132 Multiple choice questions
- does not have
- position to catch up with the violator, initiate the stop, and maintain a safe following distance until the violator pulls over.
- immediately be able to request backup.
- hole in the trunk where the lock should be, which is a common sign of a stolen vehicle.
- use spotlights for additional lighting.
- any one part of the scene, but rather scan the vehicle and its occupants for suspicious movements.
- assess the violator's vehicle for signs of danger.
- If uncomfortable with the initial stopping place, use the PA system to direct the violator to a safer location.
A safe distance is staying far enough behind the violator to be able to react to the situation at hand.
Follow the violator's vehicle at a safe distance.
As the driver changes lanes, follow smoothly.
Use safety precautions, such as avoiding traffic lanes, watching for pedestrians, and protecting the violator.
The officer might say, "Driver, drive into the parking lot ahead" or "Driver, pull your vehicle farther to the right."
The officer should be firm but respectful.
- Rodney King
- Florida driver if the language barrier makes it difficult for you to be understood.
- The officer should simply explain the observations and the violation, if any.
Allow the driver to talk.
Whether or not you issue a warning or citation, listening respectfully will help many people calm down and accept the situation.
Eliminate the racially-charged stereotypes, racial jokes, and epithets from your speech.
Do not argue with the violator.
Heighten the importance of the enforcement action by not lecturing the violator but rather explaining the seriousness of the violation by mentioning the risk of a crash or other circumstance.
End the interaction with a "thank you" in a courteous, non-sarcastic manner.
Law enforcement officers should remain polite and focused, conveying to the driver that they are hearing him or her.
Provide the person with your complete name and badge number upon request
Maintain a non-confrontational interview stance.
Establish a commanding presence by using words that convey professionalism and demand respect.
Describe the violation in terms of what you saw the vehicle, not the driver, do.
Maintain a calm tone of voice.
Greet the driver (and passengers) politely, introducing yourself and immediately explaining why you made the stop.
Maintain a pleasant expression.
Courts have ruled that people are entitled to know why they were stopped before any further discussion or requests are made.
- exit the patrol vehicle and make use of available cover.
- heed the laws they enforce.
- warn oncoming traffic.
- speak English
- investigating possible allegations of bias-based policing.
- both legally and ethically
- justify a stop, even if stopping means abandoning an earlier call.
- you must determine the driver's ability to understand you (when making a traffic stop).
- He or she may suddenly slow down.
He or she may look into the rear-view mirror and make eye contact with the officer.
He or she may signal a lane change to pull over
- rigid, wooden posture
moving towards the floorboard or backseat
excessive motion that seems beyond natural curiosity
- high beams
- ensuring you are a safe distance from the roadway
adhering to agency policy and procedure
offsetting and/or angling the patrol vehicle in relation to the violator's vehicle
maintaining a safe reactionary distance between the violator's vehicle and the patrol vehicle
where the violator can be stopped out of the flow of traffic, where you
and violator can avoid the danger of passing vehicles.
- observe a violation for which a citation may be issued.
- exit the patrol vehicle quickly.
- close the door quietly and keep the portable radio just loud enough to hear the radio traffic.
- detect and eliminate unfair policing.
- request backup and wait for its arrival before taking any further action.
- vehicle tag number and state of issue
the need for backup or other assistance as required
a description of the violator's vehicle including color, make, approximate year (newer or late model)
the number of occupants and descriptions if possible
the officer's current location, such as the street, plus a cross street or a house number; this is crucial on interstate and divided highways. If the situation escalates and the officer is injured or cannot use the radio, dispatch can pinpoint the officer's location.
the officer's identification number
the officer's direction of travel: north, south, east, or west
- passenger side of the primary
- legal right
- reasonable suspicion
- officer talks to the driver
- try to pull off onto a level spot or a slight downgrade.
- cautiously, constantly assessing the situation
- choose a safe parking place for the patrol vehicle from which to monitor vehicle movement and watch for traffic violations.
- roadway conditions that do not allow room to pull over, such as a long bridge
- to assist a motorist whose vehicle has mechanical trouble
to investigate a vehicle or occupant matching a BOLO description
to assist a motorist who is obviously lost
to investigate suspicious behavior
- any law enforcement action-not merely traffic stops-that targets an individual based on a variety of group characteristics.
- age of attachment relative to the plate (e.g., Are there shiny, new bolts on a dirty plate?)
paint or dark film on the license plate
the presence of dead insects on the tag, suggesting it was the front plate of another vehicle
expired expiration sticker or sticker that looks like it was removed from another plate
the way the plate is attached (bolts, wire) may suggest the license plate was removed from another vehicle
- nervously watching the officer.
- unprofessional or discriminatory manner.
- request another patrol vehicle to help initiate a traffic stop.
- in the roadway
- generating a citizen complaint, often receiving a verbal "thank you" from the cited motorists.
- unknown risk traffic stop
- the backup patrol vehicle may be offset to the left or the right of the primary patrol vehicle.
- Traffic flow
- officer safety
- trunk lock and trunk lid alignment to determine if someone is possibly in the trunk.
- be signaled.
- used against the officers involved in the Rodney King case.
- where road conditions could cause other vehicles to hit the patrol vehicle
on a curve
close to an exit ramp
on a ramp
- be ready to adjust and react quickly to developments in the situation after the driver stops the vehicle.
- trunk lid during every traffic stop, even if the lid appears closed.
- some before initiating a traffic stop.
- panic and stop in the left lane, skid to a stop, or swerve. Others ignore the lights.
- avoid giving even the perception of discriminatory profiling in their actions.
- update dispatch immediately
- someone hammered out the keyhole, allowing entry into the trunk without a key.
the patrol vehicle where it does not obstruct traffic flow but can
enter the roadway quickly and safely to make a necessary stop.
- one and a half to two
- you should not make the stop.
- observes an event or reason that merits the stop.
- Agency policy
- familiar with normal traffic flow, speed limits and where they change, and changes to traffic flow at different times of day.
- it may be necessary to make a traffic stop in a roadway.
- each traffic stop is unique.
- other vehicles can pass
- must limit their use of emergency lighting that may blind or silhouette the primary officer.
- at all times
- officer time to approach the violator's vehicle and assess the situation before the driver reacts.
- be prepared to exit the patrol vehicle quickly.
- level of visibility
width of road and shoulder
presence of hills and curves
- specific suspect information.
- ultimately assisting an officer if ever testifying in court about interactions with a violator.
- determine whether the officer should immediately order the subjects back into the vehicle
- seeing into the patrol vehicle.
- signals the driver to stop.
- acceleration lanes
the rear of the violator's vehicle ensures that the trunk lid/hatch is
closed and transfers the officer's fingerprints to the vehicle as
evidence of contact.
At night, only hold a flashlight in your support hand.
If, when approaching on the violator's side, you see a passenger in the backseat, stop at the back of the rear window and instruct the driver to open the window.
Stay close to the vehicle, stopping at the back edge of the driver's door.
Take advantage of light and shadows at night.
If, when approaching on the violator's side, no one occupies the backseat, remain behind the front passenger's doorpost for cover to take advantage of body armor.
Standing behind the driver's doorpost gives an officer a position of advantage while maintaining a safe distance when talking with the driver.
Remain behind the vehicle's doorpost for cover.
Approach the vehicle cautiously and remain vigilant for dangerous traffic situations.
- may need to follow the violator's vehicle for an extended period before help arrives.
- strobe, flashers, and other lights.
- request backup.
- tap the siren for one or two seconds.
- now require officers to report traffic data, which may include race and gender data on their traffic stops.
- takedown lights
- increase the level of risk of a traffic stop.
- safety and survival
- should push it down when he or she approaches a violator's vehicle.
- make sure your equipment belt is free of the seat belt and that the seat belt does not hinder your exit of the vehicle.
- Speak clearly.
Listen carefully and explain fully what is expected and what you are doing.
Refer the motorist, if necessary, to an appropriate source within the department if unable to answer all questions.
Take adequate time when speaking.
Avoid talking down to anyone or being demeaning.
- stolen merchandise, drugs, tools, a person, or a corpse.
- both the violator's vehicle and its occupants throughout a traffic stop.
- traffic stops
- cause a traffic jam or hazard.
- notification equipment
- vehicle's description, including its type, make, model, year, color, tag number, and state where the tag was issued.