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Patrol Operations and Enforcement Tactics.

Patrol Operations and Enforcement Tactics by George T. Payton and Michael Amaral, Criminal Justice Services, San Jose, California, 1996.

Patrol Operations and Enforcement Tactics is a comprehensive, straightforward book involving current law enforcement activities. Both authors are experts in the fields of patrol operations, procedures, tactics, and officer survival. Besides having written numerous other related books and articles, they teach extensively at local colleges and universities and provide training for many officers throughout the United States. Each has received much recognition from peers and various professional organizations.

They comment that their book is not the "gospel of patrol operations," but when read by those with law enforcement experience, including those aspiring for participation in academics, such readers will be impressed with the book's depth, practicality, comprehensiveness, and application to their jobs and positions. It is a well-designed and researched effort that contains experiences of frontline uniform and plainclothes officers laced with invaluable critical personal opinions.

It covers most of the latest professional techniques and methods of operation and knowledge coupled with skills for the new recruit, officers with limited experience, as well as veteran law enforcement personnel. As a book, it lends itself to the safety and survival of officers facing grave situations and assists them in enhancing the lessening of officer-induced errors and mistakes.

A snapshot of the book's content reveals a law enforcement code of ethics and a police code of conduct, detailed preventive and selective enforcement operations, and types of patrols ranging from foot to air patrols coupled with computer-directed enforcement locations and techniques. The book also includes the use of forward-looking infrared systems on air patrols and the advantages and disadvantages of practical law enforcement communications. The authors address state and local automated networks, NCIC, and criminal justice information control, each involving enforcement operations and tactics. They also include an interesting chapter on observation and perception techniques required by officers with 17 identified and proven "attention getters" that officers should employ in detecting and catching criminals. An explanation exists to assist officers in their approach to citizens and criminals, as well as safety concerns of those officers being approached by others.

The book offers four compelling points among a wide variety of information. First, it has a major overall professional depth, practical application, and thoroughness. Next, it contains an extensive critical list of 88 questions, consisting of the who, what, when, where, how, and why of operations and tactics. These questions prove outstanding for both the experienced and inexperienced officer and can enhance patrol investigative report documentation and court testimony when applied. Third, for the promotional examination and the department entrance exam challenger, the book lists 855 study questions relevant to law enforcement operations. Finally, the book contains some useful checklist items that will help maintain an officer's effectiveness, competency, and readiness for duty. These include items officers should consider when preparing to depart their residences for duty, leaving their locker rooms (even what officers should keep in their lockers), handling preparation requirements prior to leaving the squad room, obtaining necessary information for patrol duty, and checking out the patrol vehicle and its care prior to and after departing the garage area.

The book also covers the latest information on conducting standard and emergency high-risk vehicle stops, pursuit considerations and effective alternatives, legal and practical aspects of firearms use, safety and liability, and special studies involving police weapons and their applications. In addition, it includes planning for emergency incidents and officer safety countermeasures when confronting specific threats.

Patrol Operations and Enforcement Tactics is a valuable resource book for state and local law enforcement departments to upgrade their operating procedures and policies and their academies. It can provide material for the commissions on peace officers standards and training, departmental inservice training programs, assessment center selections and various examinations for different officer skill levels, and merit promotion boards. The book also could help those officers looking for a self-study professional enhancement that they can complete during shift breaks or at their residences and can support their specific college academic courses. It is a must read for all departmental patrol officers and investigative personnel, including supervisors and managers.

Reviewed by

Larry R. Moore

Certified Emergency Manager

International Association

of Emergency Managers

Knoxville, Tennessee
COPYRIGHT 2003 Federal Bureau of Investigation
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
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Author:Moore, Larry R.
Publication:The FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin
Date:Nov 1, 2003
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