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False allegations


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  • False allegations

    Alrighty everyone, how do you prevent false allegations on the job. Everything from sexual assault to simple tickets.

    Our detachment have cameras and microphones installed in half our fleet (2 of the 4 cars). If I was alone on duty and arrested a female I would radio our dispatch and tell them when I was leaving the scene and when I arrived at the detachment. They would record the time and mileage on my vehicle.

    I usually have the camera on and advise the subject that everything was being monitored by cameras live from dispatch. Of course it was a lie, it was being recorded in the car, but they didn't have to know that. I know for a fact if some idiot with malicious intent would and could kill my career with one false allegation. Therefore when I deal with a female I always try to get a witness or use the cameras or make damn good notes.

    I have had a ethnic minority lady (east indian descent) accuse me of being a racist for giving her a stop sign ticket. It actually went to court, luckily I used a car with a camera. Needless to say, the judge actually wanted to view the video to make sure I wasn't just picking on her because she was east indian. DUH!!!

    She was convicted for that offence.

    Too bad they can't bring my family history into the court room to prove I'm not a racist.

    My girlfriend happens to be east indian.

  • #2
    Originally posted by RCMP
    Alrighty everyone, how do you prevent false allegations on the job. Everything from sexual assault to simple tickets.
    You do exactly what you said. Record every traffic stop, every time. I know officers and deputies that don't do so on certain traffic stops for whatever reason, and all I can think is that not recording the stop can only lead to bad things for them.

    I am not corrupt, and have had only two excessive force complaints against me, which were proven false via video footage. I have nothing to hide, so I don't worry at all about recording stops or other encounters with the public with the dashcam. It can only help me.
    Looks like someone took their stupid pills today.


    • #3
      Record, record, record......


      • #4
        I agree with the recording of everything. But what about us small town PD's that don't have the money to have dashcams? Of course that's easy to solve there, buy my own voice recorder, which I will be doing soon. We've already had a fasle accusation on one of our officers (way before my time though), and the only thing that saved him was that he had a mini recorder in his shirt pocket, and he recorded the whole stop. The subject (a female) accused him of hitting on her and making lewd comments. When it went to court, the officer admitted the tape and the judge listened to it. Needless to say, the officer won that case, and the woman had mud on her face.
        Here's to cheating, stealing, fighting, and drinking.
        If you cheat, may you cheat death.
        If you steal, may you steal a woman's heart.
        If you fight, may you fight for a brother.
        And if you drink, may you drink with me.

        Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
        --Matthew 5:9--


        • #5

          use digitial recorder for in vehicle conversations... tape from time of stop to time you kick them loose or book them...

          I put my recorder in between the headrest of my seat with the mike aimed at the back seat. (we don't have cameras in the unit). I let them rant on...
          ''Life's tough......it's tougher if you're stupid.''
          -- John Wayne


          • #6
            Can't prevent the bs complaints. I have had a number of complaints against me. Thankfully, I was driving the sole squad with video for the biggest complaint and simply advised administration the complaint was false and they could review the video. End of story.

            Last complaint I had was a lady from an EMS call. Originally, she claimed we told her to "shut the f$#% up" , constantly used profane language, were extremely unprofessional and not compassionate. Reality of it was she was hysterical and was upseting her 2 year old by her behavior, so she was told to quiet down. I also asked questions to make sure there was no child abuse.

            I have come to believe that an officer who does not get complaints is either extremely lucky or not doing their job.

            My biggest beef with false complaints on officers is the people seem to never be charged, so it is free season on cops. If I eventually have rank, any person who files a false complaint against one of the officers under my supervision will be charged.

            I do carry a small digital voice recorder in one of my shirt pockets. I really should start using it for more "routine work". I have only used it several times during interviews.

            Also, I turn the in car mike on if someone is being difficult and leave it on until I finish transporting the offender. Hopefully, my pd will equip all marked squads with video.
            Last edited by TradArcher; 03-15-2005, 02:47 PM.


            • #7
              Originally posted by ccpd8512
              I agree with the recording of everything. But what about us small town PD's that don't have the money to have dashcams?
              I'm in the same boat; I don't have video. However, I use my little voice recorder for everything; it's saved my butt more than once.


              • #8
                Get a dirtbag lawyer (just like they have) and sue them back, take them for everything they have and then some more.

                Don't know if you can but it sure feels good thinking about it.

                We are the thin blue line
                between you
                and all the money in the world.

                And no you can't have any.


                • #9
                  Originally posted by ccpd8512
                  I agree with the recording of everything. But what about us small town PD's that don't have the money to have dashcams?
                  I know of a department that used cheap ($800) Sony camcorders with a color flip-out screen before they started getting grants for the full video systems. Of course the tape isn't secure, and the camera can't be made to automatically start recording when you turn your lights on, but it's a good start.

                  Even if your department can't afford them, maybe they'd give you permission to use a personal camcorder while on duty. It wouldn't be too hard to rig up a wireless microphone to wear on your uniform that would record to the video, either.

                  According to the Circuit City website, cameras that record to mini tapes are around $300, and cameras that record to mini DVDs are under $700.
                  ~Slippery Pete~

                  If Thomas Jefferson thought taxation without representation was bad, he should see how it is with representation.


                  • #10
                    I agree with the rest, record, record, record. Not just traffic stops, but FIs or any situation where something may come up later.

                    I helped our drug unit with a search warrant, and the audio helped out later on when a complaint was made.

                    When I didn't have a camera I had a micro recorder on my belt and another one in my car with a mike run to the backseat.

                    I've had several situations where the camera has helped my with complaints. I'm just a gruff old man from the north, and the people in SC don't care for the way I talk.
                    Remember, it is the Soldier, not the reporter, who has given us the freedom of the press. It is the Soldier, not the poet, who has given us the freedom of speech. It is the Soldier who salutes the flag, who serves beneath the flag and whose coffin is draped by the flag, who allows the protester to burn the flag.

                    Author unknown


                    • #11
                      I, too, record everything even though I am on the flipside of your problem. Our agency has in-car cameras/mics, but there is no camera or recording device in the interrogation room. I recently purchased my own mini recorder and use it in there and have always asked a male officer to accompany me in the interrogation room if I am interrogating a male. I won't take any chances and I know a few male officers feel the same about dealing with females. I do however see some male officers that do not take the precautions they should and I feel they will regret it someday. Nothing is a given in this line of work and you can't be too careful.


                      • #12
                        So far we only have a few in-dash cameras in our cars, so like everyone else, our officers mainly use their own mini-cassette recorders. However, we also have two rather interesting laws on our side to prevent false allegations:

                        CC 47.5 "..a peace officer may bring an action for defamation against an individual who has filed a complaint with that officer
                        Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere


                        • #13
                          Sounds like some agencies have their head on straight. I know it was difficult to get my old department to do anything. I would have loved to have had a DVD recorder or even a dash cam on several occaisions.

                          I also took to using the micro cassette player/recorder they issued us to record reports in field to record the contacts that seemed to be going astray when you got there. Worked real well when you pullled it out of your pocket and started it. Then you would make sure that the date and time and location got on the tape. Some people just didn't know when to shut up though.

                          I now use a digital recorder, my own, and have even gone as far as paying for a connector to record phone calls. That's the great thing about Arizona, you can record a phone call or conversations as long as at least one of the parties knows there is recording going on. And that party can be you.

                          I have heard other states have made it illegal to record without notifying the other parties or even some that require their consent.

                          It's nice to see their face though when they say you said something and you play that and its them that had said it.
                          Thinking must be hard work since so damn few people do it.
                          --Henry Ford


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