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Thread: LEO moon lighting - what status do they have under the law?

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    Regular Member Thundar's Avatar
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    There areLEOs in Hampton Roads that moon light, that is dress in their uniform, but get paid by a private company to provide securityto that private company.

    What is the legal status of a moon lighting LEO? Does he have qualified immunity while enforcing a private company's policy?

    Is theLEO always a LEO?

    I ask because we have had several incidents with moonlighting LEOs, including Danbus' Waterside incident.


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    Regular Member ProShooter's Avatar
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    Thundar wrote:
    There areLEOs in Hampton Roads that moon light, that is dress in their uniform, but get paid by a private company to provide securityto that private company.

    What is the legal status of a moon lighting LEO? Does he have qualified immunity while enforcing a private company's policy?

    Is theLEO always a LEO?

    I ask because we have had several incidents with moonlighting LEOs, including Danbus' Waterside incident.

    Whenever he is acting in the capacity of a LEO, he is a LEO. I used to work off duty jobs all the time. Even though you are paid by a private company, your are still on duty as if you were paid by the county/City. You retain all of the same powers of arrest, etc.
    James Reynolds

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    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    If you are on duty while moonlighting, are you covered by Workers Compensation if you are injured while moonlighting? I'll take "What is 'Not in this lifetime?'" for a bazillion dollars, Alex.

    If you are on duty while moonlighting, does your private employer pay towards your health care premiums, your state/municipal life insurance premium, your uniform allowance, and all the other on-duty-specific expenses the city pays? Same question, Alex.

    How come moonlighting cops get a longer break period than their on-duty brethern get? That's a violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act, too.

    How can a moonlighting cop be on duty? That would require that the city assign him to provide services to a specific individual or business and no others, which is as I recall my constitutional law, a clear case of discrimination.

    Either you are on duty or you are off duty. And as I recall several Fair Labor Standards Act cases, cops can only be on duty so many hours during a duty cycle, and can only be on duty if assigned to the specific shift by their agency's supervisory chain.

    stay safe.

    skidmark
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    Regular Member paramedic70002's Avatar
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    As a former certified armed security officer who was making far less in overtime than moonlighting LEOs were making, when my TAXES were being used to supply him his equipment and training so that he could compete against me for work, don't get me started on this topic. Oops, too late. Lets just say I think LEOs who need extra $$$ should either get a pay raise or be required to work for a private security company, like some other states mandate. And I also think all security officers should go through an LEO style background check, an "LEO-lite" academy, not a weekend course, and be granted LEO-lite authority. Gotta go...
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    Regular Member ProShooter's Avatar
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    paramedic70002 wrote:
    As a former certified armed security officer who was making far less in overtime than moonlighting LEOs were making, when my TAXES were being used to supply him his equipment and training so that he could compete against me for work, don't get me started on this topic.
    Its got nothing to do with anyone competing with you, its got to do with the fact that the business owner wanted someone there with the authority of law. A private security officer's duties are to "observe and report". A LEO's job involves arrest, detainment, etc.
    James Reynolds

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    Founder's Club Member Hawkflyer's Avatar
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    ProShooter wrote:
    paramedic70002 wrote:
    As a former certified armed security officer who was making far less in overtime than moonlighting LEOs were making, when my TAXES were being used to supply him his equipment and training so that he could compete against me for work, don't get me started on this topic.
    Its got nothing to do with anyone competing with you, its got to do with the fact that the business owner wanted someone there with the authority of law. A private security officer's duties are to "observe and report". A LEO's job involves arrest, detainment, etc.
    This is the correct answer.

    The fact is a LEO is a "sworn" officer. For that reason, even when acting off duty, he acts "under color of office" with full arrest powers. Under Virginia law he would be considered to have authority as a constable at the very least, and full LEO authority at the maximum. A lot depends on where his normal jurisdiction is in relation to the off duty work, and what level of LEO he is when on duty (state, federal, local, etc.).

    Regards
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    ProShooter wrote:
    paramedic70002 wrote:
    As a former certified armed security officer who was making far less in overtime than moonlighting LEOs were making, when my TAXES were being used to supply him his equipment and training so that he could compete against me for work, don't get me started on this topic.
    Its got nothing to do with anyone competing with you, its got to do with the fact that the business owner wanted someone there with the authority of law. A private security officer's duties are to "observe and report". A LEO's job involves arrest, detainment, etc.
    Actually I'm currently a licensed armed security officer, and as such am granted the authority to act as an arresting "officer" at my employers location. That is the difference between armed and unarmed security, unarmed is observe and report, armed is observe report, make arrest, protect the people on the property ect...armed security is in fact law enforcement on the employers property, enforcing virginia law, and enforcing company policies, as long as the company policies don't violate state or local law.

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    Founder's Club Member Hawkflyer's Avatar
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    Pagan wrote:
    ProShooter wrote:
    paramedic70002 wrote:
    As a former certified armed security officer who was making far less in overtime than moonlighting LEOs were making, when my TAXES were being used to supply him his equipment and training so that he could compete against me for work, don't get me started on this topic.
    Its got nothing to do with anyone competing with you, its got to do with the fact that the business owner wanted someone there with the authority of law. A private security officer's duties are to "observe and report". A LEO's job involves arrest, detainment, etc.
    *Actually I'm currently a* licensed armed security officer, and as such am granted the authority to act as an arresting "officer" at my employers location. That is the difference between armed and unarmed security, unarmed is observe and report, armed is observe report, make arrest, protect the people on the property ect...armed security is in fact law enforcement on the employers property, enforcing virginia law, and enforcing company policies, as long as the company policies don't violate state or local law.
    It may appear to you that you have full LEO authorities, but that is not the case in actual application. Take a look at the latest DANBUS thread in the Virginia forum and you will see the kind of problems this view can cause for you.
    Regards
    "Research has shown that a 230 grain lead pellet placed just behind the ear at 850 FPS results in a permanent cure for violent criminal behavior."
    "If you are not getting Flak, you are not over the target"
    "186,000 Miles per second! ... Not just a good idea ... It's the law!"

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    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    Hawkflyer wrote:
    Pagan wrote:
    ProShooter wrote:
    paramedic70002 wrote:
    As a former certified armed security officer who was making far less in overtime than moonlighting LEOs were making, when my TAXES were being used to supply him his equipment and training so that he could compete against me for work, don't get me started on this topic.
    Its got nothing to do with anyone competing with you, its got to do with the fact that the business owner wanted someone there with the authority of law. A private security officer's duties are to "observe and report". A LEO's job involves arrest, detainment, etc.
    Actually I'm currently a licensed armed security officer, and as such am granted the authority to act as an arresting "officer" at my employers location. That is the difference between armed and unarmed security, unarmed is observe and report, armed is observe report, make arrest, protect the people on the property ect...armed security is in fact law enforcement on the employers property, enforcing virginia law, and enforcing company policies, as long as the company policies don't violate state or local law.
    It may appear to you that you have full LEO authorities, but that is not the case in actual application. Take a look at the latest DANBUS thread in the Virginia forum and you will see the kind of problems this view can cause for you.
    Regards
    There are degrees of armed private security officer - ranging from your basic "observe and report" up to "conservator of the peace*" who have full arrest powers equal to other sworn LEOs.

    See http://leg1.state.va.us/cgi-bin/legp...+cod+15.2-1737

    § 15.2-1737. Circuit courts may appoint special police officers.

    A. The circuit court for any locality may, upon the application of, and a showing of a necessity for the security of property or the peace by, the sheriff or chief of police, appoint special police officers for a locality within its jurisdiction. Effective July 1, 2002, no person employed by a local school board as a school security officer, as defined in § 9.1-101, shall be eligible for appointment as a special police officer for purposes of maintaining safety in a public school in the Commonwealth.

    The special police officers shall be suitable and discreet persons and shall serve as such for such length of time as the court may designate, but not exceeding four years under any one appointment. Such person or persons so appointed shall be conservators of the peace under the supervision of the person or agency making application for the appointment, who shall likewise be civilly liable for any wrongful action or conduct committed by the appointee while within the scope of his employment.

    B. The court shall, prior to appointment, order the applicant to conduct a background investigation, in accordance with clause A (ii) of § 15.2-1705 of each prospective appointee who is not a law-enforcement officer as defined in § 9.1-101.

    C. All appointments made pursuant to this section shall become void on September 15, 2004, and any officers so appointed shall no longer be eligible to serve.

    (Code 1950, § 15-562; 1962, cc. 234, 623, § 15.1-144; 1976, c. 199; 1996, c. 850; 1997, c. 587; 2002, cc. 836, 868; 2003, c. 922.)
    We'll leave discussion of Danbus' case to that thread, OK?

    The question remains, what is the actual status of a LEO who is moonlighting? It is found here:

    So the operative word here is may, as defined either by the enabling ordinance or the rules established by the chief of police/sheriff. Thus, we need to look at the enabling ordinance of each locality to determine under what rules an OFF-DUTYpolice officer is allowed to occassionally use their police powers in the performance of OFF-DUTY employment.

    A clear reading of the Code of Virginia indicates that moonlighting cops are off duty and are restricted in the occassional use of their police powers.

    qed

    stay safe.

    skidmark

    * edited to correct a typo.

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  10. #10
    Regular Member paramedic70002's Avatar
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    The laws may have changed some in the past 20 years but when I was working armed security in 1988-1991 I had full arrest powers for any offense occurring in my presence, as long as I was on a property I was contracted to protect. I made over 200 arrests in those 3 years. Shoplifting, trespassing, possession of controlled substances and paraphernalia, assault, disorderly conduct, possession of illegally concealed weapons, resisting arrest, drunk in public, grand larceny, etc., etc. And about 99% of those arrests were closed with convictions.
    "Each worker carried his sword strapped to his side." Nehemiah 4:18

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    Regular Member okboomer's Avatar
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    paramedic70002 wrote:
    As a former certified armed security officer who was making far less in overtime than moonlighting LEOs were making, when my TAXES were being used to supply him his equipment and training so that he could compete against me for work, don't get me started on this topic. Oops, too late. Lets just say I think LEOs who need extra $$$ should either get a pay raise or be required to work for a private security company, like some other states mandate. And I also think all security officers should go through an LEO style background check, an "LEO-lite" academy, not a weekend course, and be granted LEO-lite authority. Gotta go...
    I did, I am, and still, I cannot compete without cutting my own throat on the job price. My overhead includes my insurance, my bond (req. by state), my taxes,my equipment, my cost of education, my time ... you get the picture.

    The city/county/state paid for their education, supplies their equipment, pays their insurance, supplies their bond, handles their withholding taxes ...

    And they have the nerve to insinuate that I am "too assertive."


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