Todays episode of...What the?
This is a discussion on Todays episode of...What the? within the Law Enforcement, Military & Homeland Security Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I think that SIXTO is right on with all of his posts. I don't know the whole story, so let us assume that the cops ...
June 23rd, 2008 01:04 AM
I think that SIXTO is right on with all of his posts. I don't know the whole story, so let us assume that the cops didn't try and call, or announce loudly that they were the cops. In that case, bad move on the cops. What is most likely going on in this case? Dad is drunk!
I've never walked up on this, but I have been dispatched on several calls like this. One for example; the cars parked in the yard, door is open, cars running, radio blaring. Front door to the house is open. No way I was going in their! If the guy is so drunk that he can't even shut his car off, I doubt that he is in the right frame of mind to thank me when I go looking for him through the house. Of course check the license plate to make sure it comes back to the residence and not some dirt bag thief.
If I was going to make entry, it would be a very slow and deliberate throughout the entry. I would announce my presence and intent very loudly repeatedly.
In my opinion they were not breaking the law. I don't want to Monday morning quarter back it, but BASED ON WHAT I KNOW I would be very up set if they were standing over my bed. I'm not that hard of a sleeper and I would have herd them if they would of yelled. Of course I don't drink, and I suspect that the guy in the scenario above was drinking. Cops don't always make the right decisions, if those cops had the same situation happen to them the next night, they might have done things differently. I doubt we know the whole story.
June 23rd, 2008 09:03 AM
One thing to remember, these are patrol officers we are talking about. These officers most likely have the same patrol area night after night. This means, they probably drove by this home 2 or 3 times a night, 5 nights a week, 52 weeks a year. If the door being ajar, keys in truck, garage door open, been the norm for this particular home, the officers would have driven on by. These officers know the area, they know the homes, they may not know the people inside the homes, but they most likely know the homes well enough, that when something seems out of place, they can tell. This does not sound like a rural area where people leave their screen doors open and windows open at night. Had that been the normal situation, then the officers would have recognized that, and driven on by.
I always hear people complaining about police are reactive rather than pro-active. Well, here are a couple of officers reacting to a potentially troubling situation, and then being proactive in rectifying the situation, and people still complain. Those of you who routinely leave your doors open, well thats great. police don't investigate open doors in your area, because thats the norm for where you live. We don;t know the entire situation here. Maybe there have been reports of home invasions in the area. We just don't know. What we do know is that the police sensed something was wrong, and they investigated. Maybe they could have done better about waking the guy up, maybe hit the sirens on the car outside, maybe a phone call. Had they just said "Hey look an open door, cool", and drove on by, meanwhile a rape is taking place inside, or the kids ae being assaulted, or the home was being burglarized, well we would be calling for these officers heads on a stake.
Remember, no matter where you go, there you are.
June 23rd, 2008 02:05 PM
I don't expect them to be superman and save everyone. Nor do I expect or WANT them to be all that proactive. I'm realistic. I know they're reactive and that's the way it SHOULD be. When everything becomes more and more proactive, crooks aren't going to be you're only problem.
Originally Posted by Jaystekan
June 23rd, 2008 03:13 PM
This was reactive--to the reasonable suspicion of a crime in progress or recently occurred.
And as to checking on publicly-accessible doors at night in general, well, if nothing's going on, a little proactivity on their part pays dividends for the community at large and helps them earn their pay in lieu of doing nothing. (Homeowner's doors, mind you, aren't always legally accessible to the police--I'm speaking more of business doors which have no curtailage...this homeowner's case was different, in that there were indicators of a potential crime; it wasn't a random door check on a home.) Paranoia about this being symptomatic of some growing police state is just that--paranoia. If there was an issue with a given officer, squad, or department violating Constitutional protections, especially as a matter of procedure, then you'd have a problem with a given person or group which would require redress and punitive action.
I agree that the officers aren't and shouldn't be required to do this--it's a matter of it not being the state's role or capability to protect everyone. But if the officers choose to take reasonable action in the interest of public safety, that's good for everyone.
June 23rd, 2008 04:21 PM
This was the point I was making in my earlier post. This guy feels "violated " because a couple of cops entered his place to ensure everything was OK after they found the door ajar, keys in the car and no one answering their knocks.
Originally Posted by BikerRN
How would he feel if three thugs found the door ajar, entered the place, beat the daylights out of him, raped his wife, terrorized his kids and killed his dog. I bet he'd be wishing the cops were there then.
The two officers saw things weren't right, had concern about the people who lived there and went to investigate. If they found a couple of dead bodies it would be a different story. We wouldn't be arguing the point if they should have entered.
Be not far from me, for trouble is near; For there is none to help. psalm22:11
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