Law Enforcement News

Vol. XXX, No. 624 A publication of John Jay College of Criminal Justice/CUNY October 2004

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In this issue:

Around The Nation: A coast-to-coast roundup of police news.
No (over)time for sergeants: How much are supervisors worth?
Last call: Tough countermeasures for officers’ off-duty drinking.
People & Places: Love is in the air; doing without; zapping the chief; head case; confronting a chief’s past; early exit.
Wives’ tale: Polygamist cops face loss of certification.
Garbage in, garbage out: Cities tackle “chronic nuisances.”
Improvement by decree: Court orders lifted for state police agencies.
Leaving the light on: LA squad tackles motel crime.
Thinking outside the box: Baltimore “CitiStat” hailed as innovation.
All in the family: Violent juveniles & their victims.
Hasta la vista: No licenses for illegal aliens.
Short Takes: Police news in easy-to-swallow capsule form.
As safe as ever: BJS says crime remains at 30-year low.
Forum: Police fatigue as an ethical issue.
Other Voices: Editorial views on criminal justice issues.
Upcoming Events: Professional development opportunities.

Note to Readers:

The opinions expressed on the Forum page are those of the contributing writer or cartoonist, or of the original source newspaper, and do not represent an official position of Law Enforcement News.

Readers are invited to voice their opinions on topical issues, in the form of letters or full-length commentaries. Please send all materials to the editor.


When police ethics is spelled with a Zzzz...

     Tired? If you are a police officer, I’ll bet you are. Sit down, put your feet up. But don’t fall asleep; take your time and read this, for it just may do you some good. As police officers, we have come across numerous occasions when we wished we had just gotten that extra hour of sleep, or the feeling that if you just close your eyes for a few minutes you will feel much better. Yes, it’s a problem — police fatigue.

     There are numerous contributing factors that can cause police fatigue, along with numerous ways of combating it. In his book “Tired Cops” (Police Executive Research Forum, 2000) Bryan Vila offers a number of clues to the causes of police fatigue, statistics about police fatigue, and remedies that can be applied to curb fatigue. [See LEN, April 30, 2002; Jan. 15/31, 2001.] But let’s look at police fatigue in a different light. Look at it as a “sleeping cop.” When, if at all, does a fatigued police officer become an ethical issue? Is it an ethical issue when the officer next to you in that patrol car is sleeping? What burden does that put on you? On that sleeping officer?...