Why the cop wanted to beat the journalist

“You sh*t, how could you have done that, do you know the trouble you got me in.”

The policeman was angry, and I didn’t know why. What I did know was that somehow I had made a blabs.

Red Cross dog - Italy. Photo cropped from orig...

Image via Wikipedia

They happen in journalism, born out of frantic deadlines, names that are spelt wrong, maybe a number incorrectly added.

All journalists hate them and try their utmost to prevent them, but they do sometimes slip through. But with this policeman there was no misspelling there, hell I didn’t even use his name.

The cop’s name is Stroppies, a bear of a man who was a member of the Soweto Dog Unit. His search and rescue dogs were considered the best, there is a story how one of them picked up the scent of a body that was lying 40 metres deep at the bottom of a dam.

A couple of weeks earlier I had seen Stroppies in a canoe on the Klipspruit river in Soweto searching for a drowned victim. I had asked for a quote.

“You know I cant talk to you, you need to speak to the police spokesperson,” he replied, while prodding the undergrowth that lay at the water’s edge with his paddle.

From the bank I pleaded, I told him that police spokesperson sat in offices and knew nothing. I told him that they always got the story wrong.

I told him that the guys on the ground fighting crime and saving people, like him were never recognised.

I told him… “Okay I will talk to you, but you don’t use my name,” he barked.

“No problem,” I said, and pulled out my notebook.

He gave me some good stuff, that went into the paper.

This time around there stood Stroppies spitting mad.

“You got me into sh*t with your story, you @#@$.”

“But how could I have got you in trouble,” I said, “I didn’t use your name, I referred to you as a member of the Soweto Dog Unit.”

He looked at me as if I was real dumb.

“You idiot, I am the only member of the Soweto Dog Unit.”

About Shaun Smillie

Journalist, with a love of bones, fossils and other things dug up. Fisherman and occasional beer maker.
This entry was posted in Media, stories behind the news and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Why the cop wanted to beat the journalist

  1. The Melanie-Ann Feris says:

    You little shit! Whahaha!!

  2. beebeesworld says:

    Great story! Thanks for reading my Legacy story! If you aren’t following my blog,, I hope you will consider doing so. I will follow your blog and see what else you have in store!

    • I did really enjoy your legacy story, as I have an interest in ancestry. I am currently working on various projects involving my genealogy, many of them I blog about, or will be blogging about. As you might have noticed I am now following you.
      Keep up the great blog

  3. Silla Grobbelaar says:


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