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  • safe town vs Violent city

    Hey guys, I'm applying to several depts around my area, and Ide like to hear from current police officers because there are two totally different directions I can go. Most of the town around me are small to medium sized and general middle class with some upper class neighborhoods and generally are very safe and non-violent. However these depts are only hiring a few new recruits at a time (3-4), which obliviously makes it a lot more competitive. The pay is considerably higher also. The second directions is a pretty large city about 30 minutes from my house, who rumor has it is hiring 80+ people. However this is one of the worst city's/ areas in my entire state, Its a very violent city theirs a lot of gangs and a lot of shooting. This is were ide like to hear from current LEO because ( I mean no disrespect to anyone ) but im sure the job in these two completely different towns is in its self completely different. Being a police officer do you prefer the quite streets and towns or do you enjoy being on the mean streets getting harden criminals and drugs / weapons off the street. I'm sure there is good and bad to both im sure the guys in the safer town sometimes wish for more action and I'm sure the officers in more violent areas wish they worked in a different environment. However with them hiring 80+ people it seems it may be a little easier to get hired. Ide really appreciate any input and if anyone has had experiences in both scenarios ide really be interested in hearing your story and your experiences.

    Thanks
    Brian

  • #2
    You are looking for a job, so you don't have a couple of different directions to go until at least one 'burb and one large city offer you a job.

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    • #3
      If you think the job of a police officer is "safe" in any town, you better reconsider this career. F-ed up things go down in the "Mayberrys" of this country all the time.

      But it sounds like you're talking more about call load. Personally, I prefer a heavy call load. It makes the shift go by much faster. The downside is you don't have as much time to be proactive.

      Comment


      • #4
        Drugs, guns and preps are in, or driving through, every town.

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        • #5
          Don't be picky, every place has crime.
          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


          sigpic

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          • #6
            I live in a small rural town with really little INTERNAL crime.

            However there is a major US Highway running through the town with another major state highway intersecting it.

            Our Sheriff's office and City PD are quite busy
            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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            • #7
              By no means do I think police work in any town is safe, I understand no matter were you are at any point things and go bad very fast. And Again I didn't mean any disrespect to anyone with my question. Obliviously I don't know what its like being a police officer because I'm not one I want to be one and I'm trying to be, how ever I would imagine that yes the call load (as someone called it ) and the type of calls has to be different, between the two towns ( again a few small towns with generally not a lot of violence, and the other city being a very big gang and drug city and a very violent city this is one of the most violent city's in the entire state) also with dealing with the public again I understand no matter where you work your going to have to deal with the stupid, the rude and the people who hate you. but is it 100% the same or is the public different, what are pros and cons of both types of jobs do you enjoy would you rather be not as busy with calls but be proactive, or would you rather have more calls and not be as proactive. To be honest Ide rather work for the smaller towns near me personally there a lot closer and better pay about 10,000 a year better, but I'm not ruling out the city ide just like to hear from people on there experiences and what they prefer

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              • #8
                It's not what we want or like best, it's what you are looking for. You are the one applying for the job and are the only one that can answer that question. If you want to get into LE, you have to WANT to do it. Very few get into this career with the idea of making tons of money. It can happen sure, but that is not the mindset most have going in. Every area is going to have its similarities and differences, as well as its good and bad.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by allen_gamble View Post
                  If you think the job of a police officer is "safe" in any town, you better reconsider this career. F-ed up things go down in the "Mayberrys" of this country all the time.

                  But it sounds like you're talking more about call load. Personally, I prefer a heavy call load. It makes the shift go by much faster. The downside is you don't have as much time to be proactive.
                  What he said.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Both large cities and small suburbs have their own challenges, positives, and negatives. I've worked in busy urban areas, and slower suburban/rural areas (albeit all with the same agency) and found that each have their pros and cons, far too many of each to list here. Go on some ride-a-longs with each department (try pick different shifts, days, and officers from each) and see what you think. My department, and many others, require applicants to ride as part of the hiring process. That being said, I would tell you to apply to both and let the hiring process sort it out. You may choose where you apply, but you can only work for the one who hires you.
                    One more thing to consider. Larger agencies often have more specialized units and assignments, affording you the opportunity to move around and experience things other than patrol. Larger agencies often have a greater chance of promotion. A smaller department may initially offer more money to start, but there is less opportunity to make rank.
                    Errare humanum est, sed perseverare diabolicum
                    To err is human, but to persist is diabolical

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Speedbird543 View Post
                      Larger agencies often have more specialized units and assignments, affording you the opportunity to move around and experience things other than patrol. Larger agencies often have a greater chance of promotion. A smaller department may initially offer more money to start, but there is less opportunity to make rank.
                      OP, this is true. I work for an agency of about 35 - 40 officers. My city (smaller historical one, no skyscrapers, more like a town) is about 16sq miles. I've been here for 8 years now, and JUST got the opportunity to test for Corporal. Some officers had to wait for 14 years. 2013 was the year we STARTED our own SWAT unit, so now some of our officers got to try out for it, and in 2011 we STARTED our own Crime Scene Tech unit, albeit one detective. 2013 was also the year we put an officer in each one of our city's 4 schools.

                      So yea, bigger agencies allow for more mobility and advancement, but personally, I LOVE knowing the community I work in and them knowing me. It makes being a school cop a lot easier.

                      Plus, our Chief is awesome and sends us to awesome training.
                      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


                      sigpic

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I love where I work, but if I was doing it all over again, I would only look at agencies with at least 500 sworn. More opportunities, more specialized assignments such as full-time air support or motors, more action.

                        Yes, 26 years on and I still like it busy with real calls.
                        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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                        • #13
                          I work in a large, high crime, cesspool of a city. I've enjoyed most of the assignments in my career. I think it's a very individual thing.

                          Places with lower crime rates tend to give police the opportunity to actually prevent crime. IMO
                          Last edited by Zeitgeist; 10-16-2014, 03:32 PM.
                          Judge me by the enemies I have made----Unknown

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                          • #14
                            This is my opinion, take it for what it's worth.

                            I love being a cop, and I love working in a violent ghetto ****hole. There's something popping off almost every night, and it makes the shift go by quick. The only thing I hate about this job is the stupid politics and when myself or one of my brothers gets jammed up over some stupid bull**** that was either whipped up by the brass, or else came from a bull**** citizen complaint. To me, it's way more stressful worrying about that **** than anything I face on the street.

                            When you work in the ghetto, you get much fewer or no complaints at all. I've had utter turds save me tons of headaches and hassles when my own supervisors were trying (for hours) to get them to say that I did X to them. That "code of the street/keeping it hood" thing doesn't generally happen in your nicer towns/suburbs. The guys I know that work our nicer areas have had paper hung on them for using salty language or "having a bad attitude". Those complainants are the ones the brass listens to, and they have long memories. A salty dude once told me that working the ghetto is more dangerous for you, but safer for your career. So far, in my 5 years on, that advice has rung true.

                            Anyway, that's my opinion. You'll have to decide for yourself which way you wanna go.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Everyone is the police, but the work is extremely different. Also keep in mind there is no such thing as a "safe" town, just "safer."

                              Here's an example of me (safe"er", slower town) and a friend in a violent busier town. As a patrolman I can follow a car around until the driver buys drugs, make an arrest, develop an informant, do my own surveillance, gather my own intelligence, write my own warrants, then the SWAT team does their thing and turns the scene over to me. A patrolman. Then I make more arrests, interviews, with with State's Attorneys, go to court, etc. The residents are super excited that you took a big time dealer out of the town. However, if I write a speeding ticket to the wrong resident, or tell some dope to get bent and Mrs. Socially Conscious hears it, I might hear about it (informally).

                              In the busy, violent town, my friend makes a drug arrest. Then he takes 10-15 more calls, a few burglary reports, a foot chase, and an accident or two. He might make an awesome arrest, but no one cares. In fact, there might be a riot over it.

                              In 15-20 years I might still be in patrol, but I can write a few speeding tickets and take a few burglar alarms and that will be my night most times. In 15-20 years he could be in a specialized unit that we don't have....or he could still be taking 10-15 calls a night, getting in foot chases, and wrestling with scabs.

                              What's better? It's up to you. I love my "safe" town.

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