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Sunday, 26 March 2017


The word 'criminal' has been in the language since around 1400 but 'policeman' arrived only in 1788.

Eugene Vidocq (July 24, 1775 – May 11, 1857) was an 18th century French crook-turned-policeman. As a fugitive from French justice, he first offered his services as a police informer.

Later Vidcoq became so successful at catching criminals that he was named the first chief of police at the Surete in 1811.

Vidocq eventually directed a force of 28 detectives, all of whom were former criminals.

Eugène François Vidocq. Portrait by Achille Devéria.

Vidcoq is considered to be the father of modern criminal investigation. He introduced record keeping and the science of ballistics into police work.

Vidcoq was also noted as a master of disguise and held patents on indelible ink and unalterable bond paper.

PC Joseph Grantham became the first British police officer to be killed on duty in 1830, when he intervened in a fight between two drunks and was beaten to death. At his inquest, the jury returned a verdict of "justifiable homicide", possibly due to public dislike of the new police force, which had been set up by Robert Peel the previous year.

The first female police officer in the US was Canadian Marie Connolly Owens, who joined the Chicago Police Department in 1891 with full arrest powers.

Alice Stebbins Wells was the first American-born female police officer in the United States. She was hired by the Los Angeles Police Department and sworn in on September 12, 1910.

When she first put on her uniform, Alice was accused of misusing her husband's badge to ride the streetcar free, until L.A. finally issued her "Policewoman's Badge #1."

Wells was allowed to design her own uniform and was active in propagating the need for policewomen elsewhere. As a result of her efforts seventeen departments in American were employing policewomen by 1916.

Alice Wells was the first female officer in the LAPD

Starsky & Hutch was based on two real-life New York City cops, Lou Telano and John Sepe, who went undercover as Hasidic Jews, gay lovers, and female nurses in the 1960s and 1970s.

In February 1976, Elvis Presley — who had a vast collection of police badges — was made a reserve Memphis policeman.

Penny Harrington became the first woman police chief of a major city in 1985. She assumed the duties as head of the Portland, Oregon force of 940 officers and staff.

While working the beat on his bicycle, ‘Robocop’ Constable Diederik Coetzee had made 309 arrests by October 2005 in Mansfield, Nottinghamshire, to set the UK record made by one officer in a single year. He retired from the force after being seriously injured on his bike in a hit-and-run accident in 2011.

Police officers are referred to as "cops" because of the copper badges they used to wear.

Source Daily Mail

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