Monday, March 23, 2009

Unsafe actions by the Montgomery County Police Department






My wife and I went for lovely walk along the Capital Crescent Trail this afternoon to enjoy the sunshine and check out Kensington.  We were rudely disturbed in our serenity by a police officer on a motorcycle.  I enjoy my own Harley, and I support police officers in their work to keep us all safe.  Further, I'm even glad to see the Montgomery Country Police Department patrolling the trail.  However, is it truly necessary to do it on a Harley, a vehicle intended for the streets.  According the the Capital Crescent Trail website, it is designated 'car-free, park-like setting."  In general Maryland traffic laws consider motorcycles to be similar to cars in that they may not pass in a lane already having a car in it.  I understand that if there is an emergency, the police might need to ride their Harleys on the Capital Crescent Trail, but in this case, with no sirens running, I doubt that to be the case.  I also expect that any response by Montgomery County Police Department to be defensive in nature because that's generally how police operate when we the citizens questions them.  I would be happy to be proved wrong.
I must contrast this with my experiences on Worth Way in West Sussex over Christmas break when I saw two police officers jogging, having left their car at the road, to look for a possible abducted child. 

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

If you look at the insignia on the fairing, you'll notice it's actually a Maryland National Capital Park & Planning Police (Park Police) motor. You probably won't get any response from the county.

YouAreAnIdiot said...

That isn't the Montgomery County Police! That is the Maryland-National Capital Park Police (Note: NOT the same agency as the U.S. Park Police). The M-NC Park Police have primary jurisdication in all county parks in Montgomery and Prince George's counties. The motorcycle in the photo has the Park Police sticker/decal on the front. The M-NC Park Police regularly patrol the parks by car, motorcycle, horse and on foot. They have been doing this since the 1950's. How else do you expect police protection off of the main streets? If you're going to criticize the police, at least KNOW what you're talking about!

Harry Buckles said...

Roger on the park police vice Montgomery County police.

Perhaps police could patrol areas off the main streets via bicycle, foot and horseback. All of these are conducive to other trail users and might even enable interactions between police officers and trail users.

Anonymous said...

Just chill out.

Lets go with the officer parks his/her car and patrols on foot. He walks on the trail for half an hour in one direction. What happens when elsewhere in the officers patrol beat an emergency response is required? Thats a half hour walk to his patrol vehicle plus the amount of time it takes to get to the call for service. That officer has more responsibilities than just the Capital Crescent Trail. It's not a perfect world. And really, how often is your walk in the park disturbed by a police motorcycle? Try not to be so critical. Motorcycles are perfect for trail checks.

Anonymous said...

So, you own a Harley? I doubt it. Harley owners aren't that stupid. Did you ever give any thought to how areas are patrolled. This is just one small part of a patrol day. The other parts include other areas to include parkways. HHMMMM! Isn't the Captial Crescent Trail near a parkway? Let me think. Oh Yea LITTLE FALLS PARKWAY. So let's make you chief for a day. So you are going to tell the motor officer to patrol Little Falls PARKWAY, but don't you dare go on the trail? And BTW dummy, most calls officers recieve are not priority (lights and sirens). How do you know he wasn't on a routine call, such as suspicious suspect or package, indecent exposure or drugs? Those aren't priority calls dummy. You are an imbecile. What do you do for a living? Maybe a cop should tell you how to do your job.

Beery said...

Amazing to me that they're not required to patrol on bicycles in the park. Not only are bicycles quieter, but they're easier to manoeuvre and better at accessing off-road areas. This just shows the how stupidly biased government is against bicycles in the capital region.

Anonymous said...

Are you serious? Park Police/County Police, and Park Rangers patrol the trails and parks on bycicle on a regular basis. Just because you have never seen one, doesnt make it not so. As soon as they stop patrolling on bike and in their vehicles, you will complain that they arent patrolling at all. They are on foot, bike, motor, car, and horse on a regular basis. Nothing will make an anti-government person happy.