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Old April 21, 2006, 09:13 PM   #1
Sarge
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Do you know a cop?

Got this from an old academy classmate, and thought this crowd might enjoy it. I have seen a lot of the stuff described here in the last coupla three decades. I'd sure credit the author if I knew who he or she was.
*******************************************************
If you are a cop, were a cop, live with a cop, or are close to a
cop, you will recognize a lot of the following:

FASCINATION STAGE - 1st thru 4th year of LE

For most officers, this is their first time outside of the middle class bubble. They have never seen a dead body, never seen life-threatening injuries, never dealt with a family disturbance, never witnessed the squalor some people call "living life," and never really understood the phrase "Man's Inhumanity To Man" until now.

Everything is new to them. You can ID them by the amount of fancy new equipment they carry...a ten BILLION candlelight power flashlight, "state-of-the-art" holster, pens that write in the rain, a ballistic vest rated to stop Tomahawk missiles, and an equipment bag large enough to house a squad of Marines.

They love it, showing up early for their shift. They work way past the end of their shift without even considering an OT slip. They believe rank within the department is based only on ability and those in the upper ranks got there by knowledge and skill in police work only. They believe the Department runs with the same attention to detail and efficiency as Joe Friday's Dragnet TV show....everyone is dedicated & committed, everyone is competent, everyone is on the same page and working toward the same high-minded goals.

When they finally go home to their spouse/ significant other, they tell them everything they did and saw; they are wired up. Some of the more "eaten up" purchase a police scanner at Radio Shack so they can hear the radio calls while at home.

HOSTILITY STAGE - 4th thru 6th year
They now show up for work about 2 minutes before their shift, and they are hiding out about 30 minutes before end of shift, writing reports so they can just throw them in the sergeant?s in-box and leave ASAP. They have to get to their second job to earn money to pay for the divorce that is pending. Their spouse is no longer interested in hearing about all the gore and heartache. They get the "you spend more time with the cops than you do with me" speech. They now know how the lieutenant got those silver bars on his collar.

They consider the FOP, the city, and all brass to be as dangerous as any viper. They gripe about everything, drink excessively, chase women, and hate the public, politicians, media, etc. They feel they have more in common with the hookers, thieves, dopers, etc.. but hate them too.

Those pens that write in the rain are no longer needed. Writing traffic citations can be a lot more trouble than they are worth, even on a nice day. To write one, or to write anything while standing in the rain, is a sure sign of an insane person.

SUPERIORITY STAGE - 7th thru 15th year
This is when cops are at their best. They have survived changes in administration. They know how the political game is played, both inside and outside of the department. They know who they can trust and who they can't. They have select friends within the department, and stay away, as best they can, from the nuts and boot-lickers.

They know the legal system, the judges, prosecutors, defense attorneys, etc. They know how to testify and put a good case together. They are usually the ones that the brass turn to when there is some clandestine request or sensitive operation that needs to be done right. These cops are still physically fit and can handle themselves on the street. They will stay around the station when needed, but have other commitments; such as a second job, a second spouse, a second boyfriend/girlfriend, etc. They have most of their friends outside of Law Enforcement now.

ACCEPTANCE STAGE - 15th to ????
Now the cops have a single objective... retirement and pension. Nothing is going to come between them and their monthly check The boss, the city (or State, or county), the idiots around the station, and the creeps on the street can all go to hell ... because they could come between them and "sitting on the beach."

There is no topic of discussion that can't somehow lead back to retirement issues. These guys are usually sergeants, detectives, crime scene technicians, station duty, or some other post where they will not be endangered. They especially don't want some young, stupid cop getting them sued, fired, killed, or anything else causing them to lose their "beach time." These guys are usually hard to find when the "clusters" hit. They spend a lot of time having coffee, hanging around the station, and looking at brochures of things they want to do in retirement.

Then the retired cop usually dies within the first five years of retirement, saving the city (or State, or county) a bunch of money.

Of course, nothing is ever 100% true...but if you are a cop, were a cop, know a cop... you will certainly recognize some of the above statements as fact, either in your own career or someone else's.
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Old April 21, 2006, 10:08 PM   #2
pipoman
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invssgt

I'm not a cop, never was a cop, don't live with a cop, nor am I particularly close to any (not because I avoid them, I'm just not).

I have seen this phenomenon you are talking about on the street. I am always a little relieved when a supervisor arrives at a disturbance call when I am involved. I know cool heads will prevail.

By the look of your sig line I am guessing you are in the "ACCEPTANCE STAGE".

Thanks for your service to your community.
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Old April 22, 2006, 12:07 AM   #3
Sarge
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Actually Pipo, that has pretty much been my 'sanity plan' from about the sixth month on the job.... and it works pretty well off the job, too I kinda waver between the last two stages, depending on what day of the week it is. I'm going on my 10th year of plainclothes stuff, so it's been pretty decent. I wouldn't trade my uniform patrol time for anything, though.

Thank YOU, and the many good folks like you, who realize that the vast majority of us truly are here to serve. You have a good evening.
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Old April 25, 2006, 07:21 PM   #4
Matt19
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Basically true stuff. There is now a core of us at work who are starting to look seriously at the retirement stuff. We are all still some years away, but we all dream of the beach.
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Old April 26, 2006, 02:13 PM   #5
andersencs
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Most of my small group of cop friends.

Most of my handful of cop friends fit this description to a tee, except those with a military bacground who started in phase III.
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Old April 26, 2006, 05:10 PM   #6
Denny Hansen
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Closed as this is not relevant to S.W.A.T. Magazine.

Denny
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