|Leave your wallet in your locker|
PoliceOne Senior Editor
I was speaking with a friend of mine from San Francisco Police Department last week, and during our discussion we came up with a great — albeit somewhat simple — tactical tip worthy of contemplation here. “Pat” and I began to talk about an incident a few years ago — neither of us could quite put our finger on the specific event, so if you remember it, please drop me an email — in which an officer who had been killed in the line of duty happened to be carrying his wallet. The murderer took the cop’s wallet, which contained as one might expect, his home address and other personal information. This gave the violator potential access to the cop’s home and family.
One solution commonly considered is to place your department address on all those DMV and credit card forms, so everything traces back to the department. For the most part agencies are very receptive to this idea, but it does present some potential issues should you need to relocate or whatnot.
Here’s an even simpler idea: leave your wallet in your locker back at the PD. All you’re really going to need is your company ID and some walking around money for lunch and whatever else you might need to pick up during your shift. My friend joked that he’s pretty much always got a lottery ticket in there too (in humor, there is truth, because true to his word, there it was!). If you have just those items — okay, maybe add a credit card which doesn’t have your home address either — in a small billfold, you’re taking just one small, simple step to ensure that your personal information stays out of the hands of the bad guys.
Oh, and you won’t have to sit on that fat, uncomfortable wallet all shift long!
Doug Wyllie is Editor in Chief of PoliceOne, responsible for setting the editorial direction of the website and managing the planned editorial features by our roster of expert writers. In addition to his editorial and managerial responsibilities, Doug has authored more than 700 feature articles and tactical tips on a wide range of topics and trends that affect the law enforcement community.
On a daily basis, Doug is in close personal contact with some of the top subject-matter experts in law enforcement, regularly tapping into the world-class knowledge of officers and trainers from around the United States, and working to help spread that information and insight to the hundreds of thousands of officers who visit PoliceOne every month.
Doug is a member of International Law Enforcement Educators and Trainers Association (ILEETA), and an Associate Member of the California Peace Officers' Association. He is also a member of the Public Safety Writers Association, and is a two-time (2011 and 2012) Western Publishing Association "Maggie Award" Finalist in the category of Best Regularly Featured Digital Edition Column.
Even in his "spare" time, he is active in his support for the law enforcement community, contributing his time and talents toward police-related charitable events as well as participating in force-on-force training, search-and-rescue training, and other scenario-based training designed to prepare cops for the fight they face every day on the street.
Contact Doug Wyllie