Most obviously they help keep our driving habits sharp and within the limits of the law — which frankly in a town that gets a large influx of new teenage (student) drivers each year that’s probably a good thing — and may even be a great thing when it helps save lives.
Regardless of age and driving experience, we all probably get a bit complacent in our driving and the long arm of the law is there to help get us back on track and keep us safe.
But you’d be surprised how many times a simple traffic stop leads to the discovery of other criminal activity. It turns out that criminals often drive with the same irreverance towards the law that they have in other areas of their lives.
What we’ve found is that a routine traffic stop frequently puts our Police Officers in direct contact with felons with outstanding warrants and lots of criminal ambition and thanks to their less than ideal driving habits we often find ourselves in a position to thwart those ambitions.
Thwarted criminal ambition is a good thing so while a traffic stop ranks up there with a root canal for things that we all least look forward to, you can at least take some solace knowing that traffic stops are one of our most effective means for catching trouble before it happens which helps keep all of us just a little bit safer — both on the streets and in our homes.
I was reminded of this last week when I read the Police Chief’s weekly staff update (see excerpt below) and she credited two Kent Police Officers with some fine Police work at traffic stops that led to two arrests:
Ptl. Bowen made a traffic stop for a minor moving violation and used his investigative skills and training leading to the arrest of a local well known felon. The arrestee was subsequently found to have drug abuse instruments and a white powder substance on his person.
Ptl. Poe also made a stop of a speeding driver who displayed indications of deceit upon questioning. Poe’s investigation of the driver led to an arrest after drug abuse instruments and a white powder substance was found.
Great job in your efforts in keeping the streets safe!