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MunicipalIamA member of the Victoria Police (Melbourne, Australia). AMAA

Jul 24th 2015 by vicpolthrowaway • 63 Questions • 226 Points

I am a 3 year member working general duties at a metro Melbourne station. I will endeavour to answer your questions as best as possible and remember I'm here as an individual with my own views, which aren't always in line with the force's stance. AMAA!

proof/verification: http://imgur.com/Oe2sGYL

Ok its 3am so I should probably sleeo. Thanks for all your questions and I hope I've answered them to your satisfaction. Keep sending them in and I'll get to them in the morning!

Keep the questions coming! I'm up at a party on the Murray and wont be back until this evening so I'll answer when I can

Q:

How did your colleague keep a straight face and remain so patient when dealing with the 'waiting for a mate' guy? (Favourite video of all time by the way!)

A:

Ah that cracks me up too! Some members just have ridiculous amounts of patience and professionalism. I can guarantee that wouldn't be the strangest thing he'd have dealt with


Q:

The camera might have helped, too.

A:

True


Q:

What was the most uplifting thing that happened to you on the job?

A:

I had to attend the death of a 4 hour old baby which was probably the hardest thing I'll ever have to do, especially dealing with parents that were distraught beyond words. But we just got on with it. A few weeks later my boss called me in to the office to show me a letter the father had written to the station thanking me and my partner for our compassion and understanding. That was definitely a great moment, terrible circumstances but it's rare to get acknowledgement especially in those circumstances


Q:

Wow, that's very touching. When I started reading I first thought you misread my question. That must've been very hard for everyone involved.

A:

Ah yeah apologies but I had to explain the circumstances. It wasn't the best day that's for sure


Q:

Someone stole the back seat and steering wheel out of my Comm. Have you found it yet, and if not, why isnt it at the top of VicPolices priority list?

A:

Unfortunately we've all been too busy getting those tickets to reach our apparent quotas to investigate.

In all seriousness that's shit beyond belief....have they not heard of pick-a-part? Realistically there's only so far you can take investigations and if there's no witnesses, cctv, physical evidence then there's not much else we can do to link an offender to a crime. To paraphrase one of my favourite movies: "if he'd ejaculated, then stolen your steering wheel and back seat, we'd have a really good shot at catching him"


Q:

My brotherinlaw is a cop, firearms instructor, I occasionally ask him the same question but he doesnt have an answer either. I get that its not an easy crime to solve purely because of the trivialness of it. They did send a guy to dust it (which even I thought was a tad excessive), but no luck. Its just annoying. Ive interacted with the cops a lot of over 30years of riding big sports motorcycles (I think you can guess why) and overall 90% of them were quite good, despite me being on the receiving end. I've got off sooo much stuff just from being polite and respectful, its not like I can blame you guys for doing what you gotta do.

The only thing I can suggest is that going into a copshop even for the most benign of purposes (as in, I need this stupid piece of paper signed) I largely find the police quite rigid and unfriendly. Not hostile, but a bit too much defensively unfriendly. Not everyone going in there is a bogan looking for an argument, so praps lighten up a tad. I dont expect McDonalds type over-friendliness, but perhaps a smile wont hurt if the situation warrants it.

ps. please for fucks sake dont become like American cops.

A:

I agree...I've had my car broken into before (nothing stolen which was the real kicker!) and no result.

There's probably a number of reasons for that attitude (overwhelmed with work, stress, suspicion of everyone that comes in[given the current climate many stations have directives now to wear ballistic vests while doing reception duties]) but I always greet people with a smile and friendly attitude. It could be the first time they've ever had an interaction with police for all I know.

And don't get me started! Its a whole different kettle of fish over there


Q:

"See, Michaels, you always take a call at a bar because, better or worse, you get a beer out of it."

A:

"He looked like Eminem." "M&m, so he was round"


Q:

In all seriousness, do you actually have quotas to meet?

A:

No. I have worked at one station where every shift we were tasked with getting either two briefs or tickets (briefs being when you intend to take someone to court) however it was not frowned upon if it didn't happen. That's the closest to a quota I've ever seen


Q:

How has your perception of the general public changed since you joined the police force? Do you notice amongst your colleagues that civilians are generally viewed as a different group of people to police officers? If so, how?

A:

I often jokingly say to my friends that I now understand....people suck.

The reality is that 95% of people sre good people. Unfortunately we come in to contact with the 5% more than we do with the 95% so that definitely skews my view of the "general public". And yes absolutely we are viewed differently. We are supposed to be the be all and know all of all aspects of the law (including aspects we would never usually come across), expected to solve everyone's issues no matter how trivial, we are stared at everywhere we go. We are under scrutiny from everyone, our peers, our superiors, the general public, the media, the legal world.

To quote an article from a NSWPOL member "we exist to preserve the bubble between what you think the world is like and what the world is actually like".

I hope I've answered your questions. Feel free to ask for further detail or clarification


Q:

Thanks for replying. I think you misunderstood the second part of my question though- I was more asking about the "herd mentality" of police officers towards the general public, as I believe a lot of issues arise as a result of police and civilians not viewing each other as equals with the same social goals.

I get what you're saying about having contact with the 5% a lot more than the 95%- no doubt that must grate on your perception of the public, like you say.

My contact with the police suggests that "skewed view" is somewhat of a systemic issue with metropolitan police. I don't notice it so much in rural areas or european countries for example. The downside is it reinforces itself by alienating some of the 95%, which then leads to 6 or 7% of otherwise good people being shitty towards the police.

Would be interested to hear your feelings on that issue, if you have noticed it or think it's an important aspect of being an officer (keeping the general public on your side, that is). Sorry if this is all too vague..

A:

I think you're absolutely right. There is that sort of mentality through some of the force (as you say especially in metro areas) and I honestly can't explain why.

Whether it's the frustration of more frequently having to deal with things that are considered too mundane or not really a "police issue" I couldn't say.

I know myself that if it's my first interaction with someone I'll generally make it as positive as possible, mainly because I'm a friendly guy but also building that trust and get rid of that barrier between the general public and police is important.


Q:

I have so many questions! Answer whatever you like :)

What is the bikie tension like nowadays?

Are the big white Mercs I see in North Melbourne mob cars?

What's the worst problem drug in Melbourne?

Which nationality causes the most trouble for you, barring Aussies?

Where's the roughest place in Melbourne?

A:

Bikie tension: there's always going to be struggles for control of the black market stuff (drugs mainly), but I'll hand it to them, they keep it mainly in house.

Mercs: I dont believe so! Very well could be though.

The worst problem drug is without doubt ice. Don't believe what the media reports to you (conversation for another day) but most crooks are on ice and will be committing offences in order to fund their habit and/or will be on ice (and other substances) while offending, that includes people involved in family violence incidents.

Now that's an interesting and divisive question- I believe every group of people have their problem children. In my experience the youths/adolescents of Maori/Pacific Islander backgrounds and those of African backgrounds tend to come under our radar more frequently....I honestly can't tell you why. Possibly once they learn that the justice system is very forgiving for child offenders.

And finally anywhere out west...sunshine, werribee, Wyndham...take your pick!!

Hope that answers your questions!


Q:

Being a westie myself, it's such a shame to see the west the way it is.

What, in your opinion, can be done to improve the situation?

A:

Despite the negative connotations I know that not everyone out west is bad. However I'm speaking from annocdotal evidence, I've got squad mates (people I went through the academy with) all over the state and by far the worst/busiest areas are those out west and you would be shocked to hear the day to day jobs they go to.

I've often asked myself what can be done about the issues plaguing the higher crime areas and I turn up nothing. Dealing with substance addiction and abuse (booze and ice mainly), generations that have become conditioned to the dole and generations worth of family violence perpetrators is not going to have some quick fix. It will take time and I unfortunately do not have the solutions


Q:

Hey, fellow Melbournian here! For what it's worth I think the police force here is generally really good and does a great job overall.

A few questions if you may.

What was the morale like at the police force after that big protest with Reclaim Australia versus the various Anti-Racist groups like? I heard it got really out of hand and pepper spray had to be used.

I've caught the bus home once when I was completely shitfaced after a long night of indulging in Australian culture, I smiled and waved to a group of police officers on the way to my stop around 10:30PM. What goes through your head if you see a friendly drunk?

Just out of curiosity, since I go to RMIT University I've always wondered. How much trouble does various student bodies e.g. Socialist Alternatives generally cause the police department in terms of positioning officers, making sure they don't get too rowdy etc.?

Last question, what's your most amusing police story if any?

A:

Honestly ive been on leave this week so I cant answer! It looked wild though! Generally stuff like that doesn't affect morale.

I can't count the number of drunks I've seen but really, if you're out having a good time, not causing trouble, not acting like a dickhead or trying to impress your mates by acting like said dickhead, I'm happy for you. Frankly I'm a little jealous most of the time because it's what I'd rather be doing.

Look by all means join a student union, but groups like the alternative (the bastard offspring of the socialist alliance) tend to prey on the impressionable to gain numbers. Im sure they do have good values and goals but from what I've seen just go about it the wrong way. I tend to see a lot of their hierarchy being agitators at demonstrations (one particular female who I won't name).

As for the stories, there's so many I forget half of them. There was a guy who was that drunk he got down to his jocks in the hallway of a well known hotel and fell asleep, then got mad when staff woke him and wouldn't take him to his room...he was in the wrong hotel


Q:

I've got nothing but praise for Victoria Police in how they handle drunks, both friendly and aggressive. Having been somewhat drunk and waiting for a lift at a train station, the two police who kept me company and made conversation were some of the nicest blokes I've ever met.

Also, I hope you don't mind my asking: is there any particular slang for police that you or any other officers find offensive? I've heard so many different words for you all and I can't keep track of which ones got the speakers in trouble...

A:

I'll be honest I'd rather deal with someone who's drunk over someone who is high on ice.

They always give us good stories too and if I have time I'll always have a yarn.

Honestly I've heard that many that it just does not phase me anymore. However if someone happens to just want to yell abuse because they're dickheads and they just happen to drop a swear word in hearing of a member of the public I'll gladly give them a fine for offensive language.


Q:

I think I know of the chick you are talking about. She was the main girl at my uni for SAlt.

A:

Very possibly


Q:

If it's any consolation for time wasted on those idiots, they got kicked out of Monash for being tools.

Edit: Also, thanks for the AMA!

A:

The socialist alternative guys? It is a little but a shame too as they've jeopardized their future by doing so


Q:

Ever fired your weapon with your intent to kill?

A:

I have...but it was to put down a severely injured kangaroo


Q:

I didn't know there were kangaroos in the Melbourne metropolitan area.

A:

I was outer suburban at the time. Having said that I had a mate at fitzroy who not long ago had a job for a roo bounding down victoria parade at 5am


Q:

When I first saw this I immediately had cartoon images of a Roo just, you know, casually bouncing down the road for fun. Sheesh, me.

A:

Mate I had the same visual. I then pictured it as an episode of "skippy the bush kangaroo" where they go to the city


Q:

How the fuck did a kangaroo get to Vic Parade?

A:

Who knows. Too much chard probably


Q:

Were you in uniform and did you plug your ears before you shot it?

Speaking of ears, how do cops deal with the hearing damaged caused by gunshots?

A:

I was in uniform and no I didn't because I didn't have any handy (hence I now carry a few pairs in my kit bag). I can tell you our firearms are loud AF.

In firearm training we have noise canceling ear muffs which are brilliant, but outside that I don't know. Ive never spoken to another member that's had to use their firearm


Q:

What are your thoughts on officers without a trade certificate in the automotive industry, or in most cases no training beyond that which is provided to them by the police force; having the power/discretion to declare aspects of vehicles defective or unsafe?

It only takes one bloke who doesent know his stuff as much as he thinks he does, to end up costing the driver in order to prove otherwise

Personally I am of the opinion the state transport departments should be in control of road enforcement for this reason, and to free up the police force for other duties also.

A:

Great question and I know its a hot button topic especially amongst car enthusiasts.

I'll start by saying that we do undergo training in order to identify aspects of a vehicle that would make it unsafe (exposed wiring on the inside of a tyre, faulty signals etc). The members of highway patrol (those who are specifically there to enforce road safety) undergo further training in this and other road investigation courses. These are the guys who will normally be handing out defects (canary's)

With that in mind I don't believe it would be necessary for any trade qualifications in any automotive field as we generally look for things that make the car unsafe, as opposed to things that affect the overall running of the vehicle (as a mechanic would). Now having said that, knowledge is power and any extra qualifications would always be of benefit.


Q:

Appreciate your reply, we used to have officers frequent our car forums but that seems to have changed since a policy update a few years back which is unfortunate.

I think alot of the frustration comes from someone who has invested an untold amount of time and money into their chosen hobby, only to be told you can't do this by a layperson in the field who is often incorrect in their judgement, costing further money and time to the enthusiast trivially clearing defects/epas/refreshing engineering certs.

My problems rarely stemmed from TMU but from your regular day to day officers, further training for these guys would be great. (and would never happen cause I know vicgov well)

A:

Completely understandable and I don't know why it's done. I think there is a need for roadside vehicle inspections (for example balding tyres with exposed wires etc), but it gets taken to far when members are focusing on modifications


Q:

What would you say your colleagues think of marijuana use in Melbourne? What are your personal views?

A:

Depends who you ask I guess. At the end of the day its still illegal to possess a drug of dependance.

I personally believe it should be legal and taxed (seriously there are just so many benefits from doing that), but we won't get there until we have a) a political leader with balls and b) an accurate way to detect people driving under the influence of it, the same way they've developed alcohol detection


Q:

Would you accept a behavioural test if it's not possible to determine impairment via blood levels?

A:

Absolutely. There are 3 main types of offences when it comes to impaired driving: -alcohol (so breath or blood test) -drug (saliva or blood test) -driving under the influence (DUI).

The third one isn't as common as it's harder to prove. Basically we don't need an empirically measured test (like a breath test that measures grams of alcohol per 210L of air.

All that needs to be proven is that the persons ability to drive was severly effected by being under the influence of a substance. This would be done by our observations, witnesses, cctv


Q:

Whats your opinion on the Sgt that blew the whistle in QLD, Then the Inspector? snubbing him when he went to say hello?

Do you believe that your duty is to the people you serve first?

Or do you believe you should look after your own first?

A:

I can't say I know it. Link? I'll back my people in 100% if they're in the right. I do not believe that our duty is to the public first...however we often do things the general public dont agree with.


Q:

Bit baffled here

I do not believe that our duty is to the public first

Then why are you a public servant? Sorry mate completely respect everything else you have said in this thread but wtf?

A:

Apologies, meant to say I do believe our duty IS to the public first.


Q:

What's your goal within vicpol? Are you working toward a particular rank or just whatever it brings?

A:

Honestly not at this stage. I am looking at doing detective temporary duties soon. I've often thought being a sergeant is a good rank. You've got more responsibility but you still get to go out on the road and you're always dealing with "the troops". Anything higher than that and it becomes more office and administrative, which really doesn't interest me at this stage


Q:

Do you guys still use revolvers? Or have you moved to a weapon designed this century?

A:

VicPol has upgraded!!! It took a while. But the service pistol is now the Smith and Wesson M&P 40. Quite an upgrade


Q:

Haha about time, I used to supervise a firing range on the navy base. The cops always came down with revolvers and it was quite comical that our service pistol were designed in 1912 and yours were older!..

A:

Yeah it was embarrassing. The specialist units do have different firearms too


Q:

Oooh! I have one of those, chambered in 9mm. Fantastic.

A:

They're quite a good pistol, very comfortable to hold too


Q:

Why have the cops warned witnesses to be quiet about that dude who was in the tree with a machete?

Is he connected somehow?

A:

In Northcote? This is the first I've heard


Q:

Thoughts on Tony abbot? personal & of police force?

A:

Personal: I don't think he should be the PM. His views are just too far behind societies'. He's also a rubbish public speaker and is just to rigid and awkward, like every media standup he does just reminds me of the awkward teenager on a first date.

Police: he's the head of state so I guess I've gotta start practicing my "NOOOOOO!" in case I have to dive in front of a bullet for him


Q:

He's the head of government. The Queen is the head of state.

A:

Apologies. My brain no function well after 20 hours being awake!


Q:

I bet you feel very relieved not having to take a bullet for him now!

A:

I would probably still have to. As long as he whispers to me afterwards "you'll always be my bodyguard"


Q:

You ever think about joining the Feds?

A:

Not really. However we often have secondment opportunities with the AFP for 12 months or so.

There are also a lot of joint taskforce opportunities with other agencies including AFP which I probably would be interested in doing, but I don't think I'd make the switch over


Q:

How come the lack of interest in AFP? Is it because you'd have to head up to Canberra?

A:

Not so much that, but I'm still very junior in the scheme of things and there are just so many opportunities within VicPol that there really isn't a need to loom elsewhere at this stage


Q:

I hope you guys don't turn out like the trigger happy yanks.

Have you had any US style police training?

A:

I think that stems from their gun culture. It's uncommon here to intercept a car and find a weapon of any sort, whereas there its highly likely the car you're intercepting has a gun in it.

No we haven't, however police forces all over the world tend to get together and see what they can learn from each other.

Having said that our "active shooter" (think Julian Knight, monash uni shootings etc) training is modeled from US training, for obvious reasons.


Q:

Interesting point. How common/rare is it to find a gun in a regular vehicle search? 1 in a 1000?

And is it a particular type of person that carries it? Can you tell who might be packing heat? Shifty looking fellas?

A:

Honestly I couldn't put a number figure to it. Im sure somewhere in our vaults of endless data collection there would be figures.

I can tell you last week that our station seized two pistolsthat turned out to be fake but we're looked the goods. They racked, they cocked, they had magazines that released.

There are certain indicators of a car and of the driver that indicate they're up to no good, but at the end of the day we need either a warrant or reasonable suspicion to search a person or vehicle.


Q:

What would constitute suspicion? Like "smelling" marijuana? Driving erratically? Too many people in the car looking like they're on their way to mischief?

A:

There's heaps of different things that would constitute it, marijuana smell is an obvious one. The driver or passenger's behaviour, their appearance. Heaps of trade secrets that we are trained to look for ;)


Q:

What is the general feeling in Vic Police towards 'metro officers' that believe they need to use unnecesary violence to detain people for offences (i.e. Not touching on)?

A:

The general feel is that they're a necessary evil. For the most part they're usually quite calm and patient when dealing with commuters and will only detain people until they can confirm name and address (then the arrest power ceases to exists).

I have personally never dealt with metro staff being heavy handed or using excessive force however I have seen several current affairs programs showing videos of them using what appears on face value as excessive force and I like most wasn't impressed. At the end of the day the outcome they're trying to achieve doesn't always justify the means


Q:

could I please also ask, if your ID gets run inside a police car:

1) is the transaction recorded?

2) to what extend of information can they view about an individual?

really appreciate it!!

A:

Yes it is. All searches on our database are recorded. The information only relates to involvement with the police (such as criminal history, if they've been a witness/victim etc). Things like your first crush and mothers maiden name don't come up!


Q:

How do you feel about all the recent shootings in the US? What do you think US police should do differently?

A:

I believe all their shootings are a direct result of their ridiculous gun culture. I've just mentioned in another response that here its unlikely to find a weapon during a vehicle intercept but over there it's likely that there is a gun on board.

I think that they're whole society needs to rethink guns and do away with their "right to bear arms", because surely the realize the red coats aren't about to sail across the Atlantic and they do not need to form militias.

Joking aside if they were to get serious on gun control I think you'd find that the police shootings would rapidly decline too. Really most PD's over there have the same equipment as we do hear but they're straight to the firearm at the first sign of confrontation because of that very real possibility the person has a gun


Q:

What did you think of Christine Nixon or Simon Overland? Tossers?

A:

I was sworn in under Ken Lay so I can only go on what I've heard, read etc. I don't believe Nixon should ever have been chief, having never served as a member of VicPol prior to her appointment. Her handling of her role on black Saturday was pretty piss poor too. As for Simon, I've got no strong views either way. I know there's the allegations of releasing certain crime stats to favour a party for election but I dont know what the outcome of that was.


Q:

What has been the hardest case for you?

A:

I mentioned in a previous response: having to go to the death of a 4 hour old baby, the fact that 3 and a half of those hours were the doctors and nurses trying to save it. Dealing with grieving parents that had tried for years for a child only to have a beautiful girl for half an hour. That was a tough day. There has been a flow on, for example I frequently got sad seeing my new nephew because I would think of that family.

There was another where I negotiated with a suicidal female who was about 7 storeys up wanting to jump. I talked to her just long enough for my partner to get up there and wreslte her over to the right side just in time(no literally, she had let go and started falling forwards). The gravity of that only set in the next day as I was directly below her.


Q:

Very subtle application of the word gravity. 10 out of 10.

Thanks for the ama. I'm an MFB firey, got a lot of respect for you guys. I can't speak for every area of the public, but I feel like you've always got our back.

Tough job you do. Keep up the good work.

A:

There was definitely no pun intended there!

I think there's the unspoken respect between all the emergency services and you're right, we'll always get your back. I take particular offence to people who try to hurt the ambos and will always drop whatever I'm doing if they've hit their duress alarm


Q:

How often do you have to deal with kids doing petty crimes? Would get irritating I'd say

A:

All the time and it's frustrating. If they've stolen something (no matter the value) then we have to take them back to the station, contact parents, wait for parents, interview etc. Its just more time consuming. However I try to take the opportunity to really show them that its a slippery slope, that having a criminal conviction will have severe effects when trying to gain employment etc. The parents are normally pretty grateful if I've taken the time to sit with them and give them a lecture about their future etc


Q:

What are your thoughts on parents that bring their kids in after they catch them stealing? Have you ever encountered this? My mum took my sister to the police station after she caught my sister stealing lollies so that the police could sit her down and have a serious chat with her about it. She never did it again.

A:

Brilliant idea. As long as it's tee'd up with the local station. However we still want people to be able to turn to us (parents tend to instill in their kids that we are only here to lock bad people up) we've got to find a good balance so they're not scared to call us in an emergency.


Q:

On the police radio, what does involvements only mean?

A:

That means the person has had no criminal convictions and has only had involvements with police as either a victim/witness/suspect.


Q:

After the last NYE, I was walking back from Canterbury train station at 2am, and I heard a scraping noise getting louder and louder for 2 minutes. I could then finally see the car coming up a block behind me, with a shredded front tyre. Everytime they went over the cobblestone style speedbumps, more sparks were emitted. I kept my eye on them because I wasn't sure when the tyre was going to come flying off, and indeed it did fly off when the car got to about 10m away and roll and land beside me. The car didn't stop - huge shower of sparks on the next and final set of cobblestones, and then drove off over the horizon.

Just what drugs was that driver on, and how sorry was their head going to be in the morning? Canterbury! Seriously!

A:

Does Canterbury have crime? Yeah I've seen people that drunk and driving. Honestly though that is terrifying. These are the people that share our roads with us.


Q:

Not the person doing the AMA, but I can answer. It is a licence condition the speed limit. If I remember correctly, they answered this question in the weekly ask a cop segment on Facebook not long ago, I also think the info is on the RTA website, will check when back on computer.

A:

Thanks for the questions! As far as the speed restrictions go I am not quite sure, however I would say that if it's a licence condition ut would be the same as other conditions such as wearing corrective lenses, auto transmission etc. However if it's law there then I would say in Victoria you could go up to 110. I'll find out the correct info for you. As far as passengers go, red p platers can have only 1 unrelated peer passenger, so you coild have your 17 year old brother and a mater who's on his p's too. Green p's its the same as full licence. And as for vegemite...only the original.


Q:

What is best way to get off with only a warning?

A:

What for?


Q:

Some sort of minor traffic infringement, like rolling through a stop sign

A:

Being polite always helps! But seriously if you are unfortunate enough to get something for a minor traffic issue, contest it. Especially if you have a good driving record. Although you'd have to weigh up whether its worth your time and money going to court for the day


Q:

How far back does a background check look to join the academy in Vic? My brother tried to join at 18 and was rejected for an offense he was apparently accessory to when he was 11.

Edit: He was with a mate who was stealing toys from a Target.

A:

I believe it covers all criminal/traffic history no matter what the time lapse. I am of the understanding that if you were to apply for police checks, they only cover disclosable court outcomes in the last 10 years (I.e. criminal convictions at court)


Q:

On average, in your police force, how often do you suspect someone in your own force might be up to no good? (ie: corruption), and if you find one person who you believe, do you take the steps to investigate and/or report it to higher ups?

A:

I've never come across it and I've thought about what I would do if I was faced with that situation.

It would be inappropriate for me to investigate that sort of thing. I believe I would refer it onto Professional Standards Command anonymously. If I didn't have enough evidence to prove the allegations I would have to gather more before referring it on.


Q:

Thanks for the AMA and what you guys do.

Just wondering, what's the most satisfying arrest, if any, that you've made so far?

A:

My day isn't complete without an arrest! Once myself and 2 other members arrested 7 people after a stabbing, that was pretty good. Especially when the CIRT (our backup) arrived to find them all seperated and detained. Their faces were priceless.

There was another (a while ago) where I arrested a guy after he and his gf had a fight and she had minor injuries, so we took them both back. After building up a rapport with her she disclosed he had sexually assaulted her numerous times on the weekend just gone and the detectives that came and took over were absolutely stoked with that result.


Q:

How hard is it to pass Victoria Police's selection process?

A:

Not very. Its in stages. Entrance exam- having a medical checkup (inc eye and hearing test) then interview with the senior sergeant at the local station- fitness test and psych test- panel interview. You need to excel at the entrance exam and panel in order to be placed higher on the "order of merit". When they select people for the next squad they select people from the top of the order of merit. Your placement on the order can be 8 months after you sit the entrance exam so you could have 40 people or more on top of you by the time you get there.


Q:

How many fail due to bad hearing or eyesight? What's the cutoff point?

A:

Dont know mate! There are certain requirements for sight and hearing. I think sight is 16/20 minimum for both eyes and hearing has to be over a a certain db


Q:

Whats your opinion on the no trucks in the right hand lane specifically on the princes fwy between corio and laverton? Would you fine a truck for being in that lane for under a minute? Im a truck driver who drives up and down that stretch four times a night and its very frustrating to be trying to dodge cars doing 70-90kmh by going between the left and middle lane when there is a perfectly good third lane i could use.

A:

I absolutely would not, you guys have enough shit to deal with.

I know there's reasons for having lanes like that (attempting to ease traffic congestion etc) but really, its a bandaid solution.

Also a question for you: do you think the division between road users (cars/trucks, cars/cyclists, cars/motorcyclists) is a uniquely Australian thing?


Q:

My father was a truck driver all his working life and always hated cyclists. It was just a fact to him. Always making jokes about how many points you get for hitting one(all jokes he never would). That didnt help and all other male role models i had also hate cyclists. I don't hate them. They never hold me up more then a few minutes at most. Its the arrogant people i hate. Where there might be a lane for a cyclist to use even just to let other past. I cant say it's the same for other countries. But yeah as far as my rural australian up bringing goes yeah the hatred is alive. I always thought that truckers and cyclists should get along because They're both the minority on the road agaist cars and very easily portrayed as the person in the wrong.

A:

It always makes me laugh. We're all trying to get somewhere but people get so caught up in their own lives and what they need to do. I just think "take a chill pill, the extra few minutes won't kill you"


Q:

Well said mate. One last question. Are you trained in what to do if you attend a road side crash involving dangerous goods?

A:

Yeah incident management is a big one. Depending on the incident the most senior member of the appropriate agency is called the "incident commander" so in that instance the most senior mfb/cfa member would be the incident commander with police usually assisting with traffic management then once it is deemed safe, taking over as investigators


Q:

How do you know if a red p plater is overloading or if they are just carrying their family?

Am I expected to carry id to verify my age or relationship with the driver when I'm a passenger of a red p plater?

A:

Pull them over and ask! It wouldn't hurt to do that.

Really after some questions you can tell who's lying and who isn't. If the driver ended up coping a fine and wanted to contest it on the grounds that the passengers were family, the driver would have to get those people in to court and if it was bullshit they'd risk perjuring themselves


Q:

Thanks for doing the AMA it's great reading.

Do you have much experience with dealing with the HVU? (Heavy Vehicle Unit), or "the task force" as we know them

I have met many highway patrol officers and general duty coppers over the years and not one of them has a good word to say about the task force guys, is this a common thing, and do "oddball" officers who don't fit in well with others generally apply for these sort of divisions where they can generally be a bit nasty?

A:

I have 0 experience with them unfortunately so I can't answer!