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  • Small Town, First police officer job. . .

    I work in a small town of 1500 people, although a tourist town during my training it was the towns off season. So on a typical night we would make 2 traffic stops in an 8 hour shift. Well I worked SEVEN shifts and they are already putting me in a car by myself. It's been a year and a half since the academy, and I moved across state for this job. I feel like I know nothing, the streets, other officers, protocol, nothing. Has any one else dealt with something like this? Will I catch on quickly and am over reacting? Not to mention I am their first female officer in years with 6 strip clubs and 22 bars in 3 miles so we have that to deal with as well. We always have two officers on the road (one being me) but I feel very unprepared. Normal or no?

  • #2
    Welcome to O.com and welcome to life under the bus. You have asked questions that only you have the answers to. Baptism by fire is much more rare than it was decades ago, but it is time to decide if you really want to work where you are and if you can handle whatever is thrown at you. Hopefully, you have other officers upon whom you can depend and supervisors who will have your back.
    Good luck.

    “Truth is not what you want it to be; it is what it is, and you must bend to its power or live a lie.”

    Miyamoto Musashi

    “Life Is Hard, But It's Harder When You're Stupid”

    George V. Higgins (from The Friends of Eddie Coyle)

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    • #3
      Originally posted by k_snyder View Post
      I work in a small town of 1500 people, although a tourist town during my training it was the towns off season. So on a typical night we would make 2 traffic stops in an 8 hour shift. Well I worked SEVEN shifts and they are already putting me in a car by myself. It's been a year and a half since the academy, and I moved across state for this job. I feel like I know nothing, the streets, other officers, protocol, nothing. Has any one else dealt with something like this? Will I catch on quickly and am over reacting? Not to mention I am their first female officer in years with 6 strip clubs and 22 bars in 3 miles so we have that to deal with as well. We always have two officers on the road (one being me) but I feel very unprepared. Normal or no?
      I am in a similar situation. I just graduated the academy and I start with my new dept in Jan. I will have two weeks FTO training. We only write about 2-7 incident reports every two weeks however, we do have a lot of traffic that comes through our city on two main HWY's so there is lots of traffic to run all the time.

      We only have 1 officer on at a time. There is also 1 deputy and 1 trooper. I was told to call the Chief whenver I get a call and he will come out and help me.

      If you want, you can PM me and we can help each other out and bounce ideas of each other.

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      • #4
        Bankerboy's thread:

        http://forums.officer.com/t196681/

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        • #5
          I will do that, thank you.

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          • #6
            Good luck OP. When a situation allows you slow down and think things through on a case.

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            • #7
              The OP says she is female.

              Bankerboy offers to "PM and bounce ideas off each other"

              OP accepts.


              Did we just witness the birth of "OfficersOnly.com"???


              Welcome to O.com, hang in there -- it gets better. Even in big agencies with 12-16 week FTO programs, it still comes down to baptism by fire. It's the nature of the job. You'll do fine as long as you keep the attitude of seeking help when you are in the weeds.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Shush View Post
                The OP says she is female.

                Bankerboy offers to "PM and bounce ideas off each other"

                OP accepts.


                Did we just witness the birth of "OfficersOnly.com"???


                Welcome to O.com, hang in there -- it gets better. Even in big agencies with 12-16 week FTO programs, it still comes down to baptism by fire. It's the nature of the job. You'll do fine as long as you keep the attitude of seeking help when you are in the weeds.
                shush, Shush!! Haha. Just kidding. That would be an interesting website. I just think the man to woman ratio would really favor the woman. Lol.

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                • #9
                  There are MANY small towns where you would find the same or similar "sink or swim" training.
                  Since some people need to be told by notes in crayon .......Don't PM me with without prior permission. If you can't discuss the situation in the open forum ----it must not be that important

                  My new word for the day is FOCUS, when someone irritates you tell them to FOCUS

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                  • #10
                    Hey Shush, can we get some querky background music with that like on farmersonly.com, if you have seen the commercials..LMAO.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Hey Shush, can we get some quirky background music with that like on farmersonly.com, if you have seen the commercials..LMAO!!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Small Town, First Police Officer Job. . .

                        I, too, was essentially indoctrinated by the "sink of swim" philosophy. I was still an undergraduate student in 1980 when I received a telephone call from a professor. He told me that a small town of around 2,000 people needed a cop to work full time, temporary, until an injured officer could return to work. It would serve as a paid internship for me.

                        Later that same day I drove up and met the Police Chief. We talked for a bit, met the city administrator, and then we stopped by his house where he had me try on some hand me down uniform pants and a shirt. I was also given a gun belt with a Smith & Wesson Model 10 revolver. I rode along with the Chief that night and the next night. When I came to work the third night he handed me the keys to the squad car. He said that I could call him on Channel 2 when I had any questions until about 10 PM. After that, I should call one of the deputies.

                        I worked about 5 months until the injured officer returned to work. I learned a lot that year. I still attended college classes and finished my Bachelors degree a year later. While I wouldn't necessarily recommend the way I learned the ropes, it can be done.

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                        • #13
                          Just give it hell, you will be fine. I know alot of Officers that started same way you did, I did same, here are keys and your badge, go patrol...
                          "What the problem is?"

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                          • #14
                            Sink or swim here with my first job. What helped was being prepared as possible.
                            Last edited by STX303; 04-02-2015, 12:46 PM.

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                            • #15
                              My town is only 6 square miles, but my department does a strict 4 month Field Training Program. If you don't make it, you get extended, if you don't make that, you get terminated.
                              The sheep generally do not like the sheepdog. He looks a lot like the wolf. He has fangs and the capacity for violence. The difference, though, is that the sheepdog must not, cannot and will not ever harm the sheep. Any sheepdog who intentionally harms the lowliest little lamb will be punished and removed.

                              I Am the Sheepdog.


                              "And maybe just remind the few, if ill of us they speak,
                              that we are all that stands between
                              the monsters and the weak." - Michael Marks


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