|Note to police departments: Don't let the kids|
drive your police cruisers
It builds alliances, and making it more likely people will cooperate if they suspect something illegal is going on.
But community policing can be taken way, way, way, too far. Take Valley Falls, Kansas. In a bid to increase community involvement, they started an auxillary police force to go on patrol in police cruisers.
You can see where this is headed already, can't you?
Let's go to television station WIBW in Topeka, to get a quote about what the appropriately named Doug Wildeman allegedly did during his stint as a cruiser driving auxillary cop:
"He was turning the siren on and off, the headlights on and off, the flashers on and and off, hit the airhorn a couple times," said witness Lee Kahn of Valley Falls. "He floored it and he gunned it at maximum speed. I assumed it was a police officer so I came to City Hall to file a written complaint, only to find out it wasnt even a police officer driving the car, that it was a civilian."
Residents also alleged Wildeman was driving around in the cruiser with a girl on his lap.
You sexy dog, you!
The City Council in Valley Falls has decided to abandon the idea of letting civilians drive around in police cruisers, which is probably a good idea. Though if anybody had a video camera, it would have made a good beginning for a revival of the TV show "Dukes of Hazzard."
The police chief in Valley Falls also might be looking for a new job soon, WIBW reported.
So, yes, it's good to have Officer Friendly hang out with the teens hanging around downtown. But maybe they should keep the keys to their cruisers, just to be on the safe side.