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Off-Duty Responsibility of Police Officers

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Reviewed Date: June 30, 2017

Original Author: 
Barton, Rex
Date Created: 
Jan 11, 2002


Subjects:
Police
Police--Laws and regulations
Police--Personnel
Police--Procedures

Off-Duty Responsibility of Police Officers

Summary: 
A statement of the off-duty responsibility of police officers.

Knowledgebase-Off-Duty Responsibility of Police Officers

OFF-DUTY RESPONSIBILITY

1. Members of the department are always subject to orders from superior officers and to calls for assistance from private citizens. Being off-duty does not relieve the officer from the responsibility of taking proper police action in any matter coming to his/her attention.

2. When there are no exigent or emergency circumstances, officers shall request the dispatcher to turn the matter over to officers on duty.

3. Officers may perform necessary police service whenever or wherever they are aware of a serious criminal offense or a present threat to life.

1. Generally, misdemeanors would not represent a serious criminal offense or an immediate threat to life.

2. In most cases, felonies would qualify, but officers should exercise restraint in dealing with offenses in an off-duty capacity.

4. In all cases, off-duty officers shall relinquish control of the situation and/or any prisoner to on duty officers having jurisdiction as soon as practically possible.


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MTAS letters and publications were written based upon the law at the time and/or a specific sets of facts. The laws referenced in the letters and publications may have changed and/or the technical advice provided may not be applicable to your city or circumstances. Always consult with your city attorney or an MTAS consultant before taking any action based on information contained in this database.