Home » Education Legislation » Updated: Trio of Curious French Police Officers Accidentally Ship Out on USS Dwight D. Eisenhower

Updated: Trio of Curious French Police Officers Accidentally Ship Out on USS Dwight D. Eisenhower

USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN-69) on Dec. 15, 2016. US Navy Photo

USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN-69) on Dec. 15, 2016. US Navy Photo

This post has been updated with additional details.

Three curious French police officers are facing disciplinary measures after accidentally shipping out on carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN-69) when it left after a port visit to Marseilles on Tuesday.

The municipal police officers – who did not speak English– came aboard the carrier right before the ship left Marseille, France, a Navy official told USNI News on Thursday.

The officers were providing security for the carrier while it was in port and were credentialed to be aboard but not on duty and wanted a last minute tour, a second source told USNI News.

Unable to turn back to the pier, Ike’s crew had the officers leave on the harbor tug after about an hour aboard, the official told USNI News.

Caroline Pozmentier, a security assistant for the city of Marseille, “said that these policemen had ‘nothing to do on the aircraft carrier’,” read a translation of a report from the France Bleu Provence newspaper.
“She promised that the three agents ‘will be subject to disciplinary sanctions.’”

The Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group is returning after a seven-month deployment supporting the U.S.-led effort to fight ISIS in Syria and Iraq. The strike group is due back at Naval Station Norfolk, Va. by the end of the month.

  • William E. Shaw

    ‘…after the carrier slipped its moors.’. Carriers don’t ‘slip their moors’ in foreign ports. They hoist the anchor.

    • Scott Hanson

      William, In some they do, some they don’t. Depends on the port. Carriers do pull in to some ports rarher than anchor out. Depends on whether the port has the facilities to handle the carrier.

      I don’t know about Marseilles, never been there. But it is not automatically a mistake.

      • HornetLDO

        Pierside normally in Marseilles. Been there twice pierside-Forrestal-’91 and HST-’02.

      • El_Sid

        It’s the homeport of CMA CGM who operate the Explorer class, about 200′ longer than little ships like the Nimitzes….

  • IFGA

    Had to find a way to get them off the ship, “MAN OVERBOARD” does it for me.

    • publius_maximus_III

      Je m’appelle OSCAR…

  • righteous

    Maybe they wanted a ride on a chopper.

  • Morduin00✓Fᵉᵈᵉʳᵃˡ ᶦˢᵗ

    Security for the ship didnt check IDs against the DV list? Sounds like someone should go to mast. And why wasnt there a translator there?

    • Philip Palmer

      In ports not normally frequented by the Navy, its common to host tours around the ship.

      • Freedom fighter

        Not just before you pull out.

    • roner

      There’s no way there wasn’t anybody on that ship who can speak French. And, those frogs can speak at least some English, but they don’t want to….

  • alex carter

    “crew who manned the brow” – do they mean bow?

    • Derek

      No, they mean the brow…….aka where you come aboard or go ashore. Can definitely tell you aren’t a sailor!!

    • Scott Hanson

      Alex, you don’t man the bow, the bow being the front of the ship.

      You do man the brow, The brow is where you board the ship and leads you to the Quarterdeck where the OOD, POOW, and MOOW stand watch.

      • Robert

        Even us Coasties know a bow from a brow, any way, Merry Christmas to all.
        Semper Paratus

        • Doubtom

          Even ‘mud sailors’ celebrate Xmas?? 😉

      • Doubtom

        “OD” is sufficient! You’re going into overload trying to prove you rate that hat.

        • Scott Hanson

          Doubtom, Is your only excuse for existence is to be a total asshat?

          I wasn’t trying to “prove” anything. and OD was never what we listed it as when I was in. It was always OOD.

          So how about you just STFU as every single comment you’ve made on multiple posts now is pure negativity.

  • Philip Palmer

    Ever since those three hookers from Australia stowed away on the Constellation back in the late 70’s, everyone thinks they can get a ride…

  • carlos

    I love the non sailors making comments on this. Bless their hearts.

    • roner

      As IF you know who’s who…

      • Doubtom

        As if you know a “frog” from a toad.

    • Catdog

      I was never in the Navy but I did sleep in the mud and wade through water.

  • I have often wondered what happened to Clouseau.

  • ibcalif

    More Duffel Blog material from Obama’s version of McHale’s Navy.

    • John Locke

      Make sure you give honorable mention to the hooker cruises USS Blue Ridge used to make between Manila and Subic during Reagans tenure.

  • Ed L

    maybe they were looking for the bar? On one ship after leaving Puerto Rico, We had three women and 2 children discover hiding in Troop berthing 1 day out from Norfolk. No troops were aboard. I was a lowly Seaman in the other deck division so I was spare the 3rd degree.

  • Paul Robinson

    They were Police Municipale, which here are treated a bit like traffic wardens. I’m an ex pat Brit/Irish living in the north of France. The French have just slightly less sorts of Police and law enforcement levels than the States, and La Police Municipale are the lowest rung. Surprised these guys got aboard, as more likely to have been used to direct traffic, rather than close security, let alone be stationed aboard. Some officer or sailor probably got chatting ashore, and unofficially invited them aboard for a tour, then after of course everyone denies responsibility. Bon weekend as they say here in Frogland, and Joyous Noel Mr LaGrone. Thanks for an amusing article, reminding me that often my French hosts are madder than a box of frogs (pun intended).

  • FourWarVet

    Be on the lookout for a Pink Panther 😉

  • Western

    Rail guns, laser weapons, drones, DARPA autonomous ships and subs…complacency can set in. Sometimes all that is between you and disaster is a seaman on watch with a (probably unloaded) sidearm. We’ve seen enough stories of those with proper credentials causing havoc. I’m suggesting this is more serious than command appears to be taking it. Commanders please get your head on a swivel. No such thing as a friendly port – even stateside.

    • Fuja

      I believe this to be a very serious lapse in security as well, and more people are at fault here than just the 3 police officers.

  • Pat Patterson

    Any relation to Inspector Clouseau?

    • publius_maximus_III

      “Does your dog bite, Monsieur?”
      …..”No. Monsieur.”
      The Inspector reaches down to pet the dog and almost loses an arm.
      “I thought you said your dog does not bite!!!????”
      …..”He doesn’t, Monsieur. Zat is not my dog.”

  • BubbaLama

    Good thing the wayward cops weren’t ISIS-oops excuse me ISIL suicide bombers bent on killing. Great security! Anyone in a host country official uniform can wander on board. Of course we wouldn’t want to offend them by verifying their creds or intent-be it tourist of terror. Hope they at least got a hat.

    • InterplanetaryBanana

      “The officers were providing security for the carrier while it was in port and were credentialed to be aboard”

      LPT: Your IQ will appear 30 points higher if you read beyond the title before replying to things on the internet.

      • Doubtom

        Yes, but only “appear”!!

      • BubbaLama

        They were credentialed yet off duty. They were allowed on board yet spoke no English thus rendering adherence to directions moot. Face it Sparky, somebody on board screwed up.

  • muzzleloader

    So the three agents will “be subject to disciplinary action”. So these 3 civilians are getting in trouble for missing ships movement…in reverse!

    • publius_maximus_III


  • Chesapeakeguy

    A ‘last minute tour’ as the ship is preparing to get underway? Seriously?

    • xia en Gao

      I’ve seen a lot of guys do a last-minute run. I saw one get on seconds before we pulled up the gangplank.

  • publius_maximus_III

    “Now hear this, now hear this. Arrête de dire des bêtises! Allez, Allez.”

    • old guy

      Tant pis, cant mien

  • Phil Gardocki

    Marseille can certainly moor just about any thing that floats. The French aircraft carrier home ports there, and it is one of the largest ports in Europe .

    • Niki Ptt

      The Charles de Gaulle home port is actually Toulon. Not Marseille.

  • Phil Gardocki

    Tempest in a teapot. They were allowed onboard. And they went onboard. The probably intended to debark before departure, buy not speaking the language, didn’t realize when exactly that was. They probably left on the pilots boat

  • Ctrot

    Can’t blame a Frenchman for wanting to see what a real carrier looks like.

  • old guy

    Honi soit que mal y pense

  • Secundius

    I would have thought that Three Guys in French “Jon-Don” Uniforms would have been a “Dead Giveaway” in Identification. Depend on How Drunk the US Naval Personnel were upon returning to the Ship…