David Dodd 2:53 a.m., May 21
Do on-duty Cops have to follow any laws?
The other day I am sitting in my car, parked on the curb waiting for my daughter to get out of school. And driving towards me, on the other side of the road, is a Cop car. And the Cop is having a conversation on his cellphone. He was laughing it up with whoever was on the phone. Does the cellphone law, while driving, apply to Cops or not. They could always hide behind the ‘cellphone was being used for police related work’ line. But how do we know?
My father dad was a Cop for 14 years. Before his death earlier this year, I ran this by him last year when I saw the same thing, a Cop on a cellphone while driving, and he agreed with me. Police should be required to hand over their cellphone bills to make sure that when they are at work, and driving, that they are not on the phone or it is an abuse of power. Or, they should have specially equipped cellphones to track their so called ‘on the duty’ calls to prevent any misconception. I totally agree with that idea. That way the police department can make sure their men and women are not abusing power.
A month ago I saw another cop break the law. The cop made and illegal turn. I know it was illegal because there was a sign. I was on the other side of the intersection and ended up going to where the cop went after his illegal U-turn; AM/PM. I went in there and found him in line buying some chips and a diet Pepsi. He had to break the law for that? In front of a bunch of kids waiting to cross the street?
Yeah, I know, it is petty. These cops are putting their lives on the line everyday, and no one disputes that. I know it’s a long way from making a u-turn and buying chips to following Charger players for thirty-miles and then gunning them down. But hey, you never know; maybe it starts with the cellphone talking and illegal u-turns and graduates to illegal activity under a freeway off-ramp because of the belief they can’t be caught, and more importantly, shouldn’t be in trouble for breaking ticky-tack laws.
The cop that made the illegal u-turn did it right in front of a junior high school. The kids saw it happen just as I did. What kind of message does this send? Just because these men and women are cops, it should not mean a free ticket to do what they want when they want to. A cop could make a bad driving decision, as surely as a truck driver can, or you and I. But I don’t think hiding behind a badge should give them a free pass.
Then again; who is going to pull them over and give them a ticket?