Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Wilmette Police Warning Regarding Traffic Stops

A friend forwarded an email to me from the Wilmette Police Department and asked me if I could put the information on The Blog. She receives emails on a somewhat irregular basis from the Wilmette Police via an outfit called silent partner alert, and also thought I might be interested in the service. I'm a little leery of signing up, because it requires opening an attachment (a no-no when it comes to safe computing practices), but she assures me she has had no problem. You can sign up to receive those emails here and read more about the service at the Wilmette Police Department's website here. Here is the alert:

The Wilmette Police Department received an anonymous complaint that on Tuesday, October 24th, shortly after 8:30pm, a female driver was stopped and inappropriately touched by a subject impersonating a police officer. The offender as described only as an older male and his vehicle was described only as a car without license plates. The incident allegedly occurred on the east side of town near Wilmette Avenue. Although the Wilmette Police Department is unable to verify this complaint, we recognize that this is a good opportunity to discuss traffic stop protocol and safety.

The Wilmette Police Department conducts almost 5,000 traffic stops a year. Fully marked police squad cars are primarily used for this function. We occasionally utilize unmarked vehicles in response to specific enforcement details or in the event that a particular neighborhood is experiencing a crime pattern.

In Wilmette, all police officers notify the police dispatcher that they are making a traffic stop. If you suspect that you are being stopped by a police impersonator please do the following:

Slow down and signal your intentions to pull over while proceeding to a well lit or populated area. If you become suspicious of the officer stopping you, call 9-11 to verify the officer’s legitimacy/identity. The dispatcher will be able to tell you if it is a Wilmette Police officer making the stop. More importantly, the dispatcher will send an officer to check on your safety. Stay in your vehicle and keep your hands on the steering wheel and your door locked.

Although incidents of individuals impersonating the police are rare, they can occur. If you observe a suspicious traffic stop please immediately notify the police. If you have additional questions or concerns you can contact our Community Relations Officer, Jessica Black, at 847-853-7555.

This email however raises three troubling questions, however:
1.)How do you signal your intention to pull over while proceeding to a well lit area
2.) How do you reach for your cell phone and also keep your hands on the steering wheel? (ie: what will the police officer think you are reaching for?
3.) Where is a well-lit area at night in Wilmette, any way?

Unfortunately no guidance is given.


Anonymous Go Dan Go! said...

Actually I'm commenting on the above post, I notice there was no comment link on that one for some reason! Weird!

Anyway Publia, you can certainly ask Dan Seals all those questions and more at his big Rally at the Park in Glenview on Friday night, 7 p.m. You can talk to him face-to-face if you want! Unlike the other guy ... what's his name again? ... who doesn't like to see his constituents unless they're sitting in a yacht club.

See you at the rally Publia!

Nov 1, 2006, 10:27:00 PM  
Blogger Publia said...

You got something against Yacht Clubs? Never saw Mark Kirk at one, though. They tend to be inhabited by Democrats, including a recent New Trier Committeeman.

Nov 2, 2006, 1:05:00 AM  
Blogger Publia said...

While I did find an event at the Waukegan Yacht Club, there are 45 parks in Glenview. I don't know one that's called The Park.

Nov 2, 2006, 1:16:00 AM  
Anonymous go dan go! said...

Glad you asked ... the rally is at Glenview's Park Center, 2400 Chestnut, 7 p.m. tomorrow!

You can ask Dan all your questions there!

Nov 2, 2006, 11:33:00 AM  

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