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ENGL 1010
7 Dec 2015


Bad boys, bad boys, whatcha gonna do, whatcha gonna do when they come for
you. This is one of the theme songs known most around the world. It comes from an
extremely popular television show, Cops. This show is one of the first places majority of
Americans get their common misconceptions on what the whole role of a police officer
is. The concept of policing was first born in 1633 in pre-Victorian England which was
overseen by a gentleman named, Sir Robert Peel. Policing was created because there was
a high demand to prevent violence and to have order within a community. The
effectiveness of policing depends mostly on public approval, a high degree of
cooperation by illustrating right and lawful actions at all times, and reporting crimes
when witnessed. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, For the second
consecutive year violent and property crime rates increased in 2012, increases driven by
simple assaults and crime not reported to police. Lately, as seen on several different
networks, the sole purpose of policing has been forgot and trashed by several Americans
all around the country, but the respected police officers are standing strong, continuing to
protect the people.
When you begin choosing what college courses you plan on taking is when you
also start thinking the hardest about what career path you would be interested in pursuing.

Originally when I was younger I wanted to work with animals, but now that I am older I
have realized that was not ideal considering I cannot stand the thought of putting an
animal to sleep. With that being said once you have picked a career path the first thing
you have to come to closure with is you do not get to pick and choose what parts of the
job you want to partake in, you get the job as a whole. Knowing yourself and what you
are passionate about are the most important qualities when considering where you want
to go with your future. Luckily, for me I have a role model in my life that sets the perfect
example of what I want in life, my brother Tony Archibald. He has been a police officer
for 8 years and has recently been promoted to the rank of Sergeant in the Tucson Police
department. Being a Police Officer in any community I believe is honorable. There are a
lot of good, bad and indifferent attributes to the everyday life in this job. To become
increasingly more knowledgeable about the career as a police officer I prepared questions
that I thought were the most important and interviewed him for his honest thoughts and
The preconceptions of being a police officer I thought before I learned more about
it included officers just waiting on the side of the road for someone to break the law or
even just barely going over the speed limit. Another one was the whole idea of them just
having a quota to fill so they would give tickets out for bogus reasons. Since the
interview I have learned much more realistic tasks of a police officer, to identify violators
of the law and escort them to court by summons or arresting the individuals. Some of
Sergeant Archibalds other responsibilities include responding to 911 emergency calls,
enforcing traffic laws, pursuing criminals, investigating crimes, and processing the crime
scene in an orderly fashion. Each police department is assigned to their own jurisdiction

within their state, but are certified as an officer to patrol in the entire state they police in.
Search and seizure is part of his everyday job; his actions and decisions have to work
within confines of the constitution to make sure the 4th amendment rights are not being
violated. Sergeant Archibald declared that, Due process is especially important because
Archibald is a fairly uncommon name and I would not like any case law written after
me. Back in the day, there were not strict regulations of peoples rights before the
Miranda Rights were created. Police officers and other authorities of the law were not
authorized to hold an individual without reasonable suspicion of a person who previously
has, or is about to commit an illegal act. After reasonable suspicion is obtained,
authorities need to develop probable cause to search and or arrest the individual.
Generally, working through a case the basic steps would be to investigate crime,
determine probable cause, arrest, book the individual in jail, and process all final
paperwork. The main cases he would not get involved with would be any matters creating
a conflict of interest, including family, the moment that conflict arises; he would recuse
himself to avoid having his integrity compromised.
To be a police officer, the education that is needed is a high school diploma or
GED at the bare minimum, but if you want to be promoted above an officer rank, it
requires any college degree. The steps to becoming a police officer requires a 17 week
basic police academy in which you learn basic investigation techniques, the law, how to
apply the law, physical/ defensive tactics, firearm training, and driving. Also, all
throughout the academy there are several tests, and then you have another 16 week field
training in which you are partnered up with a veteran police officer, and they evaluate
your performance. Some of these tests may require a little more time for particular

individuals; it depends on how quick they can learn. Seniority is a big part in the police
culture; it is traditional for the more experience an officer has, the better they are at their
job; after 3 years you are no longer a rookie and are respected more based off attitude
instead of seniority. Sergeant Archibald can be subpoenaed on a regular basis by
prosecutors and city attorneys; they ask him to explain steps he took during course of
investigation and his observations. Most of his cases he has dealt with are homicide,
aggravated assaults, major car accidents with fatalities, but now he deals mostly with
narcotic interdiction; routinely with high quantities of drugs.
The profession of being a police officer has many benefits to it. The medical and
dental coverage is one of the big benefits, especially when you have a family. The
average salary can be anywhere between 45,000 to 57,000 a year. You can retire at 20
years in the service at the highest salary you held for three consecutive years. Most of the
time you have a set schedule, which is about 4 days a week, 10 hours a day depending on
the case load. Some of the hard parts of the job are remembering every call is different,
leaving the past situation you just dealt with in the past, not letting it affect the way you
handle a new call and staying courteous. Another difficulty is spending hours at a time in
a police car doing absolutely nothing and then having to get up and moving really quick.
Also, with all the media badmouthing police work, people need to keep in mind that not
all police officers are bad apples and for every one negative news story there is a
thousand good stories not being heard. (Archibald)
Being a police officer, teamwork is a huge attribute to accomplish a common
goal. This job is more hands on action but paperwork is extremely important because
officers need to be able to document and justify everything they have done, it is an

interesting thought about how much the Basic English knowledge such as periods and
commas can alter a whole document. Sergeant Archibald wanted to be a police officer
because he liked the idea of helping people and making a positive impact in the
community and of course so he could carry a gun and drive fast. Th e passion behind a
profession is the key to waking up every day a career you will enjoy for however long
you decide to pursue it. To receive more information about being a police officer there is
a website called; tucsonaz.gov/police or a book called, Blue Blood, by Edward Conlon;
which is a memoir of being a police officer in New York.

Works Cited
Archibald, Tony. Personal interview. 13 November 2015.
Criminal Victimization. bjs.gov. 2012-13. Bureau of Justice Statistics. U.S.