Cops will not protect you…they aren’t psychic nor are they legally required to

13 Sep

The police have no legal responsibility to save you.  No, seriously.  You may have heard this before and have not known its origin.  Maybe you just think since cops aren’t psychic they won’t be there in time to stop a crime.  Well, they’re not, and they usually aren’t there to protect you when things go bump in the night

Many of us have heard the old saying,

“When seconds count the cops are only minutes away”

Or that cops investigate crimes that happened not stop crimes that are happening.

 That is very true.  And a rational person can understand that.  Of course, Gun Control zealots aren’t rational so they believe that only cops and criminals should have guns.  Criminals, so they can kill you and then armed cops can more safely capture the criminals.  Little solace to your family that the bad guy was captured. 

Because he wasn’t “stopped”.  The only person who can STOP crime are those who are armed and ready when crime is unfolding.  Such as a 76 year old employee at Everett Real Estate who shot a much younger man who was robbing him.  Or a San Antonio man who stopped Roberto Barron when he was stabbing his wife in front of a school.  The cops weren’t there to protect Mrs. Barron, but an armed citizen was.  He saved her life and held Roberto at gun point until the police eventually arrived.

But these are things we know.  Especially as gun owners who carry, we carry a firearm because a cop won’t fit in our holsters.  And despite what the media would like us to believe, true stories of self defense using a firearm are much more prevalent than is reported.

Back to what the police actually do.  They investigate crimes that have happened.  But what are they “required” by law to do?

In Warren v District of Columbia, the court found that police are only under a general duty to protect the public at large.  The court stated that official police personnel and the government employing them owe no duty to victims of criminal acts and thus are not liable for a failure to provide adequate police protection unless a special relationship exists.

 What does that mean?  That means that they do not have to answer your calls for help, they do not have to stop and assist you when you are in trouble, they do not have to do anything to help or protect YOU, the individual.  All that the police are required to do to satisfy their duty is to protect the public at large.

The case that brought this ruling in brief: Three rape victims sued the District of Columbia for negligence on the part of the police. Two of three female roommates were upstairs when they heard men break in and attack the third. They phoned the police, reporting that their house was being burglarized, and waited on the roof. Their call was incorrectly dispatched as less important than it was three minutes after they made the call, and three police cars came to the scene, three minutes after the call was dispatched. One policeman drove by without stopping, and another officer walked up to the door and knocked. Upon receiving no answer, the officers left five minutes after they had arrived. Nine minutes later, the two women called the police again and were assured they would receive assistance. This call was never dispatched and the police never came. Believing that the police had arrived and were in the house, the two women called down to the third who was being attacked. This alerted the intruders to their presence, and they then took them captive at knife-point. They were then raped, robbed, beaten, and forced to submit to the attackers’ sexual demands for the next fourteen hours.

With this ruling from the courts, how can anyone honestly and with a straight face actually argue that only police should be allowed to have guns.  If those very same police have no duty to protect a citizen then their use of a gun is primarily used to protect themselves. What kind of double standard is that?

I have always found this ruling to be the most damning to the gun control argument of only police being allowed to carry guns.   They WILL NOT BE THERE when the average law abiding citizen is in need.   Not only won’t they be there, they AREN’T REQUIRED TO BE THERE. 

Now, if these 3 women were armed then quite possibly they wouldn’t have been raped and beaten for 14 hours.  I can tell you for a fact that being unarmed and waiting on the police to save them offered them no such protection and the results speak for themselves.

The police will file a report, but only you can stop crime.

Carry on and be your own cavalry.


Posted by on September 13, 2012 in Uncategorized


48 responses to “Cops will not protect you…they aren’t psychic nor are they legally required to

  1. John

    September 13, 2012 at 11:47 am

    … required “to” … just so you know.

    • gunowners

      September 13, 2012 at 12:02 pm

      haha…literally a stuck key typo and not a two to too error. Thanks for pointing it out John

  2. TFR

    September 13, 2012 at 11:47 am

    warren v. DC is bad enough. However, coupled with DeShaney v. Winnebago County and Castle Rock v. Gonzales, the truth is that the police have NO duties whatsoever to ordinary citizens. On the other hand, there is a plethora of cases giving the police specific duties in the handling of those in custody. So, you and I have no guarantee of police protection, but criminals do.

  3. donald j. refusedd

    September 13, 2012 at 11:55 am

    In my 23 years as a law enforcement officer I have never heard such garbage! to say that we are not required to respond is also garbage! I advocate concealed carry, the Second Amendment, and more importantly, the use of common sense. If were given a radio call we must respond. I cannot know the facts of above singular case that you give as an example of the police not having to respond. I can tell you that you we are responding, and I wish I could count the number of times that I have stopped a criminal before he broke the law and still was able to take him to jail for any number of things. The above fable is a slander against all law enforcement officers that go out every day to do their jobs. Do I believe that an Armed citizen Can prevent a crime as it’s happening better than a police officer who is miles away? again common sense comes into play when you consider that situation. I pray that citizens read the above story, and make an educated decision about what is fact and what is not. On a side note I will say this, the police cannot be everywhere.

    • gunowners

      September 13, 2012 at 12:07 pm

      You’re entitled to your opinion don, and while this article is not a slam piece on police in anyway nor is it saying that police DON’T respond, they are not legally required to. It is no fable, it has the rule of precedent on it and if you read the outcome for Warren v DC you would understand that.

      Furthermore, on top of the stated rulings, the plain fact is that police investigate more crime than they actually stop outright. According to the courts that is fine because the job of the police is to be the line against order and chaos…not to actually stop individual crime but to protect the overarching society from slipping into roving bands.

      To see a fictionalized version of this concept in action I suggest you see, if you haven’t, the new Batman movie.

      • Donald J. Refusedd

        September 13, 2012 at 1:03 pm

        other than citing case law, do you understand that we ARE obligated to respond if you call for help? last i checked, officers are FIRED for not doing their jobs. if they are not obligated to respond, then why would they? duty? i imagine so. Because we swore an oath to do so? absolutely! but we also ARE obligated to respond. to say we are not, by citing case law used to protect an officer from a lawsuit, is that accurate? as someone who does wear a badge, and does the job, for the last 23 years, i would say that people saying what i am obligated to do, or not do, simply by doing a case law search to support their opinion, really need to sit in the black and white with me, and THEN say what we are or are not obligated to do. and yes, it is my opinion, and also my job.

      • Jack

        September 13, 2012 at 6:37 pm


        The OP didn’t say it, the Supreme Court did. Nobody is saying you won’t lose your job for not responding to the call, just that you won’t be held liable in a civil action for it.

      • donald j. refusedd

        September 13, 2012 at 6:57 pm


        i have to put this this way to be sure that you understand my point. if a cop is sitting in a black and white outside a bank, and a person enters that bank, and mows down all inside….and walks out, right past the black and white, and the cop just sits there, then the suspect walks away. are you being honest in saying, and the whole story above with all the comments, that cop would not be sued, prosecuted, and held liable??

        the bottom line for everything i have said is….to make a point for 2nd amendment, or concealed carry, BOTH of which are highly regarded by almost every cop i know, as being a right every good American should have, is wrong when you use cops and the duties they perform, or that they wont help you, as a selling point. JUST WRONG! to say we WONT help you, versus we might not be close enough to help you, is wrong. case laws aside, it is just wrong, and inaccurate.

        let me go further, I was in an off duty shooting in 2003. i killed a robbery suspect. i did not want to. but i honestly thought he was going to execute a store clerk. so i fired to stop him. i fired AFTER he spun to fire at me. did i know he would kill me? did i care? NO. all i thought was, “stop him from killing that clerk”. could i have watched him do it, and afterwards gone home to my wife and three boys. yes. But i would have to live with that clerks death afterwards. Also live with a lack of honor, and code.

        to say we WONT HELP, is also a slam on every cops honor, and our code. to say we might not be close enough to help is not only accurate, but it is also the case in almost every violent crime.

      • Jack

        September 13, 2012 at 7:03 pm

        Quote: “i have to put this this way to be sure that you understand my point. if a cop is sitting in a black and white outside a bank, and a person enters that bank, and mows down all inside….and walks out, right past the black and white, and the cop just sits there, then the suspect walks away. are you being honest in saying, and the whole story above with all the comments, that cop would not be sued, prosecuted, and held liable??”

        He would most definitely be sued, but the plaintiff(s) wouldn’t win. He’d surely lose his job and it’s doubtful any other law enforcement agency would hire him.

        He hasn’t committed a crime that I am aware of, and definitely would’t have to pay any monetary awards to anyone in a civil suit. This is well-established in case law, which is as good as any statute. If the Supreme Court has interpreted the law to be this way, it is this way until they reverse it.

    • Marc

      September 13, 2012 at 12:34 pm

      This isn’t a fable.. how can you actually sit there and type that? GO LOOK IT UP.

      Also, do you really think this endears you to anyone who supports the constitution:

      “I have stopped a criminal before he broke the law and still was able to take him to jail for any number of things”

      I think you made a point for the author with that one….

      This article was not a slam on police.. did you even read it???

      • Donald J. Refusedd

        September 13, 2012 at 12:53 pm

        did not realize that i needed to simplify things for you. but, since you demand it, i will. I have legally conducted a concsenual encounter on people whom i felt were possibly in an area where crimes have been commited (called a Terry stop, or consensual encounter, look that up). during that encounter, i have developed enough probable cause to determine that a crime has been commited, or about to be(probable cause detention, look that up as well). by detaining and then arresting that person, iw as able to stop him from committing crime that night, or if my charge was serious enough, for as long as he was in jail.

        did i read it? Uhmmm….from my comment, i would say i did. did you read mine? as a added proof, look at this one:

        “Back to what the police actually do. They investigate crimes that have happened.”

        kinda generic statement. It is also very misleading. we also direct traffic. we act on disasters, we do proactive enforcement in high crime areas. the list is endless. yes, we do report crimes that have happened. that is a big part of our jobs. Saying we only investigate crimes is not accurate, and is only slightly true. I have been on uniformed patrol too long to say that is all i did. I contacted people, LOTS of people. People i contacted to see why they were in a rear parking lot of a building they do not live in, at 2AM. stuff like that. does that mean i was doing my job wrong? according to every cop i know, and worked for, no, i was doing what was expected of me.

        ever hear of the North Hollywood shoootout? Tell me, did those officers respond to take a report, or did they act on a crime in progress?

        as far as slamming the police, it is my opinion, as a cop, this article is a slam on police service, and those of us trying to do our jobs. it is true, some case law is designed and presented to protect cops from being sued, if they do their jobs, and are not negligent in the performance of their duties. Citing one case and using it to prove that cops are not doing their jobs, is wrong, in my opinion.

        lt is called freedom of speech. go look that up too.

    • Jack

      September 13, 2012 at 6:21 pm

      Your department’s policy calls for you to respond, not the law. You are not civilly liable if you were just to say “screw it, I’m going to sit here and finish this Netflix movie on my phone.”

      You might lose your job, because you violated department policy or something, but you’re not liable for anything civilly.

      • donald j. refusedd

        September 13, 2012 at 6:25 pm

        are you speaking as a law enforcement officer, or are you guessing? as a person with extensive experience in my field, i speak from experience. If an officer does not respond, he will be sued, if they can prove negligence. just as anyone else who commits negligence by either doing their job wrong or not at all. tell ya what, think of a doctor in the ER. he says, screw it, i am not caring for you, i am going to watch my netflix. now, go ahead and lie to me, and tell me he wont be sued if the sick or injured person is injured, suffers, and/or dies.

      • donald j. refusedd

        September 13, 2012 at 7:14 pm


        case law is all well and good, but let me ask, just because case law exists, does that make the point valid? Is case law applicable on the streets, in that bedroom where the frightened family is crouched, holding a AR-15, hearing the burglar downstairs, knowing that he is coming up? How about right? morally right? Or is it right, simply because it acceptable in a court of law? to say we WONT respond is wrong. period! all the case law posted, wont change that.

        to say we might not be close enough to save you, so you better have that weapon locked, cocked and ready to rock, cause you and that weapon may be the only thing standing between you, and a casket, until we do arrive.

        see, that is accurate, and it makes the point. do i need case law to prove my point? do i need any law to show it is being a legitimate thought process for any gun owner? NOPE! so why not use that? all that original point says is, we wont show up, we do not have to, so protect yourselves, cause those donut eaters sure as hell wont, they do not have to, and they probably wont.

        honestly, do you see what i am saying? Or is case law the only way to really see the truth? BY the way, case law is simply judges deciding what is legally right.

      • Jack

        September 13, 2012 at 7:19 pm

        It is most definitely applicable on the streets. The FBI recently had to remove a bunch of GPS tracking devices from suspects’ vehicles because the court ruled that without warrants it violated the 4A rights of those individuals.

        It didn’t change any statutes, and most certainly didn’t change the Fourth Amendment, but it definitely did interpret its meaning and applicably.

        If you were to walk up to someone’s car now, and pop a GPS tracker onto it without a warrant, you’d be guilty of a crime… a crime you wouldn’t have been guilty of before necessarily.

        Terry v. Ohio shaped the requirements for the Terry Stop (a term I’m certain you’re familiar with). Just because the rules for a Terry Stop are outlined in caselaw, rather than statute, doesn’t mean that they aren’t applicable to you every day when you are on the street.

      • Jack

        September 13, 2012 at 7:24 pm

        Don’t get me wrong, Don. I’ll never agree that it is right or moral. You took an oath, and you’re a good man following it, like most of your colleagues.

        I’m just saying that you wouldn’t be civilly liable for not following it.

        No, doesn’t make it right, but it makes sense. If every time a person was the victim of a crime, and the police weren’t there to save them and the agency and/or officer were found to be liable for failure to protect, there would be no money left to operate a police force.

        Even if every police officer in the country were out on patrol 24 hours a day, there wouldn’t be enough of them to protect everybody, that is why it is impossible to allow them to be liable when they don’t.

        Of course, even having officers on the streets 24 hours isn’t possible, they work in shifts. Some work in the office, some are out on PTO or sick…

        See what I’m getting at here? It makes complete sense when you think of it from that perspective. Crimes are committed against people all the time, the police can’t prevent all of them, and the government certainly couldn’t afford to pay a large sum of money each time that happens. If it did, there would be no money left to provide the services that they *can* provide.

        God bless you, Don. Wish I knew you personally, you sound like a good cop.

      • donald j. refusedd

        September 13, 2012 at 7:27 pm

        once again, jack, is it wrong to say that we WONT respond? Instead of we might not be able to, or wont be there in time? to me, wont is a conscious decision NOT to. i cannot think of any cop who wont respond to a call.

        as i say, it is wrong. worded wrong. plain and simple. case law does not make it right, no matter what it says.

        as for the GPS tracker, is it wrong to track someone? how about that murderer who is about to commit crimes? I used to use GPS trackers. was a great tool to track KNOWN criminals. we lost that tool. Society took it away. is that the cops fault? can you honestly say that society is better now that cops cannot track hardcore criminals? if i can see your car, and it is on city streets, i can track you. what is the difference?? how about the other side, how about if i can put you, by the use of the tracker, at the scene of a home invasion robbery?? tell me, who wins in that one?

        the thing is that society reads things like the initial posting. they buy off on it. we WONT help. not that we CANNOT help, we wont.

      • Jack

        September 13, 2012 at 7:29 pm

        Quote: “as for the GPS tracker, is it wrong to track someone?”

        Without a warrant? Hell yes it is wrong. I’m sure you’ve heard of the Fourth Amendment before. The courts have ruled that the GPS trackers do require a warrant.

        That is the way it is now until it is changed with new precedent.

        Your comment about judges just deciding what is right legally is true, but more importantly, they are setting precedent. Precedent is as good as statute when it gets to be court time.

      • Donald J. Refusedd

        September 13, 2012 at 7:38 pm

        But does society benefit? Like I said, the citizens I protect, are in a bit more danger because a judge, or panel of judges, decided that I need a warrant. And those citizens, they want me to protect them, and case laws like that one, precedent setting or not, did not benefit anyone.

        If your car is on a street, alley, highway, I can run it, without probable cause. So why would I need a warrant to track someone who is on those same streets?

        With all that aside, I cannot do my job, unless society is behind me. The original posting, puts me, as the bad guy, cause I won’t respond, why should I? I do or have to! Unreal.

      • Jack

        September 13, 2012 at 7:37 pm

        Quote: “if i can see your car, and it is on city streets, i can track you. what is the difference?? how about the other side, how about if i can put you, by the use of the tracker, at the scene of a home invasion robbery?? tell me, who wins in that one?”

        Don, there’s a big difference there and you know it. If I’ve got my window open on my house, you can see me from the street. Legal. Does that mean that you can then install a hidden camera device in my house without a warrant? Really, what’s the difference, I can watch you anyway!

        Well, there is a difference. One requires a warrant, and the other one does not.

        If you don’t have the warrant, and then you use the GPS tracker to place the guy at the scene of the crime, it’ll get tossed in court. A good prosecutor wouldn’t even take that evidence to court.

        It is considered fruit of the poisoned tree. Any evidence you have gained through an illegal search or seizure would be tossed. Without evidence exclusive to that, the entire case would get tossed.

        It’s been a lot of fun, but I’m off to bed in a few minutes. I’ve enjoyed the conversation and look forward to more.

        Stay safe out there.

    • Jack

      September 13, 2012 at 6:24 pm

      Don, I’m sure most cops are great people who want to protect the public. It’s obvious that they don’t go into it for the money… well, unless they are NYPD officers selling illegal guns, but that’s a story for another day. Those types are few.

      In any case, you are mistaking slander for libel. Slander is spoken, libel is written or printed. If this blog entry were guilty of either, it would be libel.

      However, only facts were presented in this article. The truth is what it is. I don’t recall reading that police don’t want to respond, only that they are not required to, and the case is cited.

      Truth is a valid defense to both libel and slander.

      • donald j. refusedd

        September 13, 2012 at 6:33 pm

        not talking libel, or slander. i am talking right and wrong. is it wrong to say it is fun to molest kids? I know it is, and i also know that that speech is protected by law, 1st amendment. But, much like what was initially typed, to say it, it is WRONG. no matter how you defend it, even if you throw out that singular case law (which is also not posted in it’s entire form), it is wrong. Officers are required to respond. dept policy, personal ethics, society’s expectations, all are valid reasons and mostly why we do it. is there case law that says we shall? probably not, maybe so….who can say. DO i need to research it to find out? No. Do i need case law to determine what is morally right and wrong? of course not. Will i be sued if i do not respond, YES! it has happened and will continue to happen. i have seen it.

      • Jack

        September 13, 2012 at 6:57 pm

        Here are some more thorough citations… doubtful anyone would like the entire opinion posted here, but I’d be willing to try to do it if necessary.


        The Court, however, does not agree that defendants owed a specific legal duty to plaintiffs with respect to the allegations made in the amended complaint for the reason that the District of Columbia appears to follow the well-established rule that official police personnel and the government employing them are not generally liable to victims of criminal acts for failure to provide adequate police protection.

        Warren v. Dist. of Columbia, 444 A.2d 1, 4 (D.C. 1981)


        This uniformly accepted rule rests upon the fundamental principle that a government and its agents are under no general duty to provide public services, such as police protection, to any particular individual citizen. Turner v. United States, 248 U.S. 354, 357-58, 39 S.Ct. 109, 110, 63 L.Ed. 291 (1919)

        Warren v. Dist. of Columbia, 444 A.2d 1, 4 (D.C. 1981)


        The general duty owed to the public may become a specific duty owed to an individual if the police and the individual are in a special relationship different from that existing between the police and citizens generally…

        …Plaintiffs in this action contend that they, too, entered a special relationship with the police when Warren and Taliaferro telephoned to request assistance. Courts which have had the opportunity to consider comparable situations have concluded that a request for aid is not in itself sufficient to create a special duty

        Warren v. Dist. of Columbia, 444 A.2d 1, 5 (D.C. 1981)

        — And the grand finale…

        Although recognizing the obligation of public employees to perform their duties fully and adequately, the law properly does not permit that obligation to be enforced in a private suit for money damages. Accordingly, the Court concludes that plaintiffs have failed to state claims upon which relief may be granted and accordingly, the action is dismissed as to all defendants.

        Warren v. Dist. of Columbia, 444 A.2d 1, 9 (D.C. 1981)

      • Donald J. Refusedd

        September 14, 2012 at 7:07 am


        I do understand. I just think that to say we will NOT respond, or that we wont respond? The whole basis for my argument here, is that the author of the original post, is using law enforcement to sell 2nd amendment, or concealed carry. he is doing so negatively. i resent the tone, and I resent the assumption we WONT respond, cause we do not have to. that is wrong. no matter the case laws thrown up, no matter the many tangents that we have gotten off on, it is wrong. the author has a responsibility, in such a heated subject, to be accurate and fair. in this case, he was neither. this is my opinion. And as the person or group he is talking about, i think my opinion should be heard and has been. I think efforts to get concealed carry on a national level is a great idea. as we have seen, armed citizens, who want a lawful society, should be able to carry, and when they do get the permit, they KNOW what they can and cannot do. and so many have stopped crimes that we as law enforcement could not, since, as has been pointed out, we cannot be everywhere.

    • Bova

      September 14, 2012 at 12:42 am

      I just want to know how you manage to stop criminals before they break the laws. If they haven’t broken any laws, doesn’t that make then an innocent person? Or are you saying you are psychic and can tell when and where a person is going to commit a crime?

      And also, how many places did you get called to that were getting robbed or something where you DID NOT stop the robbery in progress? How many cases did you report to the scene of a crime AFTER the crime took place?

      Just trying to clear that up a little.

      • Donald J. Refusedd

        September 14, 2012 at 5:53 am


        as for how i can stop someone before a crime occured, I already cleared that up in another post. look for it in amongst all these posts.

        and in answer to the other question, how many times did i get called where i did not stop the robbery in progress? quite a few. cause if i was called, it is usually AFTER the crime is done, since the robbers already committed the crime when the victim called us. not sure where you are going with that question.

      • Jack

        September 14, 2012 at 5:58 am


        I think I know what he is getting at. First, a quote of the relevant part of your message:

        “quite a few. cause if i was called, it is usually AFTER the crime is done, since the robbers already committed the crime when the victim called us.”

        Do you think, in this case, that the city/county, police department and/or yourself should be civilly liable for not protecting this victim or their property?

        For example, this victim has been robbed/raped/assaulted/whatever… now they decide to sue. You are a defendant, as is your department and the city/county.

        Do you think she should prevail?

      • Donald J. Refusedd

        September 14, 2012 at 6:01 am


        Simple answer, no. As has been mentioned in previous posts we cannot be everywhere. So of course I can’t be accountable for not being some place where it’s impossible for me to be everywhere. So no I don’t think that I should be sued for not being there to prevent the crime. and apparently the Supreme Court has agreed with me on that one.

      • Jack

        September 14, 2012 at 6:04 am


        Absolutely. That is the basis for Warren and DeShaney. Now I think you understand it.

        It’s not that the Supreme Court is saying that it is “right,” only that it is economically impossible and impractical to expect the police to protect individual citizens.

        It does not mean that the police don’t make their best effort to.

  4. Eric Rothweiler

    September 13, 2012 at 12:20 pm

    Even better, how about the cops responding to the Empire State Building shooting? They could not anticipate a shooting that day but when they responded to it they failed to protect the 12 innocent people who were struck by their errant shots. One of the rules of shooting – know what is beyond your target. These guys, well meaning as they were, should have retreated to safety until they could make a clear shot on the suspect. It IS standard police procedure to not engage an armed suspect if innocent people are in the line of fire.
    And to Donald – no, I am not slamming police in general. Just pointing out another example that the police cannot be relied upon to save you. Bloomberg should have learned a lesson from that incident but I am sure he is as opposed to normal people being armed as he ever was.

    • Donald J. Refusedd

      September 13, 2012 at 3:11 pm

      i would say that i would use a poster i saw a while backl. it showed a young lady with one arm around her two kids, and the other holding a 4506 S&W, pointed at something off camera. it said underneath, “the police can be there in 2-5 minutes, or the problem will go away in less than 2 seconds, and with 4 pounds of pressure on her trigger. Which would you choose if your life was in danger?” great point, casue it says it properly. it does not say cops do not do their jobs, it say we do, but we cannot be everywhere, so protecting yourself might be the answer. the above article does not say that, and reeks of distaste for officers who might be under the impression that we do not have to come to your aid.

  5. Vickie Lynn Milner-Musgrove

    September 13, 2012 at 12:33 pm

    I would never say that all Law Enforcement Officers are bad. On the contrary, most are awesome individuals that sincerely care about people and saving lives. However I have personally had more than one experience with officers who have expressly told me that they dont make enough money to endanger their lives to protect and serve as well as having been told by a Deputy Sheriff after reporting illegal activity at what appeared to be an abandoned property “If there is NO Victim, there is NO CRIME” because the owner was not the complaintant. I asked him if that meant I could go into any abandoned property and take anything that I wanted? To which he replied….” Ugh”. All Law Enforcement Officers are SWORN to SERVE and PROTECT. But I can assure you that without my handgun I would have been victimized and possibly seriously injured if not killed by two men that attempted to enter my home in the early hours of the morning. Their first attempt, I called 911. The police arrived in time to find that they had gotten away. The second time the individuals came back, I didnt call anyone. I got my gun and met them face to face on my porch and chased them for blocks. They NEVER came back. I know I will NEVER GIVE UP MY GUN and would tell every LAW ABIDING CITIZEN, “IF YOU DONT HAVE A GUN IN YOUR HOME…GET ONE AND LEARN HOW TO USE IT”

    • Donald J. Refusedd

      September 13, 2012 at 12:56 pm

      what can i say, well said and I agree!

  6. TFR

    September 13, 2012 at 2:09 pm

    The discussion here is about the state of the law and the legal obligations of LEAs to the public. It is not a discussion about specific police officers or departments.

    Just as the law today is that there is no specific LE duty to protect the public, there was no specific criticism in this discussion.

    • Donald J. Refusedd

      September 13, 2012 at 3:06 pm

      I have to ask, if we have no specific duty to do our jobs, why is it officers are fired for not doing their jobs? they would not fire officers if the law says we do not have a duty to protect the citizens, or respond to calls. To use this simple case law wording as a means to sell the concealed carry laws, or to wave the 2nd Amendment flag, is wrong. No matter what that case law says, we do have a obligation to respond to calls. if we do not, we are fired. and in some cases of gross negligence or not doing our jobs properly, we can be prosecuted. i have seen them both. so, while your basic point that case says we do not have to respond is there for all to see, i question it’s validity.

      • Frank

        September 13, 2012 at 6:09 pm

        What is the law that requires you to do your job?

      • donald j. refusedd

        September 13, 2012 at 6:15 pm

        show me the law that says i am protected if i do not do my job. and no, not a case decision in court. i am talking a penal code section, or a municipal code section.

      • Aaron

        September 13, 2012 at 8:47 pm

        Don, you have to realize something… Laws make things illegal, they do not allow you to do something.

        “show me the law that says i am protected if i do not do my job. and no, not a case decision in court. i am talking a penal code section, or a municipal code section.”

        There will be no codified section of law that says you are not liable for not responding, be cause the only way they could write it would be to make it illegal to try to bring suit against you, and what law says what you can and can’t have lawsuit for? None, because it would be a gross infringement of your Rights to say what is and isn’t worthy of a lawsuit before the facts of each individual case was heard.

        BUT, the various court cases, such as Warren vs DC, have established exactly that as far as the Police are concerned in a way that legislators could not do. These cases do not protect your job, they protect your possessions from getting taken in lawsuits. You WILL lose your job if you KNOW something is going on and don’t respond, but at least you will only lose your job, you will not get sued for failing to respond. (they may try, but after Warren vs DC they will lose at the first hearing when the judge throws it out)

        You have to recognize the difference between being Civilly liable for failing to respond, and losing your job for not following the policies set forth by your department. Also, there is a difference between Negligence (where you KNOW something is happening and make a willful decision to not respond) and simply failing to protect through no actual fault of your own. (such as in Warren vs DC)

  7. Jack

    September 13, 2012 at 6:34 pm

    Keep in mind that it has been well-established in caselaw that you have no right to an adequate police investigation even after a crime has been committed against you.


    [W]e hold that the Suffolk County Code does not create a constitutionally protected property interest in an adequate police investigation because (1) it confers a benefit that is merely discretionary, and (2) it confers a benefit on the public generally, rather than creating an individual entitlement.

    Harrington v. County of Suffolk, 607 F.3d 31, 36 (2d Cir. 2010)

    • donald j. refusedd

      September 13, 2012 at 6:38 pm

      jack, that is for an investigation. they are citing that officers do not have to respond at all. well found on that case though. even with my having access to huge resources, i would have to admit, i cannot find any case which would support either side of the debate.

      • Jack

        September 13, 2012 at 6:42 pm


        Yes, I know it is. That is saying that after the police do respond, you still have no due process right to an adequate investigation.

        The citations stated above are in regards to the actual response and police protection:

        Warren v. District of Columbia and DeShaney v. Winnebago County Department of Social Services.

        There are a few exemptions carved out, though. One example is that the government would be potentially liable if a convict were the aggressor, since the convict is in the custody of the government.

        Generally, though, the government is not liable in any way for crimes committed against you, nor for an officer of the government failing to do anything about it.

        Both of the cases have pretty good outlines on Wikipedia that go through the facts clearly.

        I think you sound like a pretty good cop. I think most probably are. It is just important to know that police officers don’t actually have to respond, though most would, I would guess.

  8. Phil

    September 13, 2012 at 10:30 pm

    I am currently a Deputy in the state of Tennessee…this is all I have to say about this…..TENNESSEE CODE ANNOTATED
    © 2012 by The State of Tennessee
    All rights reserved


    Title 38 Prevention And Detection Of Crime
    Chapter 3 Public Officers Preventing Commission of Offenses

    Tenn. Code Ann. § 38-3-111 (2012)

    38-3-111. Officer failing to perform duties prescribed in §§ 38-3-108, 38-3-109.

    Any peace officer who knowingly fails or refuses to perform the duties required by § 38-3-108 or § 38-3-109 commits a Class C misdemeanor.

    HISTORY: Code 1858, § 4941 (deriv. Acts 1825, ch. 19, § 6); Shan., § 6902; Code 1932, § 11426; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 38-211; Acts 1989, ch. 591, § 113.

    • Phil

      September 13, 2012 at 11:00 pm

      but….. we are not civilly liable by case law but are criminal liable

    • Donald J. Refusedd

      September 14, 2012 at 6:59 am


      nice to see a brother officer speak up. In california, we have no such law. what a shock huh? California does have some cities which have Municipal code sections which make it a misdemeanor for an officer who did not perform his/her duties, or did so negligently. I work LAPD, we have no such law. in Los Angeles.

      not sure if that is a good or bad thing.

      • Phil

        September 14, 2012 at 10:10 pm

        Ya we need to stick togther especially when someone doesn’t do their research before posting something thats is wrong. Now if it were worded a little different I could understand but there again that also shows how some laws can be misunderstood by anyone. I am surprised that California doesn’t have the same law being that most states law mirror eachother but maybe be named different.

  9. chaser

    September 15, 2012 at 7:32 am

    Very good discussion, however still holds up that cival liability is null. I feel the story was good but just failed to make the point that if they choose not to repond they are exempt from liable. I am sure this was meant to stir some featheres and it did. The responsibility as always of protection falls to the individial. Unless there is a officer per person their being personal bodygaurds is never possible. The role as a department is to DETER crime by presence and in that regard will apprehend and prosicute persons that are commiting, have commited or will commit a crime. I thank those police doing their jobs as part of their community. We owe you a great debt. However many are operating to suit themselves, or to boast their self worth. I hope the prior can reform the latter or remove them. Honor is earned not worn.

  10. BAK777

    September 19, 2012 at 4:45 pm

    Yes, I think it was written to “stir some feathers” also, and I don’t appreciate that part. Donald after reading your posts I don’t think that anyone honestly believes that you and those like minded LO would hesitate to respond to a call for help. Maybe according to the dispatcher the girls that called didn’t sound scared enough for it to be a priority. Sounds like the dispatcher has some explaining to do, probably wouldn’t win a law suit against him/her NOW that would be a crime.

  11. Brahman

    September 20, 2012 at 9:14 pm

    State laws do NOT mirror each other any more than kids putting baseball cards in the spokes of their tires mirror each other. Sure lots might do it, but likely they use different cards, and hell some might just use magic the gathering cards ! Then there are the other kids who just think those kids are stupid noise making card wasters.

    The point is that regardless of how well intentioned our police force is, there are a plethora of examples of how the police do not respond in a timely fashion, and yes sometimes NOT AT ALL. Frankly the majority of the country is not within 5 miles of a police station.

    Where I grew up if we had a break in we would likely have the police show up the next day. Often times the office responding might call the house and ASK IF WE COULD MEET THEM SOMEWHERE CONVENIENT FOR THEM.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: