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Safety check or harrasment?

Old 06-13-2019, 09:03 AM
  #101  
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Originally Posted by 0dark3rt View Post
I was a Marine Deputy for our Sheriff’s Department for 3 years here in Michigan. Safety Inspections were definitely used as a good excuse to make contact with the captain To see if he’s DUI. I can’t recall ever writing a ticket because they were short a PFD or their Fire Extinguisher was out of date. 10/10 times, we’d educate the captain about the law and tell them to fix it, with a warning “we’d check them again if we saw them on the water.”

There are several violations that always earned the captain “a biscuit” cop talk for a ticket. Those were usually a child under 6 not wearing a PFD, expired registration, no lights on after dusk, fishing violations, operating vessel too close to shore/anchored boats or divers down, no spotter while pulling someone, and of course blatant violations of Slow No Wake zones.

I can definitely understand how these checks feel like harassment. Nobody likes to encounter “The Fun Police” while they’re trying to relax and have a good time on the water. But I’d venture a guess and say that everyone who posted a response on this thread has never had to pull a dead 3 year old out of the water because their parents didn’t make them wear a PFD. And I doubt any of you guys have seen the result of what a propeller does to a human body, or what it’s like to escort a grieving family member over to a body bag to positively identify their loved one that crashed a jet ski into the side of an anchored vessel because they were too drunk and didn’t understand a PWC won’t turn unless you give it gas.

Everyone hates the police until they need their help. My advice if you get stopped? Be friendly, respectful, and try your best to hide your anger. Human nature is universal, if someone is a complete a-hole to you, there’s a 100% chance you’ll quickly be an a-hole them in return. Doesn’t matter who it is or what authority they have.
just some thoughts....i bolded some parts...

'excuse' isnt the same as probable cause. if someone isnt breaking any other laws and minding their own business, then you find an excuse to ruin their day / life, that is not cool.

i dont think everyone hates the police. everyone hates bad cops. and there are a lot of them. poorly trained, unprofessional, dangerous, law breaking, etc.

finally, police should be trained in de-escalation. if someone is not being nice, they should not escalate the situation and instead de-escalate it.
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Old 06-13-2019, 09:19 AM
  #102  
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Statistically, the people that are boating on the water are going to be for the most part, good citizens. Boating is expensive.....

So why harass boaters at a significantly higher rate than the average motorist or person walking down the street? Oh, but for the children!
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Old 06-13-2019, 09:24 AM
  #103  
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Originally Posted by 0dark3rt View Post
I was a Marine Deputy for our Sheriff’s Department for 3 years here in Michigan. Safety Inspections were definitely used as a good excuse to make contact with the captain To see if he’s DUI. I can’t recall ever writing a ticket because they were short a PFD or their Fire Extinguisher was out of date. 10/10 times, we’d educate the captain about the law and tell them to fix it, with a warning “we’d check them again if we saw them on the water.”

There are several violations that always earned the captain “a biscuit” cop talk for a ticket. Those were usually a child under 6 not wearing a PFD, expired registration, no lights on after dusk, fishing violations, operating vessel too close to shore/anchored boats or divers down, no spotter while pulling someone, and of course blatant violations of Slow No Wake zones.

I can definitely understand how these checks feel like harassment. Nobody likes to encounter “The Fun Police” while they’re trying to relax and have a good time on the water. But I’d venture a guess and say that everyone who posted a response on this thread has never had to pull a dead 3 year old out of the water because their parents didn’t make them wear a PFD. And I doubt any of you guys have seen the result of what a propeller does to a human body, or what it’s like to escort a grieving family member over to a body bag to positively identify their loved one that crashed a jet ski into the side of an anchored vessel because they were too drunk and didn’t understand a PWC won’t turn unless you give it gas.

Everyone hates the police until they need their help. My advice if you get stopped? Be friendly, respectful, and try your best to hide your anger. Human nature is universal, if someone is a complete a-hole to you, there’s a 100% chance you’ll quickly be an a-hole them in return. Doesn’t matter who it is or what authority they have.
The problem I, and most people have, is the indiscriminate stops, when there is no shortage of blatant idiots running around. When I'm out on the water I see enough stupidity going on to keep every LEO out there busy for an entire day, yet they still find the time to do safety checks? Just seems like a giant waste of time for everybody involved. If all the morons have been spoken to, tickets written to, etc., then maybe do a few. But it's just stupid that a boater doing nothing apparently wrong gets pulled, while there are plenty of other choices right in plain sight.
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Old 06-13-2019, 09:29 AM
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Thank you for you Service! Semper Fi!
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Old 06-13-2019, 11:11 AM
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FPC officers have more power with less guidelines than ANY other state officer. It tends to go their heads. I for one have 3 distinct episodes with them and all 3 ended up in them loosing their jobs or being transferred to a small lake far away from where they had been working. Know the law, know the rules and they can't get away with harassment. If they push too hard, one letter and follow up phone call to the right person and they will be guarding a pond in Nome Alaska.

1. Pulled for a safety check - stolen identity that year left a warrant for my arrest. The crime was committed in NJ, I in Florida, picture of the guy on file was a 6' 6'' black man 265 lbs - I stand 5'10'', 175 lbs and as white as snow. After showing him my paperwork, the picture of the arrest from the state of NJ, a release from from state of Florida - He decided i could have printed all that in my home to cover it up and proceeds to arrest me anyway. Hand cuffed me in the boat - pulled me out, left my entire family (wife, 9 year old and a 6 year old) floating in the middle of the lagoon. I explained she can't operate the boat, - he responds - "tough shit, not my problem" and proceeds to drive me in a boat handcuffed for about 6 miles and left my family to drift away. He lost his job the next week.

2. Two sons (13 & 10) patiently waiting for a friend to pick them up from a private dock on a lake. FPC guy floats up and starts to grill them as to why they are sitting on a dock on a Sunday morning when they should be in Church. My oldest calls me and hands the phone to the officer, he says "These hoodlum kids need to be in church" - My response: "Who the fuck do you think you are?" - He fires back - "I'm the law and you can't speak to me that way": - " I am holding your kids until you come down here in person" Response: "Wait, so your kidnapping my children in order to force me to confront you in person?" - I warned him "if i show up and your still holding my kids hostage, I will have you fired tomorrow" His response - "good luck" - He lost his job the next day.

3. FPC officer hiding behind some tree's at the start of a no wake zone - problem was, he was blocking the sign so no one could see it, it was a new area designated for no wake just established the week before and he was taking advantage. I argued he blocked it on purpose, he threatened to drag me out of the boat and tow me to shore with a rope if I didn't stop arguing with him. Proceeds to write me 5 tickets totaling 850.00 and then says - Had you kept your mouth shut, I would have only givin' you one ticket. He was transferred to a small lake some 40 miles away the next week.
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Old 06-13-2019, 11:23 AM
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This pleases me....

Originally Posted by AverageJoe View Post
FPC officers have more power with less guidelines than ANY other state officer. It tends to go their heads. I for one have 3 distinct episodes with them and all 3 ended up in them loosing their jobs or being transferred to a small lake far away from where they had been working. Know the law, know the rules and they can't get away with harassment. If they push too hard, one letter and follow up phone call to the right person and they will be guarding a pond in Nome Alaska.

1. Pulled for a safety check - stolen identity that year left a warrant for my arrest. The crime was committed in NJ, I in Florida, picture of the guy on file was a 6' 6'' black man 265 lbs - I stand 5'10'', 175 lbs and as white as snow. After showing him my paperwork, the picture of the arrest from the state of NJ, a release from from state of Florida - He decided i could have printed all that in my home to cover it up and proceeds to arrest me anyway. Hand cuffed me in the boat - pulled me out, left my entire family (wife, 9 year old and a 6 year old) floating in the middle of the lagoon. I explained she can't operate the boat, - he responds - "tough shit, not my problem" and proceeds to drive me in a boat handcuffed for about 6 miles and left my family to drift away. He lost his job the next week.

2. Two sons (13 & 10) patiently waiting for a friend to pick them up from a private dock on a lake. FPC guy floats up and starts to grill them as to why they are sitting on a dock on a Sunday morning when they should be in Church. My oldest calls me and hands the phone to the officer, he says "These hoodlum kids need to be in church" - My response: "Who the fuck do you think you are?" - He fires back - "I'm the law and you can't speak to me that way": - " I am holding your kids until you come down here in person" Response: "Wait, so your kidnapping my children in order to force me to confront you in person?" - I warned him "if i show up and your still holding my kids hostage, I will have you fired tomorrow" His response - "good luck" - He lost his job the next day.

3. FPC officer hiding behind some tree's at the start of a no wake zone - problem was, he was blocking the sign so no one could see it, it was a new area designated for no wake just established the week before and he was taking advantage. I argued he blocked it on purpose, he threatened to drag me out of the boat and tow me to shore with a rope if I didn't stop arguing with him. Proceeds to write me 5 tickets totaling 850.00 and then says - Had you kept your mouth shut, I would have only givin' you one ticket. He was transferred to a small lake some 40 miles away the next week.
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Old 06-13-2019, 11:26 AM
  #107  
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Originally Posted by AverageJoe View Post
FPC officers have more power with less guidelines than ANY other state officer. It tends to go their heads. I for one have 3 distinct episodes with them and all 3 ended up in them loosing their jobs or being transferred to a small lake far away from where they had been working. Know the law, know the rules and they can't get away with harassment. If they push too hard, one letter and follow up phone call to the right person and they will be guarding a pond in Nome Alaska.

1. Pulled for a safety check - stolen identity that year left a warrant for my arrest. The crime was committed in NJ, I in Florida, picture of the guy on file was a 6' 6'' black man 265 lbs - I stand 5'10'', 175 lbs and as white as snow. After showing him my paperwork, the picture of the arrest from the state of NJ, a release from from state of Florida - He decided i could have printed all that in my home to cover it up and proceeds to arrest me anyway. Hand cuffed me in the boat - pulled me out, left my entire family (wife, 9 year old and a 6 year old) floating in the middle of the lagoon. I explained she can't operate the boat, - he responds - "tough shit, not my problem" and proceeds to drive me in a boat handcuffed for about 6 miles and left my family to drift away. He lost his job the next week.

2. Two sons (13 & 10) patiently waiting for a friend to pick them up from a private dock on a lake. FPC guy floats up and starts to grill them as to why they are sitting on a dock on a Sunday morning when they should be in Church. My oldest calls me and hands the phone to the officer, he says "These hoodlum kids need to be in church" - My response: "Who the fuck do you think you are?" - He fires back - "I'm the law and you can't speak to me that way": - " I am holding your kids until you come down here in person" Response: "Wait, so your kidnapping my children in order to force me to confront you in person?" - I warned him "if i show up and your still holding my kids hostage, I will have you fired tomorrow" His response - "good luck" - He lost his job the next day.

3. FPC officer hiding behind some tree's at the start of a no wake zone - problem was, he was blocking the sign so no one could see it, it was a new area designated for no wake just established the week before and he was taking advantage. I argued he blocked it on purpose, he threatened to drag me out of the boat and tow me to shore with a rope if I didn't stop arguing with him. Proceeds to write me 5 tickets totaling 850.00 and then says - Had you kept your mouth shut, I would have only givin' you one ticket. He was transferred to a small lake some 40 miles away the next week.
Thankfully never had such happen on the water, but I got in a flat out cursing match with a SCDNR (female) a few years back. She was all pissy about not getting a huge promotion that she thought she deserved, and went around targeting friends of the guy that did. Entrapment for a "baited dove field" which was as legal as the day is long. We had business guests there, some quite notable, and they shut down the perfectly legal field on us. Then proceeded to write a max fine ticket (which should only be reserved for the worst offenders). We know the game laws, and push them to the very limit in terms of field prep, but never break them. After writing the ticket my dad, brother, and myself were going around the field taking photos of the "infraction" and being sure to get the DNR trucks/officers in some of the pictures to avoid them making the argument that we had somehow altered the conditions for our photos. While doing so, she spouted off "don't you want me to pose" and propped up like some sort of pin up model on the side of her truck. At which point I got a bit mouthy (keep in mind ticket had long been written at that point). Told her that "it seems like a big ole f you from the DNR for you to shut down a legal field, and then be a complete b**** about it." She then informed me I couldn't talk to an officer of the law that way, to which I responded I could say what I damn well pleased on private property, so long as I wasn't making any threats. The following day the guy in command of the region was on the field, and wrote a favorable statement regarding the situation for the judge. In court when the ticket was challenged, the judge not only dismissed the charges, but also ordered them expunged without fee, which is very rare. Mrs. Congeniality got pushed out of the agency shortly there after, and had orders to stay the heck away from all property associated with our family for the duration of her job.

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Old 06-13-2019, 11:32 AM
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Originally Posted by 0dark3rt View Post
Safety Inspections were definitely used as a good excuse to make contact with the captain To see if he’s DUI. ...I can definitely understand how these checks feel like harassment.
Actually, that's a bad excuse, and hence the resentment. Safety inspections are best left to the auxiliary organizations who perform them for boaters on a voluntary basis. On numerous occasions, I have been asked if I would like a "courtesy inspection." Believe it or not, I once said yes.

I appreciate your honesty and your service, but if stopped by a law enforcement officer looking for BUI's, I would prefer to be engaged in conversation and asked if I'd been drinking, rather than to be boarded and put through a demeaning vessel search. And by all means, if you see a safety violation, the blue light comes on.
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Old 06-13-2019, 02:31 PM
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Originally Posted by 0dark3rt View Post
I was a Marine Deputy for our Sheriff’s Department for 3 years here in Michigan. Safety Inspections were definitely used as a good excuse to make contact with the captain To see if he’s DUI.
Clear admitted violation of the 4th Amendment. Fishing for violations when you see none taking place. You have done this so long you now think it's okay. Any contact other than a wave is wrong unless you see a violation.

I have been given a trumped up speeding ticket because "I needed something for probable cause."

You are dead on correct with all the rest and sound like a good apple except that one little thing called the 4th Amendment. Please find a way to do the job without stepping all over the constitution. You have no need to board a boat without cause. There are plenty of people begging for a biscuit. You don't need to manufacture reasons. Instead if using the safety inspection lie just be honest. "YOU BOYS BEEN DRINKING?" "No sir, this is a family outing. No alcohol on the boat." "Have a nice day." 10 seconds, done.

"Yes sir, we have. Except the Captain." Who you see is sitting at the helm like a dead Bernie. Yea, that group gets boarded. Gonna be a long night for these guys.
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Old 06-13-2019, 03:57 PM
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Power corrupts. ABSOLUTE power corrupts, absolutely. They can arrest for anything, anywhere, anytime. I've already been spanked for making allusions to a certain (losing) military group.....
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Old 06-13-2019, 08:45 PM
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Originally Posted by AverageJoe View Post
FPC officers have more power with less guidelines than ANY other state officer. It tends to go their heads. I for one have 3 distinct episodes with them and all 3 ended up in them loosing their jobs or being transferred to a small lake far away from where they had been working. Know the law, know the rules and they can't get away with harassment. If they push too hard, one letter and follow up phone call to the right person and they will be guarding a pond in Nome Alaska.

1. .................. He lost his job the next week.

2. ....................... I will have you fired tomorrow" His response - "good luck" - He lost his job the next day.

3. ................. He was transferred to a small lake some 40 miles away the next week.
What process did you follow to make this happen?

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Old 06-13-2019, 09:46 PM
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I turn on my phone's audio recorder for every encounter. I tell them it's on as well as any cameras. "Why do you need that?" Same reason your car has a camera in it. Recording the truth. Don't be a jerk, just be firm. Have a crew member video the whole thing. They are allowed.

Establish the why you got pulled over or boarded right at the start. Only answer questions dealing with that specific thing. Example, safety check we only talk safety. No fishing for other violations real or imaginary allowed. Stay on topic. Don't answer anything not related to safety. Once the safety check is done "Have a nice day. Please allow us to go on our way."

They have no right to interrogate you and you don't have to answer. Get them to admit the safety check was a lie. These are not rocket scientists, Especially the roid rangers with tight sleeves. You can spot them a mile aeay. If they get ugly and you have the audio and video you'll be doing everyone a favor getting them a job at the poultry processing plant.

What really sucks is the good ones know who the bad ones are but won't root them out from the inside. Taints them all.
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Old 06-14-2019, 01:00 AM
  #113  
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a TRUE HARASSMENT .................... always ............... another unnecessary pain for us contributing taxpaying citizens ......... another sodomizing action on behalf of our govt ............. people living on our money who´s main job is to harass us all ............. to hell with them .........
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Old 06-14-2019, 02:02 AM
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Originally Posted by johnny.dollar View Post
What process did you follow to make this happen?
Short answer: he didn't. There hasn't been a game warden on the planet fired the next day.
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Old 06-14-2019, 02:36 AM
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This is said somewhat jokingly, so don't beat me up. If PC should be required for a stop, I could have stopped 99.723% of the boats I encountered for not using sound signals or VHF in accordance with the navigation rules in our navigational encounter.
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Old 06-14-2019, 03:18 AM
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I reckon if i came to FL or somewhere similar, with my unconcievable aussie accent I might get away with anything I like or just get my ass arrested and pumped in jail.
But first I've got to give up all my ID names on all social media site to the USA imagration first to gain entrance, not gonna happen.
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Old 06-14-2019, 04:20 AM
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Originally Posted by peter bear View Post
I reckon if i came to FL or somewhere similar, with my unconcievable aussie accent I might get away with anything I like or just get my ass arrested and pumped in jail.
But first I've got to give up all my ID names on all social media site to the USA imagration first to gain entrance, not gonna happen.
If you have multiple ID names on social media you probably aren't honest. Stay away. We have enough liars here already. I can even see having one account with an alias but why need multiple accounts. Using an account to plan on breaking US law is what they are looking for.

Also I don't think that's about visitors. You seaking asylum from down under?
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Old 06-14-2019, 04:36 AM
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Originally Posted by johnny.dollar View Post
Statistically, the people that are boating on the water are going to be for the most part, good citizens. Boating is expensive.....

So why harass boaters at a significantly higher rate than the average motorist or person walking down the street? Oh, but for the children!
Exactly. Using the "have you ever had to pull a kid out of...." rationale cops would be barging into homes with newborns to inspect cribs, boppy pillows, etc. "Have you ever had to pull an infant's head from the bars of a crib?"

IMO the bottom line is that bumper sticker: A bad day on the water is better than a good day in the office. If they're working, they'd rather be out on the water. -Just like the rest of us.
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Old 06-14-2019, 04:40 AM
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Originally Posted by USCG Safe Boating D8 View Post
This is said somewhat jokingly, so don't beat me up. If PC should be required for a stop, I could have stopped 99.723% of the boats I encountered for not using sound signals or VHF in accordance with the navigation rules in our navigational encounter.
The same can be said for cops on the street for motorists exceeding the speed limit and not using directionals. If traffic is flowing smoothly and nothing appears dangerous they let everyone proceed.
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Old 06-14-2019, 04:45 AM
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Originally Posted by USCG Safe Boating D8 View Post
This is said somewhat jokingly, so don't beat me up. If PC should be required for a stop, I could have stopped 99.723% of the boats I encountered for not using sound signals or VHF in accordance with the navigation rules in our navigational encounter.
Then why lie? Even commercial ships don't use the horn for every watercraft they pass. In busy waterways it would be useless. It's used to avoid accidents. "Bisquits" for that is just a other dick move. How about a real crime which is what probable cause means. I monitor 16 and Leo's don't hail on approach. Even if you did when there are 50 boats in the channel you'd be causing accidents when 30 boats all try to comply with vague instructions. "24' center console prepare to be boarded."

You try to ticket us with that stupid chit and you should lose your job and you know it.

Probable cause - Legal Dictionary | Law.com
n. sufficient reason based upon known facts to believe a crime has been committed or that certain property is connected with a crime. Probable cause must exist for a law enforcement officer to make an arrest without a warrant, search without a warrant, or seize property in the belief the items were evidence of a crime.

It doesn't say some "excuse" to harass or trample on the rights of citizens. It doesn't say some BS excuse. It says known facts of a crime.
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