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  • Formal Briefing When Coming On?

    I'm curious. We have only 10 sworn, so we don't have a formal briefing session where the supervisor tells the officers what's been happening. Ours usually consist of the guy going off saying to the guy coming on, "Dude, nothing happened. We ran some traffic." Or maybe, "We arrested Jim Bob again, at least he was wearing pants this time."
    I just want to know, how big does the department have to get before you have the "Let's be careful out there" type briefing? Here, rank dosen't enter into it - you just try to let everyone know the important stuff when you see them. If it's really important, write it on the board.
    So, if you came from a larger place than I do, what is yours like?
    If trees could scream, would we be so cavalier about cutting them down? We might, if they screamed all the time, for no good reason.

    ---Jack Handey

  • #2
    No matter where I have worked (expect Port PD) we have had shift briefings...from University to mid size city to small city, to working in the county jail. Can't see why you wouldn't want it, it's somewhat of a necessity.
    Moooooooooooo, I'm a goat

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    • #3
      Formal Briefing

      Oddly enough, the Alabama Dept of Public Safety doesn't employ the formal "roll call" type briefing. This is largely due to Troopers working staggered shifts, and reporting to work, one/two at a time at a given post. This places considerable responsibility on the PCO"s(Police Communications Officers) aka, dispatchers. They will update the oncoming units relative to current look-outs, and other pertinant issues. Not knocking the agencies that use the formal briefing. The Alabama DPS practice has worked well for us. That doesn't mean it's guaranteed to work well for others.

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      • #4
        We do not use a roll call either. We are only a 19 officer dept. We come in and read the daily log book kept in dispatch, it shows all the activity from the previous shift.
        Any information not covered on the log is passed between shift sgt's. Not knocking the
        roll call system, just mentioning what works for us.

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        • #5
          We have over a hundred officers and we don't have a muster. Dispatch e-mails us everything we need before each shift. I used to work in a department that had muster. The only thing that I miss is seeing everybody before we go to work. Sometimes I'll go a couple weeks without seeing the guys working other beats. Overall, I'd say our system works well though.

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          • #6
            We have roll call for every shift. The sergeant updates on us on whatever is in the watch commander's log from previous shifts, reads off the fresh stolen cars and wanted persons and gives out extra patrol requests. We give him our car, MP5 and Taser numbers (we drive a different car every day - first come, first served - and grab an MP5 and Taser from the gunsafes). We also talk about what we had the day before.

            Depending on the shift, it can be very informal. Generally, on Saturdays, we are pretty loose, since there are no ridealongs, and no chance of any visitors being escorted through the room. Some sergeants do inspections every few weeks, but it has become pretty rare. With no more than eight deputies on a shift, he or she can tell at a glance whose uniform is within policy and who needs to tighten up a bit.

            Roll call lasts from 20 to 30 minutes, generally. Years ago, we had a longtime veteran sergeant who routinely kept us in there for 45 minutes, just chatting and talking about God knows what. His record was an hour and 20 minutes, but that was because we kept asking him questions to spur longwinded answers so we didn't have to go out in the rain.
            Government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem. - Ronald Reagan

            I don't think It'll happen in the US because we don't trust our government. We are a country of skeptics, raised by skeptics, founded by skeptics. - Amaroq

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            • #7
              Back in the early 1960s when I started in law enforcement we had only 13 field officers. Each shift held a formal briefing - 1 sergeant and two officers. The daily log was read, officer safety tips were shared, warrants were handed out and miscellaneous items addressed. When I went on the CHP we held roll call every shift.
              Be courteous to all, but intimate with few, and let those few be well tried before you give them your confidence!

              [George Washington (1732 - 1799)]

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              • #8
                We've got about 300 officers and three stations. We do a roll call at each shift. My station on 4-12 puts out seven cars some one officer and some two, a prisoner van and when the weather is decent a motorcycle.

                I give out hotsheets, wanted posters, summonses to be served, and go over crime patterns on our shift. When the captain sends out memos about things that concern him I read them, or at least skim through them- I also advise about any openings on other shifts/stations that are available.

                I don't do a formal inspection, but as mentioned elsewhere above check everyone informally and take officers aside for corrections.

                Very Eastern, very old-school. Why? Because we've always done it that way.
                "The only means we possess to thank them is to try to be as good an American as they were. We might fall well short of their standard, but there is honor in the effort."

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                • #9
                  We have shift brief/roll call at the beginning of every shift. The shifts are 6-6 or 7-7 and roll call is held for both...staggering like that so that calls are covered during that time span...someone grabs the warrant list and we mark some that we'd like to try serving...Sarge goes over the important stuff from the ones going off duty and any emails (blah blah blah) from command staff that we are suppose to hear and comprehend. We don't do a formal inspection, but it's noted by the Sgt regardless. Cars and gear are checked at least once a month....and off we go...
                  sigpic

                  I don't agree with your opinion, but I respect its straightforwardness in terms of wrongness.

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                  • #10
                    Notta here,we have take homes and go in service from our front door At some point,like when you want a cup of coffee we will get by the office and look at the previous shifts reports.Also when releiving we will tell the oncoming of anything in the works.
                    Sleeping Giant. They're not fat and happy anymore. They are hungry and increasingly angry. That is not a good recipe for a "Puppies and Rainbows America".

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                    • #11
                      No "roll call" here either.

                      I will usually read the night before and earlier shifts calls for service log.

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                      • #12
                        104 Officer PD. We have rollcalls for every shift.

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                        • #13
                          All our stations have briefings/roll calls for each shift. It's good to see all the guys before shift and bs with them. Usually we go over tactics from a previous incident the shift before or just whats happening (shootings, gang wars, stolen cars). The only time we didn't if things were jumping off or there happens to be a containment set up for a susp. I'm part of a 8 man team working a unit and we still have briefings amongst ourselves. You don't need a large watch to have briefing.

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                          • #14
                            During the Fall, Winter, and Spring we have a semi-formal roll-call where we all sit around a table in the squad room. A shift may have as many as five, or as few as two officers (minimum staffing). From Memorial day to Columbus Day we have between 30 to 40 paid reserves on staff, with anywhere from 5 to 10 per shift. During those months we have a formal Hill Street Blues type roll-call with the officers sitting in chairs lined up in front of a podium. Even when we have just one officer coming on mid shift, the shift supervisor meets with him/her prior to them going on duty. During the summer months duty assingmenst are given out to the reserves during roll-call, bike patol, fixed post, ATV, ect. and they also draw their radios and flashlights. The only real assingments given out during the rest of the year is, who gets paper work for service that day.

                            In the event the supervisor is tied up on a call during the summer months, the senior full timer will usually hold roll-call. During the rest of the year each officer would be responsible for reading the pass on, and roll-call book on their own.
                            Forti Fors Bona

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                            • #15
                              Every day between shifts. After pass ons, we generally BS about what's in the news. It helps with comraderie between the shifts.
                              A Veteran is someone who at one point in their life wrote a blank check made payable to The United States of America, for an amount up to, and including their life. That is honor, and there are way too many people in this country today, who no longer understand that fact!

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