June 10, 2009
Make your own 'luck' in cracking cases
PoliceOne Senior Editor Doug Wyllie
By Doug Wyllie, PoliceOne Senior Editor
— From an interview with NYPD Lieutenant (ret.) Tom Joyce
“Shallow men believe in luck. Strong men believe in cause and effect.”
— Ralph Waldo Emerson
We often talk about the fact that it’s important to “train like you fight.” A variation on that theme comes into play when you’re doing some of the more mundane tasks in police work. Every incident report, every single investigation an officer does — no matter how seemingly small or futile — is excellent practice for the “big case” you’ll inevitably one day face.
“I had a friend in NYPD who would meticulously dig deep on every case for the tiniest piece of information,” explains Tom Joyce, a retired NYPD Lieutenant. “Exhausting? Sure, but in addition to the fact that he frequently came up with stuff that could be used by other investigators, he was always refining his ability to dig, think, search, find, and ultimately, solve cases.”
Even when you’re tired, or when you ‘just know’ that the case you’re working on will be closed without a conviction, take the opportunity to find out something new about the investigative tools you’re using, or the way you do your business.
“It will pay off,” Joyce concludes.
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