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Author Topic: Calling the police.  (Read 8619 times)

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Lady Snowdon

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Re: Calling the police.
« Reply #30 on: October 14, 2012, 03:23:52 PM »
Growing up, my city was also the county seat, so there were both city police officers, and county sheriff's officers around.  It makes you feel very safe!  They were also very responsive; when our garage was broken into, they showed up in about five minutes, and when someone put a BB pellet through our living room window it was probably about 10-15 minutes, since we called the non emergency line and emphasized no one had been hurt.

Where I live now, I've never had occasion to call the police, so I have no idea of their responsiveness.  I do know that I see a lot of patrols in my area, which I'm grateful for.  I'm sure they'd be pretty responsive if I needed them.  There's also two major highways that run through the city, as well as a major highway to the north, so it's very normal to see state patrol around as well.  When my DH had a tire blow out at 1 am on his way home, a state trooper actually pulled up behind him, and kept his flashers on to help DH see to replace his tire. 


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Re: Calling the police.
« Reply #31 on: October 14, 2012, 04:02:43 PM »
My idea on this is going to be very skewed because of one thing - I live in a suburb of Chicago.

I'm wondering why you think your thoughts are very skewed on this? (maybe the proximity to the firehouse skews things a bit?)

It is the proximity to the firehouse and that the police station is 20 minutes away with normal driving due to being in the downtown area.  So lights, sirens, and fast driving, probably 5 minutes to respond to a 911 call.  Never had to use 911 for a police officer but one did show up when the stairs collapsed - probably a slow day.  :D  So I feel extremely safe and the OP was talking about living in an area that is very different than yours and mine.


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Re: Calling the police.
« Reply #32 on: October 14, 2012, 04:28:01 PM »
I live in a tourist trap of about 60,000 (I think the county has about 500,000 or so).  We don't have a super huge police force, but response times are reasonable IMO.  We have local city police, county, highway patrol and a few others that cover weirder calls...who responds depends on where you are...and sometimes another agency will cover a call until the correct agency can get someone there. 

Response time for emergencies is usually in the 5 minutes or so range and almost definitely under 10 minutes.  Non-emergency traffic accidents you might be waiting 45minutes to an hour or so.

The last time I was around when a major accident happened, police, fire/rescue and ambulances were there in force in under two minutes.  I have to say, I was pretty astounded at the response time on that one.
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Re: Calling the police.
« Reply #33 on: October 14, 2012, 04:42:27 PM »
The one time I called the police in my big U.S. city, no one ever showed up. It was for a knife fight I was witnessing in my apartment parking lot (literally less than 12 hours after moving into my first place alone -- great for confidence and morale)!

That said, I know they're considered pretty responsive. I just don't have any evidence from my life. I did live about a block from a fire station once, and I'm confident they'd have shown up very fast. These days I'm less than a mile from a county sheriff's office and a fire station, and less than 2 miles from a few hospitals, so I'd probably get a reasonably fast response. City police are frequently on patrol in the general area.

I did report a found wallet on a city street once (311 non-emergency line) and a cop was at my house within an hour, picked it up and called me back while he was still idling outside my apartment to tell me he'd gotten in touch with the person whose wallet it was and he was leaving to return it. That was nice.


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Re: Calling the police.
« Reply #34 on: October 14, 2012, 05:47:54 PM »
The very first night I lived at the house I shared with my roommate we were awakened by gunfire.  The sheriff's department was right across the street, and we didn't even have to call them because they heard it, too. 

In the area where we now live the response time, from what I've seen, is very good.  I've had to call the police several times because of accidents on the street where we live.  The paramedics/fire responses are excellent; one of my neighbors once had a blood sugar of over 800 so her son called the paramedics, and they were there inside of five minutes. 


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Re: Calling the police.
« Reply #35 on: October 14, 2012, 09:54:49 PM »
I've never had occasion to call the cops.  I have a lot of confidence they'd be quick though.  I live in NYC and on the same street, less then 1 mile from the poice station. I think my downstairs neighbor called the cops about my previous next door neighbor for a welfare check once because I heard her knocking and called at his door and then less then half an hour later i hear cops at his door, then mine, asking me I'd see him. So I think thats pretty prompt.  The cops around here are pretty well seen.  I see cars driving around regularly, and in the last 10 years there have been about 3 times when cops have been in my building asking us about neighborhood stuff ("have you seen...? type stuff), it makes me feel safe to know the police are actively engaged in their work in my neighborhood.  And in fact crime rates for my area are quite low, especially for my demographic. 

I have called 911 for medical emergencies, and although it felt like an eternity I think it was just  few minutes response time for EMTs. 

I call 311 quite a bit - at least 6-8 times a year. I used to call much more frequently when I parked on the street, over illegally parked vehicles, but now I have a spot in the lot and don't worry about parking as much. I have called 311 over things like incessant car alarms, broken traffic lights, a mattress on the highway, disturbing homeless people, a scheister going around pulling out minor dents from cars then demanding payment, and a few times when I saw a weird package left somewhere. I let 311 sort out who the call should be directed to. Sometimes it is the cops they direct me to, but its never the kind of thing where I'm sticking around for the response time.


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Re: Calling the police.
« Reply #36 on: October 14, 2012, 10:11:09 PM »
I live within the city limits of a small city, population of ~122k. I've called the police 3x in the 17 months I've lived here (including once for a fender bender). The response time when our apartment in our old neighborhood was broken into was about 30 minutes. The response time tonight when I called to complain about what sounded like target practice in the power line cut behind our apartments was less than 5 minutes, I would imagine because firearms were involved.

I grew up in a small town, less than 1,000 people. The first Christmas we were married, XH and I decided to surprise my family for Christmas. I had family friends invite mom, dad, and my siblings over for dinner, so that XH and I could be waiting for them when they got home, but when they came home and saw the kitchen light on they called the police to report an intruder. It took about 20 minutes for the police to respond, and we were surprised there was a patrol within 20 minutes of us to respond so "quickly".


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Re: Calling the police.
« Reply #37 on: October 15, 2012, 12:39:07 AM »
Where I grew up... well, I know some people on the board were surprised by the information that I sometimes carry a gun, but if your first exposure to law enforcement was the Banana Brothers on my town police force...

Definitely not a knock against the police, but in the small town where I grew up, we had one felony occur in 15 years. It happened in the police station parking lot, because all the local police assigned to the station were in the gas station across the street, harassing the female employees. The man who committed the truly horrible crime had come to our town seeking a victim because he had heard about how bad our police force was.

Our Chief of Police was not allowed to carry a gun, or even own a gun, as he was awaiting trial on charges of chopping his ex-wife's door down with a hatchet, violating her restraining order against him, added to a gigantic list of complaints of domestic violence.

Though this is the petty one, our local traffic court always made them go last, even though they weren't last alphabetically, or in size, or farthest from the court, or any other reason than all the local judges plain did not like the traffic cops. The other police didn't like them either, because they would camp out on the very edge of town, or even outside their technical jurisdiction on the interstate, and pull people over. Once they caught you, they would insist on a fine for something, even if the public defender wanted to let you off.

The college I went to had a better local police force, but one that you'd think would be trained about panic attacks, considering that they had a largish boarding school, a decent sized college with a special program for girls 16 and younger, a large senior-care community, a mental hospital, and a sort of halfway house for those released from the mental hospital (basically those who did not require full-time care, but were not ready to live on their own) in town. Based on my own run-in, and other friend's stories, they could not recognize and could not deal with a person having a panic attack, or really deal with any people with any level of social anxiety. Given how likely their environment made encountering people with some sort of mental illness or who may be having some declining facilities, or coming across young people away from their parents for the first time who may find an encounter with the police highly stressful, it seemed to me they could really spend a lot more time prepping the local police force, for the the good of the officers and for the good of the community.


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Re: Calling the police.
« Reply #38 on: October 15, 2012, 02:13:31 AM »
Where I grew up... well, I know some people on the board were surprised by the information that I sometimes carry a gun,


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Re: Calling the police.
« Reply #39 on: October 15, 2012, 08:07:03 AM »
In my old town (Little Rock - state capital, biggest city in the area) we had to call the cops a few times (car accidents, my car broken into at the hospital) and always had less than 15 minute response times. The one time we called the fire department (DP was discharged from the hospital too soon after her surgery and was too weak to make the one step into the house), they were there in less than 5 minutes, but we lived back-to-back with the fire house (they could have just jumped the fence!).

In our new town (small suburb north of Atlanta, in a big and prosperous county), the one time I've called 911 (DP running a 105 fever and I was afraid she'd have a seizure in the car on the 20 minute drive to the ER) they were there, EMS and a fire truck, in less than 10 minutes. Haven't needed cops, but have seen them on the scene of accidents where the cars appeared to have not been stopped more than a few minutes (no one getting out yet, even). 


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Re: Calling the police.
« Reply #40 on: October 15, 2012, 08:09:53 AM »
Out here where I live, the cops don't have a whole lot to do. One minor car accident will usually bring out every single on-duty police officer in the area. If you call them for something, they usually show up within 5 minutes if it's serious, and 10-15 if it's a small issue.

I have only needed to call the police once. Some kids in the neighborhood were running around with a pellet gun, and they shot at my bedroom window.  I had gone to their house before calling the police, but was told by the child who answered the door that his parents were not home. The police showed up within 15 minutes. I never had an issue with those kids again, because the officer apparently scared the pants off of them and their parents. All of the kids in the subdivision seem to be pretty respectful of our property now, actually. I guess word spread fast that we were not to be messed with.


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Re: Calling the police.
« Reply #41 on: October 15, 2012, 09:32:42 AM »
We don't have police for my area other than the state police. And there simply aren't enough people around for there to be a lot of state police. We do have sheriffs. And they get out and around pretty fast. But, they are stationed about 20 minutes from us. Simply put, you don't rely on police unless you absolutely have to around here.

Oddly, having a bunch of the sheriff's cars run over with a tractor has improved their response time. I think they may be trying to show that they are concerned with the public good.
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Re: Calling the police.
« Reply #42 on: October 15, 2012, 11:46:12 AM »
Where I grew up... well, I know some people on the board were surprised by the information that I sometimes carry a gun,


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Re: Calling the police.
« Reply #43 on: October 15, 2012, 11:48:31 AM »
I live in Boston, which is somewhere around 600K people, I think. You don't really call the boys unless you have a legitimate issue. We have 311 as well for non-emergencies. There's plenty to do even in my small neighborhood (Boston has a department for each neighborhood, but I'm not entirely sure how things are organized). My street is apparently a pretty popular escape route for felons, since I've encountered police sweeps more times than I want to count, and I'm in a very safe area! Response times are pretty prompt, all things considered. A lot depends on where you are, though, since each neighborhood varies drastically in crime rates and such.

When I lived in New Bedford briefly (one of the worst areas in MA) I saw a woman getting sexually assaulted on the side of the street. When I called 911, the cops were there in less than 30 seconds. I was pretty impressed. 
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Re: Calling the police.
« Reply #44 on: October 15, 2012, 11:53:39 AM »
I think "CPS" and "DCFS" gets thrown around a bit too much, but it seems like most of the police advice is to call the non-emergency number to see what they say. I've done that myself. We had some neighbors with an extremely loud party going on across the street a few years ago (pretty wide street and both houses set back a ways from the curb) where the music was actually vibrating our windows. That's a good time to call the non-emergency number. I'd never call 911 for something like that, but I almost never see people advising that.

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