by Phil Busse and Wm. Steven Humphrey

Police work is an exciting career opportunity for today's youth. However, this high-pressure job isn't for everyone! Take the Portland Police Department, for example; they are constantly being placed in situations where they have no other choice but to shoot, beat, pepper-spray, choke and taser the minority suspect in question. That's why, in order to be a member of the Portland P.D., one must be able to place moral judgments aside and act in a quick, efficient, and often insanely vicious manner.

Do you have what it takes to join this proud rank of men and women in blue? Take the following quiz and find out! Each of the following multiple-choice questions represents AN ACTUAL SCENARIO faced by the Portland Police. Simply choose the answer that best describes how the responding officer acted in the situation, and then score yourself with the answers provided below.


1) Its New Year's Eve 1998. You and a female officer respond to a complaint that a slightly intoxicated car salesman, Peter Gilbaugh (living in a low-income hotel) has urinated on another tenant's door. A struggle ensues, and the unarmed Gilbaugh falls on top of your partner, reportedly reaching for her gun. WHAT DO YOU DO?

(A) Grab the assailant's hand.

(B) Taser the assailant.

(C) Use reasonable force to remove the assailant.

(D) Pull your weapon and fire it point-blank into the assailant's head (hoping to god you miss your partner).

2) You decide to pull over a 20-year-old black man, Deontae Keller, because his car resembles one used in a recent drive-by shooting. Keller panics, jumps out of the vehicle, and is immediately shot in the back by fellow officer Terry Kruger. Amazingly, Keller manages to dash off around a corner, where he collapses. WHAT DO YOU DO?

(A) Refuse to chase after him.

(B) Refuse to call for or administer any medical aid.

(C) Wait almost two hours before approaching the victim, giving him plenty of opportunity to bleed to death.

(D) All of the above

3) In 1998, Brian Penton was apprehended for stripping off his clothes and running down the street. According to reports, Penton was then "hobbled" by police, pepper-sprayed, and placed in a face-down position until he perished. Penton also had cuts on his knees and elbows and "4-5 superficial baton marks on his back." WHAT WOULD YOU SAY IS THE CAUSE OF DEATH?

(A) "Ummm... beaten to death by cop?"

(B) "Heart attack... definitely, heart attack."

(C) "The victim forgot to take his medication."

(D) "Wardrobe malfunction."

4) It's a fairly routine traffic stop, and 20-year-old Anthony Duane Shaw's car is being blocked in front by a squad car and in the rear by your own vehicle. As you approach Shaw's car, he suddenly begins backing his car up toward you. WHAT DO YOU DO?

(A) Fire 13 shots point-blank into the driver, barely missing Shaw's 15-year-old passenger.

(B) Step to the left and get out of the car's way.

(C) Step to the right and get out of the car's way.

(D) Stay put and get hit by the car.

5) Its another routine traffic stop, yet this time it's a 21-year-old black woman, Kendra James, who tries to flee. Presumably fearing for his life, the woman is shot and killed by rookie officer Scott McCollister. AS SENIOR OFFICER, WHAT WOULD YOU IMMEDIATELY ADVISE McCOLLISTER TO DO?

(A) "Calm down and let's contact our supervisor."

(B) "Let's go to Applebee's for some pie, and get our story straight. Wink, wink."

(C) "Quick! Plant an AK-47 on the victim's body!"

(D) "Kill all witnesses within a three-block radius."

6) Routine traffic stop #3! It's two weeks ago on a sunny afternoon. You see a black man driving in North Portland, who fails to signal for a turn! Of course you pull him over. He doesn't have a driver's license, and he may have cocaine in his pocket. Holy shit. NOW WHAT?

(A) Panic!!!

(B) Fire three warning shots into his torso!!

(C) Fire three warning shots into his body, and then taser him for good measure!!

(D) All of the above!! 7) You and your partner are summoned to a mental hospital. A Mexican man named Mejia Poot was detained three days ago for failing to pay his full bus fare. He speaks no English and has suddenly "gone loco," charging toward you swinging an aluminum rod. WHAT DO YOU DO?

(A) Call a translator to help you communicate with the man.

(B) Duh. He's crazy... shoot him.

(C) Try to restrain him with non-lethal force.

(D) Call in a sassy nurse like the one Whoopi Goldberg played in Girl, Interrupted.

8) 9-1-1 receives a call alerting you to a fight at a doughnut shop in North Portland. When you arrive, eight other officers have handcuffed, hog-tied and piled on top of Richard "Dickie" Dow, a paranoid schizophrenic seen walking away from the shop. YOU SHOULD:

(A) Jump on the dogpile!

(B) Help pummel him!

(C) Form a tight circle around the melee so witnesses can't see the dogpile and pummeling.

(D) When the "victim" stops breathing, claim CPR is not your job, while keeping witnesses from administering mouth-to-mouth.

(E) All of the above.

9) A black man attempting to shoplift from a Northeast 7-11 has been detained by store clerks. A crowd gathers, and within that group, an argument breaks out between a white patron and a 31-year-old black man who is a Fred Meyer security guard. YOU SHOULD...

(A) Try to peacefully disperse the gathering.

(B) Put the black man into a "sleeper hold" until he goes into cardiac arrest.

(C) Arrest the alleged shoplifter.

(D) Pepper-spray the crowd (Yes, even the white people and babies).

10) Okay, let's assume you decide to put the black man in a sleeper hold and kill him. It's the day of his funeral. WHAT IS THE PROPER RESPONSE?

(A) Grieve for the man's wife and children.

(B) Ask for better training protocols.

(C) Seek psychological counseling.

(D) Silk-screen T-shirts picturing a smoking gun with the slogan, "Don't Choke 'Em, Smoke 'Em" and sell them to 30 of your fellow officers.


1) D, Fire your weapon point-blank. 1998, officers cleared of any wrongdoing. 2) D, all of the above. 1996, no disciplinary action taken. 3) C, Victim didn't take medication. 1998, no disciplinary action taken. 4) A, Fire 13 shots point-blank. 1993, officers cleared of any wrongdoing. 5) B, Go to Applebee's. 2003, five month suspension. 6) D, All of the above. 2004, investigation pending. 7) B, Shoot him. 2001, no disciplinary action taken, Mayor Katz later awards officers medal of valor. 8) E, All of the above. 1998, all officers cleared of wrongdoing, four awarded letters of commendation. 9) B, sleeper hold. 1985, temporarily fired, later reinstated by federal arbitrator. 10) D, "Don't Choke 'Em, Smoke 'Em."