Four hours with the CSPD

Essay by JNixon November 2014

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Jerome Nixon

Four hours with the CSPD

October 11, 2014

I want to express my gratitude and share my ride-a-long experience. The first thing I had to do was contact the Colorado Springs Stetson Hills Area Command to schedule my ride-along. I read the department's ride-along program policy and I received instructions on what I had to do to fulfill the necessary program requirements. Once the initial paperwork was done, a few signatures, a waiver and a criminal background check, I was ready to go.

On the day of my ride-along while in the waiting room I met another person who was on a ride-along for class credit as well. After newly hour of waiting I finally met my officer. The officer that was chosen to allow me to ride-along was a female officer. Following her introduction we headed out to the Charger. I was giving a walkie-talkie with an earpiece so that I could listen to the communication from the dispatch.

We entered the vehicle, buckled up and started on our way. In the cruiser the officer had logged into her laptop to check her files and looked at any updates on her calls. I was informed that my experience would vary just as much as the calls that the officers went out on from day to day. Some of my responsibilities were that I had to be self-sufficient, be able to think ahead, have the ability to know where I was and most importantly enjoy myself.

Our first call was about an attempted shoplifting at a Safeway store. I had the opportunity to drive around the neighborhood and see homes were suspected criminal activity was believed to be. We also responded to a runaway from home. The last thing we did was make a traffic stop for an...