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Watch the What?

May 9, 2009

What do you watch the most when you are dealing with a suspect? If you answered, “Watch the eyes,” you may wind up dead. While watching the eyes does play a part in dealing with a suspect after he’s been subdued (or cuffed and stuffed), the most crucial thing to watch prior to him or her being taken into custody and under lock and key is the hands. That’s right, the hands. Hands kill.

Hands also make sudden moves that can do you a lot of damage if you are not alert and on the ball. It’s kind of like a quiet mantra each police officer takes out on the streets when on duty, the subconscious whispering, “Plan for no surprises.” While it may be dangerous out there on the streets, you will have a job to do, and part of that job, besides keeping the people you protect and serve safe, is keeping yourself safe.

The making of your career is up to you in how you handle yourself, what you choose to do on the job, what career moves you make and even what you do for yourself in terms of further education. The whole idea of being a cop is that you are constantly training, learning, revising your techniques and tactics and working your way up the ladder to promotion. While you may be thinking just about getting through the police PATI entrance exam right now, be a long-range planner and set your goals high.

Set a benchmark for your career of learning every new thing that comes along, through personal experience, seminars, one on one interaction with those with experience or through police management books. Yes, reading is a good way to keep in touch with what is going in the world of policing around you. You have to remember that your career is never stagnant, unless you plan it that way.

Never stop learning things like “Watch the hands,” and why that is so critical to your survival. Never stop learning everything you can lay your hands on to be the best cop you can be. Studying police prep material is part of that path to success and the place to start planning for the future is Police Ready.

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