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Solving Yesterday Today: Cold Cases

Television has glamorized the investigation of cold cases, often portraying them as the ideal assignment for a detective. The shroud of mystery is slowly unveiled with DNA magic, new evidence, new statements, or a twist in the case. Of course, this makes for great television ratings as true mysteries are a favorite amongst the American […]

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In Search of Concealed Evidence Using Warrants: The Detectives

The station parking lot was usually the operational staging point of executing search warrants at my department. Police convoys aligned the nearby streets circling the Hall of Justice and stuffed the empty spaces in the lot: multi-agencies in marked and unmarked units, officers clad in raid vests and uniforms, long guns prepared for tactical purposes. […]

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Leading The Force

There have been long debates over whether leadership skills are born within or developed in a person as a product of our environment. I would wager how the emergence of a leader evolves is irrelevant to most of us. What is crucial is the substance in a leader. Often people can point out a great […]

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Do You Have Moxie And The Uniform To Match?

“I believe as first responders we lose our innocence so the citizens can keep theirs.” It’s a profound statement, don’t you think? One of my former colleagues, Wes Gudahl, wrote these words in an email he addressed to the police department upon his retirement from law enforcement and subsequently shared with me. We are “like” […]

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The Forgotten Witness

  Communication skills are not only needed for the hard interrogations, but predominantly to be effective with all levels of correspondence in order to extract information. Witnesses can help an investigator include or exclude evidence, information, or facts. Briefly, a witness is a person who has observed an incident, event, or watched a crime take […]

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Protecting Against Unlawful Interrogations: From The Cop Side

While viewing your favorite police show on television, have you ever followed an episode in which the police advised a suspect of their rights? Did it seem like the scene was placed for dramatic effect or was it a proper segue into an advisement of rights? Do you understand in which situations a peace officer […]

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Basic Composition of Traffic Enforcement

Traffic enforcement has long been a staple of police organizations as an essential service to the public. It is widely considered one of the most effective tools to combat and deter traffic infractions and crime. Recently, society has made demands and outcries for police to find remedies to the rising increase in aggressive driving and […]

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These Boots Were Made For Walking…

A desperate sounding 911 call had prompted them to the ranch. The century old mahogany door creaked open as the deputy sheriff’s entry team accessed the living room. At first glance, the deputies observed a phone was on the floor of the foyer. The woman lay motionless on her left side. She was a well-known […]

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How Does Your Situational and Self-Awareness Rate?

Do you know the laws (federal, state, local), police procedures, and how they apply? Can you read people, think on your feet, communicate well, and problem solve? Can you do all of these at the same time? In other words, do you practice circus tricks much? That’s right. A person can’t just occupy a uniform […]

Media Depictions of Working in Criminal Justice Versus Reality

The field of criminal justice has experienced a large amount of interest in the last decade, partly because of how the media depicts the profession. The influx of interested individuals pursuing a criminal justice degree is great for generating to interest, but distorts what to expect on the job or in the field. It’s easy […]