True Detective Stories

So the department’s commanders, in their truly finite wisdom, have decided there are entirely too many shootings and homicides in this city. No kidding?

Before I get to this ridiculous plan, some background. The city has not promoted detectives since 2019, and we are losing detectives every week from retirements, attrition, or outright resignations. My squad should have fifteen detectives, but we’re working with twelve. (Technically, we have eleven, because one detective is on military leave until January.) My squad averages twenty to forty jobs during an eight-hour shift, and we are in the busiest division in the city.

In short, we’re short. Every detective division in the city is in the same predicament.

This is what the commanders drummed up to stop the flow of violence. Detective Headquarters decided they would take detectives from the divisions and send them downtown to police HQ. When a non-fatal shooting occurs, these detectives would have to drive to different parts of the city, handle the shooting, and return to Police HQ to process the paperwork.

This is idiotic for three reasons. First, the divisional detectives are intimately familiar with the divisions where they work. Everyone knows where the hot spots are, and everyone knows who the bad guys are. Now, they’re sending detectives to different parts of the city, where they don’t know the lay of the land.

Second, the divisions are compartmentalized. A shooting comes in, the detective heads to the scene, and comes back to the division. The furthest district is maybe twenty-five minutes away, tops. Now, if you’re at Police HQ and you need to go to Northeast or Southwest Division, you’re looking at maybe an hour, one way.

Finally, this plan will decimate detective divisions. We’re already way too short to handle the insane amount of jobs we receive. Imagine how bad it will be when we lose half our detectives.

This department has made many terrible decisions in my twenty-eight years, but this is by far the dumbest idea they have ever imagined.

1,068 days.