1/8/2016 – Coffee with a Cop

I’m proud to say that Howard County, MD, where I live has one of the finest police departments in the nation. Yesterday, I went to an informal gathering called “Coffee with a Cop” at a local Dunkin Donuts. No agenda, just an opportunity to sit down with one of your friendly local cops and chat.

I’m interested in signing up for the next Citizens Police Academy, so this was a good chance to ask about that. But I also wanted to know what the major criminal activities are here in our neighborhood. Fortunately, we are not a high crime area, so most problems stem from juveniles with nothing to do. We are close to the Route 1 corridor, which is a high-risk area for human sex trafficking. The police usually get a call from the local hotel manager or one of the guests who report unusual amounts of traffic going in and out of a hotel room. The predators are quick to move out and on down Route 1 to set up again at a different hotel.

We asked about tasers and found out their limitations and the instant decisions police have to make under high-stress conditions.

This was a most worthwhile event, and I got the card and email address of the community resources officer assigned to my neighborhood. He’s a friendly easy-to-talk-with guy and I plan to use him as a resource for police-related questions I run into in writing my novels. Good to have a name and a face for this.