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I wish someone had a vendetta against me

June 17, 2008|By TIM ROWLAND

So, when you're stopped by the cops, these six words might actually work: "Do You Know Who I Am?"

I never knew that before. I thought they were just something to be drunkenly hollered by a congressman as they pull his car full of strippers out of the Tidal Basin. Or the last words of the aging, kooky-krazy tycoon before they take him away in a wire bus.

But it appears they worked for Hagerstown City Council member Kelly Cromer, who got away with only a warning for speeding, after one count of 43 in a 25 and one count of being a total snot with the patrol officer.

Afterward, she said her light treatment was due to the fact that the Hagerstown police have a vendetta against her.

They hate her? And instead of a ticket they gave her a warning? My goodness. What would they have done if they liked her, bought her a new Corvette?

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According to the police supplementary report, Cromer adopted an "attitude and sarcastic tone" while dropping the "Do You Know Who I Am?" bomb.

I like it. A true woman of the people. Matter of fact, I'm thinking she might want to use it on her next round of campaign yard signs: "Kelly Cromer: Do You Know Who I Am?"

She says the vendetta stems from the fact that she is currently on a mission to reduce the number of city vehicles that city employees can drive home at night.

Maybe. But a warning seems like a pretty weak vendetta to me. It would be like the Hatfields giving the McCoys the finger and calling it a day.

I do love a good conspiracy, though. Cue the black helicopters. She's probably just lucky that she didn't call for members of the Trilateral Commission to stop taking their cars home.

Personally, I think this whole thing was a smart move by Cromer. Really, what officer in his or her right mind is going to pull her over now? For anything? She could drive 100 mph through a school zone with a trunk full of crack and no one's going to want to touch her for fear she'll go full Lady Macbeth on 'em.

You have to feel for officer Christopher Watt, who made the stop. He knows he's got a live one, so he radios back to his supervisor for guidance and his supervisor basically says, "Son, you're on your own." Smart supervisor. No way he's getting his fingerprints on that train wreck. I admire Watt for even giving her a warning. Me, I'd have just said, "You have a nice day ma'am," and gone off to check the railyard for hobos.

Even Mayor Bob Bruchey begged off, saying it was impossible to know what Cromer meant when she allegedly asked "Do you know who I am?"

Yeah, that's a real brain teaser all right. Whatever could it mean? Better get Columbo on line two. Here's a clue - do the words "above the law" ring a bell?

Cromer, for the record, says the officer was lying about the DYKWIA part. Councilman Lew Metzner shrugged that off, noting that Cromer has been calling a lot of city officials liars of late. So everyone in the world is a liar, but her. Seems the one honest person has finally been found.

I don't hold it against Cromer for trying, though. I used that line once - turned out the officer didn't know who I was. But once he found out, he doubled the fine.

Tim Rowland is a Herald-Mail columnist. He can be reached at 301-733-5131, ext. 2324, or via e-mail at timr@herald-mail.com.

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