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What's the deal with FHP writing cops again?!?

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  • What's the deal with FHP writing cops again?!?

    I know I'm going to get some heat from a few, but I got to vent on this one. I work for a large central Florida agency and yesterday a sergeant on a different squad got stroked by FHP. To make a long story short, the officer was in a marked patrol car (in uniform) and accidentally backed into a vehicle. The sergeant was just outside city limits. Understandably she was at fault, and it was listed on the accident report as such. The part that surprised everyone is when he stroked her for the accident as well. Officer discretion?!?

    A lieutenant arrived on scene (per our policy) and approached the trooper to inquire about the incident. The trooper berated the lieutenant for obstructing his investigation. I know this thread is going to stir things up, however, I feel this needed to be shared among our brothers/sisters so hopefully we can all remember we're all on the same side.

  • #2
    Just going to play devil's advocate, but I believe FHP has a written policy that says anytime they respond to a crash, the person at fault gets a UTC no ifs, ands, or buts.

    I know they get alot of crap from their supervisors if they don't write a UTC for a driver found at fault.

    Comment


    • #3
      I respectfully submit for you/her/them/ whoever to get over it. Everybody has the 'few' people in their department, not just FHP, who will write anyone. The need for you to tell everyone we are on the same side will never sink in to those who don't care. Get over it, and do the best you can to avoid the police, especially when your are not in service. My spouse received a crash related citation years ago, she called me to the scene to pick her up. I wasn't working and didn't identify myself to the local officer. My wife after receiving the citation told him I was a trooper and she understood he was just doing his job. He immediately coped an attitude and fired back with "so, that doesn't matter, I don't care". I could have had it out for that department but didn't, I could have viewed him as the bitter guy who wasn't good enough to get on the state police but didn't? BTW, this same local officer cited another troopers wife who was involved in a crash a few years later. He was a nimrod to them too. Most officers I know who write other officers were the bullied growing up and are now the bullys. If you can't back up your actions outside of uniform than one needs to rethink their actions in uniform.

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      • #4
        How about if the LEO takes the Trooper to court then asks for independent witnesses to the crash to justify his writing of the citation?
        Nemo Me Impune Lacessit

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        • #5
          It is common policy to cite an officer, especially if in his patrol car, when he is at fault in an accident.
          Speeding and things of that nature can be kept internal but an accident is a public event that invites insurance companies, lawyers, and the general public to investigate how the accident was handled.

          If they don't write a ticket and the officer was at fault what do you think would happen next once the victims attorney and insurance company find out?

          If that Lieutenant tried to talk the Trooper out of writing a ticket he should be fired or demoted. If anything, for liability reasons, he should be telling the trooper to make sure he handles this by the book to not give the appearance of favoritism.

          The officer can always plead nolo so it doesn't give him any points.

          I did the same thing once and backed into a car while I was parking. I got the ticket and would not have had it any other way.
          Last edited by leesrt; 10-30-2009, 05:22 PM.
          Due to the Juvenile bickering and annoying trolling committed by members of this forum I have started an igore list. If your name is listed below I can't see you.

          CityCopDC, Fire Moose, Carbonfiberfoot, Damiansolomon

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          • #6
            Having investigated on duty local police crashes, I have never cited the officer. The officer would have had to do something egregious to get cited. That must be GA specific or department specific. Our guys don't even get cited when at fault, again unless it's something egregious.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by wild_sherpa View Post
              I know I'm going to get some heat from a few, but I got to vent on this one. I work for a large central Florida agency and yesterday a sergeant on a different squad got stroked by FHP. To make a long story short, the officer was in a marked patrol car (in uniform) and accidentally backed into a vehicle. The sergeant was just outside city limits. Understandably she was at fault, and it was listed on the accident report as such. The part that surprised everyone is when he stroked her for the accident as well. Officer discretion?!?

              A lieutenant arrived on scene (per our policy) and approached the trooper to inquire about the incident. The trooper berated the lieutenant for obstructing his investigation. I know this thread is going to stir things up, however, I feel this needed to be shared among our brothers/sisters so hopefully we can all remember we're all on the same side.
              No, we are not on the same side. You seem to think that because we are LE we operate under a different standard or law. We can use discretion on a speeding ticket but a trooper doesn't get to pick and chose who gets a ticket in an accident. The only exception is when there is no clear evidence to show who was at fault.
              Due to the Juvenile bickering and annoying trolling committed by members of this forum I have started an igore list. If your name is listed below I can't see you.

              CityCopDC, Fire Moose, Carbonfiberfoot, Damiansolomon

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by MLPJLP View Post
                Having investigated on duty local police crashes, I have never cited the officer. The officer would have had to do something egregious to get cited. That must be GA specific or department specific. Our guys don't even get cited when at fault, again unless it's something egregious.
                This is bad policy and will get someone a nice check if they ever decide to contact an attorney.
                The only exception is if you use the same policy for civilian accidents. No tickets unless it's egregious.
                Due to the Juvenile bickering and annoying trolling committed by members of this forum I have started an igore list. If your name is listed below I can't see you.

                CityCopDC, Fire Moose, Carbonfiberfoot, Damiansolomon

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by leesrt View Post
                  This is bad policy and will get someone a nice check if they ever decide to contact an attorney.
                  The only exception is if you use the same policy for civilian accidents. No tickets unless it's egregious.
                  I haven't seen or heard of any issues with this for the last 22 years. I believe my agencies Chief's Counsel is well versed on the perceived issues that you have addressed. This isn't going to turn into a internet match I hope, because I will gladly bow out?

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                  • #10
                    May I ask what exactly was she cited for? What traffic violation could you possibly write if you did not witness the crash?Andwasthe other driver cited as well?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      With all due respect leesrt, you are incorrect on mandatory citations for Florida. Just because you fault someone for a crash doesn't mean you have to write a ticket (remember officer discretion). The only thing I am required according to state statute is make an arrest for domestic dv (with PC of course). If it goes to court a defense attorney could inquire why a ticket wasn't written, however, it's not going to cost anyone their job.

                      Regarding the lieutenant situation, he was in no way trying to coerce the trooper. He simply approached to acquire the facts of the case. Regardless, if if the lieutenant of Mayberry approached I would show him the respect his position deserves.

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                      • #12
                        Dinosour32, she was cited for "Improper backing". The sergeant admitted to the trooper it was her fault. In Florida, you can issue a citation for certain traffic violations that do not occur in your presence.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by leesrt View Post
                          No, we are not on the same side. You seem to think that because we are LE we operate under a different standard or law. We can use discretion on a speeding ticket but a trooper doesn't get to pick and chose who gets a ticket in an accident. The only exception is when there is no clear evidence to show who was at fault.
                          I'm sure the off-duty officer, deputy, or trooper from another city, county, or state wouldn't think twice about what "side" they are on when they stop to help you when you are brawling with someone on the side of the road. I know I wouldn't. While I agree that law enforcement doesn't operate under a different standard or law, we do have discretion.
                          Last edited by Cape804; 10-30-2009, 06:48 PM.

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                          • #14
                            I am astounded at the lack of brotherhood in this state. As for the facts, was there property damage (other then the cruiser)? Was there personal injury? If negative to both then the citation was unnecessary. It could have easily been handled in-house with a written reprimand. Unless its department policy to always ticket the at-fault party.

                            Why was the FHP contacted for the accident? Last I checked unless it occurs on the HW they are not primary. Why wasn't the SO or the PD for the jurisdiction the accident occurred in contacted? More to the story here.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Campuscop, it's different here. In Florida, FHP works most crashes in most counties, and all crashes if it's on duty LEO involved in the county. If the Sgt takes it to court, it will be dismissed unless a third party (not the Trooper) shows up.

                              I don't care if you're a fellow cop, on duty, off duty, or my Pastor, if my policy says that I will cite the at fault vehicle, and I know for fact that I will get written up for it (as most Troopers will), you're getting a ticket. In this case, the Trooper's hands are tied as far as issuing the citation goes.

                              As far as the berating the Lt goes, if it was truly berating, and not you just perceiving it as berating since you were already mad at the Trooper, then it's probably not justified... but we've all had bad days. Maybe the Trooper was having a bad day because he had to cite somebody that he didn't want to. I can tell you for fact that there are certain people with certain agencies that only see you as a brother if you work for a certain PD or a certain SO... but I've NEVER seen that the be a case with ANY Trooper I've met in this area.

                              Everyone just needs to remember, even if we cause an accident and are cited for it because the Trooper's hands are tied, we're still on the same side.

                              Comment

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