PDA

View Full Version : "It's the Police!"


yomama
February 8, 2008, 11:45 AM
Ok, let me start by saying my motivations for this post are that I constantly see on the news that in home invasions, perps yell, "It's the Police!" ect....

They come in all black, and one could easily interpret them as legitamate police.

So what is the responsible action for a homeowner to take as the door is being kicked in, and a few guys are yelling they are the police and to get down?

ooreach
February 8, 2008, 11:59 AM
if it's more then 2 or 3 and they have cars with flashing lights on them, I'd probably do what they said. You could always try and call 911, if you where safe to do so, just to try and confirm, but I'll tell you most cops are not going to have much sympathy for the "I didn't know you where the law" storie as you get thrown down on the floor with the knee to your back.

zxcvbob
February 8, 2008, 12:26 PM
Even if they *are* police, if they don't serve a warrant they are home invaders and IMHO should be dealt with accordingly. (the law of course disagrees with me on that point.) But it's probably a moot point because they have the drop on you.

That's why you need layers of defense. Reinforced wooden doors with massive deadbolts that will take some time to breach. Dogs. Outdoor lights. Things to give you time to react.

Tartaruga
February 8, 2008, 04:03 PM
The real cops SHOULD have "POLICE" markings that are very noticeable on vests, helmets, shields, and should be yelling "POlICE - SEARCH WARRANT"

A lot of tactical teams have gotten away from the black and have gone to OD green or camo uniforms so black isn't always an indication.

Unless there is a specific threat, most search warrant require officers to KNOCK and ANNOUNCE prior to entering.

Tanzer
February 8, 2008, 05:23 PM
The real cops SHOULD have "POLICE" markings that are very noticeable on vests, helmets, shields, and should be yelling "POlICE - SEARCH WARRANT"
True
most search warrant require officers to KNOCK and ANNOUNCE prior to entering.
True again, but the time between knock and slam is about .000002 seconds.

bigghoss
February 8, 2008, 08:34 PM
anyone can easily get black tackticle looking clothing with POLICE on it

manutd
February 8, 2008, 09:41 PM
I would say 97% of the time when the police come knocking, its legitimate. Now, while caution is required if non-standard "procedure" is used (things that your police department wouldn't do), I am not all that worried about this issue in particular. Have a good day/night, :)

shaggy
February 8, 2008, 09:49 PM
1. Don't move
2. Pray that if its the bad guys, you don't get killed anyway
3. Pray that if its the good guys, you don't get killed anyway

With the overuse of SWAT teams for relatively minor drug warrants, and an increasing reliance on inherently unreliable informants with almost no oversight, botched raids happen all too often and innocent people do get killed. If you have a gun in your hand, you will almost certainly be killed no matter how reasonable it may be to assume it is not the police, but in fact the bad guys. I just started reading the following from the Cato Institute today - an excellent whitepaper on this issue.

http://www.cato.org/pubs/wtpapers/balko_whitepaper_2006.pdf

Capt Charlie
February 9, 2008, 01:03 AM
Guys, this one's been beat to death several times before, and it always seems to end up being either a political or cop bashing thread. See this (http://www.thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=274747&page=4) thread as an example.

None the less, it's a valid subject with valid concerns. Let's see if we can keep this one from going South as well, OK?

Crosshair
February 9, 2008, 01:52 AM
As far as the law is concerned, until you know that it is the police, it's a free fire zone for both sides. Completely irresponsible and any blame for these lay squarely on the police. It sucks when police get killed during these raids, but it is very hard to feel sympathy for them.

20nickels
February 9, 2008, 02:03 AM
TV show "To catch a Theif" (reality show, real ex-burglers) had an episode where they burgularized a house and eventually came across the homeowners LEO uniforms, I.D.'s, badges, hat badge, registered guns, etc. and laughed about it as they continued to loot. These items had a good black market value it was stated. The homeowner/officer was genuinely shaken by this when they returned his stuff.

TexasSeaRay
February 9, 2008, 03:11 AM
I'm a former federal agent who, by nature of the type enforcement we did, kicked a helluva lot of doors in during my time.

And no, I damn sure wasn't ATF--whom I don't even consider to be law enforcement.

Just from my experience and that of other agents I worked with, here are a few thoughts, advice, answers, etc. Bear in mind that I've been out of the jackbooted thug business for quite a while, so things may have changed.

Ok, let me start by saying my motivations for this post are that I constantly see on the news that in home invasions, perps yell, "It's the Police!" ect....

They come in all black, and one could easily interpret them as legitamate police.

So what is the responsible action for a homeowner to take as the door is being kicked in, and a few guys are yelling they are the police and to get down?

The responsible action is to get yourself down on the flloor, in as non-threatening/non-hostile position as possible as quick as possible.

When we raided a home, we had to first verify the address against the tenants/owners/residents. Those Treasury boys have a history of kicking in wrong doors . . . Secondly, we would often call the house or have our CI call the house to verify that the occupants were home and available to be arrested.

We had some pretty serious training at both Quantico and some at FLETC on dynamic entries. Plus, in my office in Miami, the team I was on was made up of almost all ex-military guys who were either MP/SP, specop, etc. So we'd all had a LOT of prior training and actual experience in dynamic entries, crossing fire, etc etc.

When such a team kicks your door, they're going to move on you quick. Just by the weaponry they carry and the way they handle it, plus the authoritative tone of voice and the presence of an obvious team leader will tell you this is the real deal.

These two-bit thugs who dress up as cops and raid houses are bozos, carry questionable hardware, and have no obvious leader. Fat lot of good that does you if you're watching TV and half-dozing when your door comes flying off the hinges and people start screaming PO-LEECE!

But, going to a non-threatening position will 99-times out of a hundred help you more than it will hurt you. Remember: if the scumbag thugs kill you while looting your house, it just went from simple burglary/robbery to capital. And in Texas, you will die for your transgressions.

Even if they *are* police, if they don't serve a warrant they are home invaders and IMHO should be dealt with accordingly. (the law of course disagrees with me on that point.) But it's probably a moot point because they have the drop on you.

Guess what? I didn't always need a warrant to kick in your door and arrest you. I could follow you from the scene of a dope buy that I watched you make or filmed you doing, call the rest of our crew in, and kick your door down while announcing who I am and who my partners were.

And if you tried to "deal with me accordingly," you'd lose in all sorts of bad ways, including the worst of ways that is permanent.

If you have done something wrong or you have warrants on you (be they for parking tickets or capital murder) or you owe the IRS money or you gave an STD to the Senator's significant other . . . and you've ignored all summons, calls, subpoenas and the other hundreds of ways local law enforcement gives you to comply and NOT get raided and jacked up . . . then don't be surprised if you get a very early morning visit that ends up very unpleasant.

As I've said repeatedly: "I'm amazed at the number of so-called gun owners who whine incessantly about not enforcing the existing laws that we have--then whine incessantly when we DO enforce them."

They told us at Quantico that if we wanted praise or gratitude for the job we were taking on, to quit and go join the Fire Department. They were right twenty something years ago, and they're still right today.

That's why you need layers of defense. Reinforced wooden doors with massive deadbolts that will take some time to breach. Dogs. Outdoor lights. Things to give you time to react.

If you're talking about reacting to burglars or home invaders, I agree with you one hundred percent. If you're talking about reacting to legitimate law enforcement paying you a visit, I would wonder why you--specifically--are so paranoid.

I am not a huge fan of today's law enforcement and I have been openly critical of them at times here and elsewhere. BUT, I've also been in their shoes many, many times. I didn't see a lot of hands waving in the air volunteering to take my place in the armpits of Miami, Kingston, Mexico City, Detroit and other sewer-holes passing as cities when I turned in my badge and credentials.

Fact of the matter is, there is a lot of pure-D crap circulating about "you could be next" when it comes to having your door kicked in. Yep. You could. You could also be struck by lightning right after you cashed in your ten-million dollar winning lottery ticket in which Mother Mary appeared in a cloud of Unique smoke and gave you the numbers.

Odds are about the same. Arm and protect yourself from the criminals. Your odds of having to deal with them are a helluva lot higher than having to deal with law enforcement. Provided, that is, that you don't have outstanding warrants, tickets, etc. If you (generic you) do and you're ignoring them, then you're an idiot.

The real cops SHOULD have "POLICE" markings that are very noticeable on vests, helmets, shields, and should be yelling "POlICE - SEARCH WARRANT"

My raid jacket was dark blue with yellow all-caps letters. It said POLICE on front and back, along with SPECIAL AGENT. It had the acronymn for my agency above the words SPECIAL AGENT. On the front, it had a replica of our shield. Only place you could get them was from our agency--and we had to sign all kinds of paperwork, receipts, etc for everything and anything we were issued or bought that had our agency's ID or acronymn on it.

Now, this was pre-internet days. I agree that it's probably all too easy to fake some raid jackets. But if you stop and think about it, it would also be even easier--and cheaper--to also fake a search/arrest warrant.

A lot of tactical teams have gotten away from the black and have gone to OD green or camo uniforms so black isn't always an indication.

My normal "uniform" was a long ponytail, ugly beard, sometimes an eyepatch, a cowboy hat, old faded Levis with grease stains, some sort of a HD t-shirt and a leather vest. When it was time to invite ourselves into a scumbag's home, I dressed up and wore my best bullet-proof vest--which was black with white letters that said POLICE and then XXX and then SPECIAL AGENT, and of course, a replica of our shield.

I always wanted to look my best when I was inviting myself into my newest arrestee's home.

Unless there is a specific threat, most search warrant require officers to KNOCK and ANNOUNCE prior to entering.

True back in my day. But like I said earlier, we usually called to ensure that someone was home--also worked to make sure we were at the right house as we used the reverse directory and cross-referenced the phone number with the address.

Don't know how the poor guys do it these days with everyone having a cell phone and a lot of people having a cell phone in lieu of a house phone.

AND . . . what I haven't seen mentioned here yet is the "severity" of the warrant. We used to call them "Level" warrants. A Level III barely warranted a knock before we were kicking doors, windows and getting in as fast as we could. That meant we were going after some bad, dangerous dudes.

Can't remember when the wrong home ever got raided on a three-warrant because we were also REQUIRED to maintain a minimum of twelve hours surveillance specifically ensure that we DIDN'T raid the wrong house.

When we'd do our level one warrants, half or more of the time, I'd knock on the door and announce, "XXX, we have a search warrant. Open up so we can talk please,"

We had ample identification and at that point, it was up to the occupants as to whether or not they wanted our visit to upgrade a level or two.


1. Don't move
2. Pray that if its the bad guys, you don't get killed anyway
3. Pray that if its the good guys, you don't get killed anyway

If it's the good guys and your a good guy, ain't nothing wrong with praying--I do it everyday, myself--but why would you pray you don't get killed anyway?

Maybe I'm missing the hundreds, or even thousands or daily instances in which the police botch the raid, but go ahead and shoot the good guys anyways . . . you know, since they were in the neighborhood and it would only be the cops' side of the story to tell, and so on.

Good grief. And some gun owners wonder why some (even rank and file) police don't think they should have CCW?

With the overuse of SWAT teams for relatively minor drug warrants, and an increasing reliance on inherently unreliable informants with almost no oversight, botched raids happen all too often

Shoulda stopped right there, because up to this point, you're spot-on correct.

and innocent people do get killed. If you have a gun in your hand, you will almost certainly be killed no matter how reasonable it may be to assume it is not the police, but in fact the bad guys.

This is one-hundred percent horse you-know-what.

If'd I'd shot, let alone KILLED, every single person that had a gun pointed at me or who was brandishing a gun during the course of my LE duties, I'd have more blood on my hands than most two-bit African warlord dictators.

Now if you FIRE that gun at me, you just bought the farm, son.

When you raid a home, ala SWAT or SOG or SRU sytle, you have a thing called Rules of Engagement that you are required to go over before you even leave your staging area. And unless the target home or subject of the warrant has a known history of shooting at people, especially cops, every effort will be made to command him to PUT DOWN THE BLEEPING BLANKETY BLANKING GUN, NOW!!!!!

So where all these innocent people that are being killed so often by police because they're botching so many more raids these days than ever before?

Does it happen from time to time. Unfortunately it does. Any time is one time too many, no argument from me. But does it happen with the frequency that you are stating it does.

No.

As far as the law is concerned, until you know that it is the police, it's a free fire zone for both sides. Completely irresponsible and any blame for these lay squarely on the police. It sucks when police get killed during these raids, but it is very hard to feel sympathy for them.

Wrong.

If I announce "POLICE-SPECIAL AGENT!!! GET YOUR HANDS UP, RIGHT NOW!!!" and you still point a weapon at me and then try to later use the line (assuming that you'd still be vertical and breathing, that is) that I didn't stop and show you my credentials or you couldn't get close enough to read my badge numbers (which were on the back of our badges), your defense IS NO defense.

Hey, you can still say that you "didn't know that I was REALLY the police--coulda bought that jacket anywhere, had my badge forged, anybody can grow their hair long, and hell, this is the South where EVERYONE has fancy guns."

You'd have a long time at Level three or four FCI to think about your position afterwards.

I strongly, strongly, strongly suggest you get MULTIPLE opinions from the prosecuting side on what you just wrote as fact before you go throwing it out like fact.

Folks, this is a forum that promotes the responsible ownership of firearms and prudent thought and planning when it comes to defending ourselves, loved ones and neighbors.

If you're going to bash the police, then do it with facts rather than conjecture, hearsay and opinion based upon emotion or "well, someone TOLD me" kind of stuff.

I was one. I'll criticize when and where I know for a fact that it's warranted. We can complaint about LE attitudes--as I do quite often--but we also need to look in the mirrors and make sure that it's a case of the pot calling the kettle black, ESPECIALLY in teh gun-owning community which has prided itself for decades and decades for being amongst the most patriotic, law-abiding and unselfish citizens this great nation has ever produced.

Most cops are hard-working men and women who truly believe in what they're doing. It's more than just a job. For many, they feel it is a calling.

For damn sure, it's a high-risk calling. A golf pro can have a bad shot and take a Mulli-whatever (I don't play golf, obviously). A cop has a bad shot and he/she is very likely done.

They get one chance.

Why make it any rougher? If you have outstanding matters that need taken care of, then take care of them. If you have scumbag neighbors next door who are into dope or stolen goods or whatever, then let the police know. Give them your name and your address and stress what your house looks like. All kinds of ways to minimize your already remotely slim chances of being greeted at O-dark-thirty by a bunch of black-clad cops.

Common sense, folks. Commons sense.

Jeff

Crosshair
February 9, 2008, 06:15 AM
I read you post exasSeaRay Regardless of what you think, people that continue to bust down doors will continue to be shot by armed homeowners, and they will have nobody to blame but themselves.

If you're talking about reacting to burglars or home invaders, I agree with you one hundred percent. If you're talking about reacting to legitimate law enforcement paying you a visit, I would wonder why you--specifically--are so paranoid.
Because law enforcement has become militarized. They are becoming the enemy. Police are knocking down doors, murdering innocent civilians and getting away with it. Read the CATO link below. Look at any of the articles that are being written and posted online, court cases filed, etc

And if you tried to "deal with me accordingly," you'd lose in all sorts of bad ways, including the worst of ways that is permanent.
Yes indeed, CATO has a map documenting SOME of the cases of police negligence perpetrated by people like you. (http://www.cato.org/raidmap/) However people are fighting back. More and more police are being gunned down for invading peoples homes.

When such a team kicks your door, they're going to move on you quick. Just by the weaponry they carry and the way they handle it, plus the authoritative tone of voice and the presence of an obvious team leader will tell you this is the real deal.
Yea, and me waking from a dead sleep am going to be in perfect mind to make that determination. Tactics that people like you get innocent people killed that is a DOCUMENTED FACT. Look at the link to CATO. How many more people must die before this insanity stops.

The responsible action is to get yourself down on the flloor, in as non-threatening/non-hostile position as possible as quick as possible.
You know that people are not going to do that. You KNOW that more innocent people are going to die as a result of these actions. Yet people like you accept it as standard operating procedure.

It is sad that more innocent people and "police" are going to have to die before no-knocks are outlawed for everything except what they were originally intended for. Then we can go back to the days of presenting the warrants, entering th house with the door still on its hinges, and conduct the search in a civilized manner.

I always wanted to look my best when I was inviting myself into my newest arrestee's home.
Such unbridled arrogance. It's no wonder people see the police more and more as an opponent and not a friend. No wonder there is growing criticism against people like you.

As I've said repeatedly: "I'm amazed at the number of so-called gun owners who whine incessantly about not enforcing the existing laws that we have--then whine incessantly when we DO enforce them."
I don't complain about enforcing laws. However it is the WAY that they are enforced. The war on drugs has spilled over into the war on the American citizens. The police profit from the drug war even more than the drug dealers. Asset forfeiture laws ensure that police take whatever actions are needed to get as much $$$ as possible. The only reason police "need" to do a no-knock is so they can get that small baggie of pot/crack/meth/whatever so they seize can whatever they want.

So where all these innocent people that are being killed so often by police because they're botching so many more raids these days than ever before?
Read the CATO link. Those are just the ones that they have found. Who knows how many others ended up like that 92-Year old woman in Atlanta. The one where police planted drugs to cover up their mistakes. They got caught, how many more police officers have gotten away with it? How many more people have been murdered and evidence planted to cover for police negligence? I guess that also answers your question about why people barricades their home from police. Is it really paranoia when it really is happening?

The War on Drugs is a dismal failure. It never can and never will succeed. We have forgotten the lessons of prohibition from the 1920s. We are simply repeating our failure. Thankfully groups like LEAP are trying to stop the insanity.

ShootemDown
February 9, 2008, 06:33 AM
Oh, I would think there are some homes that belongs to law abiding, with tiger pits right behind the front door. tiger in it and everything. I hope no hardass cop busts through THAT door ! :D

Mannlicher
February 9, 2008, 09:07 AM
The vast majority of home invasions I see reported, are committed by druggies, against other druggies.
The odds of a criminal home invasion happening to a normal Citizen seem fairly remote.
The number of police raids on normal Citizens, those with clean records and no involvement by themselves, or family members in illegal activity, is also pretty darn remote.
To me, the discussion is about a 'non issue'

Th0r
February 9, 2008, 09:23 AM
This kind of thing happens all the time in the UK. "Cops" abduct people involved in banking or just very wealthy people access there home and steal money and other valuables or take the guy theyve just abducted to the abucteds place of work where he'll help them because theyve got his family held hostage.

So scenario time...

Its 2am in the morning. There people kicking your door in screaming "POLICE, POLICE" etc. Mr. Doe goes downstairs with a gun. If there still kicking at your door and there are no cop cars outside then youre probably being stung.

Police use the dawn raid concept. meaning they'll usually come between 4am and 7am. the former and latter being the earliest and latest times respectively.

How many people are there?
Where I live cops raiding a house will be in a group of six or more...

How long do are they taking to kick the door in?
Cops take 5 seconds to smash the door open normally. They dont have time to say "police" alot of times.

kraven
February 9, 2008, 10:13 AM
If you're genuinely worried about having your home invaded, then why not employ a layered defense?
You can only sit in your easy chair with a shotgun in your lap for so long. Eventually, you'll need to take a shower, maybe go to work, cook, open up for the pizza guy... live.

If you want to not mistake the Police for the bad guys (and Sea Ray is right you are much more likely to have a criminal element invading) then why not install some motion detectors, a few web cams outside doors, etc.
The software for running multiple cams is pretty easy to figure out. Clearly you have a computer already.

Just being able to see outside your door in multiple angles is worth the cost. And, the cost is pretty minimal.

If you want to get fancy, you can tie it in to alert you by your PDA.
You could even build a saferoom with access to all the feeds.

If you're really worried about this situation, then take some steps to secure your home.

Hardtarget
February 9, 2008, 10:23 AM
I know mistakes happen. I make plenty myself.

That being said, here's my point. I don't deal in stolen property. I'm not a white slaver. I'm not a bank robber. I don't do dope/drugs in any way, shape, form or fasion. I don't buy, sell, trade,traffic, or manufacture them either.

There is NO reason for anyone to kick my door in...so I WILL defend my home...and probably get killed in the process.

Kind of a fatalistic view of it.

Mark.

ps: My wife worked with a woman whose father was killed by police in a wrong address fiasco. I know it does happen.

TexasSeaRay
February 9, 2008, 10:45 AM
The War on Drugs is a dismal failure. It never can and never will succeed. We have forgotten the lessons of prohibition from the 1920s. We are simply repeating our failure. Thankfully groups like LEAP are trying to stop the insanity.

Ah. The motivation for your attitude, accusations and responses just became crystal (no pun intended) clear.

I'm not going to argue the merits of the drug war with you.

I fought in it and bled in it. Did you? Anyone can read about war, especially on the internet. But seeing it, being in the middle of it, seeing the real victims, the short-term results, the long-term results and the option of not being there is only clear to those who are in it--on one side or the other.

But whether I believe in it or not is immaterial to the subject of this post.

I simply tried to respond with some advice, information and thoughts based upon my yaars as a federal agent who worked and served warrants in a number of major cities around the world.

If you re-read what I wrote objectively, I simply stated how things were during my era--I made it clear that I've been out of that work for a good long while and don't know how things are today.

However, I do believe that your atitude of "the police are now the enemy" is pathetic and contemptible. We are a nation of laws and in order to be such a nation, we need men and women who are willing to risk their butts to serve those laws and enforce those laws.

Not every cop is a miltarized goon. Not even close.

Not every gun owner is a black-gun toting Rambo wannabe. Not even close.

Just as I'm sure it upsets you to see gun owners painted with such a broad stroke, it is equally upsetting to see cops (or soldiers, or judges or babysitters or dog catchers, etc) painted with such a broad stroke as well.

And if you want to play hardball, I can give you far more instances of irresponsible and unlawful gunowner behavior than police behavior.

I don't like bad cops. I don't like the NASAF (seizuer) program either--I think it is unconstitutional, draconian and encourages corruptment. I know the man who is the originator and creator of the NASAF program. He was a very famous deputy U.S. Marshal who apprehended the infamous "Falcon" as in the "Falcon and the Snowman." His agency and ours worked very closely together.

As NASAF was originally written, it was a powerful tool against RICO crimes. But human-beings are prone to corruption--and NASAF opened the doors even wider. When you open a can of worms, rarely can you put them all back in.

Crosshair, you may not like how things are today with law enforcement. You're not alone. I don't like what I see and hear, either. I do not believe in no-knock warrants except under the direst of circumstances--and those are pretty damn rare.

The topic was "what can I do" in regards to seeing your door burst open and having cops storm in. "How do I know they're cops" etc etc.

That is what I tried to address, explain and advise upon based upon my own years of firsthand experience rather than what I read on the internet.

Jeff

Maddock
February 9, 2008, 11:08 AM
In the Cato map linked above there are 210 cases documented in the last 10 years. Each documenting varying degrees of incompetence, arrogance, stupidity and just bad luck. This is way too many (one is too many), but statistically an anomaly. 210 for a nation of over 300 million over 10 years. One per 15 million Americans per year.

Each of these cases should be investigated and the responsible parties should answer criminally and civilly, but using this to paint all police is too broad of a brush.

shaggy
February 9, 2008, 11:54 AM
Tex (and Capt. Charlie) -

My response, and I think Crosshair's, were not meant as a "cop bash"
, but more of a bash of the policy that puts good cops at risk, tarnishes their reputation and goodwill with the American public, and puts the innocent gun owner being awoken in the middle of the night to their door being kicked down in the awful predicament of having to make a split second life or death decision while confused, startled and still groggy from sleep.

The war drugs is a big part of it, but merits, or lack thereof, of that collossal failure and waste of taxpayer money is a seperate issue.

The forfeiture laws are also a big part of it in my view, and as Tex has said, I absolutely agree it provides a strong incentive to law enforcement to really push the envelope of acceptability. That too, however, is a seperate issue that should probably be discussed in another thread.

I think the federal government's policy of giving tons of weapons and military equipment away to every police department in this country to pursue the drug war also plays a part. IIRC the Cato whitepaper cites one example where a small town police department in landlocked Kansas got amphibious assault vehicles. I may still be a little off track here, but I think we're getting closer to the heart of the matter. Because of the federal giveaways, many police departments who never had or saw a reason for a SWAT team, decided to take the equipment and set one up for the usual high risk situations - armed robbery, hostage situations etc. The training that went with the giveaways was either non-existant or training from the military. Civilian law enforcement is a far different mission, with much less lattitude for error than a military operation. We are, afterall, talking about US citizens on US soil who are, by virture of our criminal justice system, innocent until adjudicated guilty in a court of law. Once those SWAT teams were set up, their mission was expanded into relatively low level warrant service, thus drastically increasing the number of times these types of raids and tactices are used. With that increase comes an increasein the number of bad or botched raids.

In one such example, 11 year old Alberto Sepulveda was shot in the back - while laying face down on the ground, fully complying with the orders of police. According to the officer, the gun just went off. I think most of us would call that a "negligent discharge". And thats just one example, there are unfortunately more.

456-SGT
February 9, 2008, 12:15 PM
I honestly don't even know why I read all of this. Maybe it was just to read TexasSeaRay's posts, whom I take no embarrasment in siding with. As a current LEO, and one who has crossed the gammet of assignments (including narcotics, from which the theme of this post, seems to be the focus), I can say that a lot more planning goes on behind the scenes than most civilians ever realize or learn from surfing the net or reading soldier of fortune type magazines.

I've been in law enforcement for nearly 20 years, am third generation in doing such, read the news, train daily, receive current and on going training in case law, legal updates, tactics, etc. I must have my head in the sand in all of these innocent killings and "botched police raids" that continue to happen.

Cop bash thread, period. I am surprised its still going.

zxcvbob
February 9, 2008, 12:45 PM
If you're talking about reacting to burglars or home invaders, I agree with you one hundred percent. If you're talking about reacting to legitimate law enforcement paying you a visit, I would wonder why you--specifically--are so paranoid.

and

Quote:
Even if they *are* police, if they don't serve a warrant they are home invaders and IMHO should be dealt with accordingly. (the law of course disagrees with me on that point.) But it's probably a moot point because they have the drop on you.

Guess what? I didn't always need a warrant to kick in your door and arrest you. I could follow you from the scene of a dope buy that I watched you make or filmed you doing, call the rest of our crew in, and kick your door down while announcing who I am and who my partners were.

And if you tried to "deal with me accordingly," you'd lose in all sorts of bad ways, including the worst of ways that is permanent.


Hardtarget already posted a better response to this than I can come up with, but you wanted me specifically to reply: I live such a boring and squeeky clean life, there is no legitimate reason for the police to ever kick in my door. So I'll assume anyone doing so is an illegal invader, and if I have time to get my guns there will be a firefight. And I'll probably die, but hopefully I'll take a few of the bad guys with me. Maybe the survivors will think twice before they kick in another door. The good news is that I know all this is a very low probability occurance.

I don't expect my house to burn down either, but I have insurance.

SteelCore
February 9, 2008, 01:01 PM
I live such a boring and squeeky clean life, there is no legitimate reason for the police to ever kick in my door. So I'll assume anyone doing so is an illegal invader, and if I have time to get my guns there will be a firefight. And I'll probably die, but hopefully I'll take a few of the bad guys with me. Maybe the survivors will think twice before they kick in another door. The good news is that I know all this is a very low probability occurance.This is precisely my position.

NukeCop
February 9, 2008, 01:48 PM
I'm not sure if this is a cop bashing thread or not. Butttt, and its a big but, I will say BIG mistakes have happened, and sometimes with sad results, for all involved. Ruby Ridge is prolly the freshest in my mind... Waco a close second, although thats more a conspiracy theory as to what happened.

Either way, mistakes happen, just as humans are prone to to corruption, the same may be said about mistakes.

hogdogs
February 9, 2008, 02:43 PM
I will say gobs of red and blue flashy thingys on my walls at night suggest real LEO outside I will go out before they kick my door in... i can VERY safely assume the address they got is wrong so I will do my best to protect my privacy.
I do not and will not be conducting any illegal activity deserving a search warrant, especially a no knock type. No dope dealing, dope growing or manufacture, nothin! So in the event I am awake when they proclaim "POLICE SEARCH WARRANT" I will assume it is a lie perpetrated by home invaders. My shot gun is right beside this here desk and it is 100% HOT! No one can kick my door and be within range to shoot me before I am able to INITIATE gunfire. After I am asleep I will not comprehend the verbal as that is what will stir me from slumber but that size ten doorbell will be understood! Again I am going to have my gun ready albeit from a prone position on the bed. Either way I am getting first shot. Mistakes may be okay status quo for some depts. but I think intel is paramount to execution of warrant and possibly lil ol innocent ME! I ain't chest thumpin' I am simply saying that since nothing I do warrants a warrant search I doubt it is real cops a knockin!
Brent

shaggy
February 9, 2008, 03:14 PM
I'm not sure if this is a cop bashing thread or not. Butttt, and its a big but, I will say BIG mistakes have happened, and sometimes with sad results, for all involved.

As I said in my previous post, I don't see this as cop bashing. The guys, like TexasSeaRay, who kick doors for a living aren't, for the most part, the ones formulating the policies that put them there in the first place. I agree with Tex that most cops are good hard working men and women just trying to do their job. Of course, mistakes are occasionally made - sometimes with fatal results for an innocent party.

That said, we come back to the original question posed by the OP - what does one do when you are awoken in bed by the sound of your door being kicked down and aren't sure if its the cops or the bad guys posing as cops. I gave my thoughts - if you have any indication whatsoever it could be the police, don't move and pray that if its the bad guys they don't kill you, and if its the cops pray you don't become victim of another mistake like Alberto Sepulveda. As we've already acknowledged accidents do happen, but thats little consolation if you're in the morgue. If the wrong door is kicked an average of 1% of the time, thats 400 times a year if (according to Cato) there are roughly 40,000 SWAT raids per year. Thats not cop bashing, its simple math - the more they're used, the more accidents will happen.

JollyRoger
February 9, 2008, 03:14 PM
The only time I have heard of bad guys disguised as LEO's is when they are robbing drug dealers who have large sums of cash or dope around, because they figure the drug dealers will give up, which they usually do. Otherwise, why go to the trouble of the disguise?

If you're not involved in criminal activity and someone is coming into your house yelling "Police," the odds are miniscule that they are not the police. If they have made a mistake, do you really want to kill them? The better option is to assume the least threatening posture, hands empty and visible, and hash it out after everything is secure and calm. If it is a mistake, legal remedies abound, and with a you may get to retire early on lawsuit proceeds. Asserting your legal rights, however, is done in a court of law, not in a p*ssing contest with officers on the scene. Armed resistance will get you hurt, killed or imprisoned, and nobody's going to buy the "I thought they were robbers" line.

hogdogs
February 9, 2008, 03:58 PM
I don't consider killin' any one enjoyable... heck killin' a deer ain't enjoyable but eating one is. But I have been given a limited time to run a bunch of thoughts through my head. I must draw the line... I have never heard of drug rip offs dressing as a cop and executing a fake warrant. I lived in the Orlando media market for 18 years and never once heard of such an elaborate plan. my gun will fire LONG before I have a chance to read a velcro "POLICE" banner on their ASSAULT duds! Since I am not engaged in illicit or illegal activity I can SAFELY determine that there is NO REASON for a police/swat presence... I may need a lawyer to prove this but like I said INTEL is more important than EXECUTION of said warrant. Mistakes can cost lives... mine included... the powers that be need to make sure they INVADE the right house. NEVER take the word of a person of less than reputable character as GOSPEL yes take his info and follow up with intel!
Once that has been covered my address is off the list!
My family depends on my legal character as well as my ability to defend themselves and our home. I cover my end of the deal now my local LEOs need to cover their end of the deal.
Brent

Yellowfin
February 9, 2008, 06:15 PM
Having read TSR's post, my response is this. I completely agree that as it is, the vast majority of people including myself have absolutely zero to fear as it stands. The problem I see is in the scenario which has substantial historical backing, not recent and not here, but recurring over the course of time. What happens when the crime they are pursuing is simply being a gun owner, or really, whatever they want to label you as? What happens when it is the real McCoy AND IN THAT SPECIFIC INSTANCE THEY HAPPENED TO BE THE BAD GUY and they do know exactly what they're doing? The concept is not dead. Millions of people elsewhere, however, are. I'm not going with conjecture or opinion, I'm going with what has happened lots of times in lots of places and it's documented. I don't fear accidental or a fake raid nearly as much as I do a deliberate but unjust one, not because of the malevolent intent of those executing it but those ordering it. I don't have the slightest question about the character, dedication, etc. of the vast majority of LE, particularly in the specialized units. I am far from alone here in having serious questions about the people who tell them what to do, as well I should. Nuremburg was full of police doing their duty. That's not paranoia, that's forecasting based on history. Sure, we technically have the Constitution, but just as laws don't deter common criminals, we have seen time and time again just how much a deterrent it really is when someone with some power really wants something. I actually don't even know of many cases of anyone successfully correcting a figure of power on legality of what they were and reversing their course of action on the spot...but know several cases of failure.

So, we're back to square one. It's not a problem at all when someone walks into your house with a firearm. Everyone thus far I've had has been someone going hunting or to the range with me or it's their daily CCW. Authority--even imaginary or perceived--is potentially far worse a deadly weapon. Thus far everyone I've known carrying that around has been amicable, ethical, and judicious in wielding it. Misuse of either is not commonplace in our everyday lives or we wouldn't be here, most likely. However, every one of us here thinks of and prepares for statistically unlikely events in the name of prudence and dealing with them with use of effective mitigating measures in the name of survival. Submission and hoping you don't die isn't much of a defense, and it doesn't seem to be method preferred by most here when dealing with the unauthorized criminals. It certainly doesn't work as a defense when deliberate harm is the intended goal in the first place. I make that distinction very carefully and specifically. An authorized crime is no different than an ordinary crime in end result, and that end result in either case is what I am responsible to myself and to my family to prevent happening.

greywolf444
February 9, 2008, 11:04 PM
while working on my boat in my backyard I heard and saw about a dozen pair of black boots run thru my yard. thru my gate, thru garden, past my boat,my property ,ran toward my house. I'm thinking about my wife and two toddlers inside as I rolled out from under the boat, still holding a hand sledge I approached the threat and demanded answers. Who are you and why are you here. all my questions where ignored. as I realized that these were cops it just made me angery. these clowns were positioned outside my house preparing to kick down my door, and I'm being ignored? I was loud enough that my wife came to the door and finally one of them said why they were there. These a**holes were at the wrong house and really didn't care. I've never trusted cops and now think even less of them.

Stevie-Ray
February 9, 2008, 11:51 PM
The problem I see is in the scenario which has substantial historical backing, not recent and not here, but recurring over the course of time. What happens when the crime they are pursuing is simply being a gun owner, or really, whatever they want to label you as? What happens when it is the real McCoy AND IN THAT SPECIFIC INSTANCE THEY HAPPENED TO BE THE BAD GUY and they do know exactly what they're doing? It just happened a few years ago in New Orleans. It surprises me that it took this long to surface. What about that, guys? What happens when you hear, "Police...we're here for your guns!" I don't even like to think about that, but it's something that can't be overlooked. Yes, there are laws against it, but criminals don't obey laws; why should we expect public officials to? Possibly some police won't enforce that type of action, but some may use the tired old saw, "Sorry buddy, I'm the NRA too, I'm just doin my job."
I wouldn't work as a LEO. Though my job is statistically more dangerous than theirs, they can have it. And they have my gratitude that they have the guts to do it everyday.

grey sky
February 10, 2008, 12:25 AM
I am only about a third of the way through the CATO artical. I have notice some here ofer that the truth will come out in court. That may be difficult as according to the artical often part of the raid includes confiscation of ALL assets even if it's the wrong address. that makes it difficult to bring a court chalenge unless you can find an attorney who works for free or will take the case on a contengent still; one is looking at taking a substancial loss regaurdless of outcome. It is a loose loose scenario for the inocent citizen. Beg for their mercy but don't expect there tobe any.

TexasSeaRay
February 10, 2008, 12:30 AM
It just happened a few years ago in New Orleans. It surprises me that it took this long to surface. What about that, guys? What happens when you hear, "Police...we're here for your guns!" I don't even like to think about that, but it's something that can't be overlooked.

In my opinion, the cops who went door to door confiscating guns should sit in the same federal prison cells as the politicians and numbnuts communist crooked scumbag that passes as a mayor in New Orleans.

One thing that was emphasized to us in our academy way back when was that we did NOT have to follow unlawful, illegal or unconstitutional orders. Period. Were such orders pushed upon us and retaliation threatened, hinted at or implied for noncompliance, we were to contact the civil-affairs division of the U.S. Attorney's Office immediately, followed by the OPR office.

I draw no distinction with law enforcement "just following orders" be those orders to take away someone's gun for no reason at all other than a paranoid mayor and chief of police, or orders to begin executing jaywalkers on the spot.

Illegal is illegal. Unlawful is unlawful. And unconstitutional is unconstitutional.

Unless I'm missing something, a cop swears an oath to uphold and defend the Constitution. Some oaths include to the effect of faithfully enforce all laws and protect all rights.

Every single sordid individual in that New Orleans case violated citizens' civil rights. They did it wantonly, purposefully, without any valid or legal or constitutional reason whatsover and with zero constitutional authority.

That's my take on that.

For those of you who boast about shooting it out with the police if they kick in your door mistakenly--and whether you know or don't know if they're police, I'll believe it when I see it.

During my time, I was on raids where we "invaded" (with legal search/arrest warants) homes filled with Crips, Bloods, MS13, South American cartel enforcers, Aryan Nation wackos, Hells Angels, Banditos, Sons of Silence, Texas Mafia, Cuban Marisols and countless meth operations and crack houses, etc etc.

None of these folks were afraid of pulling a trigger and most HAD pulled a trigger, and more than once. These were people to whom shooting and killing wasn't a big deal--just part of the price of doing business. They all had much to lose by getting arrested, with most looking at very lengthy prison terms in a very uncomfortable federal correctional institute.

RARELY did any of these proven shooters and killers fire back at us, or other agents who went on similar raids. These were people to whom violence was simply a way of life and they were as comfortable with it as they were combing their hair every morning.

Yet we have accountants and teachers and white-collar types here stating that even if they know it's the police, simply because the police have no reason to be there, they're gonna by-gawd grab their gun and go down in a blaze of glory.

Tell you what: If your wish is to die stupid, then your wish will be granted.

Wrong home/address and how on earth could it possibly happen?

Anyone here ever heard of Identity Theft? Anyone here ever heard of bad guys stealing ID's and driver's licenses, picture ID's, etc? Anyone here ever heard of criminals giving any address that comes to mind?

Anyone here ever hear of duplicate identities?

Yeah, mistakes happen and when they end up tragically, heads should roll and butts should slide right into a little five by eight foot living accomodation.

When I began getting a little seniority, I made damned sure that our intelligence was spot-on before we went knock-knocking. I also made sure our subjects were home. And if there were kids in the premises, that often-times changed everything. We called OFF raids because of children.

I was the rule in law enforcment, not the exception. Not only did I put my ass on the line every time I walked out my front door, but I also gave a damn about trying to get bad guys out of decent society so that good people didn't have to worry about them. So did the vast majority of other agents, troopers, deputies and officers I knew and interacted with.

So some of you are going to tell me and the other very few present or former LE types that visit here that you'd STILL SHOOT AT ME if we

A) knocked on your door and announced who we were and

B) you didn't answer the door, forcing us to take it down, and

C) we come in shouting who we were and that we had a warrant and we were properly identified . . .

you'd still try and SHOOT and KILL ME because some pukebag had snagged your identity off the internet and given it as an address right before he went and robbed a restaurant, lined up the employees and shot them execution style?

Why not just shoot the next cop who pulls you over for a speeding ticket or for running a red light when you're certain that you did no such thing?

And yet some of you still complain about the "us and them" mentality of LE. Well, I don't defend it with cops, but some of y'all sure as hell ain't helping it get any better yourselves.

Jeff

Capt Charlie
February 10, 2008, 12:54 AM
It just happened a few years ago in New Orleans. It surprises me that it took this long to surface. What about that, guys? What happens when you hear, "Police...we're here for your guns!" I don't even like to think about that, but it's something that can't be overlooked.
Totally different subject guys. And yeah, all involved in that were WAY outta line.

But, lets keep this to only one can o' worms at a time, OK? ;)

tv_dir
February 10, 2008, 01:03 PM
I'm not a big fan of cops myself. Traffic cops that is. I respect the hell out of people like Jeff who risk their lives 24/7 to protect the rest of us. Are mistakes made? Sure, we're all human and it is a huge tragedy when it does.

If we were able to vote on traffic laws, most would be tossed out with some exceptions like school zones etc. then we could put more LEO's on the street like Jeff so LESS mistakes would occur.

My last thought....and hopefully the majority will agree...If the police come banging at MY door....I HAVE NOTHING TO HIDE! That thought got lost somewhere in this post.

--Mike--

FrontSight
February 10, 2008, 01:52 PM
Jeff,

Wish I could look you in the eye, shake your hand and say thank you for all you've done.

hogdogs
February 10, 2008, 05:01 PM
Jeff, I have spent my fair amount of time riding with the likes of the HA, banditos, warlocks, S.O.S. and other groups I never was keen on commiting felonies. Now the scenario of a nice peace officer giving a neighborly knock on my door waiting for the porch light to illuminate their mug for ID reasons will be granted with a friendly opening of said door. I will step out. If they have a search warrant I will gladly read it and be ready to explain wrong address, wrong person, wrong crime etc. It is the "no knock" or impatient implementation of warrant that will cause us all grief. If my door is kicked in I can safely assume it ain't my friendly peace officer's boot doing the deed! I have no choice but to shoot at a home invader. Identity theft be darned.... That is just to miniscule an odds that I don't even weigh it in to the equation. My next of kin can sue for the mistake. My life has little to do with stepping up and defending my home.
I respect respectful LEO's!
Brent

zxcvbob
February 10, 2008, 05:42 PM
Jeff,
I mean no disrespect by this, but how can you burst into someone's house (warrant or not) with a military-style assault and expect to *not* be shot at? Of course we are going to try to shoot you -- that's the game *you* started and we are just playing along.

In post #12 you said a "dynamic entry" could even be used for something as minor as serving a warrant for unpaid parking tickets.

If you don't want to get shot at, knock on the door like a civilized human being. (that's a good way to resolve a lot of the problems with raids on the wrong address, etc.)

HankB
February 10, 2008, 07:25 PM
Nobody in my household has anything to do with illegal drugs, kiddie ****, robbing banks, printing counterfeit money, smuggling illegal aliens, shady tax dodges, passing bad checks, ignoring a jury duty summons, having unpaid parking tickets, or anything else of the kind. Hence, there is no conceivable reason for police to be serving a warrant at my home.

So unless there are a bunch of marked units with flashing Mars lights on top outside my house, it's virtually certain that anyone attempting to break in is NOT doing so with a valid warrant.

If I know it's police - again, uniforms, marked squad cars, etc., will be a pretty good indicator - upon presentation of a valid warrant, I WILL peacefully comply; much better to fight the police in court, rather than elsewhere.

But lacking the above, if someone is kicking in my door, unless I wake up to find a half-dozen MP5SDs pointed at my head - I WILL reasonably conclude that they are bad guys and, if capable, fire upon them.

(There HAVE been incidents right here in TX of FAKE POLICE - complete with shirts emblazoned "POLICE" on the front - so it's not a far-out theoretical supposition that guys breaking in are NOT bona-fide LEOs serving a lawful warrant. Especially if my driveway isn't full of squad cars.)

Stevie-Ray
February 10, 2008, 08:19 PM
But, lets keep this to only one can o' worms at a time, OK?Sorry, Cap'n, my bad.:o

Jeff seems to have handled the question with aplomb, though and I appreciate it.:cool:

As far as locking horns with the police goes; unless I'm positive it's not the police, through some means like previous knowledge of fake cops in the area, with vehicles like the ones parked outside, I'm answering the door quite amiably, or hitting the deck-their preference. I've got a handicapped wife to think about protecting. Who the hell's going to protect her if I needlessly throw my life away?

TexasSeaRay
February 11, 2008, 01:12 AM
I mean no disrespect by this, but how can you burst into someone's house (warrant or not) with a military-style assault and expect to *not* be shot at? Of course we are going to try to shoot you -- that's the game *you* started and we are just playing along.

First off, please try and be intelligent about this and what you are attempting to say. Otherwise, this is how conspiracist paranoia grows even more hysterical.

You cannot burst into someone's house, "military-style assault" (whatever THAT is . . .) without a warrant. If we--the police--are not already in pursuit because we have witnesed the actual commission of a felony AND believe you, the suspect, to be an immediate danger to the community, we can't just round up a bunch of guys, throw some vests on them, hand them black guns and go kick your door in for the helluva it.

I also don't believe this was ever implied or stated or directly sourced. So if you want answers or insight to a situation that occurs to one in every fifteen million citizens, may I respectfully suggest sticking to facts rather than conjecture?

The second part of your statement also tells me all I need to know.

Serving warrants is not a game. Raiding someone's private home, their residence, it is not a game. It is serious stuff. Trying to serve warrants on and arrest dangerous cartel enforcers or Aryan Brother hood thugs or MS13 assassins is about as much of a game as joining the Army and going to Iraq to play with IEDs.

I dunno. Maybe you prefer the robbers and rapists and killers to stay on the streets and in the neighborhoods. If so, get enough of you together and let your police know that since it's all just a "game," no need to play it anymore.

In post #12 you said a "dynamic entry" could even be used for something as minor as serving a warrant for unpaid parking tickets.

I said no such thing. Not even close.

This is a perfect example of how so much bullyou-know-what gets spread around via the iternet. Selective reading, selective comprehension.

What I SAID was that if you don't want a visit in the wee hours of the morning, pay your tickets or fines that you owe and then make sure any warrants that may have been issued are cleared.

If you don't want to get shot at, knock on the door like a civilized human being. (that's a good way to resolve a lot of the problems with raids on the wrong address, etc.)

According to someone who read the CATO report and calculated the odds/occurrences of police going to a wrong address, they came out to, what, one in fifteen million?

For the record, I do not believe in no-knock warrants in any shape, form or fashion. We were NOT allowed to utilize them in our (federal) agency--and nobody really wanted to.

As far as the "knock, announce and two seconds later kick the door in," anyone have any idea how many times I've heard the toilet start flushing the very second we would knock on the door and yell, "POLICE--SPECIAL AGENTS WITH A SEARCH WARRANT! OPEN UP!!!"

There were also people who swore not to be taken alive, and we believed them. They had a history of violence. Why would I want to politely knock, announce myself and then wait to be invited in when I have a legal, sworn warrant for their arrest?

Since when did hardened, dangerous criminals suddenly become passive, accomodating pussycats the minute you politely knock, identify yourself and with manners that would make even Emily Post blush, patiently explain to the murdering rapist that you are arresting him, trying him and going to try and put him in a very small prison cell for the rest of his life?

Why, hell. I never it knew it could be or should be that easy. Some of you guys need to start your own police agencies and bounty hunter outfits. You'd be zillionaires overnight you're so smart, insightful and obviously experienced at catching and apprehending bad guys.

Here's another something to chew over: For those of you who said you'd shoot back, yet also said you weren't cognizant enough in the wee hours after being woken up out of a sound sleep to know if they were real police or not so you'd just shoot anyway, by-gawd, you won't have time to even know what just happened before you got a bright light in your face and a gun aimed at you.

One thing I learned in the service and then later on in LE is that it is pretty damned difficult to to draw your weapon and get the drop on somebody who already has their weapon pointed and aimed at you.

Come on. Let's have a little common sense here as gun owners.

One in fifteen million is a little too much for me to start obsessing over how I'll shoot first and ask questions later as to whether or not the "invaders" were real cops or not.

Know what else? I was pretty decent at what I did in the service, and I was pretty good at what I did in LE, and I'm a pretty good shot who's been tested numerous times under fire. And you know what? *I* ain't gonna get into a shootout with a SWAT team who kicked in the wrong door and woke me up from a sound sleep in which I was dreaming about $5/5000 Winchester primers.

I'm gonna do what the damn cops say.

Of course, they could be fake cops. Ordered to my house by Elvis. Who is controlled by the CIA chip in his head.

Jeff

Powderman
February 11, 2008, 02:49 AM
Ah, what the heck.....


Because law enforcement has become militarized.

True, to an extent. But, have you stopped to ask WHY we started to assume the tactics and to a lesser extent, the dress of the military?

Here is some insight.

First question: You are an officer on regular patrol, within your assigned sector. You hear a priority broadcast; a bank has just been robbed. The perps are known to be armed with the following: 1. At least one AR15 rifle. 2. At least one HK91 rifle. 3. Various handguns. 4. A LOT of ammunition.

You hear that these criminals are engaging patrol cars and police officers ON SIGHT. They have also commandeered a DOT truck, and at least two of them are shooting from the back of the vehicle--an elevated, moderately protected shooting platform, VERY hard to stop.

You are armed with the standard load out--your service REVOLVER--a .357 Magnum handgun, loaded with .38 +P rounds. You have TWO complete reloads. You have an Ithaca M37 pump shotgun, with 00 buck and slugs.

You have NO body armor.

And, to put the icing on the cake, the last broadcast put the perps on the same road you are on, HEADING YOUR WAY.

Peachy, isn't it? Retreat is NOT an option. You have sworn the oath, and you are wearing the badge of a Police Officer. You WILL stand and fight, regardless of the odds.

Scary isn't it? Want to hear what happened?

Do a search for the Norco Bank Robbery, in California.

Second question:

You and another officer are in a two man car, and you receive a notification that a car of a certain description just committed a crime of violence. You see a car fitting that description just ahead. You turn on your lights, the car pulls over. You get out of the car in your clean, crisp uniform, carrying your duty weapon--again, the revolver loaded with .38 Special ammunition. Since you are mindful of the public image of your Department, you walk right up to the car, intending to investigate, and if necessary, arrest the individuals. What could go wrong?

Want to find out what went wrong?

Look up the Newhall Massacre.

We, as police officers HAD to change, because the CRIMINALS we go after changed.

Why do we wear all the high speed tactical gear, the hoods and masks?

Partially, it's to protect the face from flying particles and other moderately nasty stuff. And yes--the other reason is because it's to mask our identities.

You see, the criminals of today have NO compunction about finding out EVERY THING about you. And they'll come after you, OR your family.

Why the heavy duty body armor? Because plain clothing doesn't stop rifle bullets very well, thank you very much.

Why the heavy weaponry? Because it's common sense--you meet force with superior force.

And, why the no-knock, dynamic entries? Because the bad guys are a LOT less liable to shoot back if you catch them flat footed.

BDU's and jumpsuits are a LOT more comfortable to wear than the standard uniform. Don't get me wrong--I like looking sharp, too. Nothing looks better to me than the pressed uniform with accoutrements, shined shoes, clean leather gear and a nice Smokey hat with braid. Give me a good old solid wood nightstick, too.

But guess what? The first time you have to go hands on with someone--and go to the ground--or, like in my Department, you have to pull an unattended net full of stinking fish, that uniform ain't going to be so good looking afterward. If you mess up the BDU's--oh well! They're durable and cheap.

I honestly don't know why I even replied to this thread--it's going downhill, despite the best efforts of the mods to keep it civil. Oh, well; perhaps my post--and the other posts here--will make some folks think. If not--we'll still be here. Good day.

pax
February 11, 2008, 03:12 AM
I think that's a pretty good note to end this thread on.

A sincere "thank you" to everyone who kept it civil and productive.

pax