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  • Second Chance failed FTO

    Hello Everyone.


    First post here, but I have been reading these forums for the past year or so. This subject has been touched on many times, but like many, I feel as though my circumstances are different and I would like some advice from you guys. Long story but here ya go.





    I got hired on with a local sheriff's Office as a Deputy. I got through the academy with no problems and some of the instructors told me I had done well on many of the "mock scenes". Once I completed the academy, I was treated far more poorly by people in my agency than by the academy instructors. From the get go, many deputy's treated me like I wasn't gonna make it. I was told I was too small, people told me to not buy anything expensive in case I didn't make it, and I got quiet a few rolled eyes when I introduced myself to people. Ill admit I was pretty skinny, I lost weight during the academy because the food was so gross haha. One of the nicer Deputy's told me that its part of the game, so I brushed it off. Never the less I had a semi defensive attitude because the way I was treated made me uncomfortable.

    Where it actually got bad was in FTO. Typical smoke show, where my FTO was rude and told me he didn't wanna do "this job." Said forget everything in the academy, he will show me how to be a cop. I took that with a grain of salt. My second day of FTO we did active shooter training with a bunch of the sergeants and some other new Deputys. We trained with sims, and there was a lot of yelling, so it was pretty high intensity stuff. One of the sergeants, who had often treated me like he didn't like me in the past, was in charge. He told me I was acting like "professional backup", "maybe this isn't the job for me," and "I've never had to plan a funeral during training." I was also threatened during the training, where they would get in my face and say things like "If I catch you doing this one more time......" Within the training I was also mocked a few times and they laughed at my mistakes. It didn't seem like they were correcting any of the other deputy's but myself, even when I saw them make mistakes.
    I told my FTO I felt picked on and he said it was part of training.

    I learned from this first experience that they were testing me and pushing me to see how I reacted. I felt like they were picking on me in the heat of the moment, and I let them rile me up. I realize that this wasn't really an active shooter strategy training, but more so an emotional test, which they did not like the outcome of. It was hard to know this at the time, because we had done similar training in the academy, but we were never mocked or made to feel bad about ourselves, nor did I ever stand out as the one constantly being corrected. Just to be clear, I was never rude to anyone in any way during this training, and I was never accused of being rude. They said I seemed like I wasn't sincerely listening. I probably wasn't because its hard to be sincere when being treated the way I described.


    The rest of FTO was a roller coaster. I was told I had good days and bad days. I ended up having my phase 1 extended and I went with my second FTO to complete phase one. My first FTO said I never took initiative, I wasn't interpreting radio calls correctly, or I was not remembering where other deputy's were and I had an unusual sense of humor and a bad attitude. He said I showed some growth and he recommended I have a different FTO because I wasn't responding to his training. He even went as far to say "his teaching style wasn't inline with my learning style." I was thankful of that, and I did agree with that statement. I needed an FTO that would talk to me after every call, or at least at sometime during the day, and walk me through what I did right and wrong. My first FTO did not do this, even why I tried to ask him questions after calls. I was also never warned about failing FTO, so I didn't realize the extent to which I was performing below average. What threw me off even more, was I was scoring average on most my DOR's. I also know for a fact I took initiative on some calls, so saying I never took initiative is a false statement.



    My second FTO started off better, but ended up being a worse experience in the end. He initially told me he wondered if I was struggling because my first FTO. I knew my first FTO had a reputation and he was new at training. I knew this to be true because I had heard some detectives talking about him training me. Anyways, it seemed like everything was fine for the first three days but my FTO abruptly changed his attitude. On the fourth day he started speaking more condescending and demeaning, and yelling commands at me. He admitted he was pushing me to get a reaction. I got marked for having a bad attitude again. What gets me is that he would yell or speak to me really rude, then he would say I had a bad attitude when I softly replicated his attitude back. I'm only human and having some guy in your car for 12 hours a day treating you like crap is hard to deal with. I dealt with it, but I feel my attitude is understandable, I know I wouldn't ever talk to people the way I was being spoken to. I felt for the most part, I just took it on the chin, but I had an attitude back a few times when I felt like he was taking it to far. I was also accused of dishonesty a few times, which I knew would be a red flag. Every call, my FTO would ask if I knew where I was going. I would respond yes, if I thought I did. I was always using a map. Twice I missed my turn and got lost and he said I was lying because I told him I knew where I was going. This ended up making me not trust my FTO. I no longer felt comfortable answering his questions with a yes or no answer. After him accusing me of lying, I stopped answering with a yes or no. I then would just say, " I think so."

    My last day of FTO was pretty bad, where my FTO was putting pressure on me during calls that would have otherwise gone smoothly. This happened often where we would have a simple call that he would make much harder with his attitude and the way he spoke to me. After these easy calls, he would then write in my DOR's that I had an issue with a simple call. While this is true, in reality I probably would have been fine if he just answered the questions I needed help with instead of purposefully making it really difficult. Which he admitted to doing. The reporting of my DORs also seemed to be bias to make me look worse. I once choked on a piece of granola bar I had stuck in my throat. I had to stop talked to the victim and get some water. I even told my FTO I choked on some food. He later wrote in my DOR he had to take over on a call because I was "physically unable to speak for some reason." While true, how he worded it changes the picture of whats really going on.

    Anyways, later that day we ended up taking a lunch break with another deputy he was friends with. That Deputy sat there and told me how bad I was doing, and that I looked like a "sick and injured dog" and told me I was "not in it today" and I should go home. He also said he didn't want me to get killed because I was out of it. He continued to tell me how bad I was doing for about 20 minutes until I ended up saying "ok, I wanna go home for the day and start fresh tomorrow." He told me that is a good idea, and that's what sick days are for. I'm not a quitter, I thought I was doing the right thing by taking another deputy's advice.


    The next day I was called in by my captain and was asked to resign because I "shut down" at work. Funny thing, is that I was told I should go home by that Deputy. I told my captain this and he just laughed and said "We were gonna let you go anyways, but since you shut down we will do it now."



    My captain and Sergeant told me that this agency is too busy for me and I could be a great cop in a slower agency. They then listed a bunch of guys they had recently let go and were successful somewhere else.
    I ended up telling them I did not want to resign and I wanted to complete FTO training. They told me that wasn't an option. My captain said if I don't resign I would probably never be a cop again. He said I would lose my certification as a Peace officer. He said there was a "new rule" that being fired during FTO means the State automatically takes my certification away. I knew this wasn't true because I called the academy and spoke to the commissioner MYSELF before going to his office. I asked the Commissioner what would happen if I was fired and I was assured I would only lose my certification for a "cause", being fired not it.

    Further in the conversation with my captain, he stated to me "If you resign Ill tell anyone that asks, that you weren't a good fit for this agency and you could be successful somewhere else." I then told him I did not wish to resign. He paused then stated, "people will call me and ask about you, I know everyone around here... and if you don't resign..." he than smirked and shook his head and said, "good luck" I took what he said as black mail. I was also weary about the "new rule." I questioned him about the new rule and he seemed astonished, paused and then stated, "From my understanding this is the new rule." I told him sorry but I wont quit. He ended up firing me.

    I know that having an attitude is an issue for policing, and I know I don't have an attitude problem. I'm 30 years old and I've had many jobs. I have never been in trouble at work and have never gotten in trouble for having an attitude. I would say I don't let people disrespect me, and that is what would make me a good cop. I grew up in an environment where you cant let people walk on you, and that may have come out in my FTO process. As for the dishonesty, I never lied or tried to deceive my FTO in any way. Those accusations seem very outrageous. I was even told by another agency that those are "nit picky" accusations and he laughed.

    There were many more incidents during FTO where I felt like I was being treated dishonestly. I feel the phrase "someones ****ing on my head and telling me its raining" describes much of what happened to me with this agency. I don't think I was great at the job and they screwed me, but I do think I didn't fit in with their agency and they used dishonest tactics to get rid of me. I am telling this story to let you know my opinion of things and set the preface for what I should do now.


    Fast forward 1 year later....

    I have not yet gotten a job. I got offered employment with two agencies, a larger agency and a smaller one. I told them exactly what happened during FTO, and they both said it sounds like I got bad experience and I would work out with them. I passed the poly and psych with both agencies.

    Unfortunately, both agencies never contacted me again after calling my old agency. My thought is the Captain came through on his promise and is making sure I can't be a cop. I told the agencies what my captain said about me being a good cop elsewhere, but I did not speak about the captain saying he would give me a bad review if I didn't resign. I think that the hiring agencies called my old captain thinking he would give me a good review, and he instead trashed me because I didn't resign. I'm thinking for the next agency that I apply, I should tell them I wont get a good review from my old agency. I didn't mention the blackmail fiasco about my captain because I'm a fired Deputy that didn't pass FTO accusing a 30 year experienced Captain of an immoral act. I know that would never get me a job.

    I am hoping to get a job as security soon. I know working as security will help me be a better cop in the long run. I may try for more agencies in a few months, or try to be a reserve. I want to be a cop. I love the job, I have strong morals, and I want to be there for people when they are in need. I never lied to anybody in my old agency and I'm being as clear as possible now. I think my struggle was more so with my FTO's than the actual job itself. Do you guys think this is the right route for me or should I look at different careers?

    Thanks.


  • #2
    Originally posted by Fishlover View Post
    I am hoping to get a job as security soon. I know working as security will help me be a better cop in the long run.
    Nothing wrong with getting a job in security, but it will neither make you a "better cop" nor will it help you get hired in law enforcement.

    Originally posted by Fishlover
    I want to be a cop. I love the job, I have strong morals, and I want to be there for people when they are in need. Do you guys think this is the right route for me or should I look at different careers?
    Do yourself a favor and consider other careers. Don't become a cop. It's a thankless job that's being made more difficult every day. This isn't the time to get into LE; it's the time to get OUT.

    Comment


    • Fishlover
      Fishlover commented
      Editing a comment
      Thanks for your reply. A Deputy from my former agency called me after I was fired and suggested I work hospital security to gain experience dealing with stress. I agree it is is also a good gig as an alternative career. As far as it being a bad time to be a cop, I agree but I still want to do it.

    • Levithane
      Levithane commented
      Editing a comment
      Fishlover if you want to get experience dealing with stress, apply for a parole job. You'll deal with far more offenders and become desensitized to the bs mind games they routinely play.

  • #3
    You could talk to an employment lawyer, to see if you have grounds to pursue the first Agency for failure to properly field-train and evaluate you, but that may be BIG $. Possibly your State's Police Review Agency could assist you. Or, it may be that you just are not suited to Police work.
    I second the ideas that Security is career path of its own, and NOT a path to Policing, plus that this is NOT the greatest time to get into Policing.
    #32936 - Royal Canadian Mounted Police - 1975-10-27 / 2010-12-29
    Proud Dad of #54266 - RCMP - 2007-02-12 to date
    RCMP Veterans Association - Regina Division member
    Mounted Police Professional Association of Canada - Associate (Retired) member
    "Smile" - no!

    Comment


    • #4
      Originally posted by Fishlover View Post
      Hello Everyone.


      First post here, but I have been reading these forums for the past year or so. This subject has been touched on many times, but like many, I feel as though my circumstances are different and I would like some advice from you guys. Long story but here ya go.





      I got hired on with a local sheriff's Office as a Deputy. I got through the academy with no problems and some of the instructors told me I had done well on many of the "mock scenes". Once I completed the academy, I was treated far more poorly by people in my agency than by the academy instructors. From the get go, many deputy's treated me like I wasn't gonna make it. I was told I was too small, people told me to not buy anything expensive in case I didn't make it, and I got quiet a few rolled eyes when I introduced myself to people. Ill admit I was pretty skinny, I lost weight during the academy because the food was so gross haha. One of the nicer Deputy's told me that its part of the game, so I brushed it off. Never the less I had a semi defensive attitude because the way I was treated made me uncomfortable.

      Where it actually got bad was in FTO. Typical smoke show, where my FTO was rude and told me he didn't wanna do "this job." Said forget everything in the academy, he will show me how to be a cop. I took that with a grain of salt. My second day of FTO we did active shooter training with a bunch of the sergeants and some other new Deputys. We trained with sims, and there was a lot of yelling, so it was pretty high intensity stuff. One of the sergeants, who had often treated me like he didn't like me in the past, was in charge. He told me I was acting like "professional backup", "maybe this isn't the job for me," and "I've never had to plan a funeral during training." I was also threatened during the training, where they would get in my face and say things like "If I catch you doing this one more time......" Within the training I was also mocked a few times and they laughed at my mistakes. It didn't seem like they were correcting any of the other deputy's but myself, even when I saw them make mistakes.
      I told my FTO I felt picked on and he said it was part of training.

      I learned from this first experience that they were testing me and pushing me to see how I reacted. I felt like they were picking on me in the heat of the moment, and I let them rile me up. I realize that this wasn't really an active shooter strategy training, but more so an emotional test, which they did not like the outcome of. It was hard to know this at the time, because we had done similar training in the academy, but we were never mocked or made to feel bad about ourselves, nor did I ever stand out as the one constantly being corrected. Just to be clear, I was never rude to anyone in any way during this training, and I was never accused of being rude. They said I seemed like I wasn't sincerely listening. I probably wasn't because its hard to be sincere when being treated the way I described.


      The rest of FTO was a roller coaster. I was told I had good days and bad days. I ended up having my phase 1 extended and I went with my second FTO to complete phase one. My first FTO said I never took initiative, I wasn't interpreting radio calls correctly, or I was not remembering where other deputy's were and I had an unusual sense of humor and a bad attitude. He said I showed some growth and he recommended I have a different FTO because I wasn't responding to his training. He even went as far to say "his teaching style wasn't inline with my learning style." I was thankful of that, and I did agree with that statement. I needed an FTO that would talk to me after every call, or at least at sometime during the day, and walk me through what I did right and wrong. My first FTO did not do this, even why I tried to ask him questions after calls. I was also never warned about failing FTO, so I didn't realize the extent to which I was performing below average. What threw me off even more, was I was scoring average on most my DOR's. I also know for a fact I took initiative on some calls, so saying I never took initiative is a false statement.



      My second FTO started off better, but ended up being a worse experience in the end. He initially told me he wondered if I was struggling because my first FTO. I knew my first FTO had a reputation and he was new at training. I knew this to be true because I had heard some detectives talking about him training me. Anyways, it seemed like everything was fine for the first three days but my FTO abruptly changed his attitude. On the fourth day he started speaking more condescending and demeaning, and yelling commands at me. He admitted he was pushing me to get a reaction. I got marked for having a bad attitude again. What gets me is that he would yell or speak to me really rude, then he would say I had a bad attitude when I softly replicated his attitude back. I'm only human and having some guy in your car for 12 hours a day treating you like crap is hard to deal with. I dealt with it, but I feel my attitude is understandable, I know I wouldn't ever talk to people the way I was being spoken to. I felt for the most part, I just took it on the chin, but I had an attitude back a few times when I felt like he was taking it to far. I was also accused of dishonesty a few times, which I knew would be a red flag. Every call, my FTO would ask if I knew where I was going. I would respond yes, if I thought I did. I was always using a map. Twice I missed my turn and got lost and he said I was lying because I told him I knew where I was going. This ended up making me not trust my FTO. I no longer felt comfortable answering his questions with a yes or no answer. After him accusing me of lying, I stopped answering with a yes or no. I then would just say, " I think so."

      My last day of FTO was pretty bad, where my FTO was putting pressure on me during calls that would have otherwise gone smoothly. This happened often where we would have a simple call that he would make much harder with his attitude and the way he spoke to me. After these easy calls, he would then write in my DOR's that I had an issue with a simple call. While this is true, in reality I probably would have been fine if he just answered the questions I needed help with instead of purposefully making it really difficult. Which he admitted to doing. The reporting of my DORs also seemed to be bias to make me look worse. I once choked on a piece of granola bar I had stuck in my throat. I had to stop talked to the victim and get some water. I even told my FTO I choked on some food. He later wrote in my DOR he had to take over on a call because I was "physically unable to speak for some reason." While true, how he worded it changes the picture of whats really going on.

      Anyways, later that day we ended up taking a lunch break with another deputy he was friends with. That Deputy sat there and told me how bad I was doing, and that I looked like a "sick and injured dog" and told me I was "not in it today" and I should go home. He also said he didn't want me to get killed because I was out of it. He continued to tell me how bad I was doing for about 20 minutes until I ended up saying "ok, I wanna go home for the day and start fresh tomorrow." He told me that is a good idea, and that's what sick days are for. I'm not a quitter, I thought I was doing the right thing by taking another deputy's advice.


      The next day I was called in by my captain and was asked to resign because I "shut down" at work. Funny thing, is that I was told I should go home by that Deputy. I told my captain this and he just laughed and said "We were gonna let you go anyways, but since you shut down we will do it now."



      My captain and Sergeant told me that this agency is too busy for me and I could be a great cop in a slower agency. They then listed a bunch of guys they had recently let go and were successful somewhere else.
      I ended up telling them I did not want to resign and I wanted to complete FTO training. They told me that wasn't an option. My captain said if I don't resign I would probably never be a cop again. He said I would lose my certification as a Peace officer. He said there was a "new rule" that being fired during FTO means the State automatically takes my certification away. I knew this wasn't true because I called the academy and spoke to the commissioner MYSELF before going to his office. I asked the Commissioner what would happen if I was fired and I was assured I would only lose my certification for a "cause", being fired not it.

      Further in the conversation with my captain, he stated to me "If you resign Ill tell anyone that asks, that you weren't a good fit for this agency and you could be successful somewhere else." I then told him I did not wish to resign. He paused then stated, "people will call me and ask about you, I know everyone around here... and if you don't resign..." he than smirked and shook his head and said, "good luck" I took what he said as black mail. I was also weary about the "new rule." I questioned him about the new rule and he seemed astonished, paused and then stated, "From my understanding this is the new rule." I told him sorry but I wont quit. He ended up firing me.

      I know that having an attitude is an issue for policing, and I know I don't have an attitude problem. I'm 30 years old and I've had many jobs. I have never been in trouble at work and have never gotten in trouble for having an attitude. I would say I don't let people disrespect me, and that is what would make me a good cop. I grew up in an environment where you cant let people walk on you, and that may have come out in my FTO process. As for the dishonesty, I never lied or tried to deceive my FTO in any way. Those accusations seem very outrageous. I was even told by another agency that those are "nit picky" accusations and he laughed.

      There were many more incidents during FTO where I felt like I was being treated dishonestly. I feel the phrase "someones ****ing on my head and telling me its raining" describes much of what happened to me with this agency. I don't think I was great at the job and they screwed me, but I do think I didn't fit in with their agency and they used dishonest tactics to get rid of me. I am telling this story to let you know my opinion of things and set the preface for what I should do now.


      Fast forward 1 year later....

      I have not yet gotten a job. I got offered employment with two agencies, a larger agency and a smaller one. I told them exactly what happened during FTO, and they both said it sounds like I got bad experience and I would work out with them. I passed the poly and psych with both agencies.

      Unfortunately, both agencies never contacted me again after calling my old agency. My thought is the Captain came through on his promise and is making sure I can't be a cop. I told the agencies what my captain said about me being a good cop elsewhere, but I did not speak about the captain saying he would give me a bad review if I didn't resign. I think that the hiring agencies called my old captain thinking he would give me a good review, and he instead trashed me because I didn't resign. I'm thinking for the next agency that I apply, I should tell them I wont get a good review from my old agency. I didn't mention the blackmail fiasco about my captain because I'm a fired Deputy that didn't pass FTO accusing a 30 year experienced Captain of an immoral act. I know that would never get me a job.

      I am hoping to get a job as security soon. I know working as security will help me be a better cop in the long run. I may try for more agencies in a few months, or try to be a reserve. I want to be a cop. I love the job, I have strong morals, and I want to be there for people when they are in need. I never lied to anybody in my old agency and I'm being as clear as possible now. I think my struggle was more so with my FTO's than the actual job itself. Do you guys think this is the right route for me or should I look at different careers?

      Thanks.
      What happened to the other posts on this thread?

      Comment


      • Fishlover
        Fishlover commented
        Editing a comment
        I don't know.

    • #5
      My bunion is saying....

      Look for a different career.

      My bunion is always right.
      The unprepared, the surprise is greater, as is the processing of denial, the fog of confusion and chaos. The prepared and practiced always act quicker.

      -Massad Ayoob

      Comment


      • Aidokea
        Aidokea commented
        Editing a comment
        I'm with your bunion on this one...

    • #6
      If I may, I'd like to ask a couple questions to see if I can "troubleshoot"...

      What kinds of jobs/employment have you had in the past? Education (if so, what degree)? Military?

      Would you describe yourself as a "confrontational" or "assertive" person?
      "He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you."
      -Friedrich Nietzsche

      Comment


      • Fishlover
        Fishlover commented
        Editing a comment
        No military. Bachelors in biology. I have worked in a lab, customer service, random food service jobs and as a photographer. I consider myself as neutral, I'm not a confrontational person but I can be assertive when I want something.

    • #7
      Fishlover, I was an FTO.

      I have seen trainees that somehow managed to pass their academy, but once they were in FTO, they were unable to put to use what they had been taught.

      The taxpayers spent a lot of money to hire and train them, so we did everything we could to try to salvage that investment, by extending their time in FTO, and/or by trying different FTOs with the trainee. But some of them just can't do The Job.

      You come off as awful awful whiny, and you sound like you're blaming everyone and everything under the sun (other than yourself) for your own failure. We just have no need for that...

      Comment


      • Fishlover
        Fishlover commented
        Editing a comment
        I probably come off as whiny because I don't buy into the bs that just because my superior is a cop they can treat me like crap. The "god" attitude that certain cops have, and the attitude that you are defending this agency having towards me is what is wrong with law enforcement today. Instead of you telling me how screwed I am for not playing ball with them, you are telling me how I'm unfit to be a cop. I saw people cry in the academy and they passed FTO..... I'm capable of doing this job.

    • #8
      We interview a fair number of hospital security/police who want to do more "real" policing. The vast majority of them aren't going to get it any better than they already have it as we don't consider the majority of them even trainable. That said, it is a steady gig that pays alright, you gotta work somewhere, but it is not going to make you more marketable with other agencies.

      Comment


      • #9
        All posts containing repetitive, insulting or otherwise violating our TOS have been removed. Closing the thread. Question has been asked and answered.
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        Comment

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