The Miami-Dade Police Department was recently recognized by the National Association of Counties — which bestows annual awards for new projects that support responsible and effective government — for its "Legal Tip of the Day" program.
The campaign sought to "refresh officer’s knowledge of laws regarding search and seizure, stop and frisk and the fourth amendment, in anticipation of the launch of the Body Worn Camera program," according to MDPD Information Officer Brian Ballou wrote about the accolade in a Facebook post.
The program — begun by the MDPD Legal Bureau in January 2016 — was based on a very simple idea: send an easily digestible email to officers once a day.
Ballou wrote that the "tips were easy to absorb and hard to forget and packaged with illustrations, photographs or funny memes."
The first tip began, "A search warrant is needed when executing an arrest warrant at a third party residence..."
The emails were so popular that other agencies began asking to be included on the email distribution.
One tip in early April generated dozens of messages from readers. They were disappointed to read that the "tip program would be cancelled because it was prohibited under law." Those individuals failed to note the date — it was April Fool's Day.