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200-year-old principles guide policing

In 1829 the “Father of Modern Policing” established the Metropolitan Police Force in Scotland Yard. I know, I can hear it already; “Why are we discussing almost 200 years ago?”

Robert Peel developed the ethos that provides the foundation of ethical requirements for police departments. The nine Peelian Principles are as follows:

1. The basic mission for which the police exist is to prevent crime and disorder.

2. The ability of the police to perform their duties is dependent upon the public approval of police actions.

3. Police must secure the willing cooperation of the public in voluntary observation of the law to be able to secure and maintain the respect of the public.

4. The degree of cooperation of the public that can be secured diminishes proportionately to the necessity of the use of physical force.

5. Police seek and preserve public favor not by catering to public opinion, but by constantly demonstrating absolute impartial service to the law.

6. Police use physical force to the extent necessary to secure observance of the law or to restore order only when the exercise of persuasion, advice, and warning is found to be insufficient.

7. Police, at all times, should maintain a relationship with the public that gives reality to the tradition that the police are the public and the public are the police; the police being only members of the public who are paid to give full-time attention to duties that are incumbent upon every citizen in the interests of community welfare and existence.

8. Police should always direct their action strictly toward their functions, and never appear to usurp the powers of the judiciary.

9. The test of police efficiency is the absence of crime and disorder, not the visible evidence of police action in dealing with it.

These principles help guide Boulder City Police Department. And we couldn’t do it without you!

“Control, 269, we’re 10-8 in service.”

On Sept. 8, the evening was beautiful. A residentially challenged gentleman thought Hemenway Park would be a great place to set up camp. One small problem: He never applied for a Boulder City camping permit. Officers provided a more suitable living arrangement over the hill.

On Sept. 9, officers make contact with a female subject at the Nevada Inn. She reports being sexually assaulted in Las Vegas. However, she does not want to file a report. What did she say? She refuses medical treatment. Officers learn the suspect’s name and location. Information is forwarded to Las Vegas police. Something’s not right here.

On Sept. 10, a frantic caller reports “they are cutting a tree, down and it’s marijuana.” Officers respond to the area of Gingerwood Mobile Home Park. They make contact with the reporting person. “Houston, we have a problem.” The person reporting is not once, not twice, but three times over the legal limit of .08 blood alcohol content. Now where was this tree supposed to be?

Sept. 11, a caller reports his home was burglarized. An unknown suspect broke in and stole a very old cookie jar. Fortunately, nothing else was stolen. After some investigation, the officer files the theft report and forwards it to the Boulder City Police detective bureau.

On Sept. 12, a resident in the area of Darlene Way and Jeri Lane reports a loud argument across the street. The female locked her boyfriend out. The boyfriend crawled through apartment’s back window. Officers arrive but no answer at the door. Finally the young bride-to-be answers the door. We find the male hiding in the closet. He mentioned being scared of us. Nothing physical, just puppy love soured.

Sept. 13, two subjects are having an argument on the corner of Nevada Way and Fifth Street. A change from last call; the male locks the female out of the motel room. The female becomes so enraged she begins to bang on the glass sliding door. Bad idea! The glass breaks and the female receives a big enough gash to be taken to St. Rose Sienna Hospital. Anger can not serve as a solution to understanding.

On Sept. 14, Boulder City Hospital calls regarding a domestic issue. Officers arrive and determine the female had been battered by her husband. A few of us head over to a Nevada Highway residence. Officer makes contact with the male. The male is charged with domestic violence. Some time spent in a different environment may calm things down for him.

In closing, I’d just like to say, thank you BC for supporting us. We couldn’t do the job we do if you guys weren’t on our team. Next week I’ll talk about community involvement. Until then, “Control, 269, we’ll be 10-7, out of service.”

Officer Jeffrey Grasso is a 10-year veteran of the Boulder City Police Department. He previously served as a police officer in south Florida for four years.

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