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Now ye're talking - to a US police officer



  • Closed Accounts Posts: 12,653 ✭✭✭✭Plumbthedepths

    I'm in Texas, won't say more beyond that on a public forum. Well done him on LAPD.

    On social media he's listed his occupation as garbage collector. ;-) . However he lives for the job, my own son is a member of AGS for the last 2 years and like my brother lives for it.
    Stay safe and enjoy your retirement when it rolls around, are you planning to play 'golf' or seek a new career?

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,795 ✭✭✭Mrcaramelchoc

    is there corruption in the/your police force?have you ever seen or witnessed it?

  • Registered Users Posts: 24,647 ✭✭✭✭punisher5112

    Why is the police force suffering with so much corruption?

    Do you screw people over or are you one that actually listens and gives people respect obviously this must be both ways of course.

    Have you been in many shooting incidents.

    How to you find winding down or copping with stress is best achieved.

    What's the best cruiser you've ever driven.

    What's the most rewarding pert of the job....

    Do you love giving tickets?

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,915 ✭✭✭cursai

    Why do the FBI have those oversized badges. Is it a case of small man syndrome?

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,572 ✭✭✭khaldrogo

    27 years is very short for a full career in something. Retired by 50.....what do you do with the rest of your life??

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,795 ✭✭✭Mrcaramelchoc

    khaldrogo wrote: »
    27 years is very short for a full career in something. Retired by 50.....what do you do with the rest of your life??

    Enjoy it id imagine.

  • Registered Users Posts: 24,647 ✭✭✭✭punisher5112

    Do you know of other officers that are corrupted?

    Example they lie and say they seen something but weren't even there.

    I suffered from this and it was a Irish cop in Dublin.(Gaurd)

    He made up a false statement and even changed a witness name on a sworn statement.

    He had me in court 4 times over something I didn't even do and had actual witnesses stating so.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,932 ✭✭✭mikemac2

    Are you worried that you will get into some bizarre and dangerous situation as you get to within a few days of your retirement?

    Especially if the OP gets paired with a rookie :eek:

  • Registered Users Posts: 40,291 ✭✭✭✭Gatling

    Has the current political situation with trump and co in power lead to less thrust within the communities your patrolling especially with the sizeable Mexican population in Austin .

    Is Texas hard to police with a lot of rural areas and proximity to the border as well as larger city areas

  • Registered Users Posts: 11,323 ✭✭✭✭Collie D

    This could be one of the better AMAs. Kudos to Boards and thanks to the officer.

    My question: I’ve often read about wanted or on the run criminals being finally caught at random everyday pullovers.

    Have you ever caught a really big fish for something silly like driving without a seatbelt or no tax and insurance?

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  • Registered Users, Subscribers Posts: 47,284 ✭✭✭✭Zaph

    Gatling wrote: »
    Has the current political situation with trump and co in power lead to less thrust within the communities your patrolling especially with the sizeable Mexican population in Austin .

    Is Austin hard to police with a lot of rural areas and proximity to the border as well as larger city areas

    He didn't say he was in Austin, just that he was in Texas and didn't want to reveal any more than that.

  • Registered Users Posts: 40,291 ✭✭✭✭Gatling

    Zaph wrote: »
    He didn't say he was in Austin, just that he was in Texas and didn't want to reveal any more than that.

    Apologies I thought I read Austin.

    I edited my post to remove the reference

    Sorry op

  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 6,832 Mod ✭✭✭✭eeeee

    Is there a problem with racism within your force?

  • Registered Users Posts: 19,619 ✭✭✭✭Muahahaha

    Whats your views on the relationship between easy gun ownership and mass shootings? And how do you view the NRA solution that we need more citizens to be armed to prevent mass shootings?

  • Registered Users Posts: 21,522 ✭✭✭✭Tell me how

    The number of people incarcerated in the US increased by approximately 500% from 1980 to 2016. 1980: 319,598, 2016: 1,505,400
    Link - (

    Why do you think that is?
    • Better detection rates?
    • Increase in crimes committed?
    • The development of Prisons as a for profit enterprise?

    Do you think the country is safer now than it was in 1980?
    Do you think that the criminal justice system in the US is making society safer through reducing the likelihood of crimes being committed in to the future?

  • Company Representative Posts: 189 Verified rep I'm a US police officer, AMA

    Are the police forces in US inherently racist? From an outsider it looks that way, but I might be wrong.

    This is a complex question, not easily answered in a short forum, so bear with me, and I can only speak from personal experience. I don't think so, most of us just don't care who you are, who you sleep with, what you look like, what you wear/drive. There is a connection between poverty, unemployment, race, education and criminality that is a legacy of history, bad policies, social norms which is a complex and difficult issue. If a minority group suffers from all of the above and an area becomes a high crime area, then there are more police interactions, arrests, searches, etc. Law of numbers say there will be more minority convictions, etc. So, it can be easy, for a quick sound bite to say "the cops only arrest XXXX race in this town". Yet, police face pressure to "clean up YYY part of town, arrest all the criminals". Generational poverty, social expectations and behavior are not going to be solved by the police and more training. However, I'm a realist, are there racist cops, sure, just like there are racist bar staff, lawyers & cooks too. So, probably not, but as a community we can all do better.

    What do you make of the ever increasing militarisation of the police in US?
    I'm not a big fan of the whole "tati-cool" thing, with leg holsters, tactical vests for regular patrol officers. It intimidates people and reinforces the us vs. them mentality. There is a place for helmets & heavy body armour (I keep both in my patrol car) and some sort of armoured vehicles. When responding to an active shooter, which sadly is increasing, then yes, I want a bullet proof hummve and all the kit. Look at the Las Vegas or Dallas shootings as examples, you need military grade kit to respond to military grade threats. So, having it available, yes, daily use no but keep the kit close at hand.

    Are you Irish? Do you have experience with the Gardaí? Could you work in an unarmed police force?

    Yes, from Dublin originally (up the Dubs :-) Know a few Gardaí but never served in AGS, but do enjoy comparing notes with them. At this point I don't know if I could work unarmed even in Ireland. I think it would be difficult to unravel 20 plus years of training & reaction processes.

    Why are there so many different police forces in US? Seems to be an awful lot of overlap - is this hard to work in?

    Embedded in the US law/constitution is the inherent right for local control. Each city, county, state, agency has the right to control itself to one degree or another. Hence local police, sheriffs, state police, feds, etc. Given the size of the US, to a point it make sense, but I would prefer no lower than county size to get away from the silliness of seven officer agencies. It's duplicative & inefficient.

    How dangerous is it to be a cop in USA? Has it gotten worse?

    Hard question to answer simply, the stats from the US Dept of Justice are fairly consistent over the last 10 years, so that's reassuring to some degree. Most cops die of heart attacks due to poor lifestyle choices FWIW and most of that is preventable.

    Has Trump's election changed anything for you as a cop?

    Yes, the immigrant communities won't talk to us. It's very frustrating, we see victims daily who just clam up and say nothing. Four years ago we'd have made good cases and arrested the perps due to cooperation. The rise of White Nationalists haven't helped either. A lot of them seem to like to carry assault rifles, that makes us nervous.

    Best on-screen cop?

    US: Joe Friday, Dragnet & "Bunk" in The Wire, UK: Jane Tennison, Prime Suspect.

    At this point, are you too old for this sh1t?

    The day I get up and don't want to do this any more will be that day. Running, CrossFit & Jujitsu allows me to keep up with the young pups.

  • Company Representative Posts: 189 Verified rep I'm a US police officer, AMA

    What technology has made the biggest difference in your work since you started, both positively and negatively if possible?

    Our Mobile Data Computer (MDC). It's life changing. I run all my call on it, it has SatNav mapping, gives me directions to calls, shows me location of other units & other services (fire & EMS), call details. I run all my checks on it, number plates, ID's, vehicles, warrants, everything form the front seat of my car. I use it to write my reports & submit them digitally, all from the car. It stores my camera video & audio, I do email, use the internet. It's connected to my e-ticket writer to print tickets, no more carbon copies to route to court. Our reports are legible, auto-formatted and stored on the server for the detectives, analysists. Its night & day compared to paperwork

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,009 ✭✭✭Bellbottoms

    My questions are a little heavy and I appreciate how they might be difficult to answer in this medium.

    1. Why do you belie is behind the disproportionate shootings of unarmed black men in the US, by police officers?

    2. Why do you believe the officers are barely reprimanded for this? Many dont even lose there jobs.

    3. Is there a way for police forces to address this and to stop murdering unarmed minorities?

  • Registered Users Posts: 10,969 ✭✭✭✭alchemist33

    As a foreigner, did you have to jump through any extra hoops to join the police force? Related, are you now a US citizen?

    Roughly, what percentage of your colleagues are from ethnic minorities? And do your superiors deliberately mix pairs of cops so as to have a non-white member, or station certain cops in areas with a similar ethnic background to them?

    And thanks very much for doing this.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,932 ✭✭✭mikemac2

    Ever get the "do you know who I am? " rant from someone important? Maybe the daughter of the state governor or some spoilt rich kid. And these people indeed may have the power to get you fired. Ever see a colleague get sacked for stopping the car of someone important and entitled?

    Whats the story with field sobriety tests? If you asked the sober Methodist pastor in town to say the alphabet backwards or stand on one leg and touch their nose they would probably fail. We all would. Seems very subjective

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  • Posts: 8,856 ✭✭✭ [Deleted User]

    There was a big clean up of New York Streets in the 1990's- I believe "zero tolerance" of "anything" was a prime reason why this was a success- is this something you subscribe to?

    However, after a city is "cleaned up", and certainly NY did need a good cleaning of crime, what do you recommend is the ongoing approach to keep streets safe?

  • Company Representative Posts: 189 Verified rep I'm a US police officer, AMA

    This is an unfair & argumentative post. I'm happy to discuss issues in US law enforcement and have a coherent debate, but please back up your claims about corruption, deadly force etc. Your comment of "there is no doubt that many US cops enjoy killing others and indeed join just for that privilege" has no basis in fact. Your comment shows little to no understanding of the impact of taking a human life.

    Most respectable agencies require psychological testing, screening for behavioral issues, and an in depth interview with psychologists and ongoing monitoring of officer mental health & behavior. No system is perfect and agencies continue to balance screening with labour laws, personal rights to medical privacy and the needs of the agency.

  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 6,832 Mod ✭✭✭✭eeeee

    You mention working armed and unarmed, and the different skill sets for both. Can you expand on that? Is de-escalation not the primary driver of the process over there?

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,092 ✭✭✭The Tetrarch

    Would you draw your weapon at a snowball fight?

  • Posts: 8,856 ✭✭✭ [Deleted User]

    This is a viral video of an innocent black person being profiled by a white cop in recent times- there's a number of examples out there but this one is really frightening. I'd say you've probably seen it.

    I've watched other videos, all by reputable posters or indeed news agency documentaries around racial profiling by American cops. I can provide any number of links. And also, when these people go to complain to the police head quarters, i've some gob-smacking links to provide also around testing cop head quarters on how they handle complaints against police officers- it's actually quite frightening.

    In Ireland, why our police complaints procedure isn't perfect by any means, I'd have a lot more faith in it than in America.

    What's your view?

  • Company Representative Posts: 189 Verified rep I'm a US police officer, AMA

    As this is, would I be right in taking a guess that you're originally from Ireland or have lived here? If so, how do you compare your current role to that of a Garda (and if you did indeed grow up here, what made you opt for the US Police rather than An Garda Siochana)?

    Policing seems to be universal based on my observations with other forces. Other than the accents, uniforms & kit our roles are the same. US burglaries aren't any different than Irish ones form what I can tell

    Do you find, in the US, as a police officer involved in everyday crime, that they (the US, whatever state you may be in) have the same kind of lenient, revolving door sentences that lead to you spending all your time dealing with the same faces over and over again? Or is the stereotypical image that the US is much tougher and stamps that stuff out quickly actually true?

    Yep, and I think most cops would tell you this regardless of where you are. We see the same faces to an extent, although the US seems to have a higher degree of willingness to imprison people for minor offences than Ireland. The US locks up more people, but I submit it does little to "stamp out crime".

    And a silly question, but have you ever seen or experienced one of your patrol cars being stolen/pursued? If so, does it make it a bit more complicated (is there an element of trying to avoid damaging the vehicle etc.)?

    I know it's happened, can't personally recall it any time recently. No, a pursuit is a pursuit, you attempt to apprehend the perp just like any other pursuit. And I'm willing to bet, unlike on TV, they wouldn't understand much of what we are saying on the radio. Most people can hardly tell you their own address, let along listen to block numbers and cross streets at high speed.

  • Registered Users Posts: 21,864 ✭✭✭✭Mam of 4

    Has there ever been a time when on duty that made you actually fear for your life ? And if so , did it make you question your role as a Police Officer ?
    Take care and stay safe :)

  • Company Representative Posts: 189 Verified rep I'm a US police officer, AMA

    How come a police officer can't admit they're wrong, is it a training issue where you have to be right no matter what.
    You see so many incidents on youtube where a cop is so so wrong, but will NEVER let it go. Why is that.

    I don't really understand your question about being wrong. YouTube is not what I would describe as a balanced forum. It's not that cops aren't wrong, its more a case of people don't really understand the law. Most people think they know what they are saying because the read it online or saw it on TV, or moan on about their rights. Yes, they have rights, and we follow those rules & laws like we are supposed to, we're not making it up, I promise you. The side of the road is not the time to argue the finer points of Terry vs. Ohio (classic case law), you can have your day in court and let the judge make the call. Think about it, if I'm wrong and make a false arrest, I'll lose my job and face the possibility of jail time for false imprisonment. No thanks. Do cops make bad calls, sure, and they deserve what they get.

    If it's on YouTube, odds are it has an agenda. I don't see a lot of YouTube videos where Joe Bloggs wants to show the world he is wrong and is getting a ticket or arrested for it. Makes for poor click bait.

  • Registered Users Posts: 313 ✭✭spindex

    You may have missed the opening question, how many people have you shot ?

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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,092 ✭✭✭The Tetrarch

    Would you draw your weapon at a snowball fight?

This discussion has been closed.