Please. Do what you’re told.

A few weeks ago, I was dispatched to an alarm at a residence. Totally common and 99% of the time not a legit alarm. I happened to pull up to the residence right behind the homeowner. It appeared her husband had left the side door to the garage unlocked and the wind blew it open and activated the alarm. No biggie. The door from the garage to the house is also unlocked, but closed.

I’m already there and we’re big on public relations, so I decided to check the interior just to make sure everything was kosher. I told the homeowner, “I’m gonna check the inside. Just wait here and I’ll be right back.” I drew my gun, announced my presence and entered the house. Everything was as it should be. That is to say, nothing appeared ransacked or out of order. This house, much like your house, I assume, was not a long hallway with one door at the end. Rather, it had a few twists and turns and multiple rooms.

I say this because once I left the garage, I no longer have a visual on the homeowner. As I get to the last bedroom, I see nothing unusual, so I holster my gun and start to return to the garage. Now I hear movement immediately around the corner and a voice talking. It’s the homeowner. You know, the one I told to stay in the garage. So I don’t shoot her. *Sigh*

I didn’t point my gun at her or anything, but I did deliver a bit of a lecture about doing what the guy with the gun and badge tells you to do. You might not understand the reasoning behind it. That’s okay. You don’t need to. All you need to do is what the guy with the gun and the badge tells you to do. Pretty fucking simple, you ask me.

See, this avoids me (or more likely a more jumpy/less experienced officer) mistaking you for an intruder and putting a nice .40-size hole in your chest. Now, I know this may seem a tad reactionary. I understand. My point here is to educate. Whenever the guy with the gun and badge tells you to do something, just assume it’s either for your safety, his/her safety, or a combination thereof, ‘mkay? Excellent.

Class dismissed.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic. Snark is encouraged. Being a prat is not.

8 thoughts on “Please. Do what you’re told.

  1. Why is it so hard to do what they're told? You would think that they would understand that you ACTUALLY have a clue. That one should go buy a lottery ticket. Geez.

  2. Good thing you added that bit about the gun. I have a badge and no one does what I say.

    Stay safe,

  3. This sounds like the beginning setup for a porn scene. "Ma'am, I told you not to follow me back here! Ma'am, please put your blouse back on! Ma'am, I'm not going to ask you… Ma'am do not touch me! Stop touching me! Do not put your hand in there ma'am! I said sto… oh… oh… oh!" Cue cheesy music.

  4. Totally common and 99% of the time not a legit alarm.

    If this is true then the alarm does not give you probable cause to enter the residence.

    Man with badge and gun need to learn to follow Constitution.

  5. Anon 3:17,

    Perhaps you should go back and review the meaning of PC. An alarm and open door does give me probable cause. Not to mention, when the homeowner is there and gives permission.

    If I have an alarm and and unsecured door, I'm going to search the residence. We'll chalk that up to Cop Work 101.

    Thanks for your attempt, lame as it may have been, to put "Man with badge" into his place.

    Anonymous poster need to learn to think before posting…

  6. 1. The Constitution does not mention burglar alarms.

    2. As far as case law goes, burglar alarms do give probable cause if they are a reliable indication that a burglary is PROBABLY taking place. If, in your training and experience, an alarm has a one percent chance of being a crime, then it is not PROBABLE cause (which is, of course, required for an exigent circumstances entry).

    3. Do me a favor. At your next suppression hearing, let the judge know that, in your training and experience, the circumsatnces leading to the search or seizure turn out to be criminal activity approximately one percent of the time. Then after the hearing is over, please let the prosecutor taser you repeatedly in the bottumnal area — because, believe me, she will want to. Lol.

  7. *Sigh*

    Anon 9:15,

    Really? The Constitution doesn't mention alarms? I wonder why that could be? Perhaps it's because they didn't exist at the time?!?!

    As to your other points…I actually have made an arrest on a burglar after he tripped a home alarm. Guess what? He went to prison.

    Burglar alarms have false alarms all the time. That doesn't mean that every time is not legitimate. As a Officer, I treat them all the same. That is to say, there is the possibility that a crime is in progress and they need to be treated as such. Just because Gramma left the kitchen door open doesn't mean I know that ahead of time and have no PC to check the residence.

    Now do me a favor, go retake your first year of law school or re-watch the last season of Law & Order before yammering on…or better yet, enter and complete an Academy. Then, you can chime in with your Burglar Alarm Theory.

  8. It is called probable cause, not possible cause, for a reason. That is why they don't let you say there is a one percent chance of a crime when testifying and why you should not say it here.

    "Probable cause" is not "definite cause," but it ain't no one percent either. If you ever let a court know that you think it is one percent then your case is toast. Very burned toast.

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