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David Griffith

David Griffith

David Griffith has been editor of POLICE Magazine since December 2001. He brings more than 25 years of experience on magazines and newspapers to POLICE. A Maggie award-winning journalist, his byline has appeared on hundreds of articles in POLICE and other national magazines.

Melanie Basich

Melanie Basich

Managing Editor Melanie Basich joined POLICE Magazine in 2000 (when her last name was still Hamilton). An award-winning journalist, she has covered such topics as agency budgets, officer suicide, emerging law enforcement technologies, and active shooter tactics. She writes and manages the product section of POLICE.

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Mark Rivera, Customer Retention Manager and CJIS Security Compliance Officer with Vigilant Solutions, served for sixteen years with the Maryland State Police, retiring at the rank of First Sergeant with thirteen of those years at the supervisory and command level. He holds a Master of Science Degree in Management from The Johns Hopkins University and Secret clearance through the FBI, Baltimore.

Editor's Notes

Cop Slang: Our Favorite Terms From You

Read our 10 favorite user-submitted "cop slang" terms.

August 13, 2012  |  by

Screenshot: PoliceMag
Screenshot: PoliceMag

In May, we launched "Cop Slang," a kind of Urban Dictionary of law enforcement lingo that captures the colorful, funny, and off-beat language spoken by cops on the street.

We launched it with about 1,000 terms solicited from active and retired officers and invited readers to add their own contributions.

In the past several months, officers have added dozens of great terms worth highlighting—more than 350, in fact. Below are 10 of the very best we've seen added by readers. Check them out, and continue adding your favorite cop slang!

AMF: Need to say goodbye to a not-so-friendly person? Try AMF, or Adios Mother Fucker. It's a "farewell to someone you don't especially like." Thank you, Tim Dees.

Beat Wife: This one is the police version of the civilian "office wife." It refers to "girlfriend(s) you keep at work." This one is popular in the San Francisco Police Department. Thank you, George Ferraez.

BFE: Did you get a radio call on the other side of town? You may be heading to "Butt Fucking Egypt." Shawn, Ted, and YardDogg submitted this one.

Curb Creature: Use this one for that familiar face, the "street creep who's always getting stopped and told to sit on the curb while the cops run a record check." Thank you, Bob Parker.

DWHUA: Motor officers may be most familiar with the syndrome DWHUA, or "Driving with Head up Ass." Thank you, Chris Palmer and Mike Brandon.

Flip-Flop Swap: If your territory includes public pools or beaches, you may need a term for the "theft of footwear usually occurring at public venues in which patrons must be barefoot." Thank you, Mike Garrett.

Holster Sniffer: This one may refer to women who date cops, according to Russ and Ron King. It may also refer to a wannabe cop and "street expert" who "tells real cops 'I was going to be one' or 'I am studying to be one'" and who "relentlessly points out every small violation of law to the on-duty cops when they sitting at home looking out their window." Thank you, Gerard Zlotkowski.

IPS: Use this one to signal a fellow officer that you're moving past casual banter into "Important Police Shit." IPS is used "to differentiate operational information from chatter in a casual conversation. 'Hey, shut up a minute, I've got some IPS.'" Thanks again, Tim Dees.

Robocop: Know an especially aggressive rookie? This nickname may stick to officers who are "stereotyped as strictly enforcing laws and rules without any regard for fairness, extenuating circumstances or explanations from those subject to the enforcement." Yes, it originates from the 1987 science-fiction movie. Thank you, Dean.

Secret Service Syndrome: Use this one for a subject who exhibits a certain nervous habit. It refers to "the act of a suspect constantly looking around to see who is watching." Thank you, Rich Paloma.

Add your definition


PoliceMag Launches Police Terms Dictionary

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