Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Off Duty

How much off duty police work are you interesting in doing? How much do you project yourself as being a cop when you are not on duty? Do you wear police tee shirts and caps? Do you have police stickers on your car? Are you like me and just look like a cop?

I carry my gun on me or in my car nearly everywhere I go. I have handcuffs in the vehicle, a first aid kit, water, and a flashlight and a cell phone. My intention is to never get involved unless I am directly victimized or it is a life threatening situation or if I can handle it with a phone call.

When I am off duty I don't want to get tangled up in incidents that may cause liability to myself, my agency or to have to go to court on things that don't relate to my job. If something happens the responding officers won't know who I am or what I am doing, so I think in many ways it is better to just not get involved beyond what a good citizen would do, that's what the SGT Says.


Texas Ghostrider said...

Sometimes the best thing an off-duty can do is be a good witness. Call 911, record video with your cell phone. Sometimes it is safer for all involved to let the ON- DUTY do the job.


Excellant points there, and you too my buddy in TX!!!
Here are the rules I live by when off duty, ( which being a Fed. LEO you never really are as RCMP have jurisdiction over the munipal and Provincial guys).

Wear your T-shirts, balls caps, Dept. logo's when:

1) Attending LEO only function's such as ball or hockey games.
2) You are going to the police club and not out shopping at the mall.
3) Fine to wear at Legion Posts, and VFW's.

And unless you really look like a cop, ( I do, if the flat top was any shorter or higher I'd be mistaken for a jarhead ( sorry Marines, LOL) and I have the obligatory short moustache now.) I find more and more people since 9-11 are wearing NYPD/NYFD T-shirts, ballcaps, etc..even the actors wear them at times. So you could still feel fairly safe in Canada, (or VERY small town USA),.
If you do happen to have an incident come up where you absolutely must get involved wearing LOGO stuff or not, make sure your tin is clearly visable to the responding officers. ESPECIALLY if it's at an active shooter scene. Clearly identify yourself as a LEO to the very first responding unit!!! And every other Code 3 responder, as an 11-99 for an off duty officer doesn't sit well in my stomach!!
But as Ghostrider said, sit back, let the others guys on the job handle it, and look back fondly at your rookie days when you were as gung-ho and the guys responding....

Protect_and_Serve said...

It's tough in the small community I work in. All the bad guys know you and say hi while you're walking through Wal mart with your family.

If you don't want to carry your gun off duty, you should be a Firefighter.

Bunkermeister said...

Generally speaking, if there is no blood, I don't do anything unless I need too.

I nearly always carry off duty, or at least in my vehicle nearby.

I have been recognized at least four times over the years, once by a two year old!