Friday, December 09, 2005

Shaq becomes an officer again.

According to the NZ Herald today. In Miami Beach, the extremely long arm of the law is attached to a 7-foot-1-inch (216cm), 147kg basketball superstar.

Shaquille O'Neal, the Miami Heat centre regarded as one of the world's best players, was sworn in on Thursday as a reserve police officer with the Miami Beach Police Department. You wouldn't want to get bashed by Shaq, watch out if you are in Miami.

O'Neal, who has long been interested in a crime-fighting career and wants to become a police chief someday, has a uniform, badge, gun and the power to make arrests.

He worked as a reserve officer in Los Angeles during his years with the Lakers and has been training in Miami Beach since his trade to the Heat in July 2004.

O'Neal won't be put on street patrol - an enormous world-famous athlete in a police uniform might be a distraction - so he is working in the detective bureau on child exploitation crimes.

"He made it quite clear he didn't want to be used for photo ops and recruitment work when he came here," Miami Beach Police spokesman Bobby Hernandez said.

"He wanted to get down and dirty."

In September, O'Neal witnessed an assault on a gay couple and followed the suspects in his vehicle while calling for backup and flagging down a passing police car, Hernandez said. His actions resulted in an arrest.

O'Neal, who earns about US$20 million ($28.86 million) a year as a National Basketball Association star, must do a minimum of 20 hours work a month, when he's not busy with his other job, Hernandez said.

As a reserve officer, he has all the law enforcement powers of a full-time officer.

"The only difference between a regular police officer and reserve is I get paid and he doesn't," Hernandez said.

When I met Shaq at Beverly Hills BMW in 2003, everyone was surprised to see him pulling up in a Ford Crown Victoria undercover police car. The reason for it as it said above was that he was also an Officer in LA. Quite smart really, you don't see hooligans racing up to what is suspected as being a police car and looking in do you? Plus it had very dark tinted windows, so he would not be detected by adoring fans.

WAY to go Shaquille..... It does send a good message that although he makes plenty of folding, he is concerned with helping the community. Plus if there is a fight on the ball court, he can arrest the opposition.


Little Girl in a Black Apron said...

god i would be so frightened if he came for me :( all police officers should look like him :P

Rob Good said...

He is a nice guy...... I am sure he'd be polite to you.....

Anonymous said...

You said you met Shaq at a BMW dealer. Did he buy a BMW?