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1998 George P. Crofton  All rights reserved

Ten Fatal Errors
That Have Killed Experienced Lawmen

1. YOUR ATTITUDE   If you fail to keep your mind on the job while on patrol or you carry home problems into the field, you will start to make errors. It can cost you or other fellow officers their lives. Are you wearing your bullet resistant armor. It could save your life.

2.  TOMBSTONE COURAGE   No one doubts that you are all man. But in any situation where time allows wait for the backup. There are few instances where alone, unaided you should try and make a dangerous apprehension.

3.  NOT ENOUGH REST   To do your job you must be alert. Being sleepy or asleep on the job is not only against regulations but you endanger yourself, the community and all your fellow officers.

4. TAKING A BAD POSITION   Never let anyone you are questioning or about to stop get in a better position than you and your vehicle. There is no such thing as a routine call or stop.

5.  DANGER SIGNS   As a lawman you will get to recognize danger signs . Movements, strange cars, warnings that should alert you to watch your step and approach with caution. Know your beat, your community and watch for what is out of place.

6. FAILURE TO WATCH HANDS OF A SUSPECT   Is he or she reaching for a weapon or getting ready to strike you? Where else can a potential killer strike but from his or her hands.

7.  RELAXING TOO SOON   The rut of false alarms that are accidentally set off. Walking in and asking if the place is being held up. Observe the activity. Never take any call as routine, or just another false alarm. Its your life on the line.

8.  IMPROPER USE OR NO HANDCUFFS   Once you have made an arrest handcuff the prisoner and properly. See that the hands that can kill are safely cuffed.

9.  NO SEARCH OR POOR SEARCH   There are so many places to hide weapons that your failure to search is a crime against fellow officers. Many criminals carry several weapons and are able and prepared to use them against you.

10. DIRTY OR INOPERATIVE WEAPON   Is your firearm clean? Will it fire? How about the ammo? When did you last fire so that you can hit a target in combat conditions? What's the sense of carrying any firearm that may not work?