I found myself in several situations with the local police. If your caught running a light, everyone does this in Colombia but if your light skinned those guys stop you immediately and the only way your going to get out of jail is by giving them money. Of course me being the total tourist handed them the equivlent of 5 dollars out the window of the car... the policeman told me to put it some paper and hand it back again. Needless to say l did as l was told.. And when l relayed the story to my friends they thought this was hilarious because l had given him the equivielent of a months wages.. I also witnessed a running gun battle downtown one day coming out of a restaurant, l thought they were making a movie,, had to hid behind a tree for fear of being shot at. In the 1980's it was not so good for tourists like myself. Needless to say the country is beautiful and the people also and although l was taken off a bus one day and told to stand by the side of the road until they checked my papers they were very polite and about the whole situation where as l felt terrified. They let me go to catch another bus after that l bought a car.. Always carry your passport with you. The police will look for identification.