Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Please call

I took Friday off last week to help my mother-in-law, and didn’t spend much time in my inbox over the weekend. I get a lot of email—a whole lot—so a weekend of only occasional checks and subject lines leaves me with a sizeable backlog and a lot of catch-up.

A couple of messages (and others I have received in the past) have raised this concern. Folks, sending me an email is NO WAY to notify the police that you are the victim of telephone harassment, your teenage daughter is being stalked, or you are being tailgated by an angry driver having a road rage tantrum. And Crimestoppers is for providing tips on crimes, not for advising the police department that you are following a drunk driver, that the neighbors are playing music so loud the floors are shaking, or that someone dressed in dark clothing seems to be prowling the parking lot.

For about 90 years, the preferred method of calling the police has been to call the police—you know, press the digits on a telephone, then speak. It’s 911 in an emergency, and 441-6000 if you need us but it isn’t an emergency. We have a well-oiled communication process designed to get the information from you and to an officer in the field. If you send the police chief a personal email, post a comment on his blog, send an email to our generic account, or post a Crimestoppers tip about something that actually needs an immediate police response, all you are doing is slowing us down—sometimes by days.

We like to hear from you online, and email is a great way to discuss things with us, but it’s not the way to engage a prompt police response. Call us. We always answer.

5 comments:

JIM J said...

Well said!

Anonymous said...

On the subject of call. What is an example of a 44000 (aniamal call) I thought LPD defers to A-C on those.One is posted on Mondays list but no description.
Thank you.

Tom Casady said...

6:10 -

Dog running at large. We were dispatched on this one because it was causing a bit of a traffic issue on a major thoroughfare, as motorists stopped and tried to corral a wayward and disoriented terrier.

Dave said...

So, I should put the bon-fire out and stop sending smoke signals when I need the police?

ARRRRG!!!! said...

I spent the weekend doing ice sculptures.