Police Ride-along

July 12, 2008
By Quinn Nguyen, Anaheim, CA

I had always wanted to be a police officer, since I was at least seven years old. My dad never knew how serious I wanted to be a police officer, he just thought it was a phase I was going through. I made sure I never miss an episode of COPS, and of course, when I heard that my high school was offering Law Enforcement course, I jump at the chance.

My teacher, who was a former police officer, told us about the ride-along program some police department offer. Ride-along is when you sit in a patrol car, passenger seat, and go throughtout the day to see what being an officer was like. Of course, not to mention dangerous. So the next day, I immediately made my dad take me to my local police station, since I found out that they do offer the ride-along. That bad part was, my local police department was known to have jerk cops there, but I didn't let that bother me at all, surely, I'm as innocent as can be, haha.

To my surprise, I was treated like I was those "up to no good" juvenile, the officer was quite rude to me, but that didn't frazzled me out. So I set a date, had my dad sign the form, and I left happy and can't wait to get started. The officer at the station promised to call to confirm my ride-along, two days go by, no call, four days go by, still no call, and then THE day came, and still no call. I was feeling disappointed, but called the department. I speaked to the chief of police, and he was really nice, after making me wait on the phone for a half hour, he said that there was no form with my information on it. I wanted to cry, then it dawned on me,the rude officer probably "misplaced" my information. But the chief tolded me to come on down, I was jumping up and down in joy. Once I arrived at the station, I walked up to the window since that's what the chief told me to do, but another rude officer made me wait in line, which was very long. But I didn't give up, I walked up to the window and told him that I had a ride-along appointment. He gave my a strange look, and then finally let me inside. I was paired up with an officer, who was super cool and super nice, thank god.
I asked him questions and he asked me questions back. Our first call we responded to was a crazy lady who claim there was a spitting cobra in her house, she was on tons of medications, and there were no snake. Then we went to a car collison accident, which took about an hour. Then we went to the crazy lady's house again, this time, she claimed her vehicle was stolen. Then the officer took me around the 'high' crime area. I was a little disappointed that there were no pursuit chase, but I had fun none the less. Then he took me home, even though I didn't wanted to go home.
So all together, it was a great learning experience, I was sure I wanted to be a police officer even more. I also know that there are bad police officers out there, but majority are good. Oh yeah, the officer I rode with was cute also. :)

The author's comments:
I will be going on another ride-along soon, if you guys want to go on a ride-along also, contact your local police department. While you're at it, check out the explorer program offered at your local police department, of course, if you're interested in this line of work.

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This article has 1 comment.

on Jan. 19 2011 at 8:25 pm
ohheyyyelli SILVER, Woonsocket, Rhode Island
5 articles 3 photos 178 comments

Thats awesome! I'm deffinatley going to look into that, I would love to do a ride along. I've yet to tell anyone my interest in becoming a police officer, being a girl and all. Deffinatley will be rideculed lol. There's a one-week student trooper program in my area, hopefully I'll do that this summer[:

P.S. I love COPS, and if you havent already you should check out the crime & investigation channel. my favorite shows are female forces, rookies, and some others[:

anyways, cool article lol.

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