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(AZ Family)   On-duty cops in a squad car caught playing cards and smoking cigars by a reporter who will soon be found mysteriously dead in a ditch with 10 baggies of cocaine stuffed down his throat and a dozen kiddie porn pictures in his pockets   (azfamily.com) divider line 44
    More: Obvious, phoenix, Phoenix Police Department, no religion, Chase Field, watchdog journalism  
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8675 clicks; posted to Main » on 27 Apr 2014 at 5:24 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



Voting Results (Smartest)
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest

2014-04-27 05:37:22 AM  
4 votes:
"Phoenix City Manager Ed Zuercher said after reviewing the video. "I'd also tell people when they see that, don't wait for months to let us know." "

Yea, don't wait months collecting evidence, proving that it is a long-running trend of wasting taxpayers money...tell us immediately so we can say "oh, it was just this one time, no problem"
2014-04-27 05:02:04 AM  
3 votes:
As I thought... There's been a change to the department scope and patrol area in the last year or so.

That unit was expanded, it went 24-hours a day (it was limited hours), and its patrol area was expanded, with a primary goal of getting the homeless off the streets and into shelters. It's not limited to game-night patrols like the article says.

That change in scope likely led to a change in administration and procedures, and these two guys probably realized nobody's watching them when the sportsball teams aren't playing.
2014-04-27 12:13:26 PM  
2 votes:
Let me start by saying these guys do need a little "coaching" on acceptable behavior since sitting on top a a parking garage playing cards is not acceptable.

But, knowing the  area they are assigned to patrol that is probably the  most effective thing for  them to do.  Phoenix uses assigned patrol areas and officers do not leave  that area, unless told to- i.e. officer assist.  Now thanks to the  input of the  Very Important Businessmen the  Downtown patrol areas around  the  Arena and DB stadium there is now  a heavily staffed dedicated force patrol the  grids in that area, this means that on event nights  the officers have plenty to do because of  the  increased number of people coming to the  area for the  event.  On non event nights playing cards while having  a cigar is about all  they have to do in some of the  grids.  When you patrol for 6 hours and the  only thing  you see is a cat burglarizing a trash can you get pretty bored.
If you want to direct your self-righteous rage at someone I suggest  the  Political hack  that applied  the  pressure to create a high saturation force for the area 24/7 instead of having a appropriate ratio of officers to crime and extra units brought in as needed for events.

For those of you saying it is different when this is done in the  "private sector," remember that when you are paying more for something  since the  person sitting around and reading  fark is increasing the  cost to you, it is still a waste of the  money you earn, just like when a person whose job is paid by  the  taxpayer does it , it is just in  the  private sector you do not see your money squandered and you can self rationalize your faux outrage by saying you do not have to buy the  product.
2014-04-27 09:37:49 AM  
2 votes:

Fark_Guy_Rob: I'm not a cop - so I'm only speculating but......I'm okay with this.  This is what I want cops in my neighborhood to do.

No seriously.

Look, if someone phoned 911 and reported a murder - and they kept playing cards; that's a different story.  That's a real problem.  But there are types of jobs where you don't do anything for a lot of the time.  We had night-security at the last company I worked for.  Their job was to sit around, and wait, for something to happen.  If nothing is happening, they have nothing to do.  You are paying them, so that they will be around when something happens.

What *should* these cops be doing?  I mean, sure, maybe in some parts of some countries there is just a never-ending pile of criminals and the cops and patrol the streets and catch them.  But in most places, nothing is happening on a Tuesday night.  Just regular people doing regular stuff.  These guys could go somewhere and hassle minorities or pull over people doing 2-3mph over the limit.  But neither would make things any better.  They're on duty, they are ready to go, and they are waiting for something to do.  That's part of the time.

You see this in a lot of jobs.  If you want to get upset, get upset at the people running things that allocate resources to places where there is downtime.

This isn't like a road construction job where employees are paid to build a road, then go home.  Cops are meant to *maintain* the laws of the land.  Jobs like that are never finished.  I used to work at McDonalds as a cashier.  When we had no customers, I stood around with my thumb up my butt waiting for customers.  If you sent me home, when customers came we would have no cashiers.  Same thing.


You got time to lean? You got time to clean.
2014-04-27 08:37:32 AM  
2 votes:
As someone who's been on patrol, internal affairs and been a desk sergeant, I find the cops' behavior here unacceptable. Can 'em.
2014-04-27 08:21:56 AM  
2 votes:
I'm not a cop - so I'm only speculating but......I'm okay with this.  This is what I want cops in my neighborhood to do.

No seriously.

Look, if someone phoned 911 and reported a murder - and they kept playing cards; that's a different story.  That's a real problem.  But there are types of jobs where you don't do anything for a lot of the time.  We had night-security at the last company I worked for.  Their job was to sit around, and wait, for something to happen.  If nothing is happening, they have nothing to do.  You are paying them, so that they will be around when something happens.

What *should* these cops be doing?  I mean, sure, maybe in some parts of some countries there is just a never-ending pile of criminals and the cops and patrol the streets and catch them.  But in most places, nothing is happening on a Tuesday night.  Just regular people doing regular stuff.  These guys could go somewhere and hassle minorities or pull over people doing 2-3mph over the limit.  But neither would make things any better.  They're on duty, they are ready to go, and they are waiting for something to do.  That's part of the time.

You see this in a lot of jobs.  If you want to get upset, get upset at the people running things that allocate resources to places where there is downtime.

This isn't like a road construction job where employees are paid to build a road, then go home.  Cops are meant to *maintain* the laws of the land.  Jobs like that are never finished.  I used to work at McDonalds as a cashier.  When we had no customers, I stood around with my thumb up my butt waiting for customers.  If you sent me home, when customers came we would have no cashiers.  Same thing.
NFA [TotalFark]
2014-04-27 07:39:28 AM  
2 votes:
I find the hypocrisy to be amazing.  If this were a postal worker, NO ONE would defend this behavior.  If this were a federal worker, NO ONE would defend this behavior.  It this were an employee for the state roads, NO ONE would defend this behavior.

It has been repeatedly said that one of the most powerful unions in the United States is that of the law enforcement officers.  No politician will take legislative action against police corruption and mismanagement for fear of police union retaliation.  Truthfully, the law enforcement in this country is becoming more and more like an organized crime entity and at the same time they've becoming militarized.
2014-04-27 06:19:06 AM  
2 votes:
Well, they're never getting any slack from their supervisor again, ever, I'd suspect.  That's riiiiiiiight up there against the line of instant-firing territory, leaning forward and swaying unsteadily.  They can maybe get away with the "we were just waiting for a radio call, we didn't know we were supposed to keep moving when not on an active call" excuse once, that's probably it.  Even excusing it on the grounds of poor training rather than personal/professional failure on their part is pretty borderline.
2014-04-27 05:35:32 AM  
2 votes:

Gyrfalcon: I don't know what people think cops DO at 3 a.m. when there's no active calls besides patrol and hang out at the 7-11 and try to stay alert.


Patrolling is a pretty important function in a downtown area.
2014-04-27 05:32:40 AM  
2 votes:

AverageAmericanGuy: Meanwhile we're all reading Fark at work and no one seems to give a shiat about that. I guess double standards and hypocrisy is still okay, eh subby?


The average Farker is probably not responsible for public safety.
2014-04-27 05:32:19 AM  
2 votes:

AverageAmericanGuy: Meanwhile we're all reading Fark at work and no one seems to give a shiat about that. I guess double standards and hypocrisy is still okay, eh subby?


At 5 in the morning on a sunday? Your job must suck (or your time zone or whatever).
2014-04-27 04:37:22 AM  
2 votes:

Frederick: Would you care to weigh in on the article? Or maybe shed some inside light on the practices of cops on patrol during slow times? I'd be interested....


I used to see cops sleep or read a book during slow midnight shifts, but most cop cars have GPS so you can't get away with sitting in one place for very long any more. I don't know what the guys in the article were doing, but how did they get to sit in one place for three hours? In a city like Phoenix, you'd think they'd never go that long without a call.

I've head cops rationalize such behavior by pointing out that firefighters get to sleep on company time when they're not actively doing something. Not sure if I agree with that or not.
2014-04-27 03:17:18 AM  
2 votes:
Meanwhile we're all reading Fark at work and no one seems to give a shiat about that. I guess double standards and hypocrisy is still okay, eh subby?
2014-04-27 01:20:07 PM  
1 votes:

Billy Bathsalt: Better than them wandering around looking for people to bother.


I'm nearly inclined to agree with this. In my AZ burb the police like to periodically drive out at night and shine lights in your face while your on your evening run (think: desert heat makes early and late exercise very desireable). Yes, I dress up in spandex, bright clothing and wear lights so that I can run around visibly carrying my neighbor's silver. That's going to happen (lol I bet my neighbor owns no such thing anyway). Or maybe they think we runners will be holding bongs or something else incriminating when they come by?

My gosh, yesterday I was in Mesa and saw twenty police cars respond to some sketchy house. The police were putting up a road block and pulling out heavy hardware. More cars were still coming from every direction when we finally got our car away from that clusterfark. I'm guessing 15 minutes later the whole police force was on the scene. It makes you wonder, when you see huge clusters of cop cars at the scenes of things (very typical around here), whether the situation truly warrants the manpower or whether the cops are all bored and just looking for action.
2014-04-27 12:05:39 PM  
1 votes:
Has anybody pointed out that in AZ it's illegal to smoke tobacco in a government issued car?
2014-04-27 11:21:12 AM  
1 votes:

CruiserTwelve: I've head cops rationalize such behavior by pointing out that firefighters get to sleep on company time when they're not actively doing something. Not sure if I agree with that or not.


This is true, but firemen are generally at the station where they can be awakened from a sound sleep and expected to be fully functional and rolling within a very few minutes, and have whole multi-day blocks of their week tied up away from home where they spend the entire time waiting for calls, cleaning/maintaining the trucks, etc.

Having said that, while the time spent playing cards in the car could probably have been used more constructively, if it's not affecting their ability to respond to a call quickly I'm not sure there's a problem here worthy of such outrage.
2014-04-27 11:14:10 AM  
1 votes:
I worked the last 4 years on the night shift in a large south Florida police department. I worked weekends in a high crime area. In spite of that, on any given Sunday night I could go for several hours without a call. I'm proactive, and am in a proactive unit now, and some times there just wasn't anything to find. No traffic, no one walking around. Those night suck, and we're required to have at least one entry in our worksheet per hours. That's when you go to a watch order location and you just sit there fighting boredom.

You can put 100 miles on your car in one night and not find anything. It's a fact of policework.
2014-04-27 10:58:29 AM  
1 votes:
Meh. Playing cards and being social versus hiding from the public and playing on their cell phones. This is fine as long as they respond when needed. Only can do so many ped checks and traffic violations before the monotony sets in.
2014-04-27 10:46:57 AM  
1 votes:
I don't understand the posts sayin "nbd, they can't just patrol for the whole 8 hours!" Err why not? That's what they're getting paid for, right? I mean, my job pays me to come work the full 8 hours, so thats what I do. I don't see why its different for cops on the graveyard shift. We also have a union, but its not a powerful one like the cops union, so their hands are tied if I try whining about how unfair or hard it is to do the job I was hired to do.
2014-04-27 10:26:50 AM  
1 votes:

skinink: Why is expecting an officer to patrol his area the equivalent to Farkers of "watching the cops ride around for someone to harass"? There's never a happy middle ground with Farkers. These cops could do a patrol just to keep an eye on things. Doesn't mean they have to stop someone if nothing is going on or if everything looks normal.


Because 9 out of 10 times it's -exactly- what happens. They -look- for reasons to pull you over, no matter if you're driving safely, with current tags and up-to-date license info, etc. If the left turn light BLINKS at them, they pull you over. Both my dad and I have had experience with this (in both cases the cop was -way- too bored). As long as they respond to calls, they can sit and shoot the breeze all they want.

/I could have told them there are better places to not get caught.
2014-04-27 09:32:56 AM  
1 votes:

NFA: To be fair, if they're playing cards and smoking cigars on the taxpayer dime, at least they aren't doing the things seen in the youtube video below.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CtWNyBTrIQc



Agreed.
2014-04-27 09:25:01 AM  
1 votes:
Well, apparently they didn't have much assigned work when games weren't being played, and unlike the rest of us, can't goof off on the internet, so goofed off in other ways.  I guess all of us who post on Fark during the workday should be thankful our desks aren't out there in broad daylight where just anyone can take video of us goofing off while on the job.

Guessing command will give them some busy work for slow days now..
2014-04-27 09:05:58 AM  
1 votes:

omeganuepsilon: That's the argument you need to resort to?  They were "nowhere"?


they were hiding. they were not patrolling.

omeganuepsilon: Typical of the rest of your sunday morning troll-fest.


yeah I'm a troll. that's it.
2014-04-27 08:46:32 AM  
1 votes:

Bit'O'Gristle: True, but as i said, you can't expect them to drive around all shift.


Driving around all shift is literally the entirety of their job.  They're supposed to:

(a) be keeping an eye on things along the patrol route and

(b) be a visible presence along the patrol route to ward off potential trouble.

Taking breaks are one thing, but what is appropriate for breaks is specifically outlined in employment law (15 minute breaks, one or two per shift).  If they're not actually moving/patrolling apart from that, they're failing at both their listed job responsibilities and the first half of "protect and serve".

It's like if a night watchman at a museum decides to just not walk through the gallery-- since the presence of the watchman and the occurrence of patrols is the  major deterrent to theft, that's a firin'.

These cops were not just "on call", if that was the case they'd be allowed to do anything they wanted (that didn't involve drinking or leaving the area), but they also  would not be drawing a full paycheck.  Doing this is stealing the city's money on top of the central problem of the service not occurring.
2014-04-27 08:16:24 AM  
1 votes:
I was thinking about getting pissed off at these guys, but then I remembered the hours and hours I spent on active duty playing cards, video games, or sleeping in barracks rooms during the duty day, hiding myself or my Marines from the Gunny or First Sergeant, counting down the hours until afternoon formation, so we didn't get stuck doing some useless bullshiat.  When the training schedule calls for "weapons cleaning", and you just cleaned the biatches for 4 hours the day before, and hadn't touched them since, you try to find a way out of it.
2014-04-27 08:11:07 AM  
1 votes:
Meh.

I'd prefer to have slacker cops.

Better than the super-motivated-kick-your-ass-shoot-your-dog-and-children-still-keep-y our-job cops.

My taxpayer dime vote goes to keeping these guys, and firing the excessive violence cops.
2014-04-27 07:49:00 AM  
1 votes:
I'm thinking these guys must have some seniority, pulled some strings, and got assigned to a lower crime area.  Or maybe, they were put in a particular spot because they have a history of harassing civilians, and the higher-ups can't get rid of them yet (union stuff), so this way, they aren't riding a desk and leading another generation of cops to think of civilians as criminals in training.  This neighborhood could also have a history of demanding immediate response to stupid things, so the admins decided to placate the busybodies, and got caught.  Some HOAs constantly biatch about every friggin thing and think the cops are their personal enforcers.

It went on for a year, and admins knew about it, pretty sure.
NFA [TotalFark]
2014-04-27 07:32:20 AM  
1 votes:

Bit'O'Gristle: /True, but as i said, you can't expect them to drive around all shift.  If i had pulled that shiat on duty, i would have been standing tall before my LT, explaining why i put 200 miles on the squad car.  The general operation of a squad is, (esp at night) you check closed businesses, do some random patrol, maybe run some radar, and park somewhere waiting for a call. I don't care if they were playing cards or singing campfire songs.  They were awake, and ready to respond to emergencies.  Now, if they had IGNORED calls, i would have an issue.  But seeing as how every other "emergency" profession gets to fark off and watch tv, play cards, or whatever, I'm not going to get all derpy on a few cops who are just tying to stay awake on slow nights.  Sounds to me its just a few people who don't generally like cops biatching to the news trying to start shiat.


No, they should have proceeded to the point of highest crime in their area and vigilantly looked for suspicious behaviors, such as open air drug dealing, prostitution, gang activity, unusual loitering near stores or businesses, etc. etc. etc.

They don't have to drive a vehicle to do their jobs but they do have to focus on what going on around them and NOT a hand of poker or solitaire.
2014-04-27 07:24:55 AM  
1 votes:

AverageAmericanGuy: Meanwhile we're all reading Fark at work and no one seems to give a shiat about that. I guess double standards and hypocrisy is still okay, eh subby?



Pretty sure I won't encourage my next B-737 flight crew to take a Fark break during a hard IFR flight.

Not everyone is a desk jockey for a living, sport.

Professionalism, how does it work?
2014-04-27 07:18:11 AM  
1 votes:

Bit'O'Gristle: And as a retired cop, i can say i have worked many third shifts, and seconds, that after you check businesses, there is NOTHING going on.  No calls, and no traffic. Esp early in the morning.


FTFA

"I got home one time a little bit after 7 p.m. and they left a little bit after 10 p.m.," another resident said.

Residents said they arrived home about 8:30 p.m. to find the police vehicle parked on top of the garage and it didn't leave until after 10:15 p.m.


This isn't sunday at 4 a.m. goofing off, or just taking a break.
2014-04-27 07:14:15 AM  
1 votes:
Bit'O'Gristle: Do you expect firefighters to drive around in their fire trucks looking for fire all the time?

a faulty electrical outlet doesn't decide to delay starting a fire because a fire truck drives by at regular intervals.
2014-04-27 06:02:56 AM  
1 votes:

ongbok: Were they ignoring calls to smoke and play cards? If not, so what.


Because they're not dispatchers. They are supposed to do more than wait for a call to come in.
2014-04-27 05:58:37 AM  
1 votes:
I wouldn't care if this was at 3 a.m. but 8:30 in the evening? That's prime time. Not a time for 3 hour breaks.
2014-04-27 05:54:50 AM  
1 votes:
Here in the OC the cops used to stop in parking lots at night with 2 cars parked side by side but pointed in opposite directions so they could talk without using the radio. If you worked odd hours you'd see their little coffee klatches all the time but the advent of real time GPS put a stop to that.
2014-04-27 05:47:55 AM  
1 votes:

Gyrfalcon: Lenny_da_Hog: Gyrfalcon: I don't know what people think cops DO at 3 a.m. when there's no active calls besides patrol and hang out at the 7-11 and try to stay alert.

Patrolling is a pretty important function in a downtown area.

....which I said.

But there's nothing wrong with taking a break...just not for three hours. And I find it hard to believe their radio didn't go off even once. Did anyone check with their dispatcher to see if they were on pager? (Which is what my guys used to call it when they were taking a nap and had their radios off)(But they were security guards so it didn't matter as much)


Also, they didn't have reports to turn in from patrol? No homeless people? No stop-and-question incidents? No supervisor noticed that they turned in 1/3-less paperwork than every other patrol car in the Downtown unit?

That's why I think this was an administrative hole they found. Someone didn't finish the flow-chart or job duty descriptions when they set up the expanded Downtown Operations Unit.
2014-04-27 05:42:06 AM  
1 votes:
Better them smoking and playing card than their usual pastimes of beating homeless people to death and shooting people's dogs without provocation.
2014-04-27 05:42:02 AM  
1 votes:

croesius: "Phoenix City Manager Ed Zuercher said after reviewing the video. "I'd also tell people when they see that, don't wait for months to let us know." "

Yea, don't wait months collecting evidence, proving that it is a long-running trend of wasting taxpayers money...tell us immediately so we can say "oh, it was just this one time, no problem"


Yeah. That's the goal.

If they have any competent administrators, they would be able to tell after the first couple of instances that the fault lies in a lack of oversight, and the admins should be able to come up with a way to eliminate whatever loophole these guys found.

You don't have to let it go on for a year just to prove it can go on for a year. Some admins are actually kind of smart and can figure out how it broke the first time.
2014-04-27 04:46:22 AM  
1 votes:

staplermofo: Frederick: . If it were city road construction crews sloughing off, I'd feel differently about it being hypocritical.

The only sloughing I can think of humans doing is during menstruation... am I missing something?


Dead skin cells?
2014-04-27 04:45:11 AM  
1 votes:
Therevis nothing wrong with taking a break- but the cops that I know are cops becausevthey want to be cops- they love their jobs and they would rather be busy and be doing shiate than sit in their car. Any cop that is happy to sit in their car and play cards and collect a paycheck is not in the right profession.
2014-04-27 04:29:03 AM  
1 votes:

AverageAmericanGuy: Meanwhile we're all reading Fark at work and no one seems to give a shiat about that. I guess double standards and hypocrisy is still okay, eh subby?


My employer gives consent.  My employer is not funded with tax dollars.
I'm particular sensitive to hypocrisy (although it took me 4 tries to spell it *facepalm*), and think this criticism doesnt qualify as hypocrisy.  If it were city road construction crews sloughing off, I'd feel differently about it being hypocritical.
2014-04-27 04:21:12 AM  
1 votes:

CruiserTwelve: fusillade762: So they'll have plenty of time to play cards during their paid vacations

Vacations are extra fun when you have to worry about whether you'll have a job to come back to, huh?

Cops are placed on paid leave because they haven't yet been charged with any violations, either criminal or internal. Being on paid leave means the agency still has control over you and can order you in at any time, like to be questioned by internal affairs. It's a way to temporarily get the cop off the street and still be able to control him. Once charges are filed, either internal charges or criminal charges, the leave will become non-paid.


Alright.  Thanks for the 411.

Would you care to weigh in on the article?  Or maybe shed some inside light on the practices of cops on patrol during slow times?  I'd be interested....
2014-04-27 04:19:30 AM  
1 votes:
Just like any other profession, some police are dedicated, hard working professionals, and others arent.

If you signed up to be a LEO and you're happy making $40,000 a year to sit in your vehicle and play cards, you suck.
2014-04-27 03:44:21 AM  
1 votes:
Oh, big deal. Like none of us has screwed around on a slow day....

(RTFA... several times a week... for a year... a few hours every time...)

Um.

Nevermind.
2014-04-27 03:34:19 AM  
1 votes:
So they'll have plenty of time to play cards during their paid vacations.


AverageAmericanGuy: Meanwhile we're all reading Fark at work and no one seems to give a shiat about that. I guess double standards and hypocrisy is still okay, eh subby?


Did you quit smoking or switch coffee brands recently? You seem an order of magnitude grumpier than usual.
 
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