True Crime Thursday – Police Stop

Photo credit: dwights ghost, wikimedia creative commons

By Debbie Burke



Today’s True Crime tale is set in Detroit, dateline 2009. This three minute video chronicles a harrowing police stop with charges that include speeding, grand theft auto, and murder.

As a bonus, it offers a master class in storytelling by author Dan Yashinsky of Toronto.

Here’s Dan!


TKZers: Did you learn any techniques from Dan’s video to use in your own work?




Last day for introductory price of $.99 for Debbie Burke’s new thriller, Dead Man’s Bluff. Here’s the buy link.

22 thoughts on “True Crime Thursday – Police Stop

  1. Well worth the wait, Ma’am… the kind of shaggy dog story I was raised on…

    A police stop trick I’ve heard about, and come to witness (though not first hand – knock wood), is the officer will approach the vehicle from the driver’s side and touch the taillight to leave a fingerprint/DNA in case said “Bubbie” rabbits as “proof” the officer was there…

    • When I did my ridealong, the deputy touched the trunk, both to make sure it was closed and there was nobody inside, and also to leave his prints.

  2. When I first punched on the video, I had to wonder if Dan were Indian (Native American, I guess, is the politically correct designation, an iffy one at best). So I went looking to see what I could find.

    My reason was that his story about his grandma. Many Indians from many tribes like to tell stories about our old people, stories that show their grandeur and acuity, a sort of “my grandma and grandpa were better than anyone else’s here.” It was that generation past who came up with or passed on stories about the scary things we’re supposed to avoid, the funny things that happen in life, and what things are safe to eat.

    There difference, as Dan notes in his great, great story, is that many of our grandparents now ride in Fords and Chevys instead of on horses.

    But as to his storytelling, I appreciate and envy his sense of timing, his pauses at just the right places, and the sense of affection he projects about his grandma.

    Thank you for the post, Debbie. Thank you for the story, Dan Yashinsky. It made me think of my own grandma. She’s waiting for us in the Presence of Dawkee.

    • You’re most welcome, Jim. The oral tradition of the older generation passing wisdom via stories to the younger generation is sadly lost in today’s culture.

      Dan’s timing reminds me of great comedians like Jack Benny and George Burns.

    • The Southern oral tradition of family stories pretty well ended with us Boomers, but I have always tried to pass along stories to the siblings’ kids about the sibs’ childhood, only slightly embarrassing because I’m not a jerk, as well as stories about our parents and the family history. Most of the stories will be forgotten, sadly, but it is what it is.

  3. Well worth the wait, Debbie. I haven’t laughed that hard in a long time. I hope to be as smart as Bubbie when I’m legally blind, have no license, etc. etc.!

    Here’s my take: if any of the details had been revealed before, it would not have had the chortle impact it did.

    Timing is truly everything…

  4. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!! Loved the video. Hilarious! Ahh, thank you, Debbie. I needed a good laugh.

    Takeaway: Timing is everything. Make the reader wait.

    • Sue, a few years ago, there was a series of funny commercials (can’t remember the product) with the punchline “Timing is everything.”

  5. In traffic stop news, the city council of Berkeley, CA, in their infinite wisdom, has decided to use unarmed civilians for traffic stops. Police departments across the US have reacted with horror for obvious reasons, but as of today, I’ve seen nothing to show that the City Coucil has changed their mind.

    • Insanity seems to be the order of the day on so many fronts. All it will take is one unarmed civilian to be maimed or killed, the city sued, and then they will come to their senses…maybe.

      Traffic stops and domestic disturbances…still the most risky call for a beat cop.

  6. Pingback: A Police Stop You Won’t Soon Forget – Debbie Burke

  7. Loved this! Love the story, the perfect timing, the laugh it provided at the end of a long, stress-filled week.

    I miss the storytelling that used to happen under the trees when relatives gathered in the Sunday afternoon heat, on front porches when neighbors gathered to rock away the evening, and in living rooms when families remembered those who’ve gone before us. It feels like the art of face-to-face storytelling is slipping away.

    • Isn’t Dan great!

      I too miss face-to-face storytelling. My grandmother spun wonderful tales and taught me to read before I started school. She’s a big reason I’m a writer.

      Thanks for stopping by, Suzanne.

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