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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've seen many threads on various forums about how to interact with police, how to get out of a ticket, etc, and frankly, a lot of it is BS. Most people don't know a thing about law enforcement, and there are rumors, snake oil solutions and assorted myths on how we operate. So, here's some perspective from an actual cop, to help set the record straight and hopefully educate you.

Be aware, this is not legal advice. I work in the USA, particularly the state of Colorado, and as such, what I'm telling you could be totally different in your country/state/county/municipality. Always look up the laws of wherever you're going before you go. This said, a lot of the advice will translate across boundaries. TLDR: don't be an a**hole, you'll probably be fine.

This is also NOT the place to debate the use of force, race relations, tactics, etc. Right now, I'm trying to help you, and give you perspective you may not have had previously.

Background: I have served in LE for nearly 6 years. My duty assignment is primarily traffic, in a large metropolitan area, but I frequently end up in suburbs and even rural areas, all in the same day. I have contacted thousands of motorists, issued numerous citations and warnings, and have covered hundreds of crashes. I've arrested numerous offenders, misdemeanor and felony both. If it has anywhere from 2 to 18 wheels, I've probably come in contact with it. Sure, I don't usually respond to house calls and such, but think of this: you spend what, an hour or two a day in a motor vehicle? It equates to nearly 40,000 hours of driving in an average lifetime. A lot of activity happens in and around vehicles.

I used to have somewhat of a prejudice against motorcycles. "Oh, those tatted up biker gang members blasting their loud Harleys and those teenagers popping wheelies on their little Kawasakis? Two wheel terrorists! I'll never get on a bike, it'll kill you dead in the street!" I pretty much held this view until this year, when I took a course in advanced accident investigation. There was a specific block of instruction regarding motorcycles. Turns out, there is a lot of cool physics behind how they move, stay upright, and crash. We did analyses of various gruesome crashes, saw photos, etc. Suddenly, I was curious.

I started riding in June after taking an MSF basic course, and have been hooked. I have a 2018 BMW G310R, and a 2018 Triumph Tiger 800 XRX. I love longer trips to places I've never been, and Colorado is great for that with its many mountains and scenic roads. I enjoy talking with other motorcyclists and seeing their bikes, both on and off duty. When the next opportunity comes, I intend to go for motor officer training.

Anyway, enough about me. Here's my thoughts for you:

1. The overwhelming majority of cops are hard working, honest people, with families, hobbies, etc. They are a small percentage of society who are willing to take on an enormous burden, bear a ton of responsibility, and do a largely thankless job, often with low pay, terrible hours, and an elevated risk of being shot/stabbed/hit by a car/exposed to numerous infectious diseases/burned in a structure fire/etc. They are only human. They have bills to pay, debts to work off, they deal with the same relationship troubles, car troubles, etc, that you do, and they have to put it all aside and go through intense public scrutiny to serve you. They often have to leave their families and miss birthdays, anniversaries, holidays, etc, to protect yours. People die every day, but we go to work and prepare for it: throwing on the bullet resistant vest, loading up a gun, saying goodbye to our loved ones, knowing it could be the last time. I've had numerous close shaves with death, and I have personally been to 3 police funerals, two from my own agency. Please keep that in mind.

2. If you obey the traffic laws to the letter, and take care of your vehicles, you probably won't ever be contacted. Believe it or not, the laws are there to protect you and the public. If everyone followed them, there would be no crashes, or traffic jams.

3. If you do get contacted, start by finding a safe spot to pull over. Don't take too long, but if you go an extra quarter mile or so to find an exit or side street, we appreciate that. Chances are, the cop lit you up hoping you'd take the next exit/side street. Try not to park in the center median by the left lane, it's a dangerous spot. Once you do stop, put the car in park. Put up your interior lights if it's dark. If on a bike, stay seated for the time being. Keep your hands on the wheel/handlebars. If you have music, please turn it off.

4. Don't go reaching for your documents right away. We actually don't like you doing that, because from back there, I have no clue what you're reaching for. It's probably your documents, I'm aware, but I have no clue if you just murdered someone and are reaching for a gun instead. When I come up, I'll ask for it.

5. Speaking of your license, registration and insurance. You're supposed to have all three things, it's really not hard. Many states accept electronic proof of insurance, but be aware, if your phone dies or you don't have signal, you might be SOL, and that could result in a summons to court. Take the time to print out the insurance card and stash it in a safe place like the glovebox or center console. You can toss the old ones away, they're no good to you expired. You only have to do this every six months or even year. If you have a hard time finding your stuff, you need to clean out your car. On my bikes, I keep it under the seat tucked inside a plastic bag in the instruction manual.

6. I know, insurance and registration can be expensive, and yes, the registration is a tax upon your vehicle which you already paid sales tax on. I get it, taxes suck, but roads do cost money to maintain. The price to use the road is a registration fee. Pay for your insurance. If you can't afford it, you probably can't afford your vehicle, and need to reevaluate your finances.

7. Speaking of insurance. Don't just rely on liability coverage, get the full coverage and uninsured motorist coverage. A lot of the people who routinely cause accidents don't have insurance, because they often get dropped and no one will cover them. It sucks, but I don't trust anyone, and I'd rather have the peace of mind knowing I can replace my vehicles if an uninsured motorist damages my stuff. Or a hail storm, etc.

8. You don't have to say a word to the cop, and frankly, I don't care. Traffic stops are among the most dangerous activities police engage in, right next to domestic violence calls. I'm not going to risk my life and livelihood on a "maybe." If I stopped you, I know damn well what you did, and am prepared to testify to it in court under oath.

9. You can't talk yourself out of a ticket, but you can potentially talk yourself into one. By the time my lights have come on, I've likely made my enforcement decision. You try and argue, you're not going to win, and it may potentially look worse for you if you take it to court. My goal with traffic stops is to try and change driving behavior for the better, to protect others. If I believe I can do that with a warning, you'll probably get one, but if you start arguing, blaming others, cussing, screaming, throwing things, being insulting or making racist comments (all of which I have seen happen), I'm fairly certain a warning won't change the attitude. You try and bribe me, or ask for a warning before I've even said the reason for contact, that's not going to end well for you.

10. The quota is a myth. Most cops will probably give warnings if they can, because tickets usually involve a deluge of paperwork. My warnings to tickets ratio is probably around 2 to 1. If I'm specifically looking for intoxicated drivers, I may not even write tickets where I otherwise might have. In other words: if you got a ticket, you probably deserved it. Technically, I don't have to write a ticket for anything if I don't want to. Though me personally, I will always write you up for turn signal violations, and driving with your high beams on because your regular lights don't work. Everything else, there's time, place and manner.

Continued on next post.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
Continued.

11. Speaking of intoxication. Most people CAN do those sobriety tests while sober. Many CAN do those if they have a drink, maybe even two. If you truly are sober, you won't display the scientifically validated clues. You can research all of this. The tests are a way for us to evaluate whether you are actually under the influence of alcohol/drugs. Maybe you spilled a beer and that's why you smell. Maybe you have allergies and that's why your eyes are bloodshot and watery. Maybe you just talk slurred normally, but drunks also exhibit many of those signs. Drunk drivers do kill and hurt others. We lost one of our own to a drunk driver not long ago. Also, seriously, it's 2018. Everyone should know the dangers of drinking and driving. We have Uber and Lyft. There is NO excuse, especially if you're on a bike, a machine that demands an extreme level of precision and attention to detail. If you can't have fun without drinking, seek help.

12. "Everyone speeds." Yeah, it's true, but time, place and manner is important. If you got stopped for speeding, you are NOT going with the flow of traffic - your vehicle got singled out because it's the fastest contact. It'll likely give the best reading on the radar. If you actually go with the flow of traffic, or pass people in a reasonable, non aggressive manner, I won't give you a second glance. If I wrote a ticket for every person who was speeding, I would never be able to get anything else done. For me, personally, I will start pulling people over for speed at 10 over. I usually don't write tickets until 15 over. Seriously, no one needs to go 15 over the limit. If you're constantly in a hurry and running late, maybe you need to reevaluate your lifestyle.13. If you see a cop behind you with lights and sirens on, calmly move a lane over and start slowing down. If you didn't, you weren't paying enough attention, and you need to get your head out of your a** and pay attention. The problem is, most people don't, and they often do unpredictable, stupid things when they see lights. They often panic stop, swerve and lose control, crash into each other.

14. If you see a cop pulled over, and the lights are on, MOVE OVER. It's the law in all 50 states, and an arrestable offense in many. We lost another one of our own because someone didn't move over.

15. If you see a cop driving somewhere a bit fast, such as 10 over, but with no lights on, don't go assuming he's just doing it because he can. Chances are, he's on the way to some call, such as a crash, or civil dispute. It may not have escalated to an emergency level yet, but time is of the essence. If we were to turn on our lights, many people would just do the stupid things mentioned in 13. Most LE agencies are understaffed and can be overwhelmed by calls, if we can sneak by you without you doing the dumb things and creating more calls in the process, that's always good.

16. If you meet a cop who is mean to you, realize the world does not revolve around you. Maybe he just tried doing CPR on a baby and failed to bring her back. Maybe he almost got killed, maybe he's 14 hours into a 10 hour shift and hasn't slept for nearly 24 because he's had mandatory overtime, court, and other obligations. It's not an excuse, but then again, he's only human, as are you. You might encounter a cop on his bad day. We encounter multiple people every day, usually experiencing one of the worst days of their lives, and do it again and again, but right now, my team is getting its collective butt kicked at a major call I should be on, but your car got dinged in a parking lot and you demanded someone come out here. It might also mean the cop is an a**hole, but lots of people fit that description. Grow up, there are more important things to worry about.

17. If you meet a lot of cops who are a**holes, YOU might be the you know what. If you meet a lot of cops in general, you also might be doing something wrong.

18. If you have a concealed carry permit, that's probably okay, but be wary of reciprocity laws. In Colorado, you don't legally have to tell me about it, and if your gun stays holstered, so will mine. If you do happen to show me the permit, understand I may ask to see the gun, and will likely hold onto it for all our safety while I check on your license. I know how to use guns, I'll give it back - it might be unloaded, but you'll get it back, and more often than not, I might even choose to just give a warning. The permit lets me know a few things: you're a law abiding citizen, are not a convicted felon, are not a domestic abuser, etc. At that point, if you truly just made a temporary lapse in judgment and were willing to own up to it and even showed me your CCW, I think a warning would suffice. Most cops are supportive of gun owners, many of them do enjoy shooting and hunting as a hobby. Be warned, if you have something really cool, they may ask you about it - as in, where they can get one, and how much it costs.

19. For motorcyclists: seriously, get training, get your endorsement/MC license. No, your buddy Jimbo didn't actually teach you that well. An MSF course is a good place to start, but again, it's a start. I want to take advanced courses ASAP. Never ride beyond your skill level, and please, take the time to put on the gear. I've seen a lot of mangled bodies from those who didn't. On almost all the single motorcycle crashes I've covered, the rider didn't have an endorsement. As for the left turning vehicle, realize that while it's not your fault if you do get hit, you can still avoid it. Practice emergency maneuvers and high viz gear does help, for the most part, but I've seen many crashes where people died for seemingly no reason, and others where someone should have died gruesomely, but walked away without a scratch. If it's your time, it's your time.

20. If I ever stop you on a bike...chances are good if you have a valid license, proper gear, and weren't being stupid, I will end up giving you a warning and chat with you about your awesome bike. You have enough to worry about with the rest of the motoring public, and I find many motorcyclists to be more attentive and courteous in traffic than most car drivers. I'm not out to ruin anyone's day, I just want everyone to make it home alive, car or bike. Again, driving behavior: if I think I can fix it with a warning, I won't need to take the time to write a ticket. If you're cool to me, I'll be cool to you. If it's a good day, I'm probably insanely jealous you get to ride while I'm having to work.

21. LE is always looking for good people. Especially nowadays. It's hard to get people to join up, because of how difficult the job is, and the often **** pay, hours, risk, etc. I joined this profession to make a difference, and I'd say most of my fellow officers did the same. It's hard to say if I did make a real difference, but who knows, maybe I stopped a person, gave them a warning or ticket, and it changed their behavior. Many people flap their mouths about the problems in the community, but few ever take real action. Ask around - a lot of departments allow citizens to go on ride alongs. Even if you have no intention of becoming a cop, it's still a way to see firsthand how we operate. You're stronger than you might think. Go to your local station and think about applying. It's a HARD profession to get into, but it's worth it.

I hope this was somewhat educational, and that it gives you some perspective. Everyone enjoy riding, and please be safe!
 

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Thank you very much for your service and for taking the time to educate us:grin:

I have never in my life met a LEO that wasn't courteous to me in every way but I have always been the same to them:grin:

In my Vocation, I continually liaised with Detectives of various Law Enforcement agencies, professionally and socially :smile_big:

I rode with the Blue Angels and more recently with the Choir Boys, both LEO groups in Southern California and we rode together all over the country attending rallies like the 4 corners run, Yuma Prison run, Laughlin river run and of course Sturgis, many times. My best friend and most of my riding Bro's worked out of the 'City of Industry' Sheriff's sub station.

Watch your 6, 'they' are out to get you, especially the anarchist loser crowd:surprise:

Just one question?? Are you arresting a lot of marijuana stoners driving on the roads since CO made it legal?:surprise:

GOD bless!:angel:

Sam:nerd:
 

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I loved my time in Colorado and never had any trouble out of any of the LE out there, ie feeling stalked. Here in Indiana, specifically the Indy area, I still dont worry about LE but, geez people drive like a..holes and feel like LE looks the other way. I know in Semi's can be pulled over by any LE but only CVSA really enforces on them but have on the flip side seen the CVSA troopers completely ignore 4 wheels running absolutely stupid around bikes and Semi's. Spoke to one trooper, here in Indiana and he basically said that they were doing OT and their job was to pull over Semi's only.
 

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The LE in my local towns and counties range from excellent to... we'll say unfortunate. Despite living in an area with a large population, 911 response time (at least the one time I called and the times my mum called throughout the years) is about 40-45 minutes. In that time for my one time, the person I was trying to save could have died. I can see why many people out here carry protection.

But on the flip side, the majority of LEs I've met are nice everyday people just like you or me. My favourite officer remains the guy in Wisconsin Dells who went above and beyond to protect me from a bar owner who was seemingly trying to whip up a mob action because my ID "outed" who I am. They didn't even have any respect for my parents who were with me, either.

He saved the day and warmed my heart and made me feel happy to be me. :) The funny part was that the bar owner was the one who flagged down the officer hoping to get me arrested.
 
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Good read and I definitely appreciate the perspective. Regarding #12 , I actually did get a ticket once when I was just following the flow of traffic, note I was in a full size pickup not on a bike. Thing is I pretty much always keep to the 2 (or better yet 3) second rule. When he pulled me over he said the other cars were too close together but since I had space in front of me he was able to radar me. Then he said something about I was just catching up to the traffic in front of me. I was not catching up to the traffic in front of me, but I wasn't about to argue the point.

Note I'm sure I'll jinx myself, but it's been about 15 years since the last time I was pulled over. That one above I didn't feel I deserved a ticket, but there had been a few other times that I clearly did, and didn't get one so it all evens out. I guess technically I did deserve it because I was speeding, it just sucked that I was picked out because of the big cushion I keep in front instead of riding on someones tail.

I do appreciate that it's a difficult job. My son actually wants to be a wildlife officer and just went into the USCG as part of getting the background for some experience in doing that type of work. It's a calling for sure.
 

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I think it was a gr8 article, and as much as we don't want a ticket specially one that will up our auto ins. I think the best
thing we can do is to accept our mess -up, man-up or woman-up, be courteous and get going.
Agreed. I never play dumb or use any tricks. If being polite and understanding is a "trick" then it's what I live by anyway. Most of the time I've been pulled over, I know exactly what for.

I'm too intelligent to play dumb. LOL

I would like feedback on something though.

I was told hands on the steering wheel and look straight ahead. I think I creeped out a couple officers following an officer's advise. Now I keep my hands on the steering wheel to help them know I'm not reaching for anything, but I look and talk to them like a normal person.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Glad to see the positive responses! I'm always happy to answer questions.

Reference MJ: in my experience, the actual amount of stoned driving hasn't really changed, at least to the standard patrol guy. Those who drive high now were driving high before it was legal, and those who never tried the stuff, still don't for the most part. MJ impairment can be a bit trickier - unlike booze, there are a variety of effects from different types of marijuana, and even individuals having the same may report different effects. Many police do a "wet lab" for learning DUI enforcement, where they bring in volunteers to get drunk (it's super easy to find people for this), and the trainees practice administering the test in a controlled environment.

Trouble is, since MJ is still illegal most places, it's hard to get funding/permission to do something like a "green lab." A lot of cops might just miss the signs. If more cops were trained on detecting MJ impairment, I bet the numbers would increase. I did get to do a green lab a while back. If you're high and unable to safely operate a vehicle, I'll know, and I will arrest you. Just like with booze, it's best to just stay home or call a Lyft, it's not worth your life, or someone else.

Still, I think MJ is on the way to full legalization in the future - it may take a while, but I'm confident it will happen in my career or at least lifetime. I personally don't like it, and have never touched it, but I also have a close friend who relies on medical MJ for all sorts of pain, and it helps her tremendously. I've personally seen far more devastation due to alcohol than MJ, yet no one thinks twice about drinking a substance which is literally a poison to the body, the very purpose of which is to influence your state of mind. I've seen the negative effects of alcohol so often, I ended up losing my taste for it. I just can't touch the stuff without thinking of people puking and peeing on the walls, adults breaking down and becoming children, the smell of death and despair mixed with booze, etc.

And of course, we hand out heroin/opium/hydrocodone/oxycontin like candy, that's a whole different animal.

As for the hands, best keep them on the wheel, or visible otherwise (ie not in your pockets). The hands are what operate weapons and kill, if we see them and they're free of weapons, we know you're not a threat. Well, less of one anyway - bare hands can still be dangerous. Be cool with me, I'll be cool with you.

You can act and talk like a regular person, no need to stare straight ahead. Bottom line: just relax. It's only a traffic stop. I wouldn't have contacted you if you truly did nothing wrong. Everyone is constantly violating traffic, if you got pulled over, it's probably because your behavior was more severe than the rest. I'd feel better and probably more lenient if there isn't a whole bunch of unneeded tension between us. More than 99% of cops are the same way. If you get a ticket, it's not end of the world. You might pay a fine, maybe get some points on your license, maybe your insurance rates go up a bit - it sucks, but you did violate the law. I didn't write it, but I'm expected to enforce it. Again, changing driving behavior for the better - either because I am confident you will heed my warning, or failing that, the ticket deters you from trying it again. If you feel you don't deserve the ticket or it wasn't fair, take it to court. But if life was fair and people always got what they deserved, police wouldn't need to exist.
 

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BRAVO !!!!!!:grin:

In over 55 years of riding and 85 motorcycles, I have got ONE ticket:angel: The Judge threw it out of court because he drove the same road every day to and from the Courthouse and knew I was telling the truth for why I had to exceed the speed limit in order to merge 5 lanes over to exit the Freeway, in a very busy area.
:smile_big:

In heavy traffic in Southern California where this happened if you use your turn indicators expecting that someone will give you room to change lanes, most will speed up to fill the gap and not let you merge and that's what happened to me:surprise:

Sam:smile_big:
 

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@1Adam12 Excellent post and follow-ups. Thank you for your service.

Growing up I was taught the police keep our townspeople safe and we should be grateful for their service.

It's sad that today it seems they are taught the exact opposite. So many are taught that they are victims and then filled with anger and hate. :sad:
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
One thing I also want to address: where does the money for your traffic ticket go? Are the police just corrupt, extorting money out of citizens to fill their pockets? Wouldn't it be better if the police could just, say, issue points towards a license suspension without making it cost anything?

Probably not.

The actual amount and distribution will vary, but much of it goes to a state/county/municipality general fund. This is basically used for anything from schools to domestic violence victims advocacy to conservation projects, or otherwise disbursed at the discretion of the government. Some of it goes to maintaining motor vehicle records. Some goes to a fund for helping the victims of crimes or traffic crashes, especially those who may not have their own health insurance. There are court administrative costs, jury fees, and more. You can ask your local jurisdiction where the money goes - it's all public record, and you can likely look it up yourself.

Yes, in some jurisdictions, it is a significant portion of revenue collection. I know some towns in my area that make nearly half, or even more, of their city budget by traffic citations...though on the flip side, I know one of their police departments doesn't even cite until 15 over. It means you could go 79 mph in a 65 mph zone and probably not get a second glance. It's not a speed trap, they're sitting in plain view right there, visible for miles. If you get a ticket from them, you totally deserved it.

Would it be better for police to not issue monetary fines, but just points towards a license suspension? Perhaps, but understand it'll cost you in a different way. We, the police, are tasked with enforcing laws, and traffic safety is always a significant part of it. If we let motorists run amok without any regulation, believe me, it'd be bedlam and pandemonium out there. Heck, I spend a significant portion of my time on the phone with citizens, taking complaints about traffic in their neighborhood, and I just look at my stack of paperwork an inch high, hearing my partners getting their butts kicked by crashes and other calls. I wish I could help, but really, it's tough sometimes. Again, we need people.

There is nothing instinctive and natural about being in a motor vehicle - the fastest human can run what, maybe 20, 25 mph for a short distance? You go any faster, and you're going beyond the limitations of the human brain's capacity to process external environmental stimuli and react accordingly. There's actually a genetic basis for all that - look up BDNF, brain derived neurotropic factor, which basically is responsible for your attention to detail, ability to focus, etc. Long story short and harsh, some people are just born stupid and shouldn't drive, but we hand out licenses to just about anyone with a pulse, and even some without.

We are asked to minimize the deaths and destruction on the roadways. To assist those previously mentioned victims, we collect fines that go towards these funds. If we didn't have these funds, we would be unable to keep up our operations and everything would collapse. In order to maintain the same level of services, without issuing fines, you'd have to get the money from elsewhere - instead of collecting 100 dollars from a person who broke the law, we'd have to collect a total of 100 dollars from everyone. Your taxes would go up - maybe less than the cost of a traffic ticket...but I've been driving a while and have never had to pay a traffic fine, even when I got pulled over and deserved it. I've probably made up the cost of one traffic ticket, and if I stay careful, I can go decades without ever paying. I just bought a Sena headset for the cost of one traffic ticket!

Ask your local government about how much revenue they brought in from traffic citations. Chances are, you'll find that it could pay for a lot more police officers and the equipment needed...but you have far, far fewer police than the numbers suggest you should get. The police don't actually get much, if any, of the funds directly from a traffic ticket. The government as a whole may very well just use it for their pet projects. Believe me, I'd love to have more of the revenue, perhaps we could fix our dilapidated fleet of patrol cars, maybe we could upgrade our communications, or invest in better training for the officers. Or better yet, I'll go without, I'd like my wife, a school teacher, to make more than poverty wages, and to have a classroom that's not falling apart with mold in the ceilings.

Maybe the system has gotten too large for its own good, but here you are, benefiting from it. If you don't like it, vote to dismantle it or run for office. This is America, you can do that.

I don't like paying fines, so I will just not do the crime.
 

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Regarding #8 , does this mostly refer to drivers trying to talk their way out of a ticket, or a recommendation to simply limit ANY conversation with LE after being pulled over? I've seen so many videos (and heard anecdotally) about police attempting to extract information unrelated to a stop in an attempt to get drivers to incriminate themselves. This takes the form of lying, intimidating, threatening arrest and taking advantage of motorists who don't know their constitutional rights. Basically, unless a motorist assertively exercises their rights, they risk getting rolled over by a cop trolling for information. In the videos I've seen, police sometimes react to drivers (or people) exercising their rights by asking, "do you really want to take this to the next level?" Why would police equate exercising constitution rights with taking it to the next level?

You sound like a decent person and police officer, and believe most are like you, but also think it's more a minefield then you suggest when civilians have to deal with LE.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Regarding #8 , does this mostly refer to drivers trying to talk their way out of a ticket, or a recommendation to simply limit ANY conversation with LE after being pulled over? I've seen so many videos (and heard anecdotally) about police attempting to extract information unrelated to a stop in an attempt to get drivers to incriminate themselves. This takes the form of lying, intimidating, threatening arrest and taking advantage of motorists who don't know their constitutional rights. Basically, unless a motorist assertively exercises their rights, they risk getting rolled over by a cop trolling for information. In the videos I've seen, police sometimes react to drivers (or people) exercising their rights by asking, "do you really want to take this to the next level?" Why would police equate exercising constitution rights with taking it to the next level?

You sound like a decent person and police officer, and believe most are like you, but also think it's more a minefield then you suggest when civilians have to deal with LE.
There are a lot more traffic contacts in a given day than what you see on Youtube or anecdotes you hear. The overwhelming majority only lead to traffic charges and nothing else, because the overwhelming majority of people are not criminals, they're just engaged in an unnatural activity (driving) and made a mistake.

Still, bad guys and good guys alike drive everywhere, and plenty of illegal activity happens on, in and around vehicles. I can detain you for a reasonable amount of time, and the stop is perfectly valid for me to investigate if there is more than just traffic. People are predictable, and when you've been doing it long enough, you know when a person is hiding something. Most people have a conscience, and they know their drugs, DUI, or human trafficking or whatever else is illegal. Whether I agree with the law is irrelevant, I just have a duty to enforce it, and if I suspect something, I'll investigate it. Most of the time, I don't even have to ask specific questions, people end up telling me everything I want to know, plus plenty I DON'T want to know, because of that conscience. "Why did you run the stop sign?" "I'm sorry, I gotta tell you, there's some drugs in the front seat, and I swear the dildos in the trunk aren't mine!" I don't need to threaten or intimidate anything. I can't speak to what anecdotes you have, but I know a lot more cops than most citizens do, and I have never seen or heard of any such behavior from any of them.

If a person wants to assert their rights, more power to them. I was in the military for 6 years too, that's what we fight to protect. If they don't know their rights, that's their problem, not mine - most citizens have access to the world's entire knowledge, and more processing power than the Apollo program in their pocket. You can learn so much, but most people don't bother, and 9 out of 10 times, when someone tells me they know their rights, they actually don't. It's my job to stop crime and enforce laws, not teach people Constitutional law and the intricacies of the Bill of Rights. Otherwise, I'd have become a civics teacher.

Bottom line: I have a job to do, and it requires me to constantly be learning and educating myself for the betterment of society. Everyone, law enforcement or otherwise, should do the same - if more people were willing to do that...we wouldn't need cops, would we?
 

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I can't speak to what anecdotes you have, but I know a lot more cops than most citizens do, and I have never seen or heard of any such behavior...
It's amazing you've NEVER even heard of any such behavior. A simple Youtube search came up with this. I'm guessing you'll be shocked to learn it's only the tip of the iceberg. Clearly the citizen wasn't required to show his ID since the officer couldn't articulate a crime, but here he is being threatened with obstruction and arrest. Why? Is suspicion a misdemeanor or felony?
 

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The LOW life a-hole in the first Video is what ruins the lives of LEO's just doing their job:surprise:

How about this: "No problem officer, here is my ID.":grin:

Thank you for your service and do us all a favor and drop him in the swamp:surprise:

Sam:nerd:
 
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