At the Ft. Eustis guard station, we were politely asked to exit the car, leave all doors open and open the hood and trunk. I have no problem with that at all. My wife and I were asked for our driver’s licenses, car registration (again, no problem) and a car insurance card. (!) The only State Farm card I had was for our secondary vehicle and had expired three weeks ago. The officer asked if we could call our agent for verification. Since it was Sunday and we didn’t have the agent’s home number, that was not a feasible solution.
We were then told to stand at the front of our vehicle, face the Ft. Eustis sign, and that another officer would be called. Our licenses and registration were held while we waited for the other officer. At this point, one of our grandsons began to get frightened and upset about this situation. To her credit, the officer tried to help us reassure our grandson (though unsuccessfully) that we were not “in trouble” and that nothing was going to happen to us. We told her that we felt that we should leave, since the boys were too upset to enjoy seeing the museum and expressed their desire to leave and go home.
Effectively, we were being detained until we were cleared to leave. I say that because we could not proceed to our intended destination (museum) nor were we permitted to leave, since security people were holding our ID’s and car registration.
The officer who was called arrived in about ten minutes, and after examining our credentials in his patrol car for another five minutes or so, returned our licenses and registration and curtly told us where to make a U-turn to exit Ft. Eustis.
As a taxpayer I was insulted. As a would-be visitor of the museum, I was offended. I've asked them to be more specific in their informaton their website information, and to let parents and grandparents know exactly WHAT will be required for ID. This was inexcusable and so easily avoided. We checked their website before we went to see what was required, but nothing prepared us for that experience! Be Warned!
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