8 - June 6, 2014 | Pelham - Windham News What to Expect if ‘You’re Under Arrest’
the arresting offi cer reads the Miranda Rights, making sure that the suspect fully understands what is being recited. These rights are only read after an arrest has been made and before any questioning begins: “You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be provided for you. Do you understand the rights I have just read to you?” In New Hampshire, anyone (not in violation of a restraining order)
Mike Scholz, one of the participants of the inaugural Windham Citizen
Pictured above, Windham Police Sergeant Brian Bliss fi ngerprints “suspect” Tim Stanton during a mock
arrest at the Citizen Police Academy.
Police Academy, gets a diff erent perspective from inside one of the cells at the Windham Police Department.
Those who are participating in Windham’s very fi rst Citizen
Sergeant Brian Bliss, left, demonstrates handcuffi ng techniques on Sgt. Bryan Smith during a recent session of the Windham Police Academy.
by Barbara O’Brien Possessing a small amount of marijuana, driving while impaired,
shoving someone during an argument; any of these infractions can result in a normally law-abiding citizen being arrested, something most people only know about from watching a favorite crime drama on TV.
Police Academy, however, got to experience what it’s like to be arrested fi rsthand. Sergeant Brian Bliss, who has worked with the Windham Police Department for the past 12 years, explained arrest procedures, while providing a tour of the secure booking area. Bliss, a former detective with the Windham Police, also serves as a fi eld training offi cer and as an instructor at the annual New Hampshire Police Cadet Training Academy held in Concord. Arrests can be made following the issuance of a warrant or based on an offi cer actually witnessing an illegal activity. A suspect is fi rst handcuffed behind his or her back, told of any charges, and placed in the back of the cruiser. The individual is then transported to the police station; where the cruiser pulls into an enclosed, secure area, referred to as a “sallyport.” After being removed from the cruiser, the person, who is under arrest, is taken inside to the booking room to be photographed and fi ngerprinted. Windham does not have digital fi ngerprinting equipment because of the expense. Suspects are fi ngerprinted the “old-fashioned” way, using an ink pad and individually rolling each fi nger onto cards used specifi cally for that purpose. Four sets of fi ngerprints are taken, one of which goes to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, where it is stored permanently. If the person under arrest decides to talk about the alleged offense,
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submitted by Alex Dubois, Pelham High School Senior Have you ever wanted to see police dogs in action? Have you ever wondered how much training they and their respective offi cers undergo? Did you ever think about their different tactics in fi ghting crime? Mrs. Dube’s Criminology class at Pelham High learned the answers to all this and more on May 20. The class was paid a special visit by offi cers Paul Benoit and Dan Nelson of the Salem Police Department, along with their four-legged counterparts, Trigger and Till. Trigger and Till are both black German shepherds. Offi cer Benoit began the presentation by explaining the differences between passive and active alert. Trigger is trained for passive alert, which means when he searches for contraband or other items, he scratches the surface and sits while the offi cer uncovers it. Offi cer Nelson explained that this tactic is used when there is a threat of a bomb. Till, on the other hand, is trained for active alert, in which he rapidly searches and digs and claws until he fi nds what he is looking for. Active alert issued mostly in narcotic searches and other drug raids. Offi cer Nelson said that the canines’ primary function is to be a “locating tool.” The next few minutes were open for general questions. Chantal Roussel asked if either of the offi cers has ever been bitten by their dogs, to which they both replied, “yes.” They explained that the dogs struggle to be the “alpha dog,” which is the position of the offi cers, and thus may attempt to take out their frustrations toward them. However, Offi cer Benoit quickly chimed in and said that he still loves his dog and working with him every day “is truly a magical experience.” Dylan Faust asked if there was any special equipment they needed to use with their dogs. Both offi cers were kind enough to pass around their muzzle and tracking harnesses. To everyone’s surprise, the dogs even have their own bulletproof vests. Mrs. Dube asked if the offi cers would rather have a human partner or a dog partner, and surprisingly they preferred to have the dogs by their side. The second half of the presentation was extremely unique and interesting. The class was able to witness the police dogs in action. Offi cer Nelson, protected by a sheath over his arm, was taken down by one of the dogs. The dog did not stop until he had completely ripped the sheath off his arm. A mere few seconds later, the offi cer’s arm already showed signs of bruising and swelling. Secondly, Offi cer Benoit (also wearing protective armor) played the role of a fl eeing suspect. He ran across the fi eld, but was caught and taken down almost instantly. This was a live demonstration of the dogs’ second function as an “apprehension tool.” This presentation was a very special treat for the criminology students, and they are all very thankful that the offi cers took time out of their day to come and see them. Casey Gendreau, who hopes to pursue a career in law enforcement, said, “It was a very insightful experience, but I think I would rather have a human partner to help me.” Tia Floyd said “It
was way different than I thought it would be, and now I realize how much work canine offi cers have to put in.” Everyone enjoyed the presentation, although Mrs. Dube was a bit frightened by the dogs. She said that shows how much she enjoys making her class interesting for her students, especially since this is her last year teaching before she retires. Mrs. Dube also invited an FBI agent and School Resource Offi cer Brian Kelley to come and speak to the class.
who is arrested is entitled to bail. The amount of bail is set by the bail commissioner, an individual who works for the court system and who is called into the police station when an arrest is made. The arrestee must pay the bail commissioner a $40 cash fee, no credit cards or checks accepted, before being released on bail. Often, when charges don’t involve serious allegations and the individual doesn’t have prior convictions, the person is released on what is known as P.R. (personal recognizance) bail. If a cash bail is required and the person who was arrested can’t raise the money, he or she is then transported to the Rockingham County Jail in Brentwood, until an arraignment can be scheduled on the next regular court day. If a person is released on P.R. bail and then doesn’t show up in court, a warrant would be issued for that individual, and the bail would need to be paid in cash.
A bail bondsman is different than a bail commissioner. A bondsman works for a private company that charges 10 percent of the bail amount to loan someone the money needed to get out of jail. Interest charges are also assessed on the amount owed. For example, if bail were set at $10,000, the person taking out the bond would have to pay $1,000 up front. The holding cells at the Windham Police Department are used on a temporary basis, either until a person is released on bail or is transported to the county jail. Prisoners are not kept overnight in Windham. Juveniles can be held at the police station no more than four hours.
Sergeant Bryan Smith, who developed the Citizen Police Academy
for Windham, said police offi cers are “as polite as possible” under the circumstances, depending on the behavior of the subject who is under arrest. “Our goal is to use our words” and avoid physical confrontation, whenever possible,” Sgt. Bliss added. “A little bit of kindness goes a long way.” In fact, “It’s not unusual for someone who has just been arrested to shake our hands and thank us for doing our job in a professional manner,” Sgt. Smith added.
‘Release the Hounds’ at PHS
Staff photos by Barbara O’Brien
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