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I've thought about doing a police ride along for years. What were your experiences with ride alongs? Were you treated well? Was it more than just a bunch of boring traffic stops? Did you go on 1st, 2nd, or 3rd shift? I have no interest in being a LEO, so this would not be a job shadow for me. Just a little curious and would like to see/experience 'a day in the life.'
I did as a Police Explorer when I was about 15 in Pennsylvania. I got treated fairly crappy by the officer and the dog wanted to darn near tear my head off every time I scratched my nose. Basically the officer didn't want a kid along with him and he let me know it. Looking back, I probably wouldn't want someone along either...just something else to be responsible for. I think I rode with him two or three times and he warmed to me somewhat towards the end, but it was never overly friendly.

When I graduated, I went in the Navy instead :) .

i've done more than i can count, during my 4 wasted years in criminal justice.

my first ride was the best.. Deputy Curry, WCSO. he started the tour of the precinct, and within 3 minutes we got a call about a woman with a knife having a "psychotic episode." we went a million miles an hour, in the rain, for about 8 miles, at 2pm in saturday shopping traffic... 90mph, on the wrong side of the median, southbound on Murray blvd, against on-coming traffic.... WOW!

then, we get there, and the chick having the psychotic episode was NAKED and hot. unfortunately, she'd vomited, pissed, and bubblegumted all over herself, so the effect was a bit nullified...

but still a very cool ride. Deputy Curry was a good guy, and i had really positive feelings about my career choice after that ride. Curry was a real guy- he was still fairly new, and had joined when he was like 28 or something.. so he was more real than cop.

the next few got progressively lamer... most of the next guys i rode with were straight out of college cops. hadn't ever lived life, and were egotistical, authoritarian, uninteresting jackasses. i never got treated badly, nor even condescended toward much- but i have a very high-context personality, even more so than most cops. anybody with a tamer character would probably get eye-rolled at every other question.

it was these ride-alongs that made me abandon criminal justice in the middle of my last term before graduation. screw cops. some are good guys, most are bubbleguming idiots.
I've done several. Most of the officers I've ridden with were pretty nice. How your ride goes really depends on what they've got going that night - busy nights can be exciting; slow nights are, well, slow. When things were busy, it gave me a new appreciation for what they have to deal with - your car getting broken into just isn't going to be top priority when they are responding to gun shots fired at one end of town & a break-in at the pharmacy on the other side of town.

I encourage everyone to do it at least once.
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