Situations Dictate Different Outcomes.
Author: Tatreaus Gray, Chapter member and LEO
TO A LOT OF OUR CONCERN TODAY’S INTERACTION WITH LAW ENFORCEMENT CAN BE SOMEWHAT OF A SCARY EXPERIENCE, BUT IT DOESN’T HAVE TO BE THAT WAY. A FEW QUESTIONS HAVE BEEN BROUGHT TO LIGHT BY A FEW OF OUR MEMBERS. BEFORE I ANSWER THESE QUESTIONS - NOT ALL ENCOUNTERS WITH LAW ENFORCEMENT ARE THE SAME AND SITUATIONS DICTATE DIFFERENT OUTCOMES.
1.) Can an officer order you to step out of your vehicle during a traffic stop? The answer is Yes, but the situations depends on several things. Sometimes during a traffic stop the driver might seem real nervous or moves around in the car a lot giving the officer suspicion that something could be occurring or about to occur. And sometimes it could be as simple as you made a mistake and they would like to explain to you the reason you are being stopped instead of writing you a ticket.
2.) Can an officer order you to stop recording video of an incident in public? No. Civilians have the right to record anything they want; the problem is today everyone wants to upload everything on social media, the good and the bad. Say for instance you are shot but instead of the person offering help they continue to record instead of rendering aid. But on the other hand sometimes it provides evidence to a crime or an incident that someone else might have not seen. Just know that sometimes if they can find who the camera man or woman is the courts can subpoena your phone to retrieve the video.
3.) Is it lawful for an officer to order you to do something that might cause you bodily harm? No, it’s not lawful for officer to ask you to do something that might hurt you. If you feel you are doing something that is not lawful ask for his or her name and badge number and file a complaint with the Agency’s Internal Affairs department. You could also ask for a supervisor to come on scene as well.
AS I MUST SAY AGAIN ALL SITUATIONS HAVE DIFFERENT OUTCOMES DUE TO THE NATURE OF THE CALL AND OR TRAFFIC STOP. YOUR ATTITUDE WILL TAKE YOU A LONG WAY. EVEN IF YOU ARE IN THE RIGHT JUST FOLLOW INSTRUCTIONS, AND IF YOU BELIEVE THE LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER IS IN THE WRONG FOLLOWING THE PROPER PROCEDURES WILL PUT YOU IN THE WINNING SEAT EVERY TIME.
JUST LIKE YOU CAN’T SHOOT ON THE SHOOTING TEAM IF YOU DON’T COMPLETE A MPA. WHAT IF SOMEONE IN THE CLUB ASKED YOU TO VOUCH FOR THEM, WITHOUT COMPLETING THE MPA, AND HE OR SHE GOES ON THE RANGE AND INJURY THEMSELVES. NOW, THAT PERSON CAN COME BACK AND SUE YOU FOR NOT FOLLOWING PROPER PROCEDURES…JUST FOOD FOR THOUGHT!