Connecticut News - State, National an...

Connecticut News - State, National and Local News from The Hart...

There are 30 comments on the Hartford Courant story from Jun 6, 2007, titled Connecticut News - State, National and Local News from The Hart.... In it, Hartford Courant reports that:

Colchester police say they don't always feel safe in Colchester. And they say residents shouldn't either, according to a four-page letter written by the union president and vice president for the local police ...

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Hartford Courant.

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Bubba

Ponte Vedra Beach, FL

#1 Jun 7, 2007
Criticizing Police in a small town can be dangerous, but I have to say that numerous request for Police Patrols on a road in Colchester, where the speed limit is 25 MPH, and cars go as fast as 100 MPH, have no registrations showing, and a variety of ATV, Ninja style motorcycles going down the road at extreme speeds while doing wheelies, have gone ignored...Or an Officer will set up once, spend fifteen minute in plain view, and go away with all of the speeders knowing full well he will never be back. All in all, Colchester Officers are a fine bunch of people, but they are spead way too thin...and what would be considered as a normal request for traffic enforcement goes totally ignored by Colchester Police Commanders...
CTMom

Botsford, CT

#2 Jun 7, 2007
This is just the union attempting to strong arm negotiations. Look at he facts and quotes.

First, the article is unclear. Is there just a state trooper on schedule from 12-7, or is there a Colchester officer as well? Because if there isn't a Colchester officer, how can the unions be claiming that officers want more back up during those hours? And if there is a Colchester officer, the facts are right in the article that the other towns serviced by Troop K also only have just one officer or constable on duty and the state trooper covering Colchester serves Colchester faster than any other town since the barracks right here.

"Rush-Kittle said the other 11 towns covered by the Colchester barracks usually have just one officer or constable on duty to cover the town."

Sure, he may be in another town at that point, on another call- but the probability is low given the low crime rates in all three towns. The facts contradict themselves.

"It sounds alarming, but Sgt. William Kewer, the resident state trooper supervisor who oversees the local department, and Lt. Regina Rush-Kittle, commander of the Colchester barracks, say Colchester has adequate police protection."

So, the problem isn't being pointed out by the officers, as the lead two officers say it isn't a problem- but by the union, who is then claiming it is the officers speaking up. Here are two officers- the ONLY two quoted and mentioned by name- who are saying it's not like that at all. But the unions are saying it is horrible. If the unions have problems with the number of police staff, maybe they should question why an additional officer was budgeted and approved for last year, but only JUST hired...12 months after the budget approval. And if the unions were truly interested in getting more staffing, they wouldn't be seeking to increase salaries so largely, knowing that will only impede the process.
Selectman

Madison, CT

#3 Jun 7, 2007
Bubba, Please contact me re:your concerns about traffic enforcement at [email protected]
Outraged local citizen

United States

#4 Jun 8, 2007
Unfortunately, either the letter written by the union was not read at all, or only pieces of the letter were read. And again, unfortunately, the key points of the letter were addressed in such a manner that it completely downplayed the importance of back-up. The whole point of the letter was to address the staffing problems...not overtime. The overtime was suggested as a possible solution to the staffing issue. With more staff, there will be less overtime. Am I wrong? What am I missing? Also completely ignored was the fact that by federal standards for every 1000 residents, a minimum of 1.8 officers should be staffed. Colchester is quicly approaching 17,000 residents. I'm not a math wiz, but I do know that 7 officers expected to serve and protect 17,000 citizens just doesn't add up. Perhaps the article should have included more research into the union issues and less quotes that are in obvious retaliation to this union. You would at least hope that your own sgt would support you....
Outraged local citizen

United States

#5 Jun 8, 2007
There was a Colchester officer from 12-7 but he was removed from that shift because, surprise surprise, one of the other guys left for another police department that provides back-up and will probably take care of him. The union is not attempting to strong arm negotiations. They are just fed up because they are burned out from always working alone. You may want to do a little research as well...the crime rate in Colchester and surrounding towns is really not that low. Drugs and DUIs are a huge issue; not to mention the recent robberies and various other crimes. To have one trooper for 11 other towns doesn't sound ridiculous to you? I hope it's your town that needs him next and he takes forver to get there. Maybe you'll wake up then. I don't understand why Tracy Fox only obtained quotes from Kewer and the LT. Clearly she isn't interested in obtaining all of the facts from both sides...only siding with those 2 and giving them way more credit than they deserve because they are never working without back-up or alone.
CTMom wrote:
This is just the union attempting to strong arm negotiations. Look at he facts and quotes.
First, the article is unclear. Is there just a state trooper on schedule from 12-7, or is there a Colchester officer as well? Because if there isn't a Colchester officer, how can the unions be claiming that officers want more back up during those hours? And if there is a Colchester officer, the facts are right in the article that the other towns serviced by Troop K also only have just one officer or constable on duty and the state trooper covering Colchester serves Colchester faster than any other town since the barracks right here.
"Rush-Kittle said the other 11 towns covered by the Colchester barracks usually have just one officer or constable on duty to cover the town."
Sure, he may be in another town at that point, on another call- but the probability is low given the low crime rates in all three towns. The facts contradict themselves.
"It sounds alarming, but Sgt. William Kewer, the resident state trooper supervisor who oversees the local department, and Lt. Regina Rush-Kittle, commander of the Colchester barracks, say Colchester has adequate police protection."
So, the problem isn't being pointed out by the officers, as the lead two officers say it isn't a problem- but by the union, who is then claiming it is the officers speaking up. Here are two officers- the ONLY two quoted and mentioned by name- who are saying it's not like that at all. But the unions are saying it is horrible. If the unions have problems with the number of police staff, maybe they should question why an additional officer was budgeted and approved for last year, but only JUST hired...12 months after the budget approval. And if the unions were truly interested in getting more staffing, they wouldn't be seeking to increase salaries so largely, knowing that will only impede the process.
CTMom

Ashford, CT

#6 Jun 11, 2007
Outraged local citizen wrote:
There was a Colchester officer from 12-7 but he was removed from that shift because, surprise surprise, one of the other guys left for another police department that provides back-up and will probably take care of him. The union is not attempting to strong arm negotiations. They are just fed up because they are burned out from always working alone. You may want to do a little research as well...the crime rate in Colchester and surrounding towns is really not that low. Drugs and DUIs are a huge issue; not to mention the recent robberies and various other crimes. To have one trooper for 11 other towns doesn't sound ridiculous to you? I hope it's your town that needs him next and he takes forver to get there. Maybe you'll wake up then. I don't understand why Tracy Fox only obtained quotes from Kewer and the LT. Clearly she isn't interested in obtaining all of the facts from both sides...only siding with those 2 and giving them way more credit than they deserve because they are never working without back-up or alone.
<quoted text>
So, is your beef with the staffing of the Staties or the local police? Which is it? And there is more than one trooper to cover 11 towns. The article here said one trooper covers 3 towns. Your initial opening statement is the exact reason local residents don't want to approve the hiring of additional officers. For starters, they aren't hired right away when approved- as I said before last year's budget approved an officer position which was only just filled. Secondly, what you said is exactly what happens. We hire and train our officers- at our expense- only to have them use us as a springboard to larger more appealing police departments. As for crime rate- it is low. Crime is not non-existent, but it is low, especially for a community of 17K.
Concerned Parent

Ashford, CT

#7 Jun 11, 2007
Selectman wrote:
Bubba, Please contact me re:your concerns about traffic enforcement at [email protected]
FYI: Mr. Selectman- street racing, skidding, ATVs, speeding...we've complained. Ironically, my husband got pulled over during one of the short 15 minute stints an officer did on our road...he was doing 9 over the speed limit. Meanwhile, on a daily basis people fly by doing 50mph in a 25mph zone and kids street race regularly. Perpetrators can be found daily around Hi Lea Road or the O'Connell end of Taylor Road.
Bubba

Ponte Vedra Beach, FL

#8 Jun 13, 2007
Concerned Parent wrote:
<quoted text>FYI: Mr. Selectman- street racing, skidding, ATVs, speeding...we've complained. Ironically, my husband got pulled over during one of the short 15 minute stints an officer did on our road...he was doing 9 over the speed limit. Meanwhile, on a daily basis people fly by doing 50mph in a 25mph zone and kids street race regularly. Perpetrators can be found daily around Hi Lea Road or the O'Connell end of Taylor Road.
So are you trying to say that because you're husband was ONLY doing 9 over the limit, that he shouldn't have gotten a ticket??? He does 9 over, then the next guy does 15 over, and all of a sudden, all of our so-called "good" citizens are driving like they really do! Like a bunch of idiots!!! Take off duty troopers for an example. Speed limit is 65, they do 80...Why? because Law Enforcement is lacking that professional standard that makes them want to be an example instead of making them the problem...I had an off duty trooper with wife and kids in his car pass me on Rt 2. He was doing almost 90....As soon as he whipped by, the other traffic took off in his wake doing well over the speed limit...The tactics the Police use are so antiquated...They sit for a few minutes, cars going the opposite direction flash their lights (another group of "Good" citizens) and the traffic slows down, Cop leaves and it's bedlam again...A kid lives down the road from us, his blue S-10 pickup with a tan bottom and a low rider kit, flies down the road with no regard for anyone. He has no plates on display, he plays a bad sound system with the whomp whomp music, and his vehicle has numerous other "issues". I asked an East Hampton Cop why they don't take some enforcement action...The Cop answered that they had already arrested him 12 times, as if that was enough... Arrest his little butt 12 more times, or fifty, if that is what it takes...Or, will they just be happy when this little twirp kills someone.(Mr. Selectman, this kid live on Silmanville Road.) His dad goes down the road throwing out empty beer bottles... As far as the Lady who says their is no crime! What a bunch of B.S.... Our home has been burglarized, car stolen, all of my neighbors have been burglarized, the kid who did it was first arrested for pot possesion, then later he was caught with Heroin...Where are 17 yr old kids getting Heroin? Take off your rose colored glasses people. A crime is a crime whether it's burglary or 9 over the limit. If your husband got a ticket, he deserved it. I bet you're one of those people with a "Support our Troops" and a Soccer Mom Sticker on the back of your car...Want to support something? Try supporting the Law!
Outraged local citizen

United States

#9 Jun 13, 2007
Ahhh, so you're one of those people...The kind that says "what's the point of hiring another officer for Colchester because they are just going to use it as a 'springboard' to another department..." Maybe the new recruits wouldn't use the department as a "springboard" if there were opportunities to advance. What's the incentive to stay if you can't move up in rank and you are always working alone? Wow, that would certainly make me one happy employee! Clearly you are not overworked, having everything fall on you to get done. You probably have also had the opportunity to advance in your field. This incredibly hard-working police department is basically treated like crap because there are so few of them. On top of getting a case, they have to do all of the forensic work, interviews and interrogations, warrants, and paperwork, booking, transporting and court sessions themselves. They can't delegate any of the work to other people. They see a crime regardless of how big or small it is, through to the end. They don't have experts to come in and do the work for them. They are the detectives, the forensic scientists, the investigators. With all of that on their plate, no wonder people are complaining about speeding and who is doing what because no officers are around long enough. With more staffing in the department they would be able to have a chain of command and even back-up, and maybe help solving their "low crime rate" crimes. Maybe that would give them an incentive to stay! And is it such a bad thing some of your tax money at "your expense" is delegated to hiring new police officers so that you are better served and protected?
CTMom wrote:
<quoted text>
So, is your beef with the staffing of the Staties or the local police? Which is it? And there is more than one trooper to cover 11 towns. The article here said one trooper covers 3 towns. Your initial opening statement is the exact reason local residents don't want to approve the hiring of additional officers. For starters, they aren't hired right away when approved- as I said before last year's budget approved an officer position which was only just filled. Secondly, what you said is exactly what happens. We hire and train our officers- at our expense- only to have them use us as a springboard to larger more appealing police departments. As for crime rate- it is low. Crime is not non-existent, but it is low, especially for a community of 17K.
Bubba

Ponte Vedra Beach, FL

#10 Jun 13, 2007
Outraged local citizen wrote:
Ahhh, so you're one of those people...The kind that says "what's the point of hiring another officer for Colchester because they are just going to use it as a 'springboard' to another department..." Maybe the new recruits wouldn't use the department as a "springboard" if there were opportunities to advance. What's the incentive to stay if you can't move up in rank and you are always working alone? Wow, that would certainly make me one happy employee! Clearly you are not overworked, having everything fall on you to get done. You probably have also had the opportunity to advance in your field. This incredibly hard-working police department is basically treated like crap because there are so few of them. On top of getting a case, they have to do all of the forensic work, interviews and interrogations, warrants, and paperwork, booking, transporting and court sessions themselves. They can't delegate any of the work to other people. They see a crime regardless of how big or small it is, through to the end. They don't have experts to come in and do the work for them. They are the detectives, the forensic scientists, the investigators. With all of that on their plate, no wonder people are complaining about speeding and who is doing what because no officers are around long enough. With more staffing in the department they would be able to have a chain of command and even back-up, and maybe help solving their "low crime rate" crimes. Maybe that would give them an incentive to stay! And is it such a bad thing some of your tax money at "your expense" is delegated to hiring new police officers so that you are better served and protected?
<quoted text>
I know what to do...Lets get them some snappy new uniforms...Designer, maybe by Ralph Lauren or Oleg Cassini...Then we can get them some Ferrari's for squad cars...Maybe with built in espresso machines and video games on the gps console... Then we can get some new Police Commisioners...You know, the kind who pull building permits for big projects at their homes, in line with what the law says...If I had a Ferrari to drive, I might not mind working in a town where there is no future....
CT Mom

United States

#11 Jun 14, 2007
Bubba wrote:
<quoted text> So are you trying to say that because you're husband was ONLY doing 9 over the limit, that he shouldn't have gotten a ticket??? He does 9 over, then the next guy does 15 over, and all of a sudden, all of our so-called "good" citizens are driving like they really do! Like a bunch of idiots!!! Take off duty troopers for an example. Speed limit is 65, they do 80...Why? because Law Enforcement is lacking that professional standard that makes them want to be an example instead of making them the problem...I had an off duty trooper with wife and kids in his car pass me on Rt 2. He was doing almost 90....As soon as he whipped by, the other traffic took off in his wake doing well over the speed limit...The tactics the Police use are so antiquated...They sit for a few minutes, cars going the opposite direction flash their lights (another group of "Good" citizens) and the traffic slows down, Cop leaves and it's bedlam again...A kid lives down the road from us, his blue S-10 pickup with a tan bottom and a low rider kit, flies down the road with no regard for anyone. He has no plates on display, he plays a bad sound system with the whomp whomp music, and his vehicle has numerous other "issues". I asked an East Hampton Cop why they don't take some enforcement action...The Cop answered that they had already arrested him 12 times, as if that was enough... Arrest his little butt 12 more times, or fifty, if that is what it takes...Or, will they just be happy when this little twirp kills someone.(Mr. Selectman, this kid live on Silmanville Road.) His dad goes down the road throwing out empty beer bottles... As far as the Lady who says their is no crime! What a bunch of B.S.... Our home has been burglarized, car stolen, all of my neighbors have been burglarized, the kid who did it was first arrested for pot possesion, then later he was caught with Heroin...Where are 17 yr old kids getting Heroin? Take off your rose colored glasses people. A crime is a crime whether it's burglary or 9 over the limit. If your husband got a ticket, he deserved it. I bet you're one of those people with a "Support our Troops" and a Soccer Mom Sticker on the back of your car...Want to support something? Try supporting the Law!
Actually, I have neither of those stickers on my vehicle. And 9 over th limit is not excessive on our road. The speed limit signs have little tag lines on them that says "per order of selectman". Our speed limit signs have not been updated in over 15 years- back when our road was a one lane dirt road. Most people can safely do 30-35 on our road. Would you expect Lebanon Ave or Norwich Ave to have a speed limit of 15 or 25? The side roads off of ours- SIDE roads, so they're smaller roads, have HIGHER speed limits. Buckley Hill Road- a far more dangerous road with curves and hills, just one street over- has a higher speed limit? How backwards is that? Our signs were never updated when the road was improved years ago. BUT, the people who FLY by doing 50, maybe even 60 or more, those people are just borrowing time before they hurt themselves or someone else. So yes, there is a difference between someone who travels a road at a reasonable speed and someone who travels the road at an unreasonable HIGHWAY speed. Please Bubba- you drive the absolute speed limit or less ALL the time?
CT Mom

United States

#12 Jun 14, 2007
Outraged local citizen wrote:
Ahhh, so you're one of those people...The kind that says "what's the point of hiring another officer for Colchester because they are just going to use it as a 'springboard' to another department..." Maybe the new recruits wouldn't use the department as a "springboard" if there were opportunities to advance. What's the incentive to stay if you can't move up in rank and you are always working alone? Wow, that would certainly make me one happy employee! Clearly you are not overworked, having everything fall on you to get done. You probably have also had the opportunity to advance in your field. This incredibly hard-working police department is basically treated like crap because there are so few of them. On top of getting a case, they have to do all of the forensic work, interviews and interrogations, warrants, and paperwork, booking, transporting and court sessions themselves. They can't delegate any of the work to other people. They see a crime regardless of how big or small it is, through to the end. They don't have experts to come in and do the work for them. They are the detectives, the forensic scientists, the investigators. With all of that on their plate, no wonder people are complaining about speeding and who is doing what because no officers are around long enough. With more staffing in the department they would be able to have a chain of command and even back-up, and maybe help solving their "low crime rate" crimes. Maybe that would give them an incentive to stay! And is it such a bad thing some of your tax money at "your expense" is delegated to hiring new police officers so that you are better served and protected?
<quoted text>
Since you would like to make inaccurate assumptions, maybe i can assume you are a town officer? Or possibly just another employee of some other company who maybe feels "entitled" to things but doesn't necessarily put in the work to achieve them?

The thought of scientifically untrained people performing forensics work is scary in the least. If you're going to make the argument we should pay them more and hire more of them, let's make sure they're actually capable of doing the jobs we expect. It takes a degree in forensics to work forensics. And surely you're not suggesting we should hire more officers so some of them can be paper pushers, are you? Why do I get the feeling you are using a large city department as a role model? Colchester needs detectives, and beat patrol, and a forensics lab? Really? How many other towns our size, with a 50 sq mile radius, have such a large department?

Look at the budget. There is about $570K in salary in the budget for officers, including overtime and "miscellaneous payroll". That excludes support payroll and the resident trooper, who alone is another $200K. It's not that resources aren't being dedicated to the police department- they are. Isn't $770K a year in salary for a total of 7-8 officers a pretty substantial investment. This does not include uniforms we purchase and pay for cleaning (why we pay for cleaning is beyond me), vehicles, further training, etc. If there were a large crime problem in town, don't you think our BOS would be seeking the funding of more officers over library computers and money for a new senior center or ball fields? Don't point the finger at the taxpayers' priorities. Who hires these officers? Who negotiates their contracts and terms? At what point did Colchester "outgrow" its police force? Who allowed this to happen- to allow the town to grow so rapidly it's busting at the seams now? Certainly not me, or my neighbors. Not the taxpayers- we're just being blamed for wanting to keep more of our dollars in our pocket instead of continuing to go along blindly with what the Boards want.
Outraged local citizen

Plainville, CT

#13 Jun 14, 2007
Actually, they are not untrained with forensics...they receive that kind of training in the academy. It is not necessary to have a degree in forensics to go over a crime scene to collect and process the evidence. I don't believe I ever said to pay them more. My argument is to hire more of them so as to alleviate their workload and provide back up for safety measures. Their whole argument in the letter was that they are understaffed and feel unsafe. And I never said they needed the detectives and the beat patrol and all of that... so please don't put words into my mouth. I brought up the point of everything they are responsible for, and to handle all of that on your own during a shift is overwhelming. So you think that the Colchester PD doesn't work hard enough to gain more staffing? What more do you want them to do? They are responsible for a lot of things the state troopers get credit for. Also your lack of confidence in them is extremely disturbing. If the state troopers had written the letter instead would you feel the same way as you do about CPD? Maybe you truly don't understand the dangers of being a police officer regardless of town mileage or crime rate, etc. Perhaps you are also forgetting that not all 7 of them working at one time. At most there are 2 officers on a shift, but frequently only 1. If one officer is already tied up and there is an emergency at the opposite side of town, the mileage doesn't seem so small anymore does it? Itís not the job of the state troopers to back them up. Colchester is an independent police force. The troopers are for the East Haddams and Salems that donít have police departments.
CT Mom wrote:
<quoted text>
Since you would like to make inaccurate assumptions, maybe i can assume you are a town officer? Or possibly just another employee of some other company who maybe feels "entitled" to things but doesn't necessarily put in the work to achieve them?
The thought of scientifically untrained people performing forensics work is scary in the least. If you're going to make the argument we should pay them more and hire more of them, let's make sure they're actually capable of doing the jobs we expect. It takes a degree in forensics to work forensics. And surely you're not suggesting we should hire more officers so some of them can be paper pushers, are you? Why do I get the feeling you are using a large city department as a role model? Colchester needs detectives, and beat patrol, and a forensics lab? Really? How many other towns our size, with a 50 sq mile radius, have such a large department?
Look at the budget. There is about $570K in salary in the budget for officers, including overtime and "miscellaneous payroll". That excludes support payroll and the resident trooper, who alone is another $200K. It's not that resources aren't being dedicated to the police department- they are. Isn't $770K a year in salary for a total of 7-8 officers a pretty substantial investment. This does not include uniforms we purchase and pay for cleaning (why we pay for cleaning is beyond me), vehicles, further training, etc. If there were a large crime problem in town, don't you think our BOS would be seeking the funding of more officers over library computers and money for a new senior center or ball fields? Don't point the finger at the taxpayers' priorities. Who hires these officers? Who negotiates their contracts and terms? At what point did Colchester "outgrow" its police force? Who allowed this to happen- to allow the town to grow so rapidly it's busting at the seams now? Certainly not me, or my neighbors. Not the taxpayers- we're just being blamed for wanting to keep more of our dollars in our pocket instead of continuing to go along blindly with what the Boards want.
Outraged local citizen

Plainville, CT

#14 Jun 14, 2007
Maybe this will shed some light for everyone on the staffing issue...

Town of Montville:
45 square miles
17,500 residents
18 police officers

Town of Waterford:
37 square miles
18,000 residents
28 patrol officers

Town of East Hampton
36 square miles
12,000 residents
15 police officers

Town of East Lyme
35 square miles
19,000 residents
16 police officers full-time; 5 police officers part-time

Town of Colchester
50 square miles
17,000 residents
7 police officers

Is the Colchester PD really so wrong in requesting more staffing now? You think any of the other police officers just mentioned ever have to work alone?
CT Mom

United States

#15 Jun 14, 2007
And all of these towns are either older and established (no recent growth boom) and have lareger police department budgets. 7 officers in Colchester, plus a resident trooper- budget is $700K salary. In East Hampton, those 15 officers are budgeted $1.2 million. So that makes sense, right? Again- is it the taxpayers who hire? Who set budget priorities? Who give in to the BOE year after year, while the town budget grows minimally?(look at recent reductions:BOE budget is 80% of the budget and yet the town reduced their budget by nearly as much as the BOE did!) Is it the taxpayers who prioritize fields and buildings over troops? Or are we lead to believe and have no reason to suspect otherwise that everything is "hunky dorey"? Oh sure, the BOS made a HUGE stink a couple years ago when they insisted that we needed a paid fire chief- but police officers are working alone you say? Funny, they don't seem to be as worried do they? So whom do we believe? And if the officers want more funds for more staff- they need to fight town hall- not the taxpayers. Take your battle there, please.
Outraged local citizen wrote:
Maybe this will shed some light for everyone on the staffing issue...
Town of Montville:
45 square miles
17,500 residents
18 police officers
Town of Waterford:
37 square miles
18,000 residents
28 patrol officers
Town of East Hampton
36 square miles
12,000 residents
15 police officers
Town of East Lyme
35 square miles
19,000 residents
16 police officers full-time; 5 police officers part-time
Town of Colchester
50 square miles
17,000 residents
7 police officers
Is the Colchester PD really so wrong in requesting more staffing now? You think any of the other police officers just mentioned ever have to work alone?
CT Mom

United States

#16 Jun 14, 2007
I never said they weren't hard working. How many officers are on each shift? Is it just the one shift mentioned that there is a single officer? How does adding another officer, who could be doing all those multi-tasks you mentioned, ensure that another officer would not have to respond alone? It doesn't. It can't. So what we're really talking about here is expanding the entire force to a completely independent full time force aren't we? There is a huge difference between needing another officer or two and needing to double the size of the force. The taxpayers need to be given information up front & honestly, if that's the case. Because police forces aren't just bodies and salaries- but headquarters, vehicles, equipment, insurance, retirement funds, etc. If the BOS isn't making it a priority- and they aren't- then taxpayers will never accept it as "needed".
Outraged local citizen wrote:
Actually, they are not untrained with forensics...they receive that kind of training in the academy. It is not necessary to have a degree in forensics to go over a crime scene to collect and process the evidence. I don't believe I ever said to pay them more. My argument is to hire more of them so as to alleviate their workload and provide back up for safety measures. Their whole argument in the letter was that they are understaffed and feel unsafe. And I never said they needed the detectives and the beat patrol and all of that... so please don't put words into my mouth. I brought up the point of everything they are responsible for, and to handle all of that on your own during a shift is overwhelming. So you think that the Colchester PD doesn't work hard enough to gain more staffing? What more do you want them to do? They are responsible for a lot of things the state troopers get credit for. Also your lack of confidence in them is extremely disturbing. If the state troopers had written the letter instead would you feel the same way as you do about CPD? Maybe you truly don't understand the dangers of being a police officer regardless of town mileage or crime rate, etc. Perhaps you are also forgetting that not all 7 of them working at one time. At most there are 2 officers on a shift, but frequently only 1. If one officer is already tied up and there is an emergency at the opposite side of town, the mileage doesn't seem so small anymore does it? Itís not the job of the state troopers to back them up. Colchester is an independent police force. The troopers are for the East Haddams and Salems that donít have police departments.
<quoted text>
Outraged local citizen

Waukegan, IL

#17 Jun 14, 2007
More often than not, they are working alone each shift...days, eves, and the occasional mid. I doubt they want just 1 more officer...they should be staffed for 27 based on FBI stats. However, they are not asking for an additional 20 officers...just enough to ensure that there are 2 on each shift. It doesn't really matter how long a town has been established for if they are growing so rapidly. I do understand your concerns about the money and who's pocket it ultimately comes out of. I have many family members in law enforcement so I come from a completely different perspective. It's ridiculous for one officer to be working alone. The uniform is a target. How many times in your life have you heard "safety in numbers." How should this situation be any different? Your first post mentioned that the whole thing was just to strong-arm negotiations for raises. Raises were never even brought up. Think an extra dollar will make a difference in how safe they feel? Think a hundred grand a year would pacifiy them? It's not about the money! It's about their safety! What if this was your husband, son, brother, father, mother, sister, daughter, whatever in the police department relaying their fears of safety? Would you just tell them they are overreacting and it's really all about the money?
CT Mom wrote:
I never said they weren't hard working. How many officers are on each shift? Is it just the one shift mentioned that there is a single officer? How does adding another officer, who could be doing all those multi-tasks you mentioned, ensure that another officer would not have to respond alone? It doesn't. It can't. So what we're really talking about here is expanding the entire force to a completely independent full time force aren't we? There is a huge difference between needing another officer or two and needing to double the size of the force. The taxpayers need to be given information up front & honestly, if that's the case. Because police forces aren't just bodies and salaries- but headquarters, vehicles, equipment, insurance, retirement funds, etc. If the BOS isn't making it a priority- and they aren't- then taxpayers will never accept it as "needed". <quoted text>
Bubba

Ponte Vedra Beach, FL

#18 Jun 15, 2007
CT Mom wrote:
<quoted text>
Actually, I have neither of those stickers on my vehicle. And 9 over th limit is not excessive on our road. The speed limit signs have little tag lines on them that says "per order of selectman". Our speed limit signs have not been updated in over 15 years- back when our road was a one lane dirt road. Most people can safely do 30-35 on our road. Would you expect Lebanon Ave or Norwich Ave to have a speed limit of 15 or 25? The side roads off of ours- SIDE roads, so they're smaller roads, have HIGHER speed limits. Buckley Hill Road- a far more dangerous road with curves and hills, just one street over- has a higher speed limit? How backwards is that? Our signs were never updated when the road was improved years ago. BUT, the people who FLY by doing 50, maybe even 60 or more, those people are just borrowing time before they hurt themselves or someone else. So yes, there is a difference between someone who travels a road at a reasonable speed and someone who travels the road at an unreasonable HIGHWAY speed. Please Bubba- you drive the absolute speed limit or less ALL the time?
Yes I do drive the speed limit all of the time...You see, as a retired LEO Pilot, I know that the Law is the Law, and when posted on a speed limit sign, it is meant to be obeyed. It is attitudes like yours that contributes to the same problems you complain about. Are you a traffic engineer? Is your husband? Do you know the differance in stopping time between 25 MPH and 35 MPH? Would it make a differance if it was your kid who fell into the path of an oncoming car? Bulkeley Hill has all kinds of accidents If everyone just decides to drive however fast it is that they want to go, why put up speed limit signs. Next, your kids will be sent home from school for violating a school policy...Maybe smoking pot! You'll wonder where you went wrong...I raised my kids right, fed them, tucked them in every night, I went to PTA meetings, and even took them to church once when they were five...You see, kids learn by example, so if Dad fudges the speed limit by 9 MPH, well, why shouldn't little Johnny fudge the rules at school, later on at work, and so on...The sign on the school house door says no guns, is it a suggestion? Or a Law? If you're unhappy with the speed limit signs, go park you butt in the first selectmans office and demand they be changed...You can't just make the law what you think it should be, because you don't like the sign...Next time you're out driving, watch someone who breezez by you, weaves in an out of traffic, and count the seconds it take you to catch him at the next stop light...He will have burnt all of that extra gas, wear and tear on his car, and endangered other lives, for what? A 10 second advantage? 9 MPH, or 2 MPH is breaking the Law, a Law that many people before you fought very hard to preserve and protect...Your attitude is what is wrong with this country...Freedom comes at a price, and when you disrespect the law, you disrespect the Flag, you disrespect the country, and you disrespect all who fought and died for it....
Outraged local citizen

Plainville, CT

#19 Jun 15, 2007
Very well said.
Bubba wrote:
<quoted text>Yes I do drive the speed limit all of the time...You see, as a retired LEO Pilot, I know that the Law is the Law, and when posted on a speed limit sign, it is meant to be obeyed. It is attitudes like yours that contributes to the same problems you complain about. Are you a traffic engineer? Is your husband? Do you know the differance in stopping time between 25 MPH and 35 MPH? Would it make a differance if it was your kid who fell into the path of an oncoming car? Bulkeley Hill has all kinds of accidents If everyone just decides to drive however fast it is that they want to go, why put up speed limit signs. Next, your kids will be sent home from school for violating a school policy...Maybe smoking pot! You'll wonder where you went wrong...I raised my kids right, fed them, tucked them in every night, I went to PTA meetings, and even took them to church once when they were five...You see, kids learn by example, so if Dad fudges the speed limit by 9 MPH, well, why shouldn't little Johnny fudge the rules at school, later on at work, and so on...The sign on the school house door says no guns, is it a suggestion? Or a Law? If you're unhappy with the speed limit signs, go park you butt in the first selectmans office and demand they be changed...You can't just make the law what you think it should be, because you don't like the sign...Next time you're out driving, watch someone who breezez by you, weaves in an out of traffic, and count the seconds it take you to catch him at the next stop light...He will have burnt all of that extra gas, wear and tear on his car, and endangered other lives, for what? A 10 second advantage? 9 MPH, or 2 MPH is breaking the Law, a Law that many people before you fought very hard to preserve and protect...Your attitude is what is wrong with this country...Freedom comes at a price, and when you disrespect the law, you disrespect the Flag, you disrespect the country, and you disrespect all who fought and died for it....
Bubba

Ponte Vedra Beach, FL

#20 Jun 15, 2007
Outraged local citizen wrote:
Very well said.
<quoted text>
Thank you...Lets take a second and look at what an extra 9 MPH does to your stopping distance. This is average car, good tires, driver in good health, etc...At 20 MPH Stopping distance is 40 ft. At 30mph it jumps to 75 feet. This is the length of a tractor trailer rig...At 40 mph it jumps to 120 ft, and at 50 mph, the stopping distance is 175ft. This is barring any distractions from kids, animals, or other passengers...All of these statistics are from NTSB website and can be checked out...Last year, coming down Ogden Lord Rd to Bull Hill, I had a lady in a silver SUV who lives on Farm Gate Rd following me on my Harley, no less than 20 inches from my rear fender...She had kids in the car...I motioned for her to back off, but as I was going the speed limit but it wasn't fast enough for her. She is so lucky that those anger management classes I took paid off...I have since seen her driving that car, and have witnessed her doing 60 in a 30 mph zone...Now she'll hit someone oneday, but in the meantime, what influence is she making on the minds of her children? Kids are smart, and they know that 30 mph over the speed limit is breaking the law...But...if Mommy can break the Law, why can't we...And so the seed is planted, and grows, until one day the police pull your now 17 yr old daughter out of a tangled wreck with her face disfigured so badly you don't even recognize her...So far fetched? How many young kids have died in this part of Connecticut in just the last 3 or 4 years? To the Lady from Farmgate Road, that nice yellow house you have...Hit a biker and watch Trantolo and Trantolo take your house, your savings accounts, and any other property or wealth you may have away from you and give it to the Biker. Let your children have the bent twisted body of that BIker in their minds for the rest of time...Mommy did that to him...As for you mis T.D. of Farmgate Road, you will never sleep a full night again. Why? Because you, and so many others like you, can't appreciate this country well enough to obey some traffic laws. Just like CT Mom hear on this thread, you think that you are better than the rest. Your time is more important, yoour ugly kids are better looking, and you don't need to have respect for anyone elses right to live safely. Well here's a flash! If you don't respect the law, and if you don't respect the safety of others, you don't respect yourself either...

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