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  • Real police work

    As a new officer, I hear the term "real police work" thrown around quite a lot. I'm curious to see what various officers' and civilians' definition is of that term. What's yours? Do you include things like community-oriented policing goals, taking crash reports, et cetera, et cetera?
    "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, can not and will not ever harm the sheep." -Lt. Col. Dave Grossman

  • #2
    Ask 100 people, and you'll probably get 100 different opinions.

    For me, real police work starts with responding to 911 calls.
    Talk sense to a fool, and he will call you foolish - Euripides

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    • #3
      Real police work, that's a laugh. Is the NYPD officer that works a high crime area more of a cop because he works more homicides than the north dakota state trooper who spends 95% of his time writing traffic citations?

      I personally think anything that falls within the boundries of responsibility for an officer falls into real police work, from working homicides to showing a bunch of kids how your light bar works, there's no difference for me especially now days when community policing is the buzz word of the day.
      Illegitimi non carborundum - Don't let the bastards grind you down.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Caspertoo
        Is the NYPD officer that works a high crime area more of a cop because he works more homicides than the north dakota state trooper who spends 95% of his time writing traffic citations?
        Yes.
        Talk sense to a fool, and he will call you foolish - Euripides

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        • #5
          ACK!!!

          The gap between rural police and city police widens a little bit more
          Illegitimi non carborundum - Don't let the bastards grind you down.

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          • #6
            ACK!!!The gap between rural police and city police widens a little bit more
            Though unsure if Delta was serious, it's not surprising. Many officers that chose to work in the "big city" think that all others are not "real cops".
            I had a guy in my class that was a 10 year vet of the NYPD. He couldn't believe the amount of work patrol did here i.e take crime scene photos, investgate traffic collisions including some fatalities, did death investgations, processed our own DUIs including SFSTS. Needless to say he did not last too long for various reasons.
            When you respond and have to call someone else to take photos and interview people, you shouldn't think lesser populated "city" cops aren't doing real work.

            TGY
            Disclaimer: The writer does not represent any organization, employer, entity or other individual. The views expressed are those only of the writer. In the case of a sarcastic, facetious, nonsensical, stirring-the-pot, controversial or devil's advocate-type post, the views expressed may not even reflect those of the writer [This sig stolen from Brickcop who stole it from Frank Booth].

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            • #7
              Originally posted by That Guy
              Though unsure if Delta was serious, it's not surprising. Many officers that chose to work in the "big city" think that all others are not "real cops".
              I had a guy in my class that was a 10 year vet of the NYPD. He couldn't believe the amount of work patrol did here i.e take crime scene photos, investgate traffic collisions including some fatalities, did death investgations, processed our own DUIs including SFSTS. Needless to say he did not last too long for various reasons.
              When you respond and have to call someone else to take photos and interview people, you shouldn't think lesser populated "city" cops aren't doing real work.

              TGY

              Couldn't have said it better myself!

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              • #8
                Is the NYPD officer that works a high crime area more of a cop because he works more homicides than the north dakota state trooper who spends 95% of his time writing traffic citations?
                Absolutely......The word "real" in "real policework" implies the essence of policeness that the public has come to imagine exists from popular culture. Thus, you're not the "real police" if you just write tickets in North Dakota. However, if you do "real policework" like working homicides like Sipowicz, you're the "real police", as opposed to being "technically the police" by virtue of having graduated from a police academy and being certified with a police department. Many cops who work smaller or more sedate departments get defensive when confronted with the fact that their counterparts in the big city do more policework in their first couple years on the job than they're likely to do during a whole career. That's just the way it is.....If you want to be the big city ghetto police, get a job in the big city ghetto....if you want to work in an upscale suburb, work in an upscale suburb, but don't pretend you've experienced the same job as the big city ghetto cop, cuz you haven't and likely never will.

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                • #9
                  Well yes the NYPD guy will probably experience a lot more in his first year than me during my first year, but there are experiences I will have he will not.

                  How many NYPD guys have raided a Hillbilly POS house where they produce meth only to have the "family" run into their backyard (10 acres back yard mind you) only to realize the backyard has strategically placed BEAR TRAPS that they know where they are but you do not.

                  I could give other "unique" rural experiences but bottom line is that I believe the smallest of the small town police departments are doing just as much "real" police work than the biggest of the big city cops. Their duties are different, yes, but go work their job for a year and tell me the same thing.

                  Also just have to throw in, having your backup be 20 minutes away, trying to find places on streets (if you want to call them that) that aren't marked with sign posts nor are they on the issued maps, or dealing with drunk white trash on highways. My FTO just two months ago had a guy slam into the back of his cruiser while on a DUI stop. His hand was inside the stopped vehicles window and the impact of the cruiser into the stopped car broke his wrist. Of course the thing he is most thankful for is that his Crown Vic didn't explode. Note thought that both the driver of the 1st stopped car and the driver that hit his cruiser were both above .08
                  Last edited by Caspertoo; 12-31-2004, 07:41 AM.
                  Illegitimi non carborundum - Don't let the bastards grind you down.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    You can only do the work that you are assigned or is available to you in your area. But around here we have some guys that are busy making traffic stops while others are covering jobs in thier area, or going to inprogress calls. The other night myself and another officer were dispatched to a group fightimg in the parking lot of a local resturant. He says to the dispatcher "before that put me out on a traffic stop". Now I'm going solo to a group fighting. Several other officer spoke up to back me but were a ways away. Needless to say we had a little chat with him. If you want to do traffic thats fine but Officer Saftey comes first, covering your area next, then after coffe, lunch, business checks, comes traffic. If you are assigned to the highway knock yourself out but if you have a sector or beat you had better take the "real" jobs in your area before you get tied up on a traffic arrest and we have to cover your area..that is the way about 98% of us feel and work in my dept, It take awhile for us to reprogram the guys who transfer from depts that are heavy into traffic enforcement. We simply dont have the time or manpower to do a lot of traffic and still cover our area.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by That Guy
                      Though unsure if Delta was serious, it's not surprising. Many officers that chose to work in the "big city" think that all others are not "real cops".
                      I didn't say that.

                      The question was if a cop who works a high crime area is more of a cop than someone who does 95% traffic enforcement.

                      Considering that the great majority of traffic offenses in my state aren't even crimes (they're civil infractions), how else am I supposed to answer that?
                      Talk sense to a fool, and he will call you foolish - Euripides

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                      • #12
                        My definition of "real police work" is anything that a police officer can do to improve the quality of life in the community in which they work in.
                        If it wasn't for STUPID PEOPLE I'd be unemployed.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Delta784
                          I didn't say that.

                          The question was if a cop who works a high crime area is more of a cop than someone who does 95% traffic enforcement.

                          Considering that the great majority of traffic offenses in my state aren't even crimes (they're civil infractions), how else am I supposed to answer that?
                          Sorry, I didn't assume that it had to be answered so technical. Nor did I say that you meant it that way. I simply said that your answer is not surprising.
                          Frank made a good point on working where you want to. Please give me examples on what they will see that I never will.

                          TGY
                          Disclaimer: The writer does not represent any organization, employer, entity or other individual. The views expressed are those only of the writer. In the case of a sarcastic, facetious, nonsensical, stirring-the-pot, controversial or devil's advocate-type post, the views expressed may not even reflect those of the writer [This sig stolen from Brickcop who stole it from Frank Booth].

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Not to say that this is always the case, but sometimes, the big city police can get used to dealing with dangerous situations and fall into a comfort zone or routine, whereas the smaller areas can get a serious call and have to be really prepared mentally because those calls don't come too often. However, this works both ways. The small towns get used to traffic offenses and the larger cities may not have as much time to deal with those type of situations. Both can end up with bad results.

                            Real policing applies to each and every dept. and their specific goals. Policing is dangerous no matter where you may be. So, all departments get my respect for real police work.
                            "He who lives without Discipline Dies without Honor"

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by That Guy
                              Please give me examples on what they will see that I never will.
                              Considering that I've never been NYPD, and I have no idea where you work, how am I supposed to answer that?
                              Talk sense to a fool, and he will call you foolish - Euripides

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