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Alone Against All Odds

Alone Against All Odds

Cops are accustomed to answering calls for help, and generally think no less of those who ask. But officers themselves are often hesitant to ask for help, and that can be very impractical and even costly. 

June 24, 2014

Shots Fired: Mt. Orab, Ohio 01/03/2010
Whistleblowers Sounding the Alarm

Whistleblowers Sounding the Alarm

Regardless of how they are viewed, whistleblowers' capacity to effect change within their agencies often eclipses that of those with more formally acknowledged power.

April 25, 2014

Shots Fired: Bloomingdale, Illinois 10/26/1998

Just What the Hell Are We Protecting?

I do wonder to what extent the federal employees among our ranks ask themselves whether or not these people are worth protecting and their laws worth enforcing? Just where are the conscientious objectors within the federal fold? Are its ranks really filled with men who are content to be given their marching orders and sent out to wreck havoc? And do they really think that all this won't some day come back to bite them in the ass?

April 14, 2014

Shots Fired: Berks County, Pennsylvania 06/30/2011

Shots Fired: Berks County, Pennsylvania 06/30/2011

Upon their crossing, the trackers noticed that leaves blanketing the side of a steep hill had been disturbed. Regrouping with his K-9, Pagerly gave him the search command and released him again. Jynx appeared to immediately find an odor and began moving rapidly up hill and toward Hawk Mountain Road.

March 26, 2014

The Law is An Ass (At Least When it Comes to Photographing One)

The Law is An Ass (At Least When it Comes to Photographing One)

Making my way to the urinal, I was passed by a man who'd stepped out the adjacent stall in a hurry. As he did, I noted the presence of crumpled tissue paper on the floor about the toilet. The man's presence in the stall had not been diet-related. Normally, this would not have been something I'd have felt compelled to concern myself with. Different strokes for different folks.

March 17, 2014

A Hollywood Lesson in Heroes

A Hollywood Lesson in Heroes

And so I sat down and waited for highlights of hero-celebrating fare, looking forward to clips of "End of Shift," "Ladder 49," and "Backdraft." I figured I'd maybe catch a glimpse of a pre-"Cheers" Ted Danson in the role of ill-fated LAPD Officer Ian Campbell in "The Onion Field."

March 6, 2014

Reserve Officers: For Love of the Job

Reserve Officers: For Love of the Job

At minimum, an LASD reserve officer's service will include logging 20 hours a month regardless of obligations posed by the reserve's regular job and family responsibilities. He may find himself working his own patrol car, standing guard in the cold along a parade route, or handling that "change of shift" report nobody else wanted.

March 4, 2014

Fighting the "Never Say Die" Killer

Fighting the "Never Say Die" Killer

Taking the one-percenter out is problematic. You're no doubt familiar with the extremely popular cable television series "The Walking Dead" in which you have to shoot the brain to put down the monster. This often holds true in getting the one-percenters to go "lights out," too.

February 25, 2014

Shots Fired: Marshalltown, Iowa 11/02/2012

Shots Fired: Marshalltown, Iowa 11/02/2012

The seemingly tireless duo crossed in front of Jefferson's patrol unit. Jefferson drew his sidearm and yelled, "Stop! Police! Let me see your hands! Get on the ground!"

February 14, 2014

A Plea for Ballistic Helmets

Officers who object to wearing ballistic face shields/helmets in high-risk shooting situations should have a face-to-face discussion with their children and ask their children, "What if daddy or mommy would get killed at work and not ever come home again and not ever hug and kiss you or play with you, how would you feel?"

February 7, 2014

Advice for the New L.A. Sheriff

Advice for the New L.A. Sheriff

Can the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department assert itself as one of the best and most innovative departments in the country? Can it say that it serves its communities as vigilantly and as well as other law enforcement agencies? Can it say that it still enjoys the reputation in the profession that it once did?

February 4, 2014

Friend, or Foe…Or, Neither?

I couldn't help but note how the absence of supervisorial intervention had played out for others elsewhere; how their failure to stem some cancerous problem exacted ever greater tolls later. What might have culminated with a written reprimand or a punitive day off instead ended up being the irrevocable loss of careers, families, and freedoms. A few employees ended up taking their lives.

January 20, 2014

Shots Fired: Riverside, California 09/11/2008

Shots Fired: Riverside, California 09/11/2008

Officer Evan Wright chased after a gang member who fled and reached for his pocket while running. A flying tackle sent the two men into the middle of a residential driveway where some 20 guests were observing a quinceanera party in the front yard.

January 17, 2014