Thread: Cop guns...
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Old July 17, 2013, 07:01 AM   #20
Mike Irwin
Join Date: April 13, 2000
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 39,343
"So Joe Friday was violating department policy?"

No, he was not. Detectives and plain clothes officers were not required to carry the standard 6" barreled revolver on duty. It was issued to them, and they maintained it, as part of their dress blues uniform.

LAPD has always allowed officers considerable leeway in their choice of off duty and backup guns.

Officers who were promoted to detective grade or who were temporarily assigned to plain cloths details could carry their former backup gun as their primary weapon.

Additionally, when the first uniformed full-duty female officers were recruited to the LAPD in the late 1940s, they were not issued the standard 6" service revolver. They were issued a 2" barreled revolver that was carried in a special pocket that was sewn into the department issued should purse. Yep, a purse.

The show Adam-12, while a TV show, was shot in the 1960s and 1970s, and was made in close cooperation with the LAPD, whose advisors took great pains to ensure that the show was presented as accurately as possible given that it was such a potent PR opportunity.

Supposedly the advisors had a significant amount of control over over the script and production and could, and often did, demand changes.

OK, Jack Webb of Dragnet fame was the driver behind Adam 12, and Webb was a stickler for precision and accuracy in the portrayal of police activities.

In several of the episodes, the two main characters are put on temporary plain clothes assignments and are shown carrying S&W Model 36 revolvers as their only armament.

In at least one other show they are shown off duty carrying the same revolvers.
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Last edited by Mike Irwin; July 17, 2013 at 08:18 AM.
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