Go Back   SOCNET: The Special Operations Community Network > General Topics > Law Enforcement

Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 20 September 2008, 23:25
Sharky's Avatar
Sharky Sharky is offline
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: SOCNET
Posts: 20,706
Advice For All New Officers

Here's Sharky's 10 rules about being a cop:

1. Just do your job. It's not personal so dont make it personal.

2. When the shift is over, let it be over unless you are forced to do otherwise by circumstance. Dont be that idiot out pulling over the citizenry in your POV for speeding with your blue dash light that you bought from Galls.

3. Keep your mouth shut. Don't be a part of the gossip circles who are constantly talking shit about other officers. Those same guys are talking shit about YOU when you're not around.

4. Find the guy that everyone in the Dept (and on the street) respects and watch how he handles difficult situations.

5. Dont make bad situations worse.

6. Treat people like you would want a cop to treat your mother unless they wont let you. Not everyone is a scumbag.

7. If there has to be a fight and there's no way around it, you better be the first one to pile on. Dont be that jackass that escalates the situation until it comes time to fight then he vaporlocks and stands there with his thumb in his ass.

8. Understand that not everyone out there is in such awe of your badge and gun as you are. For some, it's simply something they would dearly love to stick up your ass.

9. Did I mention keep your mouth shut?

10. And most important, always remember that that badge will get you pussy, but that pussy will also get your badge.
I was born my papa's son
When I hit the ground I was on the run
I had one glad hand and the other behind
You can have yours, just give me mine
When the hound dog barkin' in the black of the night
Stick my hand in my pocket, everything's all right

-ZZ Top
Reply With Quote
Old 25 September 2008, 12:27
ccorgr175's Avatar
ccorgr175 ccorgr175 is offline
Verified SOF
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Dinosaur National Monument
Posts: 1,225
I'll 2nd that...

Cheers -

Reply With Quote
Old 25 September 2008, 12:45
Seanmcd82's Avatar
Seanmcd82 Seanmcd82 is offline
Embrace the Suck
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: On the Beach
Posts: 3,002
Originally Posted by Sharky View Post
10. And most important, always remember that that badge will get you pussy, but that pussy will also get your badge.
Gulp.....Those charges were dropped by the way...:D

Great Post Sharky, all very true. Especially the one about keeping your mouth shut.
It's never the Jump that hurts, it's always when you hit the ground
Reply With Quote
Old 25 September 2008, 12:49
RedDawg_03's Avatar
RedDawg_03 RedDawg_03 is offline
Pirate and Rogue
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Central Savannah River Area
Posts: 1,039
My suggestion to you is to start drinking heavily - Bluto Blutarsky

Stupid should be a medical diagnosis - Texan

Being smart does not guarantee success, but being stupid practically guarantees failure - GSniper
Reply With Quote
Old 25 September 2008, 16:00
grog18b's Avatar
grog18b grog18b is offline
Clorox bearer for SOTB
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Finally back to my 203 range
Posts: 4,254
I would only add,

Know the rights of the people you protect first. Know the laws to arrest them for second. Not knowing the first can cost you your job, and your department lots of money. You can learn the second as you go along.

If you don't know something, ask someone who does.

Never "assume" anything, never "trust" anyone. The old saying "Be kind, be courteous, be polite, but have a plan to kill everyone in the room", applies to any dope house, or other house, you go into. Never assume the victim who called you is telling the truth, and never assume he or she will not attack you when you decide to put the cuffs on their breadwinner. Never assume that 10 year old can't harm you. Some of them are better shots than your partner.

Best one... Police work is not like it is in Hollywood or any movie you have ever seen. If you think people fly back when you hit them with your 357... You are in for a rude awakening... People on Meth or crack can go for miles after being shot numerous times. They can also kill you.

If you are going to assume... Assume everyone you meet or put cuffs on will try to kill you. Someday, you will be right.

Search your prisoners well. Very well. Search them like your worst enemy gave them 10 weapons to kill you with, and were told to hide them on their person. You'd be surprised what you find...

Never cuff anyone in front. Always to the rear, back of the hands together, keyholes up, tight enough to hold them. As I said... Assume they will try to kill you. They just might.

When you speak on the radio, even in the heat of battle, maintain your cool, and speak clearly. People can't understand screaming on the radio.

Never lie in court. If you do, your career is shot, and you might as well go be a garbage man. No one will ever trust you again. The phrase "I can't remember" is a valid answer.

Stay in shape. The criminals will. If you are fat, look for another line of work, or get promoted. Other cops don't want to rely on you when the SHTF.

Always carry a back-up weapon of a larger size. (ie shotgun, AR, etc) Pistols were invented so men could fight their way back to their REAL weapons.

Your reports are a reflection of what kind of officer you are. Reports that are short, with no facts, that go no where, that are missing information with a lot of mis-spelled words, say a lot about you.

That's all I got right now... :)
"....As far as "rights" are concerned... I look at them this way. I don't tell you what church to go to, and you don't tell me what kind of firearm I can own." GROG

If gun control laws controlled crime, we wouldn't need cops.
Finally, I believe that punishing lawful gun owners by creating new, more onerous laws, and restricting Constitutionally guaranteed rights, when we already don't enforce the tens of thousands of gun laws we have on the books, is like beating your dog because the neighbor's dog shit in your yard.
"The Reaper"
Reply With Quote
Old 25 September 2008, 16:54
FinsUp's Avatar
FinsUp FinsUp is offline
Aww F**K it
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Middle Earth
Posts: 2,812
70 things ALL rookies should know...
1. Out here, everybody lies.
2. They lied to you during training.
3. Never take the word of a drunk person over that of a sober person.
4. Civilian ride alongs are not your friends.
5. Sit back and listen to the veterans.
6. Some night, someone will try to kill you. You do not know when, who or where. Therefore, consider everyone with whom you come in contact to be a potential threat.
7. If you need help, ask for it.
8. NEVER, EVER lie.
9. Have fun with the job and don't take yourself too seriously.
10. If you think someone is watching you....they are
11. Go Home At The End Of Your Shift
12. Pick A Secret Mentor
13. Develop A "Hand Fetish"- Watch everybody's hands
14. Report Writing IS "Officer Survival"
15. Wash Your Hands!
16. Wear That Geeky Traffic Vest
17. Have A Life Outside The Job
18. Trust Your Instincts
19. Handcuff EVERYBODY / "Search For The BB"
20. Be Professional And Courteous, But Never Forget The Next Person Meet You May Have To Kill.
21. Trust Your Instincts
22. You've got 30 years to be the Police (depending on your state)...don't try to do everything the first year.
23. Know where the hell you are in your town/city
24. Don't let the bastards get you down...the department is probably full of people that like to complain.
25. When it comes time to lay hands on somebody (and that time WILL come), let your violence be swift and merciless.
26. Don't talk bad about other officers EVER.
27. Listen up to the radio and know where the other officers are.
28. When everyone else in the jurisdiction is shagging paperwork calls, DO NOT stop the car with a out tag light that is being driven by a 60 year old woman who has never ever been stopped by the police before just because you are a little bored.
29. Murphy was a cop and he likes to do ride-a-longs. If it can go wrong it will.
30. NEVER eat where you can't see your food being prepared.
31. Don't hold your flashlight in your weapon hand.
32. Don't ever tell back-up there not needed even if there from another agency.
33. Look Good/sharp in uniform
34. Attitude is everything-
35. I highly recommend not purchasing expensive writing utensils for patrol work. You will eventually lose them.
36. You must be alert.
37. Never let anyone you are questioning or about to stop get in a better position than you and your vehicle.
38. Is your firearm clean? Will it fire? How about the ammo? When did you last fire so that you can hit a target in combat conditions? What's the sense of carrying any firearm that may not work?
39. Remember to look up when your out on patrol
40. Have a SPARE key for every car you THINK you might drive...and keep it ON YOUR PERSON.
41. Sometimes the bad guy will get away. Sometimes you just can't connect him to the crime. Sometimes he will be out on the street before you report for your next shift. Sometimes prosecution will be declined. RELAX, THERE WILL BE A NEXT TIME.
42. Think about worst case scenarios,then have a plan to respond. Have a backup plan in case the first one fails. Always leave yourself a way out.
There is no such thing as retreat. However,there is nothing wrong with fighting in the opposite direction.
43.Be nice to everyone you meet. Have a plan to kill everyone you meet
44. Pay special attention to people who don't want to make eye contact. The ones who give you the "fuck you" looks are the ones who probably don't have anything going right then.
45. Learn to look around at everything quickly and not staring in one place hoping something happens there.
46. Get out on foot and walk. Perps expect us to be lazy. They never expect us on foot.
47. When asking for consent to search,watch their eyes. If they have something,the eyes will automatically look at it before they respond.
48. Be nice to your dispatcher!
49. NEVER walk up to a vehicle on a traffic stop with a ticket book in your hand. I don't care what your FTO says.
52. Stay in shape.
53. Keep learning/going to schools/college.
55. Buy a bag of chewy dog treats in the resealable bag. Great for coaxing a pitbull out of the house you need to get into.
56. Check the backseat of your squad before you leave the station, and every time you take someone out. You'll be surprised how much dope you find.
57. Pretty girls have gotten breaks all their lives, so tag 'em.
58.Wear your body armor every single day. No matter what, no matter how hot or uncomfortable it gets, or if the other guys tease you. The day you you don't wear it could be the day you need it.
59. Never, never, ever trust ANY member of the news media if you want to stay out of the trick bag.
60. When on the radio always use your normal tone in your speech! It helps when you call out on traffic or anything and your fellow officers can tell that there is a concerned/excited tone in your voice they will know that something may be up and can start your way.
61. Personal hygiene is a must. First, you're dealing with the public and they don't need to smell your stinky ass.
62. Remember, two is one and one is none. Always have at least two flashlights, two pairs of cuffs, two radio batteries because when you need that particular piece of equipment most, it will crap out on you.
63. Practice, practice, practice. Because the bad guys sure are. They study your holsters and probably know how to get your firearm out quicker than you do.
64. When you make a traffic stop, don't just give a tag number thinking your dispatcher will get all the pertinent info. from the return. Give a vehicle description. What if that tag doesn't belong on that car? When the driver gets though shooting you, I'd like to be able to at least be looking for the right type of vehicle.
65. For the love of God, please take all the crap that jingles out of your pockets. I don't want to clear a building with a guy that has $15.00 worth of pennies in his pocket and something resembling a janitor's key ring hanging off his belt.
66. If you find one weapon always assume there is another
67. Remember that this is people business. The more details you can recall about people, their families, what they drive, where they work, who they hang with, where they hang, will be so vital in your every day contacts.
68. Don't let the prospect of a citizen complaint keep you from doing your job. If you're right, don't worry. Some people just love to complain.
69. Take a bathroom break whenever you never know when that long drawn out call or arrest is going to prevent you from going.
70. NEVER trust anyone from Internal Affairs/Professional Standards. ALWAYS have a union rep. with you in any interrogation. Stand up for your rights and make sure THEY follow the rules.

I cant stress enough numbers 17 and 30.
One of the fundamental truths of the universe is that there isn't anything that cannot be improved with the addition of pirates, ninjas, midgets or monkeys.

For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil. Romans 13:4
Reply With Quote
Old 25 September 2008, 17:35
Axe Axe is offline
Banned 26FEB10
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: MI
Posts: 1,659
I wish someone had taught me those things when I was a rookie. Every single item is excellent advice.
Reply With Quote
Old 25 September 2008, 19:30
CA SGT's Avatar
CA SGT CA SGT is offline
What could possibly go wrong?
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Here and There
Posts: 1,677
First things taught many years ago....Bills, booze and broads overwhelmingly are what cost cops their careers. Many years later, I saw all kinds of variations on those themes but they held true.

Some "musts" would be..

Have a good security holster that you PRACTICE with to the point that you are just as fast with it as a simple pouch holster.

Always wear your vest no matter how uncomfortable it gets

Always have a backup gun

Stay physically fit and train, train, train (weapon, baton, ground fighting, etc)

If your single and have been working awhile, then decide to get married, prenup your retirement. LE divorce rates run nearly in the 75% range. You do not want to be pushing a unit around for an extra 5 years at the end of your career, to make up what you lost in a divorce.
This job isn't dangerous enough....I need to start milking rattlesnakes and jerking off tarantulas on my lunch hour.
Otatsiihtaissiiststakio piksi makamo ta psswia
Reply With Quote
Old 25 September 2008, 20:49
heavyguns1/1's Avatar
heavyguns1/1 heavyguns1/1 is offline
Confirmed User
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: NY
Posts: 1,164
Don't over drive your car. Too many of us die in crashes.
Reply With Quote
Old 25 September 2008, 21:58
Kilo17 Kilo17 is offline
Roll Fire
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Iraq/live in AZ
Posts: 100

I have to second and stress this part. Two examples of FORMER co-workers who are no longer allowed to be law enforcement officers in the state of Utah and both faced criminal charges.

One got so caught up in trying to F*** every vagina he came into contact with that it led him to expose himself to a girl that was not interested in him. He was caught and charged. He resigned then had his cert pulled.

Another pulled over a woman that he had a relationship with (a sexual one) for several months. After giving her a DUI, he took her home as a courtesy and decided to F*** her while he was there. She was drunk at the time. When she saw the DUI cite in her purse the next day, see claimed rape. He was charged, fired and cert pulled as well.

These are just two examples of many real life situations of cops I worked with, making very bad decisions. THINK before you act, especially when the act involves your penis.
Don't just stand there, throw lead!
Reply With Quote
Old 28 September 2008, 17:56
Expatmedic's Avatar
Expatmedic Expatmedic is online now
Anesthetized User
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: In A Wuhan Bat Market
Posts: 4,050

Don't try to fuck them.

They are kids and some are young adults. Most are trying to learn and all have that "I am in awe of your presense Lord Vader" look.

Protect yourself, your partner AND your retirement in every way, shape and or form.
Support SOCNET.

It don't come easy.--Ringo Starr

Equality is no measure of success.
Reply With Quote
Old 28 September 2008, 18:10
Defensor's Avatar
Defensor Defensor is offline
Confirmed User
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Southwest
Posts: 201
Originally Posted by FinsUp View Post
70 things ALL rookies should know...
30. NEVER eat where you can't see your food being prepared.
This is one that is often overlooked.
Reply With Quote
Old 28 September 2008, 18:43
Flying Pig's Avatar
Flying Pig Flying Pig is offline
Confirmed User
Join Date: May 2005
Location: SW Florida
Posts: 3,395
Originally Posted by Expatmedic View Post

Don't try to fuck them.

They are kids and some are young adults. Most are trying to learn and all have that "I am in awe of your presense Lord Vader" look.

Protect yourself, your partner AND your retirement in every way, shape and or form.
Holy Cow.....

If I had a dime for every cop Ive seen fired for that.......Wheeeeeew. Fortunately, nothing molestation related, just cops hooking up with college criminology students out for rides, a 19 year old explorer, etc...Nothing good ever comes from it.
Conduct every traffic stop extending the olive branch of peace; while having a tactical plan to kill everyone inside the vehicle. - Gordon Graham
Reply With Quote
Old 28 September 2008, 20:25
usacivpol usacivpol is offline
Confirmed User
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Ohio
Posts: 452
Stay clear of politics.
If you get in on politics you will go out on politics.

you want fries with that?
Reply With Quote
Old 16 October 2008, 20:23
JohnG JohnG is offline
On the Extract Bird
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: San Diego
Posts: 294
If everyone you meet guesses you're a cop before you tell them what you do, you might want to look into that..
Also, develop a skill that if for some reason you are not able to work in the field, ie drunk driver hits you, that you have a second career.
Reply With Quote
Old 27 October 2008, 14:35
Blackjack7 Blackjack7 is offline
The Missing Link
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: M.E.
Posts: 233
I'm a little late on reading this one, but Sharky what a great post. Excellent advice, short and to the point, for everyone entering the job. Probably a good read for some who have been around a while and forgot.
Reply With Quote
Old 16 November 2008, 18:39
thecat0369 thecat0369 is offline
Confirmed User
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: NoCal
Posts: 157
Good reading.
Reply With Quote
Old 18 January 2009, 14:49
Evil Snowman Evil Snowman is offline
Confirmed Boozer
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Boston, MA
Posts: 80
Good stuff ...
"The church says the earth is flat, but I know that it is round, for I have seen the shadow on the moon, and I have more faith in a shadow than in a church"
- Ferdinand Magellan
Reply With Quote
Old 19 January 2009, 13:17
ksfa's Avatar
ksfa ksfa is offline
Join Date: May 2007
Location: US
Posts: 598
Good advice from all....
Remember that inmates become cooks....culinary skills are what they teach in yes, you always want to watch the food prepared. Also, remember that the same inmates have a lot of time to work out, so if you aren't...someone else is!

Take all of the training offered and keep a folder of all the certs. That may come in handy to pad a resume for another position or agency.

Don't bitch about being a travelling shift especially is full of report writing. Do a good job at explaining the facts in an articulate manner. Your reports are going to court with you and it may be that you can't remember what you thought you would never forget.
Scientists have confirmed that today's earthquake was caused by our Founding Fathers turning over in their graves.

The only thing worse then losing a child in the service of our country is to lose that child to an ungrateful nation.

Still missing you...SGT Brandon J. Thomas 19thSFG(A) are always in my heart, buddy.
Reply With Quote
Old 23 January 2009, 22:33
RITS RITS is offline
Registered User
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Iron Mountain Michigan
Posts: 32

This is good for the new guy and for the veteran to review. I also feel you need to keep your perspective. We deal with the lower 5% of the population 95% of the time. You need to balance your life in areas to stop you from thinking the 95% are just liike the 5%. But do not let your guard down. After 20 plus years it does seem that the %5 is a growing population maybe closer to 10%

I thank you for the reminders of seeing it in black and white again.
Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Our new posting rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 12:09.
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions Inc. All Rights Reserved
SOCNET 1996-2020