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  • Security Companies

    Do you guys know of any security officers that you deal with in your areas that do a good job? I'm talking about knowing their place, and using good sense. I know a lot that are wannabees, but there are some that are professional. I started out in security and then later went into law enforcement. I know that there are guys doing it now that will later be cops.

  • #2
    I've known a whole lot of security folks, several of which were excellent at their jobs! Most however worked for individual companies rather than security companies.

    My all time favorite was a fella who had been a prison guard in Arizona. Unfortunately the bottle got in the way of his job and he got canned. He dried himself out and went to work as a S/G at a resort. Never called unless he really needed me. Never tried to go beyond what he should.

    ------------------
    I used to have an open mind - but my brains kept falling out.

    6P1 (retired)

    [This message has been edited by Don (edited 06-25-2001).]
    6P1 (retired)

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    • #3
      I've been in security since I've graduated from high school (3 years ago) and have seen a lot of good and a lot of bad people in this job. There are people who want to be cops eventually (like me), people who think they're already cops, and people who don't want to do anything other than sleep. Occasionally you will also find someone who doesn't fit into the above catagories that actually does a good job. The lower the pay, the harder that is to find.

      I started out with a large contract security company (I'll just refer to it as "W") working at several different posts. In the summer of 1999, I was requested for the post at our local newspaper, which was half "W" employees and half in-house employees. The in-house guys were EXTREMELY more professional than our people. The main reason for that is about a $6 per hour pay difference. When one of our "W" guards went psycho one night and tried to burn down the building, we lost the contract and I was retained as an in-house employee. Instead of making $9 an hour, I now make $15 an hour.

      With one exception, the other five people in my department are very good at their jobs and don't overstep their bounds. Everyone but me is ex military LE, and our supervisor is a retired police officer. 4 out of the 6 people in the department (myself included) have college level educations. One of our guys speaks fluent Russian and is in the application process with the FBI. We're althorized to carry weapons (although we rarely do), and we wear plain clothes. The job isn't too exciting, but it's good money for a college student.

      On the other hand, I also still work for "W" part time. We have the contract at our local arena (concerts, sporting events, etc.), and also at several other businesses in the city. I work for them usually a couple times a month at various places. The pay isn't anywhere near as good, and neither are some of the people I work with. Things were worse, but we got a new hard-*** office manager who doesn't put up with people looking or acting sloppy. While most people don't like him, he's the best thing that's happened to the company in the three years I've been there.

      The only reason that I don't just quit "W" is that I've been there so long and want to keep a good reference. And yes, three years IS long in the security industry. Out of the 300 people in our office, I'm in the top 20 on the seniority list.

      Security is a job where you can normally tell who's good and who's not by the salary. When you're paying minimum wage, you get minimum wage class people. When you pay a good wage, you get good people. I guess that's the way it is in all jobs though.

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      • #4
        I dont know if this really qualifies as "security", but the best security guards I have ever seen were at Savannah River Nuclear Station. There SRT team is highly regarded and they are some real professional operators, I was thoroughly impressed, so impressed I seriously thought about applying, but I realized that this just wasnt the right time for me.

        Even there regular security officers seemed like top notch people, while on duty they have full arrest powers and conduct security patrols of the entire facility, they even enforce state traffic laws on the public highways that run through the site, this was the first time I have ever seen someone in a Wackenhut uniform issue a traffic citation. Like I said I dont know if I would consider them security or not, while they may technically be security guards, they just struck me as being more like LE and not private security officers. They go through a 9 or 10 week training cycle which is supposed to be similar to our state training. I am not positive about this but I think several of their officers actually recieve training at a D.O.E. academy.

        I think they are the exception to the rule when it comes to private security, I have seen some good security firms and I have seen some bad ones, from what I have seen, it all goes back to recruitment and wages. Like Patrick said, you get what you pay for.

        ------------------
        [email protected]

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        • #5
          Pat, it sounds like you have your head screwed on straight. You have the college, you are working on experience, and you are realizing the importance of good work references. I think you will get where you want to go. It sounds like you have plenty of time.
          Thanks for the replies on my post everyone.

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          • #6
            Pat,
            I know exactly what you mean. I currently work for a large bank. We originally were half inhouse and half contract but I am now the only inhouse person left. The others were replaced with contract because it was cheaper. Out of the other nine staff here, I would only recommend one for inhouse consideration.

            I have worked security/loss prevention for (GASP!) ten years so I've got a bit up on ya. A few people look down at me when they hear I'm a security guard but when I tell them I make 45K a year they usually do a double take. Our company prides itself in paying for quality people. (Wow! I feel special!)
            Of course I also want to be a cop and will actually take a pay cut because Ifeel so strongly about it.

            Glad to hear that not all cops look down on us. Got into a bit of a tiff with one rather vocal Canadian police officer who spouted his particular views of F*ckin Cop Wannabes on a different forum.
            Copper2be

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            • #7
              I've spent more time in private security than I have in LE. Duty wise, about the only difference is who paid me, and what I was paid. No police officer authority, but I had the authority to apprehend and detain those who comitted offenses in front of me.

              Security companies are more concerned with turning a profit than they are at providing professional service to their clients.

              I've seen my share of idiots and wannabes. I've seen some get their butt used for a broom!

              But what really gets bad is when the brain-dead wonders are the ones in charge! I let go a pretty explosive reply to a post in here a few days ago, about why I left this one company. Give a company nearly 4 years of your life and best effort, rising from the bottom to a middle level management job, only to have a good top manager leave and be replaced with one who has the IQ of a carrot!!!

              I won't ramble on, but that is a classic example of why a lot of security companies get a bad rap. I ended up working for a smaller, more elite agency, working these rough assignments these candy-assed meat market agencies won't even think about, so concerned with liability. We worked in close association with the police department, and gained their respect quickly.

              Sadly, combined effects of a divorce and the loss of a key account forced my employer out of business.
              Never make a drummer mad- we beat things for a living!

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              • #8
                I know this is getting off the track a bit, but I wanted to relate an experience of one of my colleagues. He's a detective at the same station as me. Anyway, whilst investigating what was thoguht to be an attempted bank robbery earlier in the day, the security guard on the door would not allow him on the premises because he was carrying a firearm. My friend, a very reasonable and patient man, explained to him that he was the police and was authorised to carry his gun where he pleased (with certain exceptions of course, but none relating to banks). The security man then had the nerve to cite a procedures manual stating that no weapons may be carried inside the bank. Luckily my friend managed to locate the manager who of course set the situation right. But what he said was priceless:- "I'm just the same as you guys, I'm enforcing the rules of my superiors". No wonder I drink.

                [This message has been edited by highwayman (edited 06-28-2001).]

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                • #9
                  I've worked in private security off & on for the past 15+ years, and one of my beefs is the agencies will usually only issue you one pair of pants and two shirts(if you are lucky). You have to buy your own if you want more, and if you
                  Bicycle Billy

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                  • #10
                    Highwayman, that was a remarkable story! I've heard similar stories before!

                    Posted by SpecOpsWarrior:
                    The best security guards I have ever seen were at Savannah River Nuclear Station.
                    While on duty they have full arrest powers and they even enforce state traffic laws on the public highways that run through the site. This was the first time I have ever seen someone in a Wackenhut uniform issue a traffic citation.
                    I didn't know that it was legal for a guard to do that in some states. Interesting.

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                    • #11
                      I took a 2 year hiatus out of LE and spent it supervising security for 3 stores in a major retail chain. I actually learned soe things while there (more about watching people, about installing covert cameras etc). Likewise, my experience in LE was helpful there.

                      Because of my security experience, I was chosen to participate in a task force with the state licensing folks on private security.

                      I've run into some really professional folks in private security. I've also run into some people that were complete dangers to themselves and anyone around them.

                      ------------------
                      Niteshift-
                      Where am I to go now that I've gone too far.

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                      • #12
                        It's just like anything else. You have good ones and bad ones.

                        ------------------
                        I used to have an open mind - but my brains kept falling out.

                        6P1 (retired)
                        6P1 (retired)

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by me again:

                          Posted by SpecOpsWarrior:
                          The best security guards I have ever seen were at Savannah River Nuclear Station.
                          While on duty they have full arrest powers and they even enforce state traffic laws on the public highways that run through the site. This was the first time I have ever seen someone in a Wackenhut uniform issue a traffic citation.
                          I didn't know that it was legal for a guard to do that in some states. Interesting.

                          Maybe I should clarify that statement a little bit, just to avoid any possible misinterpritation. I'm not exactly sure when this happend but our state legislature passed a bill that gave security personnel at Savannah River full enforcement powers while on the job, when they are on the clock they can make arrests and write citations just like any other sworn officer.

                          I looked around and found their website hears the link.
                          http://www.srs.gov/general/people/wackenhut/index.htm

                          ------------------
                          [email protected]

                          [This message has been edited by SpecOpsWarrior (edited 06-28-2001).]

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