real issues. Sometimes no amount of reasoning would help and that’s when the cuffs would go on and conversation ended.
    Thanks again for another memory.
    Semper Fi

    • Your wizen Gunny was correct. Drunks were always unpredictable. Sometimes amusing and other times a clear and present danger to themselves as to others.

      Thanks again Tom for your great comments as we both travel down memory lane. Semper Fi!