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    Renewed Challenges Based on Miranda

    Over the past couple of years courts have seen a renewed number of claims based upon allegations related to violations of the 5th Amendment self-incrimination clause as well as violations of the rule announced in Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U.S. 436 (1966). Two cases decided on June 28th 2004 provide some guidance for law enforcement agencies with respect to the reaches ...
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    Autism and Law Enforcement

    Autism and Law Enforcement produced by Dennis Debbaudt and directed by Dave Legacy, April 2004. The video Autism and Law Enforcement provides a quick and engaging education in autism that can help increase safety for both officers and individuals with autism, as well as minimize the potential for litigation that could occur as a result of a misunderstanding. Interviews and vignettes ...
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    Roll-Call Training

    Body: Hypothetical: Officer Courtney observes a subject, Mr. Eubanks, who he has reasonable suspicion, (but not probable cause), to believe has been involved in the shoplifting of a can of beer. Officer Courtney stops Eubanks. Question: Can Officer Courtney constitutionally conduct a frisk of Eubanks, for officer safety, prior to questioning him? Answer: No, not under the facts provided. Shoplifters are ...
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    State Level Training Commissions

    "Alabama Peace Officers Standards and Training Commission": "Alaska Police Standards Council": "Arizona Peace Officer Standards and Training Board": "Arkansas Commission on Law Enforcement Standards and Training": "California Peace Officer Standards and Training Commission": "Colorado Peace Officer Standards and Training Board": "Connecticut Police Officer Standards and Training Council": "District of Columbia Peace Officer Standards and Training Board":,a,1232,q,541040,mpdcNav_GID,1523,mpdcNav,%7C31417%7C.asp "Federal Law Enforcement Training Center": ...
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    Supreme Court-Violation of Miranda does not Violate 5th Amendment but may Violate Due Process

    In a decision dated May 27, 2003, the United States Supreme Court held that interrogation undertaken and continued in violation of Miranda, does not give rise to a civil lawsuit based on a violation of the Fifth Amendment in cases where the police never attempt to introduce the statement in a criminal trial. Chavez v. Martinez, 538 U.S. ___, slip op. ...
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    The First Layer: Policy Establishing Departmental Standards of Performance

    In the previous article titled: "Focus on Liability Reduction and Better Performance" we described the Six Layered Liability Protection Process which requires absolute attention to the development of policies based on the principle of "foreseeability" for the performance of certain tasks, the training in the necessary skills and critical policies, quality supervision, corrective action and remediation, constant review and necessary revision, ...
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    Failure of Supervisory Involvement in Pursuit Contributes to Liability

    Clark v. South Carolina Department of Public Safety, 2002 S.C. App. LEXIS ( S.C. Ct.App. 2002), involved a police pursuit conducted by the South Carolina Highway Patrol. Trooper Greg Bradley observed a van operating at 57 mph in a 45 mph zone. He attempted to pull the van over but the van took off. At one point the van stopped in ...
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    New Book, New Page, New Puzzle

    Hello, and welcome to the Chaplain’s Corner 2009. New Year’s 2009! Wow. I can still remember back in high school when I thought the year 2000 was so far in the future that it would never get here. Doesn’t seem possible, yet here it is again...another new year. A new year. A time of new things. Some of us are lucky ...
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    Police Officer Suicide Prevention

    h4. Officers kill themselves at higher rate than general population The seasonal spike in suicides during the Christmas/New Years holiday period is no secret to veteran law enforcement officers. What may come as a surprise is the high number of officers that, to use the old phrase, "eat their gun." The recent suicides of two New Orleans Police officers during the ...
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    Behavioral Aspects of Crowd and Riot Control

    Having described the types of behaviors and techniques associated with riot behavior, both group and individual, it is now important to discuss those techniques that law enforcement must employ if it is to successfully contain and control this behavior. Like the individual and group activities that are a part of riot behavior, riot control involves actions both by the individual police ...
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    The Rookie

    Hello, and welcome once again to the Chaplain’s Corner. I thought I’d share one of my “vintage” Christmas columns from previous years with you. This one is from 2001: It seems strange, I guess… as I pondered and pondered a Christmas message, the phrase “walking the beat” kept coming to mind. Way back in the early days of police work, before ...
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    Bible Study Time

    Hi and welcome once again to the Chaplain’s Corner. I’ve had this idea keep coming back and coming back, so I guess I should pursue it. It isn’t often (and it has been a while) since I did something akin to a straight-up Bible study in the column. What I’d like to look at this time is a passage from the ...
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    Two Rulings Related to School Detention: (1) Detention w/o Notification & (2) Detention by SRO

    Detention w/o Notification OK In the first case, Wofford v. Evans, 390 F.3d 318, (4th Circuit 2004), school officials twice detained a 10-year old after her classmates told their teacher that the girl, M.D., had brought a gun to school. Students at Colonial Elementary School in Botetourt County, Va., reported to their teacher that they had seen M.D. in possession of ...
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    The Scanner

    Hello, and welcome back to the Chaplain’s Corner. July 2011… only 16 more months! I only hope this country lasts that long. I have to wonder: “What part of ‘NO’ don’t Senators understand?” And of course, too, when you read the headlines on Drudge, you keep seeing things proposed and pending that are straight out of the Book of Revelation. But ...
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    Helpful Hints: Drug-Dependent Behavior

    A person who has overdosed should be treated as a medical emergency, and police officers must be able to recognize the symptoms. Acute opiate overdose is characterized by a marked unresponsiveness, in the presence of very slow or labored breathing. Needle marks and/or tracks will be noted. The pupils are pinpoints, and both pulse and heartbeat are extremely slow. If the ...
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    Witnesses: A critical element in administrative investigations

    When your law enforcement agency conducts an administrative investigation you usually have a complainant and your agency employee. Frequently, the complainant has a witness or two. Your employee often has other agency employees, such as a partner or back-up officer, supervisor and the dispatcher. Other witnesses with little or no allegiance to either the complainant or employee are commonly referred to ...
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    I Have Heroes - They Are Called Dispatchers

    I Have Heroes - They Are Called Dispatchers
    Many moons ago at the ripe old age of 19 I began my law enforcement career. I was still too young to become an officer so I became a dispatcher while I waited to go to the police academy. I figured I'd do the "easy" job of dispatching before becoming a cop and doing real police work. It sure didn't take ...
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    United States Supreme Court: Scott v. Harris (Ramming During High Speed Pursuit)

    On Monday February 26, 2007 the United States Supreme Court heard oral argument in Scott v. Harris, a case stemming from a high-speed pursuit in Coweta County Georgia. Harris, the motorist was speeding through Coweta County which drew the attention of law enforcement. Officers attempted to stop Harris, at which point he fled at high-speed. Deputy Scott of the Coweta County ...
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    Doing the right thing and being treated "wrong"

    Sometimes law enforcement officers who are suffering from police stress avoid seeking counseling, often for good reason (see my article "The Ugly Shrink"). But sometimes stress builds up to a point where they have an episode either of depression or panic that is so disturbing or so blatant that they reluctantly see a therapist. Often spouses convince their partners to get ...
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    Quoting Statements in an Open Account: Truthful or Deceptive?

    During most interviews the investigator should develop an open, or narrative account from the subject. It is called an open account because the investigator’s question encourages the subject to relate everything relative to the area of inquiry and once the subject starts talking, the investigator does not interrupt the account. Examples of questions that elicit an open account include, “Mary tell ...
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