SFPD Reports Bernal Heights Robbery/Fight On Moving Car Straight Out of "T.J. Hooker"
It was Candide's grating mentor Pangloss who opined that our noses are shaped as they are so as to better accommodate our eyeglasses. If Voltaire had been writing American cop shows in the 1970s instead of French social satire in the 1750s, Inspector Pangloss would have put it this way: Car hoods are shaped as they are so as to better accommodate T.J. Hooker.
The sight of William Shatner's stunt double clinging persistently to the hood of a Gran Torino or Chevelle or other appropriately gargantuan American car of the day was a staple of 1970s television viewing -- it was such a cliche that Saturday Night Live even got Shatner to parody it a decade later . But even those of us who don't read police reports every day know that it's not often you see someone desperately dangling off of a moving car while a crime is in progress.
So it came as a bit of a shock to read the Ingleside police bulletin, which documented this straight-out-of-T.J. Hooker instance:
On Friday at 11:30 p.m. in Bernal Heights -- Andover Street and Eugenia Avenue to be exact -- a woman was walking home alone when an older model silver car pulled up behind her (an "older model silver car" -- this really is right out of T.J. Hooker).
A woman jumped out of the car and attempted to snatch the victim's purse. A fight ensued, during which the victim was dragged into the car. The two women continued to grapple over the purse as the car took off, with the victim presumably dangling precariously out the door.
The fight continued to the point where the mugger conceded; she released the purse, and, in the process, the victim was jettisoned from the moving vehicle and thumped along the neighborhood streets, receiving multiple abrasions on her arm, hip, and forehead and a trip to St. Luke's Hospital.
Within the same police report, Captain David Lazar noted a series of robberies in the neighborhood and "many of the incidents have occurred when the victim was alone, walking the streets, at night." That may be -- but it's a safe bet that cases involving victims dangling out of or being ejected from cars are still a rarity, as are police officers who resemble Heather Locklear or Adrian Zmed.