SOFREP Readers,
This article was written by Tommy Barber, an 11 year veteran of the New York City Police Department. He is a certified New York State Department of Criminal Justice Firearms Instructor. Pursuing Master Degree at John Jay School of Criminal Justice.


Three words designed to save your life.

You may believe that all police are biased. Biased against race. Biased against sex. Biased against social status. But these three words can save your life, and mine.

Police. Don’t move!

POLICE. An identifying statement. One word letting you know that you are being confronted by a law enforcement authority.

DON’T MOVE! A demand. Not a request. Not a suggestion. Don’t move! A clear and concise directive as to how you should react to the first word, Police.

You may be innocent. You may be the victim of profiling. You may be in a rush, impatient, embarrassed, or frustrated. Remember, these three words are being screamed at you to save your life, and mine.

Police. Don’t move!

Picking up your pants by grabbing at your waistband, reaching for your wallet, turning to point your cellphone camera at an officer, any move you make, any deviation from “Don’t move” has the potential to end fatally.

Police. Don’t move! A universal phrase that if adhered to could save your life, and mine.

Police. Not just a noun, also a verb. To police is to maintain law and order. Many times the enforcer is not looked upon favorably. You may not always agree with the enforcer, but remember, the enforcer is there to maintain law and order.

The notion that you may challenge the decision of the enforcer is false. The time to challenge is not at the point of contact, but throughout the criminal justice process. You may have no faith in this process. Work to change it. Fulfill your civic duty and work for change. Support your local politician. Volunteer your time. Get your children involved. Raise your young ones to believe they can change a failed system, if that’s what you believe it is.

The U.S. Dept of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics “Report For Police Assistance, 2011” states that 1 in 8 U.S. residents (31.4 million people) had contacted the police for assistance at least once in that year. Of that 31.4 million people 86% felt the officers were helpfull towards resolving their situation. Strikingly, there were no statistical differences between blacks, whites, and hispanics as to whether the police were helpful or not. This report reaffirms the notion that when called upon to act professionally, and assist communities of all colors, the strong majority of law enforcement is colorblind.

Should you choose to disobey this very simple and direct order, you and only you can be responsible for what follows.

Remember, Police, don’t move is not a request, but a DEMAND designed to save your life, and mine.

Image courtesy of Inside the Beltway