University Cop fired for responding to Officer Down

This is a discussion on University Cop fired for responding to Officer Down within the Law Enforcement, Military & Homeland Security Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Don't play with the University of Florida PD...they are regular LEO's and like to TAZ the Bro's. (If you recall the national news...)...

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Thread: University Cop fired for responding to Officer Down

  1. #31
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    Don't play with the University of Florida PD...they are regular LEO's and like to TAZ the Bro's. (If you recall the national news...)
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  3. #32
    VIP Member Array mcp1810's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaRedneck View Post
    From what I understand he did not call it in because the dispatcher as well as other officers were asking for radio silence so the officers on scene could communicate.
    But Rice has their own radio frequencies that are not used by the city officers so his calling out on his department's primary channel would have had zero impact on the city units ability to communicate. They did not call out on his channel, he heard them on a scanner in his car.
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  4. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by mcp1810 View Post
    But Rice has their own radio frequencies that are not used by the city officers so his calling out on his department's primary channel would have had zero impact on the city units ability to communicate. They did not call out on his channel, he heard them on a scanner in his car.
    Not true.

    Rice University PD do not use scanners. They have their own channel on a radio network that works with HPD and other area Constables. According to his radio interview on KTRH, he did everything he was supposed to do, even calling out on his channel he was responding. That's how his Major knew he left the area and returned.
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  5. #34
    VIP Member Array mcp1810's Avatar
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    From the story linked in the original post
    It was a Saturday on campus when David Sedmak, a Rice University police officer, heard "Officer down, officer down!" on his scanner:
    So you are saying the story is factually inaccurate?
    and
    The university said in a statement that its officers often assist other law enforcement agencies when the need arises. But Sedmak erred, it said, by not informing the university police dispatcher about where he was.

    "Sedmak left his post when only two other officers were on duty and failed to notify his supervisor of his whereabouts for nearly an hour, which could have endangered the safety of our students and campus," according to the university.
    So is now saying that the university administration is lying.
    But the good news is (per KHOU story) Fellow lawmen fight for fired Rice police officer | khou.com Houston that all transmissions are recorded.
    "In all instances, Rice officers are required to promptly notify the RUPD dispatcher of their location and the situation, and they have portable radios and mobile radios in their police vehicles for that purpose. All radio transmissions are recorded, logged and monitored by the Rice police sergeant on duty. This enables the sergeant to monitor the situation to ensure that the officer is safe when responding to calls off campus, and also to ensure that enough officers are on duty on campus to protect the safety of our students and employees," the Rice statement read.
    So they can just go to the master recording for that day to prove or disprove that he made notification he was leaving campus.

    And even if they are part of the regional trunked network (as opposed to the old individual UHF repeater pairs) they have their own "talk group" so they can still communicate with their own dispatcher without interfering with HPD communications.
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  6. #35
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    I am not suggesting anyone is lying. Probably semantics on the part of the press, with them using improper jargon. I know a couple RPD officers, have had lunch with them, etc. They use their radios to monitor HPD.

    Sedmak was on KTRH yesterday and was pretty specific that he and is other officers are tied into HPD and their radio network in some manner. Not that it's that big a deal. As you pointed out, the University has admitted they can assist HPD. Their story as to why he was fired has now changed three times.
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  7. #36
    VIP Member Array mcp1810's Avatar
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    But of course Rice being a private university and this being Texas they can fire him because it is a day ending with the letter "Y".
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  8. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by DefConGun View Post
    I've always wondered about the authority that University cops have. Are they glorified security guards or can they really arrest you and have you prosecuded the same as a normal LEO or what?
    It really depends on the state. If they are fully accredited LEO then they have full powers. In Richmond VCU Police have full powers on or off campus.
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  9. #38
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    I don't know what the standing orders are for his post, but at first glance the fact is that he left his post. As a Marine I can understand the significance of that. It would all depend on what the rules of engagement were for the campus police to assist the city PD. Calling the administration Commies is showing poor judgment for their viewpoint: they pay the officer to guard their campus and they expect him to do just that.

    Get rid of all the testosterone and good old buddy stuff and look at what his actual duties were. At this point I for one don't know for sure what his duty was and can't judge him.
    Retired Marine, Retired School Teacher, Independent voter, Goldwater Conservative.

  10. #39
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    Gentlemen...(and ladies)

    It may help to understand some police theory to properly hash this out. Within policing there are different theories of operation as there are in any discipline. One such theory is that the police can not be all things to all people. Well thats a simple way of putting it.

    There may be certain public entities that require a dedicated police service to meet the special needs of that entity, organization, or political subdivision. Under this theory the police have been broken down to three area's of secondary responsibility. Primary responsibility of all police officers being to protect, and to preserve life, and property. And to protect and observe the constitution of the U.S., and the state constitution they serve.

    Think of the three area's of policing as a pitchfork with three tines. Each as important as the other, and often co-dependant of the other. Remembering this is not a hirearchy.
    1) General purpose police.
    2) Special purpose police.
    3) Private police.

    The Houston P.D. is the general purpose police, and serve the entire city reguardless of other departments with dual jurisdiction. General purpose police often provide police functions not covered by special purpose police. For example SWAT, investigations, event coverage, forensic sciences, booking and court services, training services.

    The University police are special purpose police. They provide police services to the community they are responsible for. In my experience these are full police officers with the same privleges, duties, and responsbilities as the general purpose police. Except that they are specialists to their secondary responsibilities. Administratively they are responsible to the political subdivision, or civilian operating authority that employ them.

    Both General purpose police, and special purpose police are public police. They are both responsible to and for the general public.

    Private police are just that. Some states have laws that allow a private business, school, hospital, manufacture, home owners assn. private land owner etc. to hire their own police service. While the rules, and responsibilities of these individual may vary from state to state... They usually have some limited police powers of arrest and seizure. Again this varies from state to state and in some cases city to city.

    Continued...
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  11. #40
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    Continued...

    During my career I've worked as both a special purpose police officer, and a general purpose police officer. Other than personal prefferances, and career choices there is little difference.

    The backbone of any department of any kind is the patrol function. Everything is ancilliary to patrol. While the least glamorous, I found it to be the most difficult, most dangerous, and most satisfying part of the police career. It may cause some harrumphing from some other former, and active cops... but I believe and will defend my opinion that in any police department, anywere in the U.S. that 90% of all actual policing is done by about 10% of the department. Different people have different names for this 10%. Some administrators refer to them as pains in the a$$. Some pogie officer's may refer to them as fools, lol IMO detectives refer to them as free labor... anyway you get the idea. Amongst ourselves we just call us cops. The highest compliment one cop can pay to another is "That guy is a cop". One thing about cops is.. they usually know each other. Department lines mean nothing when you're in the doo doo, and no back-up is available... and you hear a voice behind you ask how you want to handle it... and there stands a university cop. It dont matter what his shield looks like or what color his shirt is... Your not alone... another cop wont let you down.

    This is the best I can do to help everyone understand the relationship between cops, even when you dont know each other.

    Continued....
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  12. #41
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    Continued...

    I know that I drag these things out... and I'm sorry if I'm boring anyone...

    IMO this campus officer is a cop. He heard an officer in serious distress and he responded. In a city the size of houston... two mile's isnt far at all.
    I'm sure the university police administrators saw this as a chance to dump a pain in the a$$, and replace him with an officer that has a proper attitude,and aspirations... like becoming an administrator.

    IMO the Universty is a less safe, and less served place after ths firing. As far as the Officer. He'll be OK. He's a cop.


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  13. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by wjh2657 View Post
    I don't know what the standing orders are for his post, but at first glance the fact is that he left his post. As a Marine I can understand the significance of that. It would all depend on what the rules of engagement were for the campus police to assist the city PD. Calling the administration Commies is showing poor judgment for their viewpoint: they pay the officer to guard their campus and they expect him to do just that.

    Get rid of all the testosterone and good old buddy stuff and look at what his actual duties were. At this point I for one don't know for sure what his duty was and can't judge him.
    Yes, my point too. You can't just take off and leave the sometimes thousands of students in dorms to handle something catastrophic without sufficient help: fires, critical illness, suicide threats etc.,etc,

  14. #43
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    Kinda like in the Military,If your a Marine and your ass is on fire you don't care if the guy coming to help is Navy,Air Force,Coast Guard,or another Marine,you just hope they brought a fire extinguisher
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  15. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by dukalmighty View Post
    Kinda like in the Military,If your a Marine and your ass is on fire you don't care if the guy coming to help is Navy,Air Force,Coast Guard,or another Marine,you just hope they brought a fire extinguisher
    Just as long as it isn't a soldier.

    A Marine couldn't live with himself if the Army saved him.
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  16. #45
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    SIXTO I think you mean "as long as it isn't a Doggie". : )
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    patriot and who isn't. Its function is to obey orders, not originate them.

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