Monday, January 18, 2010

Just in Case Anyone was Wondering...

Some recent posts and comments on this and other blogs have gotten me thinking that perhaps some readers may mistakenly believe that a certain blog author may write tickets to people for so called "bullshit violations", or that every driver stopped is cited regardless of the "insignificance" of the violation. A couple of comments have been so blatantly out of line, abusive and even borderline criminal that they have been outright rejected.

As a result, I decided to go back and count my "stats" for the past week.

During my 40 hour work week I stopped 45 individual vehicles. Of those 45 traffic stops, 17 received verbal warnings, and the remaining 28 received citations. I also mailed one owner responsibility citation for an equipment violation and I issued a citation to the owner of a vehicle for knowingly allowing an unlicensed driver to operate his vehicle, so if you want to be picky you could say I issued 30 tickets for 45 car stops.

Three vehicles were impounded for suspended driver licenses, and one for registration that was 22 months expired. Two licensed passengers were allowed to drive the vehicles of unlicensed drivers, in lieu of impounding the cars.

Mind, not all weeks are the same, and this week was chosen at random. I didn't "stage" the week to get favorable stats. In fact, I didn't even decide to do this until the week was done, and I had to go back and get the info I've posted here.

Think what you want, but I think a warning for every two citations should be pretty fair in anyone's book. Especially since most of the citations were for things like excessive speed and license violations.

Take it for what it's worth...

19 comments:

WVmedicgirl said...

I thank you for simply doing your job. It is your job to enforce the laws. I know I appreciate being given a verbal warning, but at the same time I should not get angry if written a citation for doing something wrong. Thanks again and keep up the good work!

Carteach0 said...

I have the sense that you would be about average, although my 'feeling' is based on very little evidence.

There's good and bad in every profession. The good get tarred with the same nasty opinions that splatter off the bad.

As an instructor, I get the same thing.

Chris said...

You are a police officer, charged with keeping the peace and upholding the law. I am not a peace officer(as of yet), nor was I in the military, however I do understand the reasons why your job is important to the safeguard of America. I will be honest, I like to drive fast, its fun. I also know that if I get pulled over, it's because I was speeding, I was breaking the law, and johnny law is doing his job. The people(the sheep) are never happy to have there heals nipped at. The officer(the sheepdog) is not always happy to do it, but it must be done. I would ask a question of all the people who dislike the officer keeping them safe. Are you willing to go into the places everyone avoids to make a difference? are you willing to possibly place yourself in harms way for the betterment of others? are you willing to have to have to deal with assholes (like yourself) to do whats right?

...no?

...Why?

Joe Allen said...

I wonder how many of the folks complaining about "bullshit citations" have had their car hit and totaled by an unlicensed, uninsured driver.`

G said...

See, you just talk meaner on your blog than you really are. You (reasonably) defend your rights to give out a citation to anyone who breaks the law, but you're actually pretty decent to the people you stop.

Brett Allen said...

You know, in my opinion, you don't have to explain/justify/whatever your actions unless you do something wrong.

You writing a citation for someone else's wrongdoing is their issue to defend, not yours.

Though I appreciate that you use your discretion, even if you didn't, you wouldn't be wrong, just a to people.

Now if that's what you're trying to avoid, good luck. No one will ever be completely satisfied unless your job was really just a community wide guidance counselor.

Then they would bitch when they got totaled by a speeding drunk.

You can't win ;)

the observer said...

Wow, you can impound a car for an out of date registration? Is this common? I am a law abiding citizen except for vehicle registrations! Even when I lived in a state with just an inspection reg, I was usually late. Right now, I am quite late, as I cannot get my vehicle's inspection status and personal property tax status in synch!

HonkingAntelope said...

For what it's worth, you seem like the type more interested in catching real criminals and only write tickets when the license plate comes back with a red flag or when the violation is too blatant to let it slide, rather than just for the fun of it like some other blog authors who shall remain unnamed.

fuzzys dad said...

It sounds very fair. The people that complain about your ticket writing should walk in your shoes.

Officer "Smith" said...

Observer,

Yes, we can impound for registration that is more than six months expired.

And I do, because that's where a large portion of the public safety funding in this particular cash strapped state originates.

If someone has been driving their unregistered car around for half a year without bothering to pay their registration, what is to make me believe they're going to pay it in the second half?

*Goddess* said...

I don't think anyone should have to justify doing their job.

The Dispatcher and Her Officer said...

I can totally vouche for our units in my city!! It's quite common for officer's to clear their traffic stops with an 'advised' and not a 'ticket'.
-Dispatchers

Cleanville Tziabatz said...

I am not sure what the point of these stats is. From the stats we cannot tell whether any of the stops were good or whether they were bad.* From the stats we cannot tell whether you wisely or unwisely exercised your discretion your discretion to warn instead of cite.

The stats are mildly interesting, but not that helpful to really evaluate you as a peace officer.

FOOTNOTE:

It sounds like the expired registration one was a good stop. So we can put one in the good column and 44 in the undetermined column.

Officer "Smith" said...

Cleanville Tziabatz said...

"I am not sure what the point of these stats is. From the stats we cannot tell whether any of the stops were good or whether they were bad.* From the stats we cannot tell whether you wisely or unwisely exercised your discretion your discretion to warn instead of cite."

Well, Tziabatz, this would be a prime example of not being able to please all of the proverbial people all the proverbial time.

I assure you I do not make "bad stops", nor have I ever seen anyone from my agency do so. I have explained this fact in depth elsewhere in this blog. I'll leave it to your searching skills to find it.

the observer said...

I am not a police officer, but I have to say that traffic stops are more good then bad. I know, from listening to my scanner, that officers frequently are able to find wanted felons and parole violators during the checks they do on the drivers. They might get more bad guys except some drivers bolt when they see the lights and KCPD and most of the other agencies in the metro cannot chase a car if the only thing they have is a traffic violation. (That is no wants/warrants show on the tag, or there is no tag or a temp tag--even with no tag/temp tag, they cannot chase for just traffic stuff. Sometimes they follow for a bit, but they cannot chase.)

Every time I have been stopped, it was for a reason, pretty much. Cops don't stop people for random jollies.

Stay safe out there.

Cleanville Tziabatz said...

Well, I don't think any peace officer has ever admitted to making a bad stop. I always assumed that peace officers were trained to say that all stops are good. It is sort of like how everybody in jail is innocent, even though only some of them are.

Moe said...

I don't get why you see the need to try to prove to these people that you're an honest honorable person. Correct me if I'm wrong, but this isn't court, it's your venting station.

We've got a saying up my way that we use as a blanket statement for those who question us - "Fuck `em if they can't take a joke."

Front Porch Society said...

Just tell those whiners to shove it up their *sses and see how they like it.
People who have no clue what it is like to be in law enforcement should shut up about writing tickets.

Triple Beeper said...

You (and those other LEOs you represent) have my full support, even without the justification. Even when you catch me doing wrong. Even when you call me on it and write me a ticket (i.e. every time I've been stopped-- and yup, I was guilty for each one). I know it wasn't your reason for writing it, but thanks for doing what you do.