AMA Criminal Justice reform and the future of policing from a millennial perspecitive

Adam Wilson
Jan 7, 2018

I am currently writing a book about the future of policing and criminal justice refrom form the perspective of my generation, and how we are going to change it. It would be great to have some thought provoking conversations with people interested in the topic. My goal is to gain more insight on what interests are out there and hear new ideas along with points.

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Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

Jan 8, 1:24PM EST0

I hope to see myself in a leadership position within my agency or another. I could possibly be teaching if the right opportunity came along, and would like to speak at various events.

Jan 8, 1:37PM EST0

How long have you been a Special Investigations Detective and why do you want this job?

Jan 7, 12:34PM EST0

Several years now. Special investigations, or VICE, is very fun and comes along with interesting investigations. I'm not in a dress shirt and tie everyday and everyday is different and much more covert than other positions. 

Jan 7, 12:38PM EST0

Do you watch crime movies and if so, what do you find amusing between movies and real life?

Jan 7, 12:05PM EST0

The most amusing is this belief we have all this crazy technology that can just give us all these instant results, like instant DNA!  

Jan 7, 12:07PM EST0

Sounds like Bourne! ;)

Jan 7, 2:03PM EST0

In the recent years, police officers are under scrutiny because of discrimination, what are your thoughts on this?

Jan 7, 11:41AM EST0

It's really disturbing and has caused a huge decline in the number of applicants and people wanting to become officers. I'm not naive to think discrimination doesn't exist, but I firmly believe it doesn't exist at the rate the left and media portray. I have witnessed an onslaught of attacks on officers I work with that tried to portray them as bad immoral cops, when if fact they are probably some of the most upstanding humans I have ever known. If you knew them, you would think "well if he is considered a bad guy, then there isn't a good person in the world." But it's a good news story and gets the reporter clicks on the link, even though it's destructive to the officers involved.

Jan 7, 11:48AM EST0
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What is the challenging and dangerous part of doing a police work?

Jan 7, 9:41AM EST0

In the current climate, the media and political attacks has made it very challenging. Now we have a very low number of people wanting to be cops. Not because they dont want to be one, but because of the potential for their lives to be ruined if the media perceived their action in a situation as a mistake. Now, we are getting shorter and shorter on staffing causing us to lower standards in order to get people out on the street. That's the most dangerous part, I think, currently. In general, domestic situations and traffic stops. 

Jan 7, 11:32AM EST0

Any thoughts on the US Gun Policy?

Jan 7, 8:57AM EST0

I am very pro-gun. I have witnessed first hand what happens to victims that could have protected themselves if they would have had a gun. I have also witnessed first-hand what happened because the potential victim had a gun. When you deal with real victims, it changes your perspective. At least it does for me. 

Jan 7, 11:29AM EST0
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What insights or interesting stories can you share to us about your work?

Jan 7, 8:07AM EST0

OOf, that's a tough question because everyday has an interesting story. Plus it's kind of subjective. I may think something is just another day at the office and you may think it's fascinating. Currently though, my interaction with the human trafficking world and finding out how deep that rabbit hole goes with online "dating" sites that are being used almost exclusively for prostitution. It's an underground world that has become very lucrative and is not well known. For an example, just look at under their dating tabs and massage tabs. That's just the tip of the iceberg.

Jan 7, 11:43AM EST0

What has drawn you into writing a book about criminal justice reform?

Jan 7, 7:56AM EST0

I believe the millennial generation is lacking voices in this area and I am hoping to fill part of that void. 

Jan 7, 11:35AM EST0

What are you looking for in terms of career development?

Jan 7, 6:25AM EST0

I hope to run for sheriff one day or possibly teach at a nearby university after I get my Ph.D. We need professors in criminal justice that has extenisve criminal justice experience instead of just academia experience.

Jan 7, 11:36AM EST0

What skills are needed to make one a good private investigator or detective?

Jan 7, 6:14AM EST0

Empathy, compassion, integrity, curiousity, and the ability to think outside the box. 

Jan 7, 11:37AM EST0

What injustices do you see everyday that you wish the law or the government should take heed of?

Jan 7, 3:40AM EST0

There are things I believe we could do different but wouldnt necessarily call them an injustice. For one, a long time ago, jails and prisons became our mental health facilities. The number of inmates in any faciltiy have a huge number of mental health issues making the improvement of recidivism through punsihment of prison very difficult. I would like to see us get some of these men and women the mental health improvement they need. 

Jan 7, 11:40AM EST0

Do you also get death threats? What measures do you take?

Jan 7, 3:14AM EST0

I've recieved a lot death threats because of my work with gangmembers and drug dealers. I received so many they lose their umph. It almost just becomes part of the job. There is a funny video with Randy Travis threatening a trooper and swearing he was gonna have him killed. The trooper is laughing it off because thse situations are common. Even for the most serious ones, I refuse to live in fear. If someone wants to hurt me...come get it. 

Jan 7, 11:23AM EST1

Even though we cannot live in fear, we do have to be careful. How do you protect yourself in situations like these? 

Jan 12, 2:22AM EST0

What's the most stressful part about doing police work?

Jan 7, 2:44AM EST0

Depends on the person, some may say paperwork (so much paperwork), some may say light sentences or dismissals on a technicality after many hours were poured into a case. Some would say that the internal things that happen within the police department, such as putting in for positions and not getting them is the most stressful. 

Jan 7, 11:20AM EST0

Are you planning to continue your studies or pursue Law maybe?

Jan 7, 2:09AM EST0

I am going for my Ph.D. in Criminal Justice and may teach at a university somewhere. The law degree was very tempting, but being a full time cop, there were no programs around me that would allow me to work full time, and go to law school. The Ph.D. however, does. 

Jan 7, 11:18AM EST0
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What reforms would you like to see in the North Carolina criminal justice system?

Jan 6, 11:48PM EST0

One thing I have been typing on today is the recodification commission in NC. This is a group of people tasked with going through our statues and getting rid of redundant laws, laws that are irrevelant and outdated. This makes our rule of law clearer and better understood by everyone. 

Jan 7, 11:16AM EST0

Does one need to have a background in law enforcement to be a detective?

Jan 6, 11:48PM EST0

Yes, for most. However, there is a shift occuring in the crime scene world. More and more civilians are being hired to work crime scenes. These people have typically been law enforcment in the past with a rank of detective. 

Jan 7, 11:14AM EST0

In your line of work, what are the common crimes you encounter and what are the penalties? Do you agree with the penalties?

Jan 6, 10:18PM EST0

I've dealt with all types of crimes, from property, drug, violent crimes, etcetera. The penalties will vary and depend on your criminal history. Depends on the situation. There has been times I was in a trial and did not agree with probation being given, and believed the offender deserved active time. 

Jan 7, 11:13AM EST0

What kind of obstacles do you run into when you are trailing on someone?

Jan 6, 8:58PM EST0

In a surveillance type situation? In a vehicle?

Jan 7, 11:11AM EST0

How do you deal with conflict and moral issues while investigating?

Jan 6, 7:43PM EST0

Try to be as objective as possible and fair. Although I may not agree with something on a personal level, it's not my job to investigate based on my opinion. I have to use my states law and US Constitution as my guide. 

Jan 7, 11:09AM EST0

Can you cite an example when you went above and beyond your call of duty?

Jan 6, 5:07PM EST0

I'm a little bit of a work a-holic at times, so there have been many times where I did something that wasn't required for me to do that helped someone or helped put someone in jail. The most recent would be the first time I charged someone with human trafficking. At the time it had never been charged in my county, and no one knew how to work that kind of case because no one ever had. Human trafficking wasn't my responsibility but it needed someone to work it. Without being asked I took it upon myself to start working those cases with any spare time I had and basically pioneered the human trafficking task force we have now. Ended up saving some lives too, and now it is a part of my responsibilites. 

Jan 6, 5:24PM EST0