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  • Another Witness?!

    Ok, let's get straight to the point...

    Do I have COP written all over me? Or better yet, WITNESS?!

    Folks, I have been the unfortunate victim of being in the wrong place at the wrong time - but this isn't necessarily a bad thing, I must say, because in these 3 incidents, which have all occurred within a matter of 2 weeks has been a little too much for me to consume. However, I must say it has opened up my curiosity.

    Here's my problem - I am a convicted felon, residing in California and my probation is due for termination in November 2005. I have stayed clean for 3 years following the crime I committed, and have actually helped law enforcement officers and my community by volunteering my time and efforts for a better future for us all.

    The nature of my crime I would rather not discuss, but it is unrelated to drugs or violence if that gives you any idea.

    Anyway, these past 2 weeks have been overwhelming - consider this; I have been the witness to 3 crimes, two of which were hit and run, and the most recent occurred earlier this evening of a theft/robbery. Am I supposed to be involved with law enforcement now that I am on the "straight and narrow" and cleaned up my life? I have always admired police officers, ever since I was a kid - unfortunately I made a horrible mistake and got myself in jail for a few months. I was given a break, however, and I have been advised by my probation officer that I can request to remove my felony to a misdemeanor, but I have also been told by other parties that I can request to have the entire conviction expunged.

    My question here is, what are my chances of becoming part of the law enforcement community with a 1st time felony and completion of my 3 year probation plus community service involvement?

    I must tell you, I have wanted to use handcuffs and tazer guns in order to detain these criminals in all 3 crimes I was a witness of, they all ran off like cowards instead of facing their responsibility - but I felt so horrible, not being able to do more for the innocent victims. In all 3 incidents, I was able to stop these criminals from running from the law, but I do not have the authority to do so. I believe now, that if I had the authority and resources for detaining these criminals the victims would be in a better situation at this point. Is it normal to feel this guilty? Is this a sign of what I should do with my life?

    Please help me find an answer. I am overwhelmed by all I have witnessed within 2 weeks' time. Unbelievable.

  • #2
    Hate to tell you this but there is no way you could ever get into law enforcement in Washington state. Not sure about other states but I would think it would be highly doubtful.

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    • #3
      Another witness

      Realistically, you stand no chance of becoming an officer. There may be other areas of police work you can get into, such as fleet maintenance, non sensitive clerical, etc., but probably never a sworn position. Just the facts of life. On the occasions that you mentioned, your involvement was handled exactly the way we expect good citizens to respond; as a good eye witness. We don't want you getting more involved for a variety of reasons, case integrity being the least of them. Your personal saftey would also jeopardize our response, regardless of how much you want to "put hands on" a bad guy. There is nothing wrong with being the "eyes and ears" of a professional police agency. It helps us solve over 80% of the crimes we investigate. You served your sentence, hopefully, you'll get off probation and maybe even get your civil rights restored. Consider yourself a success story!
      Jerry
      "If all else fails, stop using all else!"

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      • #4
        Well thanks for letting me know, but there is another question that remains - I have heard of, and known very few, individuals who have committed one crime in their past, they took responsibility for their sentence and now they are working with law enforcement. Perhaps I am not researching as much as I should, or perhaps it is a "California thing"? I think I should research the idea a little more.

        I appreciate your responses.

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        • #5
          I think these cases you heard of were probably drug cases. If you're clean & sober, I'd steer clear of that. Because a) you don't get paid and b) you're going back on the slippery slope of substance abuse.

          My advice? Just live your life. If you want to be involved with a law enforcement agency then work on the civilian side. I know it's a suck job, but you're a felon and even if you did become a cop that would be brought up every time you went to court to testify your case- and it may even cost you a case. You don't even want to bring up the crime in an anonymus forum. How embarassing would be for you to have to explain that charge in front of a judge, jury, and the defendant and his attourney every time you went to court (which is often)?

          When I worked in the jail I used to tell inmates "The only difference between you and me was I was smart enough not to get caught."

          I'm glad to know that your not just another "revolving door" case. That you are almost square with the house and want to go the straight and narrow. Your story has given some glimmer of hope for soceity, thanks.
          You have no right to not be offended.-Neal Boortz

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          • #6
            There are still support type jobs you can do in law enforcement, but with a felony conviction you won't be a sworn police officer, sorry.

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            • #7
              Look into CDC, I know CDC can hire people with misdemeanors, but I doubt they can hire felons. If you get it reduced to a misdemeanor, you can probably work CDC (California Department of Corrections) as a guard. See what you can do, the worst you can hear is "No.". Even then, become buddies with some police in your area, and keep your eye open. Neighborhood watch style. Also, I'm not "suggesting" anything...but there's always citizens arrests.

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