Tuesday, July 26, 2016

NYPD Lexicon - The Words Defined, For Those that Want to Know

Perp - Perpetrator, the one that committed the crime

Bus - Ambulance (probably rooted in the concept that in poor neighborhoods, most doc visits are via ambulance to an Emergency Room)

Wheel Gun - revolver

Heater - perp's gun

Skel - druggies and other "low lifes" - probably rooted in the idea that many heroin addicts are thin and skeleton like

RMP - Radio Motor Patrol - patrol vehicle - police car

Po Po - police officer as he is often referred to on the street

Tin - Police Officer's badge / shield

Shield - Police Officer's badge

Square Badge - Private security / store securing

One Way - a cop that only looks out for themself only

Summons Whore - a cop who writes lots of summonses, thinking it will get them a detail

Detail (Precinct) - a position that is off patrol in a precinct

Detail (Event) - getting detailed to an event, like a parade, New Year's Eve, a protest, etc

Hats and Bats - often noted on a detail notification - bring your nightstick and helmet

Wood Shampoo, Bronx Party Hat, Turbanized- hitting someone in the head with a nightstick

In the Bag - in uniform - "I'm not doing anti-crime tonight, I'm in the bag"

Boss - Sergeant or above. Any rank above you

Collar - Arrest

On the Job - you're a cop

The Job - the police department

Shakebox - a supervisor that has trouble making a decision

Shakey - a cop that follows the patrol guide too closely and is inflexible in how he polices

Christmas Lights - a patrol car's emergency lighting

Mope - criminal, usually on the low end of the scale

The House - the stationhouse

63 - out for meal

House Mouse - cop with an inside job, off the streets and not dealing with perps

Ground Ball - easy to do or complete

Swing - your days off - "I'm swinging out for two days"

Scratch - Signature

Step on your Dick - mess up

Bag of Shit - a situation that is just going to get worse before it gets better. A case with no leads.

Shoo Fly - Duty Captain on the evening or midnight shift who makes the rounds of all the precincts in his or her patrol boro - "Shoe Fly heading to the Four One"

Green Paper - Command Discipline. An official reprimand.

Kangaroo Court - The Department's Trial Room

On the Level - trustworthy, team player

Hairbag - A lazy, unkept cop

Looking - looking to make an arrest - "Guys, I'm looking today, so if you find something you don't want, I'll take it"

Flying - working your tour on patrol in another command

One P P, Puzzle Palace - NYPD Police Headquarters

One Under - perpetrator is under arrest

Sector - subdivision of a precinct, defines the area an RMP or Sector Car should patrol

Land Pirates - FDNY

Floater - DOA in water

Making a Collar - making an arrest

Collars for Dollars - making an arrest near the end of tour, thus incurring overtime

RDO - Regular Day Off

Tool - cop that's an asshole

28 / UF-28 - Request for unscheduled Day Off

Rat - someone that calls Internal Affairs / POs and Detectives assigned to Internal Affairs

Rat Squad - Internal Affairs

Draftee - most supervisors in IAB / Internal Affairs

Dinosaur - a cop with over 20 years on the job

Day Tours or 8 by 4 - day time shift, generally 0705 x 1540

Evening Tours or 4 by 12 - evening shift, generally 1530 x 2355

Midnight Tours or 12 by 8 - overnight shift, 2345 x 0720

So, The Plan Last Saturday was to Revisit my Old Stomping Grounds in Hunt's Point

Yep, that was the plan. Go to some of the more memorable locations in my old South Bronx commands and take some picture, from the outside, of the more memorable locations.

Didn't happen.

This past weekend was too damn hot.

Instead, I virtually explored it via Google Maps and Street Views. I found myself constant drawn to the same location. Actually, it's four locations, but it's treated as one. Four attached buildings. Two common courtyards. One large, connected roof.

621, 623, 625 and 627 Manida Street. Confines of the 41 Precinct, deep in Hunt's Point. We used to refer to it as The Well.

I have a couple of stories to tell from that location and would appreciate some feedback as which to tell first. The choices are:

1- 34 Under, Central! (34 arrests made in about 45 minutes - all walking into 625/627 to buy crack)

2 - Don't Choot! Don't Choot! I takin' a Chit! (the closest I ever came to shooting someone)

3 - Officer, You are Under Arrest! (4 Y/O "Fat Boy" arrests Officer Tenkar)

4 - That Ain't no Cop! That's the Retard from Around the Corner (my first time doing observations on a narco set)

5 - This Bike has No Breaks! (Riding a crackhead's bike back to the station house - and not being told until I'm already going downhill that it had no breaks)

Let me know here, G+ or on Facebook - I'll have the post in question ready by the weekend.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Excellent Analysis of the Alton Sterling and Philando Castile Police Involved Shootings

Since I've retired I've been checking out some police related podcasts as I'm considering doing one myself at some point. You would have thought I would have dug into the world of police podcasts while I was actually commuting to the job.

One of the best I've found so far is the Police Academy Podcast. It does an amazing breakdown and analysis of the Alton Sterling and Philando Castile police involved shootings.

You can listen to the audio or watch the videos below. I ask you do one or the other. They were an eye opener for me.

Add the Police Academy Podcast to you podcast app.

Alton Sterling:

Philando Castile

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Eight-ball on the Corner Mailbox

It was a late winter night in early 98 when we heard the gunshots "POP! POP! POP!" followed by at least a half dozen more. We were traveling west on Westchester Ave, just past the intersection of Southern Blvd and the gunshots were from behind us.

We turned on the Christmas Tree lights and did a sharp u-turn at which point the job came over the radio: "Confines of the 41 Precinct, shots fired Bryant and Westchester. Unit to respond?"

"One Tracer Five Three Oh Five. Show us responding. Two blocks out. Will advise when 84."

And just like that we were on the scene. There was only one person there, a black male, early 20s, about 5' 9" and almost as large around. He was leaning face front on a mailbox, almost draped on it.

"Yo, my man, you ok? You see anything?" His jacket was black with an eight-ball on the back.

"Officer!" he exclaimed, turing his head without moving his body. Upon getting close to him I could smell the iron in the air. His jacket was wet from blood seeping out of an unknown number of bullet wounds.

Shit! "One Tracer. Get me a bus to my location forthwith! Male shot, multiple wounds."

"Guy, you're going to be okay. I've got an ambulance coming, just stay with me."

"Tell me the truth officer. How bad is it? I got's to know."

What do you say to a man with multiple bullets in his back? The only reason he was still alive was that the fat on his back kept the damage from being lethal.

"You were shot multiple times. Just be cool. EMS is almost here." You could hear the sirens from the ambulance, they were close.

"No man! My eight-ball jacket! How bad is it? Will it wash out?"

I stood there, stunned for a second. Here's a man with multiple bullets in his back and he's concerned about whether or not the blood will wash out from his jacket.

"Don't let them cut my jacket officer! Please, promise me you won't let them."

I asked the EMTs to let him take his jacket off before they loaded him up for the hospital. As he held up his jacket, I could plainly see five bullet holes. Blood was going to be the least of his jacket issues.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Assasination Attempt on Two NYPD Cops Last Night

I caught the news last night as I was laying in bed. Confines of the 70 Precinct in Brooklyn.
Dear Fellow Sergeant 
Tonight in the confines of the 70th precinct at the corner of Ditmas avenue and E 23rd street. Two NYPD officers in uniform were walking their patrol post when a dark colored sedan with tinted windows slowly approached them made a statement about getting them and proceeded to fire shots at the officers. The vehicle was occupied by (4) four male blacks, fled the scene and was subsequently dumped in the confines of the 67th precinct. Perps are still not apprehended. 
Please remain alert at all times. The SBA will utilize every resource to defend your action. Your safety and the safety of your officers is paramount. 
Stay safe
Ed Mullins
The bridges leaving Brooklyn were shut down in an attempt to locate the perps. Vehicle was recovered but no perps in custody at this time.

The following letter was sent last Wednesday by my union:
Dear Fellow Sergeant, 
The widespread violence directed at the law enforcement community was exacerbated this week when the Louisiana State Police uncovered a plot by numerous males, including several juveniles, to attack police officers with the sole intention of killing as many cops as possible.

Had the plot been carried out, a high-ranking State Police official said it would have caused “substantial harm to the police in the Baton Rouge area,” where a controversial police shooting took place last week.

As I have said many times before, we cannot afford to be complacent here in New York. This is perhaps the most dangerous time in history to be a police officer, regardless of the geographical location.

SBA personnel, as well as all NYPD officers, are urged to utilize extreme caution in everything you do both on and off duty. While on-duty, do not stare at your cell phones and be aware of your surroundings every minute of your tour.

Do not do anything alone, including taking meal or personal breaks. If using a bathroom in a public place, always have a fellow officer in close proximity to you.

Wear your bullet-resistant vests and carry extra ammunition at all times. Do not respond to any assignments, regardless of how seemingly routine, without backup. Scan the street or the location where you are headed before embarking down that road.

Enter all buildings strategically and realize that you must prepare for the unexpected at all times. The reality is that during these dangerous and daunting times, there is no such thing as anything routine.

While off duty, I urge you and your family members to not wear any police related items such as T-shirts or chains that suggest a connection to the law enforcement community. I would also suggest removing police family member stickers from your personal vehicles.

The hatred directed toward the police could not be more real. Some educated people have even described the Dallas man who shot 12 police officers – killing 5 - as a martyr.

I am not overreacting when I tell you to be careful – everywhere you go and in everything you do, whether on or off duty. The stakes are too high, and New York is always a favorite target of dissenters and terrorists.

When we were sworn in as police officers, we vowed to do whatever is necessary to keep the public safe. That is a vow we all take very seriously, but we must also be committed to keeping ourselves safe amid ever-increasing dangers.

We and our families, as well as our colleagues and the millions of law-abiding people that we protect on a daily basis, deserve nothing less.

Ed Mullins
If you are active, retired or a family member, now is not the time to advertise or advocate for the profession of law enforcement. I had my wife remove the gold charm of my sergeant's shield after reading this email, and my buff and memorial shirts are going deep in a drawer. I don't know when, let alone if, they will be worn again in public.

Remove decals from your personal vehicles and I strongly suggest trading in any FOP plates for standard state issued plates, especially if your family also drives the car in question. Unlike you, they will not be armed if the car is targeted.

It's a sad world we live in.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

My Black Lives Matter Moment in Time - Part 1, The Organized Chaos

On December 3rd, 2014 the Staten Island Grand Jury, came to the end of their investigation to the police related the death of Eric Garner. While I personally never thought what the cops in this situation did was criminal, it was in my opinion, poor tactics. It might not look good on camera striking someone resisting arrest in the knees to bring them down, but it certainly is following procedure. Jumping on the guy's back? Not good tactics.

On December 4th, 2014 I reported to work at my usual start time - 6 AM. By 830 that morning, I was suiting up with one of the detectives from my office - we were being detailed for expected protests. Little did I know at the time I wouldn't get back to my office until 11 AM the next morning and wouldn't head home until 1130 AM on December 5th.

Much of policing is "hurry up and wait", and we sat in an unmarked vehicle until nearly 430 PM on the 4th, waiting for things to actually happen. With the exception of the detective from my office, no one besides my had crowd control training beyond the basics given in the academy. My old unit, a Bronx Tracer Unit when I was a rookie, was trained for two days in "disorder control". I tried to impart some of that basic knowledge to the 8 cops and detectives assigned to me, but I shouldn't have bothered. What would follow that night was not what I had trained for. It wasn't "disorder" but "organized chaos."

When the protestors started streaming into the park at Foley Square, you could tell, if you paid attention, that this was not going to be an ordinary protest. As they marched us single file to the square, a white lady, somewhere in her 70's, ran up to me and screamed in my face "YOU FUCKING PIECE OF SHIT!" I was surprised to say the least. I felt her breath in my face as she made her pronouncement. She then ran off, back into the mingling crowd of protesters.

I didn't think too much of it and I've certainly been called worse. It was when the second little old white lady came running up to me that it struck me that it was a tactic being used by some part of the protesters. This woman didn't get quite as close, as I knew what to expect this time and turned to confront her. "YOU FUCKING PIECE OF SHIT!" New lady, same line. I thanked her for expressing her opinion in such a courteous manner. She stared at me dumbfounded and stumbled back in the direction of the crowd.

I turned to the cop behind me in line and said: "See what you get when you put stripes on? The love of little old ladies. I really feel like I earned my stripes today."

The tactics of the protesters was really slick. The leadership broke off from Foley Park in different directions, requiring the NYPD to splinter into seperate units to follow and escort. The NYPD didnt seem to have much of a plan aside from running along side the protesters. Which lead to chaos when these splinters would sweep around and intersect each other, such as they did at Houston and Broadway. They intermingled two such groups and then broke off in 4 directions. Social media was their tool and they used it well. The NYPD was played and the night was still young.

Most of the chanting was "no justice, no peace. no racist, po-lice!" which was fine. A few "fuck the police" thrown in for good measure and of course, "hands up, don't shoot!" My sister actually saw me on the BBC news feed, running along with these idiots.

Part 2 will be The Line is Drawn. Wherein I make my first and only arrest as a Sergeant, because no one was taking the NYPD "for real."

Small aside. I just ordered these gloves as the video is pretty striking. Slash proof gloves. Not stab proof. I'm not sure how tactical they are (I suspect it wouldn't be great while frisking a subject but might work well in handling protesters), but I'm a klutz in the kitchen (and retirement means more time in the kitchen), and at 10 bucks for 2 pairs I'm giving it a shot.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Not the Way I Wanted to Remember My Last "Active" Day in Law Enforcement

I had lots of plans on how I was going to re-kick the Saturday Knight Special blog. Mourning the loss of yet more members of law enforcement was not it.

Three officers dead in Baton Rogue. Three others shot. Another military vet is the shooter, this time with links to the Nation of Islam.

The assasination of five officers in Dallas on July 7th was already going to change the direction of this blog, or at least add more depth to it.

It will still be stories of my time on patrol, but not just my rookie time, but later patrol time as both an officer and a sergeant. It will also touch on current events that are relevant to law enforcement. It will carry my opinion on these events and what can be done to keep us from the death spiral we appear to be on in this nation.

The angry wind that's blowing, fueled by the media and those with agendas, needs to shift. There isn't a cop in the nation that starts their tour or shift with the idea of "I want to kill someone today." The most common thought, after figuring out where and what your meal will be, is getting to the end of that tour safely. Going home to your family.

I still remember, as a newly promoted Sergeant, mentioning that my tour, the 5th one of the week, was "my last one." Jimmy, a black cop with well over 20 years on the job at the time, still carrying his six-shooter in a swivel holster, reprimanded me in his slight southern drawl.

"Sarge, your last tour is the one ya don't go home from. I ain't never gonna hear you say those words again. We clear?"

Clear as glass Jimmy.

There are 31 deaths of law enforcement officers by gunfire so far this year, an increase of 94% over the same time last year.

It's not the guns that are killing cops. Guns are certainly the method of choice, the instrument if you will, but they aren't doing the killing. Guns didn't kill 362 this year so far in Chicago or 168 this year so far in NYC. People killed them.

And those inner city deaths, you know who cares about those numbers? Not the feds. Not the media. Apparently, not the Democrats or the Republicans, Progressives or Conservatives, not the activists nor the racists. Those that care are the family members and the cops. I saw way too much death in my 20 years. Innocents and gangbangers. Cops and perps. I carry every death I witnessed with me and will continue to do so until my own passing.

Because cops do care. And bleed. And die. For you and your's.