It’s a bit intimidating to get a voicemail from the cops, asking for a call back.
Except when the conversation goes like this.
Foti Koskinas — newly appointed deputy chief — asked me to convey a message to “06880” readers:
The Westport Police have teamed up with State Police to address the Nado parking issue — that’s the contractor who, for several months, has parked vehicles overnight under bridges on the Sherwood Island connector and South Compo Road.
“It’s not acceptable,” Foti said.
“Nado has been warned. The Westport Police will enforce that warning. If they park there again, they’re not getting a red sticker or even a ticket. They will be towed.”
And not by a truck that picks up Passats.
“They’ll be towed by a heavy-duty wrecker — at heavy expense,” Foti says.
And that’s their expense — not the town’s.
But wait — there’s more!
“We’re glad people complained about this,” Foti says.
“We want the public to feel open calling us. That’s the only way we know what’s going on. And the only way we’ll get better.”
Foti encourages the public to phone 203-341-6000 with any questions, complaints or concerns. A shift commander will handle the call.
And if that’s not good enough, you can ask for Foti or Police Chief Dale Call.
Just don’t ask to park your earth mover underneath any bridge in town.
In 1958, Bob Thompson and his wife moved to Westport.
Exploring the basement of their new Chapel Hill Road home, he found what he thought was an enormous cannonball. He hauled the 70-pound artifact up to his garage. It sat there for over 50 years, disturbed only when he cleaned up, or rearranged things.
Recently, an antique dealer friend spotted it. He told Bob it was too big to be a cannonball. It looked like a mortar shell, the friend said — maybe it still had explosives in it.
Bob called the Westport Police Department. Within moments 2 squad cars, a fire truck and an emergency vehicle roared up to his home.
The public safety officials told Bob to roll — not drive — his car out of the garage. The mortar shell hasn’t blown up in 50 years, Bob said; I don’t think anything will happen now.
Just do as we say, they said. He did.
Westport’s finest called the State Police bomb unit. When they arrived, they asked — well, told — Bob and his wife to leave the area. The Thompsons headed out for coffee.
When they returned, the explosive was gone. Yellow warning tape still remained, strung around the area.
The police told Bob the bomb had been taken to Sherwood Island. There, the authorities blew it up.
That sound you hear right now is hundreds of Westporters calling authorities to check out all the stuff they’ve had in their garages for years, and never thought twice about.
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