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  • Please give your opinion on my incident with police

    Hello everyone. Let me just start out by saying that this post is not intended to be anti-LE in any way. I actually want to go into law enforcement. My recent college decision came down to attending the United States Air Force Academy (got a congressional nomination ) or a University to study criminal justice, language, and business, then go into LE, and hopefully federal eventually. Now, with that said, I want to tell the story that in my eyes was innappropriate and very unfortunate. This is COMPLETELY unbiased, and I tell it to you exactly as it happened. Now please give opinions, whatever they may be.

    On a Friday night last winter, I was out with a small group of friends (8 people). We were at a local playground playing tag on the equipment. At 1145 (2345 hours for you officers ) a police squad car (Saint Paul PD) entered the parking lot of the playground. Seeing that a police car had pulled up, my group of friends and I came off the equipment to speak with them.
    At this time, one of my friends was asked by female officer #1 "What do you think we're going to say to you?"
    He respoded "You want us to go home?"
    "Oh no, you're not going anywhere"
    At this time, I realized this wasn't going to end well. She and her other female partner asked our ages etc.
    She told us we could either get arrested for tresspassing (there WERE signs posted saying the playground closed at ten, which we unfortunately did not see) or get taken in for curfew. Obviously, we opted for the curfew option. She told myself, and one of my other friends to leave since we drove. And one friend was 18 so he was released.
    They then proceeded to place the remaining 5 of my friend all into the back of a single squad. Keep in mind we aren't small. They were cited for curfew violations and released. End of story.


    Now that the story has been told, let me give my personal opinion.

    -It is incredibly inappropriate to transport 5 fully grown people in the back of a single squad car. I mean my girlfriend had to sit on my friends lap the entire ride downtown. Its a huge safety violation if nothing else, and the police certainly should have known this.
    -It was 1145 when they came. The citations said they arrived at 1205. This means that they blatanly LIED. Unacceptable and this creates a huge breach of trust and certainly does not help relations with the public. This bothered me the most of all their actions.
    -They claimed that they let the three of us go because we were all eighteen. NOW LISTEN TO THIS. THEY TOOK IN MY TWIN BROTHER, BUT NOT ME. Both 17...explain how one of us could be taken in and not the other, given that they only released the three of us because we were "all eighteen". I think the reality is they didn't want the paperwork of towing two vehicles. Another LIE.

    This left me and others feeling alienated and incredibly frustrated. Luckily I have taken two ride alongs with SPPD, and have come to realize that for the most part it's a good department with good people.

    Please give opinions on if you think it was appropriate or not, etc. And if anyone is interested I could tell about the aftermath of this incident.

  • #2
    Oh, and sorry that post is so long.

    Comment


    • #3
      I should also say that none of us were doing anything (drugs, alcohol) besides playing tag.
      And one other opinion I have:

      -Apparently they were on "curfew detail". So they may have just been trying to get a jump on their quota for the night by starting early, or trying to appease administration or community groups with high numbers of curfew violators that were picked up.

      Comment


      • #4
        Sorry last one. I just want to say that Im not seeking advice so I can blame the officers or get them punished, as this incident was resolved long ago

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        • #5
          I think you're making a mountain out of molehill.

          1) I don't know what summonses look like in Minnesota....I will assume they look like ours and there is only one spot for a time, the time of the violation. Whether it was 1145 or 1205 is irrelevent, because either way you were out after curfew (I'm assuming again that curfew time is the same as here...1100).

          2)As far as the transportation aspect of it, if St. Paul is as busy as we are, I can't tie up three cars to transport, and juveniles cannot be placed into a wagon unless they are violent.

          3) You don't mention, or aren't aware, of whether there had been complaints about incidents in this playground in the past. If the Dept. had received alot of calls or citizen complaints, then the officers' supervisor probably told them to take care of the problem and to have zero tolerance. I have been told this in the past largely because the person who is making the complaints is persistent and overbearing, and the bosses get tired of dealing with it. The squeaky wheel gets the oil.

          The bottom line is that this is a curfew violation, which is a status offense. They could have charged everyone with tresspassing, which is a misdemeanor.

          I wouldn't lose a whole lotta sleep over this.
          Government exists to protect us from each other. Where government has gone beyond its limits is in deciding to protect us from ourselves.

          Ronald Reagan

          Comment


          • #6
            NO NO NO ....curfew for 17 year olds is MIDNIGHT on Friday and Saturday nights, thats why it actually makes a fairly big difference, because in reality we were not violating the curfew regulations. So it isn't just a paperwork error, its the difference between a Violation, or No Violation.
            Last edited by greeny; 08-17-2005, 02:23 AM.

            Comment


            • #7
              This leads me to another question. Do you think that a judge would hand down stiff penalties, or even convictions, to a group of kids who were not aware of the tresspass, were committing no other crimes, have no previous records of deviant behavior, A honor roll, active in community, varsity athletes, were completely cooperative with law enforcement, blah blah blah?
              I'm not saying anyone should be exempt from the law, I'm just saying it seems like it would be a bit of an overreaction in this situation when they could have just have effectively solved the situation by saying "Please go home"

              And if you're saying you have NO WAY of transporting people safetly, that seems like a huge problem with your policies which needs to be adressed. Imagine if there was an accident where 5 teens were killed while unsafely being transported in the back of a squad. Think of the field day attorneys would have with that one (not to mention the media). It seems like a huge liability to me.
              Ill admit im kind of just playing devils advocate at this point. And even though I'm posting this so late, don't worry, I'm not losing any sleep over it
              Last edited by greeny; 08-17-2005, 02:35 AM.

              Comment


              • #8
                At any rate, relax....I'm 39 and had 1 negative contact with the police when I was 17....I got over it. In five years you will all be laughing about it.

                Dealing with Juveniles is a pain in the ***, and you don't get any medals for curfew violations. I'm quite certain that the officers would have much preferred to be doing something else.

                You said you wanted to get into law enforcement. If and when you do, you will see what I mean. Life isn't always about black and white. Cops are human too and I'm sure none of this was done maliciously...they'd have to be nuts to go out of their way to screw with some juvies over a curfew violation.

                In a few years, when you are in their shoes, you will see what I mean.
                Government exists to protect us from each other. Where government has gone beyond its limits is in deciding to protect us from ourselves.

                Ronald Reagan

                Comment


                • #9
                  Thanks man. I'm sure ill see the other side eventually. These two officers are School Resource Officers, so they may actually enjoy working with juvenilles.

                  I have gotten over it (otherwise I probably would not want to be getting into the profession), I just thought it would be interesting to get different perspectives besides my own.

                  To be honest, the funniest part is that my gf, who honestly is probably the most innocent/least deliquent person i've ever met, is top ten in her class, etc., picked up a jail nickname of "goldilocks" that night from her cellmates. Her family still teases her about that one

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    ...And I don't believe that at 17 Years old ya'll were playing "TAG" either...

                    It doesn't pass the smell test.

                    BTW, does your watch have EXACTLY the same time on it as your twin brothers watch, down to the second? If not, WHO's watch is LYING? Or did they go by the clock on the Squad car dash? I guess if the clock was wrong on the squad, the whole case should be dismissed, because we all KNOW you were getting ready to leave the already CLOSED park at the stroke of Curfew.
                    Do you realize that in about 40 years, we'll have thousands of old ladies running around with tattoos?
                    --------------------------------------------------
                    Common sense... the LEAST COMMON of all of the senses.
                    --------------------------------------------------
                    Why are hemorrhoids called "hemorrhoids" instead of "assteroids"?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by greeny
                      -It is incredibly inappropriate to transport 5 fully grown people in the back of a single squad car. I mean my girlfriend had to sit on my friends lap the entire ride downtown. Its a huge safety violation if nothing else, and the police certainly should have known this.
                      No. This made you mad b/c your girlfriend sat in another dudes lap. Get over it.

                      Originally posted by greeny
                      -It was 1145 when they came. The citations said they arrived at 1205. This means that they blatanly LIED.
                      Does it say "Time" or "time of violation"? Most just have "Time" which means time the citation is written.

                      Originally posted by greeny
                      -They claimed that they let the three of us go because we were all eighteen. NOW LISTEN TO THIS. THEY TOOK IN MY TWIN BROTHER, BUT NOT ME. Both 17...explain how one of us could be taken in and not the other, given that they only released the three of us because we were "all eighteen". I think the reality is they didn't want the paperwork of towing two vehicles. Another LIE.
                      In my JD this "paperwork" of towing a vehicle is one form- a piece of paper, and takes about 2 minutes to fill out. More like the cops were being considerate of your situation and rather than you paying the hundreds of dollars in towing and impound charges, they decided to be nice and cut you a break.

                      But that couldn't have been it, could it? Oh no. The police are never nice.

                      Originally posted by greeny
                      This left me and others feeling alienated and incredibly frustrated.
                      Sorry your feelings got hurt. Maybe they thought they were dealing with adults.

                      Originally posted by greeny
                      Please give opinions on if you think it was appropriate or not, etc. And if anyone is interested I could tell about the aftermath of this incident.
                      Why bother? Just like the first part of your story it sounds like you'll just twist to make these officers look bad again. You got what you had to say off your chest and for some reason you chouse us to be your recepticle to vomit your frustrations on. Now that you're done, do you feel better?
                      You have no right to not be offended.-Neal Boortz

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Just the breaks! You got off and your brother didn't. As for the time thing ... the cops may have arrived at 1145 but until they talk to you and figure out what they have, the time of the violation may be slightly different. Time still goes on. If you were standing at the park at 0001, you are obviously not at home. Soooo... guess what? Your breaking curfew.

                        I agree that the officers should have called for another unit to help transport, safety reasons and all. (more liability) but I'm not familiar with the local "procedures". If they were school officers then maybe you did make their day. Doesn't change the fact that YOU ALL were there when you were not supposed to be. Who knows what was going through the officers heads. One thing for sure is that they spent a lot of time at the Juvy jail booking these kids in, and that SUCKS. Maybe they liked it, but most of us would rather being doing something better. As for the quota thing, LEO's don't have them, it's a poor argument and 'nuff said on that.

                        I applaud you on getting an appointment into the AF academy. Take that route if it's available to you. Good luck to you and if/when you are in LE things will look different.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          They're female officers, most act like they've lost their freakin minds anyway.
                          The liberal politician has the only job where they go to the office to work for everyone but those who pay their salary.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by tony.o
                            They're female officers, most act like they've lost their freakin minds anyway.
                            Why...? Because you got your *** kicked by a couple before...?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Incident with police

                              Two sides to every story. We haven't heard the cop's side. Probably won't either. Get over it. As far as college is concerned, go to the A.F. Academy. You get paid for it,and then there's the discipline.

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