Drug Policy

"Yeah, sure, I know, it's a free country and I ain't got the right. But I got a badge. What do you got?"


Yesterday's New York Times brought the shocking and bizarre story of "Sergeant Bill" Jakob, the unemployed former trucking company owner and wedding-performing minister (among other things) who apparently hoodwinked the entire town of Gerald, Missouri into thinking he was a federal agent sent to save them from the scourge of methamphetamine.

The whole outrageous and sadly hilarious thing is well worth your time, but here are a few particularly notable details:

In addition to having a badge and a car that seemed to scream law enforcement, Mr. Jakob offered federal drug enforcement help, [Mayor Otis] Schulte said, (a notion local officials said must have somehow grown out of their recent application for a federal grant for radio equipment) and asked [Police] Chief McCrary to call what he said was his supervisor's telephone number to confirm Gerald's need for his help.

When the call was placed, a woman—whose identity is unknown—answered with the words "multijurisdictional task force," and said that the city's request for federal services was under review, the mayor said. Mr. Schulte said he now suspects that Mr. Jakob adapted the nonexistent task force name from the "Beverly Hills Cop" movies starring Eddie Murphy.

Read it and weep.

NEXT: Hustler, Once More Into the Constitutional Breach

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  1. It sounds like a story from Gogol.

  2. Holy fucking shit.

  3. After he was found out, I heard he escaped by stuffing a banana in the real cops’ tailpipe.

  4. You got to admit the whole story is pretty funny!


  5. To some, like Mayor Otis Schulte, who considers the county around Gerald, population 1,171, “a meth capital of the United States,” the drug scourge seemed to be fading at last.

    Seems to me you’d need to be on drugs to think your little hole of a town was the capital of anything, Otis.

  6. Who is this douche that keeps spamming H&R with his keylogging websites?

  7. I could totally imagine this story as a Broadway musical, a la “Music Man.”

  8. A town of 1200 people is a “meth capital of the US?”

    Give me a fucking break. Do all small town government officials instantly shit their pants at every press release from ONDCP?

  9. Who is this douche that keeps spamming H&R with his keylogging websites?

    He’s been on it for awhile, but he seems especially persistent today.

  10. Do all small town government officials instantly shit their pants at every press release from ONDCP?

    Seems that way, yeah.

  11. That’s amazing. I feel bad for the people that got caught up in it, but that is just so funny.

    It could be a libertarian parable.

  12. I guess even a small town like Gerald needs, on occaison, an Axel Foley to bust its Victor Maitland.

  13. The odd thing is that people are upset because he wasn’t a “real” law enforcement officer.

    The actions he took, arresting people, kicking down doors don’t bother them.

    So the crime was what he pretended to be rather than what he did.


  14. I’ve had some bad experiences with the small Missouri towns around that area. This story doesn’t surprise me in the least.

    It boggles the mind that so many folks who should know better could fall for the idea that some supposed federal LEO doesn’t need search warrants. Or even that some lone doofus could simply walk into a police station claiming to be a fed, and nobody apparently bats an eye, following his directions on drug raids. I’ll bet half the folks in that town still approve of this moron’s “cleaning house”.

    Fucking rubes.

  15. You teach people to submit long enough and they eventually bend over for anyone with a badge.

  16. If badges are outlawed, only outlaws will be badgerers.

    Or something.

  17. Why is he only being charged with impersonating a federal officer? How about B&E, assault, kidnapping, and battery? All the charges related to using a firearm in those crimes as well?


  18. I’d probably start doing meth if I lived in that town too.

  19. a car that seemed to scream law enforcement

    A 1974 four door Plymouth Volare, no doubt.

  20. Maybe the prosecutor doesn’t want the public to question Sgt. Bill’s tactics or inspect them too closely, seeing as how well they mirror those of “legitimate” LEOS.

  21. Randolph Carter,

    Probably because the people he assaulted were accused of using drugs; I think that a lot of folks really don’t care about the rights of people accused of using drugs.

    Citizen Nothing also makes a good point @ 10:39.

  22. God I fucking hate middle MO

  23. So, if some psycho-douche, impersonating a “federal agent” conducting a drug interdiction operation, kicks down your door in the middle of the night, and you shoot his balls off with your twelve-gauge, how do they write it up?

  24. Does anyone have the movie rights yet? Someone get Tim Blake Nelson on the phone.

  25. I’m thinking this is right up the Cohen bros alley.

    And: I like the way they say, “We didn’t want to fire the officers who blindly helped him, but the city’s attorney made us.”

  26. I can imagine that the movie would be modeled on “Walking Tall.”

  27. P Brooks,
    That would make you a “cop killer” and the DA would seek the death penalty.

  28. So he took along the town cops with him on warrantless raids, and they really thought they didn’t need one because he was a federal agent?

    And I love how it’s the beat cops who lost their jobs but not the police chief who was the dude’s best friend.

  29. “Once I got his name, I hit the computer and within an hour I had all the dirt on this guy,” Ms. Trest said.

    Haha. I guess no one in Shit Hole, Missouri aside from this reporter has heard of Google.

  30. Randolph Carter, its funny you should say that, because Joe Don Baker was my first choice for the lead role, until I saw the guy was way too skinny for that.

  31. Haha. I guess no one in Shit Hole, Missouri aside from this reporter has heard of Google.

    No, everybody here knows how to google. Thats how they get their sibling porn. I think the reporter might know a couple other sites to search besides google.

  32. You teach people to submit long enough and they eventually bend over for anyone with a badge.

    Drug Abuse Resistance Educatione (D.A.R.E.), aka Cop Worship 101, is an important part of the curriculum.

  33. Is this the man who wrecked the buffet at the Harrow Club this morning?

  34. This little gem from TFA,

    Mr. Withington said he had not yet been charged with a crime; Gary Toelke, the Franklin County sheriff, confirmed that no local charges had been issued against him. . But the mortification of that day, Mr. Withington said, has kept him largely indoors and led him to consider moving. Since the search, residents have tossed garbage and crumpled boxes of Sudafed (an ingredient of which can be used to make methamphetamine) on his lawn, he said, and he no longer shops in town, instead driving miles to neighboring towns.[emphasis added]

    I suspect “Sergeant Bill” has a lot of friends ans sympathisers in that town who will defend his actions to the last.

    I’m not sure who I find the most contemptable, the petty crook feathering his own nest or the gaggle of Babbits who condone his methods of “law enforcement”.

    Mayor Otis Schulte seems to be an extra special prize in this game.

    Weep for America.

  35. Actually, I wrote “weep for America above” but that does not capture it.

    Someone brought up Walking Tall above and I remember the enthuiastic reception it got from people where I was living. I was living in Canada. Buford Pusser got standing ovations in movie theaters there.

    As long as there are those who the people consider undesirable or threatening people everywhere will clamor for protection. Civil liberties be damned. It’s well nigh universal.

  36. WTF? I mean, my wife and I have called the listed police dept. number to confirm the guy at the door really is a cop. Nobody working for this pissant little town can do the same thing? Are you freaking kidding me?

    Damn, but people are stupid.

  37. “Ooh, baby, you are so talented…and they are so dumb!

  38. Wow. His lawyer’s defense is pretty much, “None of this was even remotely legal, but hey, the town is better off! The people he didn’t arrest will tell you so.”

  39. Uh, hi, I’m Agent joe, from the Multi-Jurisdictional Task Force, and I’m here to inventory your evidence locker…

  40. Another instance proving there are vast numbers of folks out there who enjoy pretending to be police — and who are willing to preform that “thankless” job for free.

    They seem to love doing all the cop stuff: Busting people, flashing the badge, packing heat, ordering people around, drinking coffee in a little styrofoam cup, wearing tight shirts that say “police!” chewing the fat with the ole chief, growing a mustache, breaking the law with impunity, etc. etc.

    If I was defending this dude: (yelling in court) “Well, he may not be an “official” cop, but at least he gets results, you stupid chief!”

  41. ‘Captain of Kopenick’ story have exposed German militarism. What does this story prove?

  42. This very well may be the new face of life here in the good old U S of A. With the militarization of law enforcement and their love affair with excessive force, We the People become slower to ask questions and faster to cease and desist. Easy pickin’s for pretenders.

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