A Wild Start to My 25th Year in Policing

Today, I start my 25th year as a cop.

Just finished up a crazy night with the Chicago Vehicular Hijacking Task Force. It’s basically working ground zero for our nation’s struggle with inner city violent crime. It’s the type of work that I’ll tell my grandkids about some day. (And they won’t believe it.)

We responded to a “10-1” (officer needs emergency assistance), for “shots fired at the police.” We get on scene & learn it was connected to a carjacked SUV that my partners & I were actively tracking that exact moment!


When that call goes out over the radio, EVERYONE goes. And when you realize everyone is OK — you remember the brother & sisterhood this career brings. From guys & gals you’ve never met before. Racing to help. It’s like nothing else.

If you let it, the feeling can overwhelm you. When I finally lay my head down tonight, I just might let it.

Through it all, it truly is the best job in the world.

And I get to do it everyday. For at least a few more years.

Here’s to finishing 24 in dramatic fashion. 🥃😅👍🏽


Post photo is a late night selfie over the 18th St bridge, South Loop, Chicago, after I dropped off my partners at the station.


Lou Hayes, Jr. is a detective supervisor in a suburban Chicago police department. He's focused on multi-jurisdictional crime patterns & intelligence, through organic working groups compromised of investigators & analysts from a variety of agencies. With a passion for training, he studies human performance, decision-making, creativity, emotional intelligence, & adaptability. In 2021, he went back to college (remotely!), in hopes to finally finish his undergrad degree from the University of Illinois - Gies College of Business. Follow Lou on LinkedIn, & also the LinkedIn page for The Illinois Model


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