The vehicle flew into the house, crashed into a piano, and knocked a man out of bed. It was a crazy crash . . . True story! Was this scene from a movie, or just another day in the life of a cop?

How the true story began

“Units respond to a 901-T, injury collision, in RD 52 at the corner of Santa Mariana and La Roca,” said the police dispatcher, “vehicle into private residence at that location.”

I was rarely dispatched to an accident involving injuries in a quiet residential neighborhood, let alone at 2:00 a.m. But when I heard the call broadcast, my mind immediately pictured the interior residential streets where one elbowed into another.


As I arrived on scene I saw rubber tire transfers on the curb, tire tracks across a manicured lawn, and more tire marks on a raised brick planter that was damaged. Yet the car was missing. Was it a hit and run?

I shined my spotlight toward the house. It illuminated what had been a large living room window, but there was no glass in place on the enormous opening. Could a car fly through the window frame, into the home, without further damaging the front of the house? Yes it could!

Crazy crash . . . true story

I walked up to the scene and navigated through shards of broken glass. Amazingly I witnessed a red Pontiac Fiero sitting atop a crushed mini-grand piano in the living room. The piano had been pushed forward, and bulldozed through the drywall that was connected to the master bedroom.

Sitting on the couch, in a pool of his own urine, was the 16-year-old male driver. He was nearly catatonic and speechless. Once I confirmed he was all right, I walked around the corner and into the master bedroom. There I found a middle-aged gentleman in his underwear, writhing on the ground in pain. He was suffering excruciating back spasms.

His terrified wife confirmed they were asleep when the car came crashing into the house. It was self-evident the car landed on the piano, which then propelled through the wall. The woman confirmed they were knocked out of bed when the baby-grand punched a hole in the adjoining partition . . . true story. 

DUI investigation

The young man sitting motionless in the living room had been at a party, and was obviously intoxicated. As I conducted a DUI investigation, he cried for his father, who arrived on scene a short time later.


When the father arrived, he demonstrated unconditional love for his son. However, he reminded him there would be legal consequences for his actions as I placed him under arrest.

The victim that was knocked out of bed was a local pastor. As the case proceeded to court, the reverend demonstrated support and offered forgiveness for the young man.

Yet even with the love of the father, and forgiveness from the victim, there were still legal and civil consequences for the teenager.

Purpose of this true story

How often do we find ourself in similar circumstances? Because we’ve done something foolish that wreaked havoc, and sitting in a mess we cry out for our heavenly Father?

Most notably, the point I’d like to make is that God offers forgiveness and unconditional love, but we should not expect him to erase the consequences of our actions. Indeed he will help us rebuild and reconcile broken relationships, but the Hollywood illusion of rewinding the clock so the damage can be undone is unrealistic.

Most of all, as we ask for God’s mercy and the forgiveness of those we’ve harmed, we should also seek his guidance in picking up the pieces and moving forward. Yet we should avoid symbolically sitting in a pool of urine as an uninvolved spectator, hypnotically viewing the havoc we’ve created. As a result, we need to take steps to remedy our damage and pursue reconciliation.

“Therefore, confess your sins to one another,” wrote James, the brother of Jesus, “and pray for one another, that you may be healed.” . . . True story!

Jim McNeff

(Feature image is file photo. It is not from the incident described in this story.)