Taking personal responsibility and paying attention to detail are two very important character traits to have. It is important for civilians to demonstrate these traits but even more important for police officers and police recruits. Police officers and recruits should be held to a much higher standard than civilians because of the position they are in or will be in where they enforce the laws over civilians. They should be a role model for people to follow. A lack of personal responsibility can cause many problems.
Not only for the person who is making the choice not to take personal responsibility but for the people around them. One such example related to law enforcement could be if an officer with a department vehicle doesn’t get the preventative maintenance done on his vehicle. Then when an officer from another shift takes the same vehicle out, the vehicle could break down or not function to it’s best ability. While this could just be a minor inconvenience for the second officer, it could also be a matter of life and death. It’s possible that the second officer could have been on his way to a shooting or armed robbery in progress.
If this officer was the closest to the incident, this could add on extra time before another officer arrives on the scene which would allow more time for the criminals to possibly kill someone or to get away. This may seem like an exaggeration but it is a very possible scenario. We never know what the consequences of our choices could be. They could be insignificant or maybe a matter of life and death. Since we are not able to tell the future and see what the consequences of our decision could be, it is better to avoid the gamble all together and take personal responsibility.
This means we should do the right thing and make responsible choices. It is also very important for us as recruits to show personal responsibility at the academy. While it may be easier to take shortcuts or take the easy way out with a job or task we are given at the academy because someone isn’t watching, it is not the right way to do things. We attend the academy to learn skills we will need for the rest of our career and to learn discipline. By making decisions not to take responsibility we are endangering ourselves, our future co workers, and the citizens we will one day serve and protect.
If we were to take shortcuts now and not fully learn skills we will need as officers, we may show up to a call for service and not know how to handle something such as a domestic dispute and many lives would be endangered because of it. Recruits should also take personal responsibility for their actions because it shows that they have integrity. Integrity is the most important thing to have as a police officer. Police officers have privileges and access to certain things that the general public does not.
They should be trusted to handle those privileges in a responsible manner because they will do the right thing and not take advantage. It is human nature to want to lie to get out of a situation that could get you in trouble. However, as recruits and one day in the future as officers, by taking personal responsibility for our actions, we will tell the truth no matter what the consequences could be simply because it is the right thing to do. Another important thing to do as a police recruit is pay attention to detail. While in the academy, there will be a lot of information coming our way.
It is important to pay attention to even the smallest details so that we fully understand every skill that we should be learning. Another reason it is important to pay attention to detail is because it will help us in our career as police officers. One such instance that this recruit has already noticed is that this recruit pays attention to the smallest details of his uniform. This recruit notices things such as a belt that needs to be blackened, or shoes with scuff marks that need to be polished, or strings hanging from the uniform shirt and pants.
What this recruit is learning from having to have a well kept uniform is an increased attention to detail. This recruit has noticed himself looking at these minor details on other recruits uniforms and even in this recruit’s free time noticing imperfections in civilians clothing at a restaurant or gas station. This is actually a very good trait to have because if this recruit is a witness to a crime, this recruit will be able to notice things such as maybe the suspect has a tear in his jeans that can identify him later. Or maybe a scar on his face, a particular brand name on his boots, or description of a weapon he was using.
This recruit’s eye is being trained to look for those details just from having to keep his uniform tidy and free of those imperfections. Paying attention is also important as a recruit or police officer when we are filling out official documents and forms. If a form is supposed to be filled out a certain way, we should pay attention to detail and fill it out 100 percent correctly. If it is not done correctly, this will make other people’s jobs harder because we don’t know how to do our own job. They will have to pick up the slack and fix the items hat were not done correctly. It should have been done right the first time. Another more extreme situation could be something that we encounter as police officers one day. Perhaps we would be collecting evidence one day from a murder suspect. If we collect that evidence in such a way that is unconstitutional, that evidence (maybe it could be a gun with fingerprints on it) will not be able to be used in a trial and that could allow a murderer to go free because we couldn’t pay enough attention to detail to know the correct way to go about collecting that evidence.