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Posted: 9/6/2010 7:04:46 PM EDT
I have a LT that wants us to stop everyone for walking after dark.

His "PC" is the high rate of burglaries. The "suspicious" folks are not walking around with flat screen tvs or pushing lawn mowers. A few have had backpacks on, but we work in a college town too. All the folks stopped, so far, have been black too. The shift do-boy is the LT's pet too. All he stops are black folks for walking. He just stopped a black male at 10:30 PM for walking on a side walk, next to a major road. Have a feeling he's doing more than a Terry Frisk on pat downs too.

Yes, you can get out with folks, and ask them if they want to talk to you for a few minutes. But, they can tell you to "pound sand" and keep on walking. However, this is considered "obstruction" to some here. One thing if a burglary just occurred and you have a general description and make contact with someone matching most of the description, but I'm just talking about folks just walking.

I need links to court cases showing that this BS is unlawful and illegal. I would do the research, but have limited time on the Net the next few days at work. Thanks in advance.



Link Posted: 9/6/2010 7:35:43 PM EDT
Originally Posted By BIKECOP29:

<snip>

His "PC" is the high rate of burglaries.

<snip>

One thing if a burglary just occurred and you have a general description and make contact with someone matching most of the description, but I'm just talking about folks just walking.



I hope I'm not in the minority but I have no issue with getting out and making contacts if there is a burglary problem.

As you already stated, some of these stops are going to be consentual encounters. As long as that is understood I have no problem with anything going on. If you have a burglary problem then RS is pretty easy to articulate at night around the closed businesses. You don't need PC.

I don't think you will have much luck proving that this is "wrong."

Now go catch a burglar.

Link Posted: 9/6/2010 7:50:39 PM EDT
Originally Posted By BiteDog:
Originally Posted By BIKECOP29:

<snip>

His "PC" is the high rate of burglaries.

<snip>

One thing if a burglary just occurred and you have a general description and make contact with someone matching most of the description, but I'm just talking about folks just walking.



I hope I'm not in the minority but I have no issue with getting out and making contacts if there is a burglary problem.

As you already stated, some of these stops are going to be consentual encounters. As long as that is understood I have no problem with anything going on. If you have a burglary problem then RS is pretty easy to articulate at night around the closed businesses. You don't need PC.

I don't think you will have much luck proving that this is "wrong."

Now go catch a burglar.



I get out with people quite a bit. Depends on who, what, when, where, then find out the "why". You would be amazed at what you can uncover by doing this activity. Nobody is going to walk around with a big sign that says "I just did some bad shit". YMMV.
Link Posted: 9/6/2010 10:22:13 PM EDT
I stop and talk to people but use alot of tact in doing so. Just, "Hey, come here" will probably get you in IAB pretty quick.
Link Posted: 9/6/2010 11:44:37 PM EDT
For clarification, this is being done in residential areas. If it was a commercial area, RS would be easy to articulate due to stores being closed. I get out with folks next to closed stores all the time. Now they are going into carports, calling in tag numbers, since the vehicles are backed in and the tags are not visible from the street. And I caught a burglar last month, from clothing description given by a witness. His arrest as netted 10 other suspects too.

Posted Via AR15.Com Mobile
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 1:14:19 AM EDT
Originally Posted By BIKECOP29:
For clarification, this is being done in residential areas. If it was a commercial area, RS would be easy to articulate due to stores being closed. I get out with folks next to closed stores all the time. Now they are going into carports, calling in tag numbers, since the vehicles are backed in and the tags are not visible from the street. And I caught a burglar last month, from clothing description given by a witness. His arrest as netted 10 other suspects too.

Posted Via AR15.Com Mobile


Good job. Go catch the cat burglars now.
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 5:30:43 AM EDT
Originally Posted By tango59:
I stop and talk to people but use alot of tact in doing so. Just, "Hey, come here" will probably get you in IAB pretty quick.


So, coming to a skidding sideways stop in the Crown Vic, jumping out with weapon drawn, and yelling, "FREEZE, MOTHERFUCKER!" probably isn't a good idea?
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 5:54:29 AM EDT
Originally Posted By TxSgt1911:
Originally Posted By tango59:
I stop and talk to people but use alot of tact in doing so. Just, "Hey, come here" will probably get you in IAB pretty quick.


So, coming to a skidding sideways stop in the Crown Vic, jumping out with weapon drawn, and yelling, "FREEZE, MOTHERFUCKER!" probably isn't a good idea?


But it'll be entertaining!
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 8:04:19 AM EDT
We have a team that pretty much just goes into the shitty parts of town and pats pockets. Does some of it get thrown out? Yep. Are the corners pretty much empty of dope slingers, yep.
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 11:02:36 AM EDT

Originally Posted By TxSgt1911:
Originally Posted By tango59:
I stop and talk to people but use alot of tact in doing so. Just, "Hey, come here" will probably get you in IAB pretty quick.


So, coming to a skidding sideways stop in the Crown Vic, jumping out with weapon drawn, and yelling, "FREEZE, MOTHERFUCKER!" probably isn't a good idea?

That would be funny as fuck, but not worth a suspension and/or termination.

Came across this case law, Brown vs. Texas. http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/scripts/getcase.pl?court=us&vol=443&invol=47

It seems to justify my original concern about stopping folks just for walking in a residential area after sundown.
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 11:23:39 AM EDT
Like so much proactive police work, it is what the individual officer makes of it.

If he's keeping very detailed records - not just radio traffic or contact cards - to support his activities and trends/impact, I can see this as a good idea. The word of mouth effect will be reaped not only from crooks, but from any resident who sees this or is contacted, too. Kept positive, it's a winner.

But I can also see where the wrong guy could make this blow up, and damned quick.
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 11:24:43 AM EDT
Originally Posted By BIKECOP29:
Came across this case law, Brown vs. Texas. http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/scripts/getcase.pl?court=us&vol=443&invol=47

It seems to justify my original concern about stopping folks just for walking in a residential area after sundown.


Brown was a daytime case and drug related. Like most case law, the officers poor articulation of what they were trying to accomplish is the reason the court sided with the defendant. The officers were not able to articulate any hand to hand, no approaching vehicles, no suspicious activity apart from "it looked strange and we had not seen the subject before."

Brown should have been a consentual encounter or the officers should have waited and watched a little more to develop better articulation for a detention.

You simply are not going to be able to prove that what your Lt wants done is "wrong." Your troops can go talk to whoever they want. If all they have is a consentual encounter so be it. If they have RS or better yet PC then they are not doing anything wrong.
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 11:35:50 AM EDT
Originally Posted By BIKECOP29:
I have a LT that wants us to stop everyone for walking after dark.

His "PC" is the high rate of burglaries. The "suspicious" folks are not walking around with flat screen tvs or pushing lawn mowers. A few have had backpacks on, but we work in a college town too. All the folks stopped, so far, have been black too. The shift do-boy is the LT's pet too. All he stops are black folks for walking. He just stopped a black male at 10:30 PM for walking on a side walk, next to a major road. Have a feeling he's doing more than a Terry Frisk on pat downs too.

Yes, you can get out with folks, and ask them if they want to talk to you for a few minutes. But, they can tell you to "pound sand" and keep on walking. However, this is considered "obstruction" to some here. One thing if a burglary just occurred and you have a general description and make contact with someone matching most of the description, but I'm just talking about folks just walking.

I need links to court cases showing that this BS is unlawful and illegal. I would do the research, but have limited time on the Net the next few days at work. Thanks in advance.





Well, sounds like a "mere encounter" to me. You either walk the area and get to know the residents, or you pass a/some people pull over and go for a stroll. Chat them up, and see if anything is out of sorts. They are not being "detained" and are free to ignore you and keep walking. But most will stop and chat for a minute or so. If they do, you may gather info, if they don't... maybe that tells you something too.

It's all HOW you do it. It long ago was the "common" way of policing, particularly in the metro areas.
In fact I think it even had a name... "beat cop", a cop who "walked the beat".
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 11:38:41 AM EDT
Originally Posted By BIKECOP29:
I have a LT that wants us to stop everyone for walking after dark.

His "PC" is the high rate of burglaries. The "suspicious" folks are not walking around with flat screen tvs or pushing lawn mowers. A few have had backpacks on, but we work in a college town too. All the folks stopped, so far, have been black too. The shift do-boy is the LT's pet too. All he stops are black folks for walking. He just stopped a black male at 10:30 PM for walking on a side walk, next to a major road. Have a feeling he's doing more than a Terry Frisk on pat downs too.

Yes, you can get out with folks, and ask them if they want to talk to you for a few minutes. But, they can tell you to "pound sand" and keep on walking. However, this is considered "obstruction" to some here. One thing if a burglary just occurred and you have a general description and make contact with someone matching most of the description, but I'm just talking about folks just walking.

I need links to court cases showing that this BS is unlawful and illegal. I would do the research, but have limited time on the Net the next few days at work. Thanks in advance.






Interesting.

TXL

Link Posted: 9/7/2010 8:26:23 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/7/2010 8:28:43 PM EDT by 401Jeeper]
Here's my take. Mind you, I've been a detentions deputy for 5.5 years and am now not quite halfway through FTO for Patrol.

0415 one morning, white male wearing a backpack walking down major street in my sector, semi-industrial area. My FTO and I call out citizen contact and go talk to him.

"Hey guy, just wanted to talk to you for a minute. There's been burglaries around here and we were curious if you've seen any wierd stuff going on." BS, but it's a reason to talk to him. Turns out he's walking to work at UPS, even knows the exact mileage to and from work. He lost his license so he walks. Legit guy, willingly gives me his ID and even tells me he got a letter yesterday saying he missed a court date.

Sure enough, I run him and he goes to jail. Good stop? Absolutely. Until I found out he was wanted, he was free to tell us to pound sand and walk away. He didn't even have to give us his ID because we had no RS to stop him. Turns out he had work clothes and water bottles only in his backpack. Nothing illegal or suspicious on him.

It's all in perspective. You can stop anyone and talk to them at any time in any place, as long as you understand they don't have to tell you jack, unless you can articulate good RS to question them.

Edit to clarify search incident to arrest
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