Officer Survival


Officer Survival2022-01-26T11:01:38-08:00

Lessons Learned, Forgotten, And Ignored

It’s disappointing that we don’t pay better attention to our own history I am writing this just after returning from Las Vegas and the SHOT Show. An outstanding trip, a much-needed reunion with friends, and a celebration of the shooting, hunting, and outdoor culture. For American COP readers, throughout the show, there was unabashed support for law enforcement. While most of my time in Vegas focused on our industry, I can never visit without reflecting on the [...]

By |February 27th, 2024|

Christmas Stories From Patrol

By |December 19th, 2023|

Coming up on Christmas, I’m reminded of the ones I worked over the years. That got me thinking about good Christmas stories. Two stand out, one of which I’ll share here: a cautionary cop tale that eventually came to be. The others are from friends of mine who are still [...]

Set It & Forget It

By |November 14th, 2023|

Where do I set the dot? Is it like lights? Can it be too bright? Can you, or should you, tailor the dot's setting to the current lighting conditions? What about the situation? That dot is all the way up. Even at this distance, it is difficult to see [...]

From Familiar To Fatal In One Critical Second

By |September 19th, 2023|

A recent winter was a dark and bitter one for law enforcement, and the freezing cold had little to do with it. In Washington State, still mourning the murders of a Seattle cop on Halloween night and a Pierce County deputy the week before Christmas, four officers were shot to [...]

Spike Strips – Are They Worth It?

By |September 19th, 2023|

One phrase we see in both criminal and civil proceedings is “officer created danger.” It also appears in the legislative attacks on the Graham standard and other legal precedents that provide policing’s legal framework. Spike strips in their natural state - in a hard plastic case, unused.   [...]

Hypocrisy: Hazardous To Your Health

By |September 5th, 2023|

Buckle Up For Safety. Click It Or Ticket. Protected Or Ejected. No matter what clichéd phrase you want to throw out, the message is always clear — seatbelts save lives. Not wearing one has consequences, be they financial or mortal. These are the kinds of missives we relay to the [...]

Code 3 vs. Pursuit Driving: Is There A Difference?

By |August 29th, 2023|

I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty sure most of us became cops so we could drive fast legally. Who can deny the attraction of having droves of people get out of your way while burying the gas pedal into the floor in conjunction with the bright lights a-flashin’ [...]

OFFICER SURVIVAL | What If Grasshoppers Had Machine Guns?

By |August 22nd, 2023|

I often flashback to certain past events in my life, like Marine Corps School of Infantry (SOI), circa 1989. I was an 18-year-old Private sitting with the others in my platoon, paying close attention to a crusty old Gunny who was going over the finer points of how to lay [...]

Situational Awareness: Condition Orange At All Times?

By |July 18th, 2023|

My partner and I were working the graveyard shift and had taken a coffee break in a restaurant. We were engaged in an intense discussion about something so important I can’t remember what it was, when from my left side I felt a hand touch my shoulder and voice say, [...]

Street Cop Tactics

By |July 11th, 2023|

Over the years, I’ve watched what’s been written about tactics and their application by cops. I noticed much of the material is geared toward SWAT and specialized units. Perhaps this is because the perception is SWAT needs these tactics more than patrol cops? But by the time SWAT gets there, [...]

THE ARROGANCE OF IGNORANCE | Are You That Good … Or Just Lucky So Far?

By |June 27th, 2023|

There’s an old saying you can’t fix stupid, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t keep trying. I started pondering that issue the other day, following an interesting discussion I had with an officer. He’s one of those patrol officers I’m pretty sure every department has; the one convinced he’s seen [...]

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