Bill Langlois has been choked, kicked, beaten and robbed 256 times, but it was all part of his job - as a police decoy.

The 56-year-old San Francisco police officer endured a decade of vicious muggings and beatings before retiring Friday after 28 years on the force."I found it fascinating as a decoy to see a crime from its inception," he said Friday. Still, "knowing that you could be attacked every day made me feel more apprehensive than any other time I've known."

Langlois finished his work as a decoy in 1987 after specializing in nabbing muggers who preyed on the elderly. He disguised himself as a sick old man, hunching over a cane, but still his attackers often used guns and knives.

For the past three years, he was a patrol officer.

Langlois was awarded the police department's gold medal, its highest citation for valor, and was nicknamed "Rug Rat" because he spent so much time getting his face shoved into the street by his attackers.