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Calguns LEOs LEOs; chat, kibitz and relax. Non-LEOs; have a questions for a cop? Ask it here, in a CIVIL manner.

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  #1  
Old 03-06-2011, 3:18 AM
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Default "COPS" - by Mark Baker, THE WIRE, SOUTHLAND, THE SHIELD, THE CHICAGO CODE

Back in the day, (the mid-80's?), I read "COPS" by Mark Baker.

Great book. Non-Fiction.

( http://www.amazon.com/Cops-Mark-Baker/dp/0671685511 )

More recently there's been THE WIRE.

Amazing. Albeit fiction.

Currently there's SOUTHLAND and now the new show THE CHICAGO CODE about high level corruption from the producers of THE SHIELD.

This level of media, which I judge to be reasonably truthful, helps define my appreciation for LE.

I'm curious what resonates with LE and the general public at large...
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  #2  
Old 03-06-2011, 3:54 AM
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All of the shows you mention are pure fiction and have little to do with real police work.

This is a big problem for LE, because people see BS like this on TV ad think this is how it really is, when it is actually pure fantasy.

Get serious. Your question is borderline offensive to someone who has put their life on the line for 32 years protecting people of all walks of life.
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  #3  
Old 03-06-2011, 4:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Ron-Solo View Post
Get serious. Your question is borderline offensive to someone who has put their life on the line for 32 years protecting people of all walks of life.
No offense intended, but that's what I'm curious to hear...

On what level, if any, does this "critically acclaimed" general media stuff resonate with LEOs. (Or has there ever been a show that truly resonated...?)

The Mark Baker book, a former officer himself, kinda' focuses on the gulf that exists between LE and the public due to misperceptions perhaps largely due to media versus what many officers actually encounter on a daily basis.
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Old 03-06-2011, 5:17 AM
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When I get home I do not want to watch them. They are so far from the truth they can take every bad thing that happens to an officer in ten years and cram to 30 min. Or my favorite is hearing well I saw that on CSI I know that can be done. People have lost there touch with reality and belive that what they see on TV is the way it is. It is the dumbing of society. Don't le t me get started on the video games.
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Old 03-06-2011, 10:04 AM
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It's pure fiction. While the producers and writers of Southland do pull actual cases; they dramatized them to such a level it's insane. While I have had my fair share of crazy things happen it's not even close to what those show portray.

Also if I see any corruption I am required and would be happy to report it. I am still waiting to see it.
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Old 03-06-2011, 10:47 AM
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Southland is good but you have to remember they have essentially shown a career's worth of activities in what appears to be a year. (Basing it off of the fact the rookie is just now getting off probation)

I lost interest in the Shield when at the end of the second season one of the cops was fired for something she was already disciplined for. Illegal. The strike team sucked at doing illegal stuff. If the show were like real life they would have been caught before the end of the first season.

The Chicago Code gets the political corruption right. Everything else sucks.

Don't even get me started on CSI. People just don't get it that there is a two month wait on DNA for murders due to backlogs.

The Wire was nice. They kept it reasonably real. Although I think the last season they did go overboard a bit but the cops were caught and bounced off the force. I do have trouble beleiving it wouldn't get out.

If they really were to write a TV show like it is it would never get aired. A patrol oriented show would consist of 1/2 taking reports and the other 1/2 writing them. An investigations oriented show would consist of watching a guy make phonecalls in a cube most of the time with occasionally going out and showing a photo line up.
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Old 03-06-2011, 11:26 AM
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Even though I wanna be a cop, I've never been interested in CSI, SHIELD, Criminal Minds or that other crime investigation and cop dramas.

I love COPS and Trap Car !
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Old 03-06-2011, 11:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2Bear View Post
This level of media, which I judge to be reasonably truthful, helps define my appreciation for LE.

I'm curious what resonates with LE and the general public at large...
The media and truthfulness is an oxymoron, whether it be on TV, in written form or in real life do not sit well with me.
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Old 03-06-2011, 4:59 PM
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The Wire was a good show and they kept it fairly accurate regarding major narcotics cases. The politics shown in The Wire were very accurate when it comes down to budget issues, promotions, alliances etc. The guy that plays the pastor is Melvin Williams, the Baltimore gangster that the show is based on.

Some days I feel like McNulty...just riding the boat around.
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  #10  
Old 03-06-2011, 9:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cowboykenny View Post
When I get home I do not want to watch them. They are so far from the truth they can take every bad thing that happens to an officer in ten years and cram to 30 min. Or my favorite is hearing well I saw that on CSI I know that can be done. People have lost there touch with reality and belive that what they see on TV is the way it is. It is the dumbing of society. Don't le t me get started on the video games.

I've heard "The bad guy peed in my toilet, but I didn't flush it so you can gather it as evidence....."
Yeah so I can book it into my urine portal and compare it with similars in the National Urine database...

However, more frequently is the "I didn't touch that rock that went through my window, so you can get fingerprints off of it."

The whole CSI and their exceptional rate of finding fingerprints and matching them with bad guys has killed taking cold 459's.. Everyone thinks I'm going to gather prints and find the bad guy within half an hour. Unrealistic.

Back on topic: Southland has some excellent LE consultants.. Albeit a bit unrealistic as far as the action, it is VERY well put together and exceptionally accurate.
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  #11  
Old 03-06-2011, 9:23 PM
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Originally Posted by sacshooter1 View Post
The Wire was a good show and they kept it fairly accurate regarding major narcotics cases. The politics shown in The Wire were very accurate when it comes down to budget issues, promotions, alliances etc. The guy that plays the pastor is Melvin Williams, the Baltimore gangster that the show is based on.

Some days I feel like McNulty...just riding the boat around.
That's what I was thinking as well. obviously they have a lot of dramatic license, but the dope dealing and politics in the wire were as close as any show can be... and still be entertaining.

The new Hawaii 5-0 is the worst. If my Iphone could do as much as Magaretts could do I would have solved all the crime on my beat in my first month on the job. And I liked the old 5-0

The best cop show I ever watched was "High Incident." From about 20 years ago or so. I watched that show as a teen. I later got a job with a very busy inland empire department. After a few weeks I said "wow this is just like high incident!"
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  #12  
Old 03-06-2011, 9:27 PM
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Originally Posted by mlatino View Post
However, more frequently is the "I didn't touch that rock that went through my window, so you can get fingerprints off of it."
We collect the rocks now and have about half a dozen cases with a DNA match and suspects in custody. But I hear you, the worst here is car burglaries.
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  #13  
Old 03-06-2011, 9:32 PM
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We collect the rocks now and have about half a dozen cases with a DNA match and suspects in custody. But I hear you, the worst here is car burglaries.
Holy...

Let me get this right.

You collect the rocks thrown on 594's / 459's and book them into evidence.. And then an evidence technician scans the aforementioned rocks for DNA, and compares those results to a DNA database?

And then you arrest the bad guys because their prints were on a rock? How about the defense of "Yeah I may have touched the rock but I never threw it."

What agency is this?
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  #14  
Old 03-06-2011, 10:19 PM
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You mean CHIPS wasn't just like the real CHP?

Anyone remember the old Police Story series? No, not Jackie Chan!

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Old 03-06-2011, 10:25 PM
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We collect the rocks now and have about half a dozen cases with a DNA match and suspects in custody. But I hear you, the worst here is car burglaries.
Your agency spends all that money for the lab? Must be broke by now.

People don't want to hear the city isn't going to do ten thousand dollars worth of lab work because your five hundred dollar iphone was stolen from you car.
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Old 03-06-2011, 11:06 PM
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I'm glad that agency can do that. My agency has a 2+ year back log on DNA examinations.
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  #17  
Old 03-07-2011, 7:04 AM
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I don't watch cop shows. I love my job but I also love my free time too. When I'm off duty I don't want to focus on being a cop.
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  #18  
Old 03-07-2011, 3:21 PM
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remember the episode on the wire when bunk and mcnulty show up to the murder scene and all they say is the "F" words while putting clues together????


Classic. I also thought the wire was pretty close to actually detective work. The other cop shows are all drama and suspense. a simple shoot/dont shoot scenario is a 30 minute conversation with the suspect at gun point, go figure.....
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Old 03-07-2011, 3:26 PM
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Originally Posted by sacshooter1 View Post
The Wire was a good show and they kept it fairly accurate regarding major narcotics cases. The politics shown in The Wire were very accurate when it comes down to budget issues, promotions, alliances etc. The guy that plays the pastor is Melvin Williams, the Baltimore gangster that the show is based on.

Some days I feel like McNulty...just riding the boat around.
They want "dope on the table". The Wire was a great series to watch. Not that I would relate it to real LE, but I think it is the best of the ones mentioned in bringing up issues like you put.
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Old 03-07-2011, 5:06 PM
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remember the episode on the wire when bunk and mcnulty show up to the murder scene and all they say is the "F" words while putting clues together????


Classic. I also thought the wire was pretty close to actually detective work. The other cop shows are all drama and suspense. a simple shoot/dont shoot scenario is a 30 minute conversation with the suspect at gun point, go figure.....
Apparently that was an inside joke for the Baltimore Homicide detectives. The joke is that they swear so much that one day their vocabulary will just consist of the f-bomb.

I bet the actors had fun with it. Imagine trying to convey emotion and dialogue using only one word.
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  #21  
Old 03-07-2011, 5:17 PM
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I'll date myself, but back in the 70's "Police Story" was a pretty good series. It was created by Joseph Wambaugh.

Recently the show "The Wire" was a pretty good account of drug trafficking and working a wire case.

A few missed facet were the endless hours sitting on surveillance or the mind numbing boredom in the wire room actually listening to tapped phones...Been there
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  #22  
Old 03-07-2011, 9:52 PM
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The only thing close to being real was TJ Hooker!! I mean, how many of the females at your stations look like Heather Locklear? And the way William Shatner kept his hair perfect while fighting suspects.

Okay...all joking aside, I agree with Ron and the others. These new shows are BS and just add on to the public thinking they know what we go through based on a TV show.
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Old 03-08-2011, 12:38 PM
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If you want to check out the roots of The Wire, you should read David Simon's book: Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets. It's the same book which created NBC's Homicide (The first season pretty much followed the book. Subsequent seasons took off in its own direction, probably due to pressure from NBC).

Simon's follow up book, The Corner: A Year in the Life of an Inner-City Neighborhood, also spanwed a HBO miniseries of the same name.
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Old 03-08-2011, 1:04 PM
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I always wonder about that DEA show on Spike.

Every person they talk to flips and gives the name of the next dealer. Just doesn't seem believable.
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Old 03-08-2011, 8:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tyrist View Post
Your agency spends all that money for the lab? Must be broke by now.

People don't want to hear the city isn't going to do ten thousand dollars worth of lab work because your five hundred dollar iphone was stolen from you car.
We also DNA swab counters at 211 scenes, swab steering wheels on 10851 recoveries, and stuff like that. Of course not everyone does that, 50% of our officers do the bare minimum and go ten 8. We also have a backlog but it gets done eventually.
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Old 03-09-2011, 2:45 AM
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Y'all suck. Nothing beats CopRock! Best show ever made about cops. Don't even talk to me anymore because you guys clearly have no clue.

Then again, I loved the following shows:

High Incident
Andy Griffith Show
Police Story (1970's)
Adam-12
Dragnet
The New Adam-12
The Shield
SouthLAnd
Law & Order (the original NY one, not any other spinoff)
TJ Hooker (only for Heather Locklear)

Hated these shows:

CSI (all of them)
Law & Order: SVU (Ice-T playing a cop insults my very soul)
CHiPs

Never watched Hill Street Blues, Barney Frank, The Wire, 3rd Watch, or NYPD Blue.

I think one reason I loved The Shield is because while the show was so out there and crazy ludicrous, it's something that we thought... that's awesome... just a rogue cop out there giving back as good as the gangbangers do... which we won't do and will never condone in real life, but it's good fantasy relief.
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Old 03-09-2011, 4:47 PM
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Quote:
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Anyone remember the old Police Story series?
With Angie Dickinson as Pepper?!!! You betcha'...






1974-78, Pepper was an undercover police officer who worked for the LAPD.
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Old 03-09-2011, 7:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Notorious View Post
Y'all suck. Nothing beats CopRock! Best show ever made about cops. Don't even talk to me anymore because you guys clearly have no clue.

Then again, I loved the following shows:

High Incident
Andy Griffith Show
Police Story (1970's)
Adam-12
Dragnet
The New Adam-12
The Shield
SouthLAnd
Law & Order (the original NY one, not any other spinoff)
TJ Hooker (only for Heather Locklear)

Hated these shows:

CSI (all of them)
Law & Order: SVU (Ice-T playing a cop insults my very soul)
CHiPs

Never watched Hill Street Blues, Barney Frank, The Wire, 3rd Watch, or NYPD Blue.

I think one reason I loved The Shield is because while the show was so out there and crazy ludicrous, it's something that we thought... that's awesome... just a rogue cop out there giving back as good as the gangbangers do... which we won't do and will never condone in real life, but it's good fantasy relief.
Well, ADAM-12 was still on the air when I started in 1974.... I was actually partnered one night in the 90s with a Deputy named Reed (I am Molloy), and dispatch called us "1-Adam-12" The young stallions on the Department had no idea what they were talking about...

I am not much for cop shows, though having been a sexual assault/child molest investigator for almost 3 of my 20 years, I have a certain affinity to Elliot on SVU. I always like "Barney Miller," probably because it reminded me of the nut-bags I worked with in MPI in the Army.....
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Old 03-09-2011, 11:15 PM
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Hill Street Blues anybody? Or is that more for the east coasters?
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Old 03-10-2011, 8:14 PM
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Police Woman, anyone?
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Old 03-10-2011, 8:40 PM
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I enjoyed Hill Street first few seasons. Somewhat entertaining. Third Watch had some good episodes, like where Renko (?) kills the Russian mobster. That was JUSTICE!
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Old 03-11-2011, 9:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron-Solo View Post
All of the shows you mention are pure fiction and have little to do with real police work.

This is a big problem for LE, because people see BS like this on TV ad think this is how it really is, when it is actually pure fantasy.

Get serious. Your question is borderline offensive to someone who has put their life on the line for 32 years protecting people of all walks of life.
Actually, THE WIRE is based on real cases and they had retired cops as tech advisors. It is also documented that gang members and drug dealers were studying the show to figure out how to thwart LE measures on surveillance.

Southland has some good stuff in it (suspect running cuffed away from the traffic stop, brake checking dude in the back seat, etc.) I know that shizz happens, because when I was an LEO I witnessed it. Their radio traffic/and lack of it in the patrol cars is pure Hollywood. As well as how quiet the jail is when they interview peeps, but overall there is some realism to it.

When I was a cop, I used to watch NYPD Blue religiously. It was drama, but I enjoyed it. I never felt "offended" by it. And the greatest cop show on the planet was Barney Miller. The only thing I really don't like in cop movies/shows, is all the pile ups of patrol cars. That is pure b.s. Granted, there are some wrecks in pursuits, but if you are working patrol, you better have been thru EVOC and know how to drive and know when you are driving beyond your abilities. My .02.
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Old 03-11-2011, 7:09 PM
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IMO, Southland is the best out of them all.

I know they are nothing like the real job. But I would say it might be close.

I'm kinda picky with the realistic factor in these types of shows. Ive seen LAPD use arjents now which they should have a solid red burning red light. Which to be honest I've haven't seen from LAPD. I might be wrong.

SDSD down here uses arjents and has one of the red LEDs burning solid for their requirements.
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Old 03-12-2011, 8:57 PM
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CopRock FTW!!!!!
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Old 04-23-2011, 7:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 415dog! View Post
remember the episode on the wire when bunk and mcnulty show up to the murder scene and all they say is the "F" words while putting clues together????


Classic. I also thought the wire was pretty close to actually detective work. The other cop shows are all drama and suspense. a simple shoot/dont shoot scenario is a 30 minute conversation with the suspect at gun point, go figure.....
Majorly NSFW for language and corpse nudity, but if you Google:
The Wire - McNulty and Bunk, the famous crime scene
you can watch it.

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Old 04-23-2011, 10:30 PM
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The Wire - McNulty and Bunk, the famous crime scene
It has long qualified as my favorite scene from any police drama ever. Sheer brilliance.
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Old 04-24-2011, 1:48 PM
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Did anyone see last night's COPS? 2nd segment was in Tampa, FL: white guy with a openly carried handgun having a dispute with black neighbors over their dogs barking at night and keeping him up. At first he claims they are dealing drugs, abusing their dogs, shouting threats over the fence, all sorts of "suspicious activity". They claim he went on their property with the gun. He apologizes profusely and he hugs the male head of household at the end, no arrest or citation. He only gets chastised by the cops about this not being the "old west" and that he shouldn't carry like that.

He surrenders his gun as soon as the first cop on scene talks to him, but the cop isn't in a major hurry to take it and doesn't draw his own gun. They run the serial and give it back to him at the end. Hard to believe the same would have happened in CA. I can hardly even believe it happened in FL, since he couldn't have been legally open carrying off his own property with or without the excuse of the need to make a citizen's arrest for "animal cruelty" (3rd deg felony wobbler/misdo). Maybe the cops figured they were both exaggerating.
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  #38  
Old 04-24-2011, 11:53 PM
jaysen jaysen is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nobody33 View Post
We collect the rocks now and have about half a dozen cases with a DNA match and suspects in custody. But I hear you, the worst here is car burglaries.
Holy schnikes! Hahah, if I had a dollar for every time an RP called dispatch back and said "The Officer forgot to print the rock and take it as evidence", I'd be a Millionaire!

This line summarizes the agency, and reasoning for the above (I guess)
Quote:
But I hear you, the worst here is car burglaries.
/sarcasm

OPs question/ reminds me of what ride-alongs/victims never fail to mention; "so it's really nothing like TV"

Last edited by jaysen; 04-24-2011 at 11:57 PM..
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  #39  
Old 04-25-2011, 12:10 AM
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bubbagump bubbagump is offline
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Bait Car makes me laugh.

I HATE LAW & ORDER: SVU
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Old 04-25-2011, 1:48 AM
N6ATF N6ATF is offline
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Bait Car's alternate title is Law & Order: SUV.
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