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Euclid Baker

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Deputy Euclid Baker is a secondary antagonist from the film Tank. He is played by James Cromwell.

Biography

Deputy Baker, often referred to by his first name Euclid, is one of Sheriff Cyrus Buelton's subordinate officers in the county sheriff's department. Like his superior, he is corrupt and abusive, and takes pleasure in seeing others get hurt, such as when Buelton uses his belt to whip a prostitute. However, he is also cowardly and incompetent, and often bears the brunt of the abusive Sheriff's anger, such as being whipped with a belt across the face in the same scene.

He's first encountered by Master Sergeant Zack Carey in a bar when he complains about a prostitute spending time drinking with Carey instead of turning tricks (as the sheriff's department gets a rakeoff). He slaps her, and in turn is punched by Carey. He pulls his gun only for Carey, despite being drunk, to swiftly disarm him and throw the weapon into an aquarium.

Feeling humiliated, Euclid doesn't report the incident to the Sheriff the next day. But Buelton, noticing his black eye, badgers him into fessing up and demands to know why Euclid didn't arrest Carey. When Euclid can't provide an answer, the Sheriff angrily dismisses his incompetent deputy from his office and handles the vendetta against the Master Sergeant personally from then on. When he tries and fails to get the US Army base to hand Carey over for assaulting a law enforcement officer, he sends Euclid and another deputy to arrest Carey's son, William, by planting marijuana in his locker, with Buelton's intention being to extort Carey by getting to him through his only son.

When Carey eventually has enough of the corrupt Sheriff and his men, he resigns from the Army and takes his restored World War II Sherman tank to the county jail to rescue his son (as well as the family's lawyer, whom Buelton had also jailed on flimsy pretenses). Euclid is the only officer on duty and is held prisoner with the tank's main cannon, confessing to the Master Sergeant that William has already been taken to Sheriff Buelton's "work farm" to perform slave labor for the crooked sheriff and his political cronies.

After freeing the imprisoned lawyer and a few other townspeople Buelton had locked up, Carey uses the tank to destroy the jail as well as Euclid's patrol car. He forces Euclid to strip naked publicly, and the prostitute he'd slapped in the bar handcuffs him to a telephone pole. Carey then drives off to the work farm and rescues William.

Euclid (after getting his clothes back) later assists Buelton and the other deputy sheriffs in attempting to prevent Carey and his son from reaching the Tennessee state line. However, whereas Buelton becomes more and more obsessed as the movie goes on, Euclid becomes increasingly more hesitant and contrite, following his humiliation at Carey's hands. In the end, he tries and fails to help his boss stop the tank at the state line, and laughs at him when William Carey uses the tank's gun to knock Buelton into the mud. It is unknown what happens to Euclid afterwards. Likely he ended up facing similar charges to his boss, for aiding and abetting Buelton's corruption.

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