Chief's Chair: Causing waves
Editor's note: In anticipation of police chiefs worldwide making the trip to Chicago for IACP, PoliceOne asked you to sit in the chief's chair and tell us what you would do if you were chief of police. We read every submission and selected some standouts from among those we received.
If I were chief I would have my agency’s Criminal Investigations Section handle all follow-up investigations. Currently they do not: Patrol handles all cases from start to finish and from robberies to simple thefts. Patrol is the backbone of any department, but since we have to investigate all of our cases and work patrol, we are always playing catch up.
Next I would allow my patrol officers to eat lunch together. Currently no two patrol officers are allowed to eat together, but any number of CIS officers and supervisors are allowed to. This is something I have questioned since I started, and no supervisor can give a good reason for it.
I would allow patrol officers to arrange the inside of their cruisers to fit them. Currently one of our majors designates what goes where, and most of our patrolmen are unhappy with this. The troops who work the streets everyday need to have the vehicle equipped to their needs.
If our budget was increased, I would get new equipment for the inside the cruisers. Because we have a bad drug problem in our area and no access to a K-9, I would also start a K-9 unit.
Overall my current chief is doing a good job but it seems many people that fill the supervisor rolls are afraid to “cause waves" — in other words, change things or speak up — so if I were chief, I would go into it with a very open mind.