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Why are Cops Called 12? Reason, Origin, and Its Benefits

The government deals with a ton of difficult stuff to keep everything organized and running smoothly, and they use handy code systems so that they can quickly give away information to each other in a way that is not much understood by others. One of them is called the Federal Supply or Service Code which is like a four-digit ID for things the government buys and uses, and then there is this big 13-digit number called the National Stock Number and it is like the government’s own special barcode for keeping track of stuff in their inventory.

So coming to the topic now, the term ’12’ is used in the police radio code system and is added to their protocols in order to notify that a law officer requires assistance.

Glimpse Into Why Are Cops Called 12?

So the slang term ’12’ is used for police officers and where it really came from is not crystal clear but there are a few ideas floating around because one is that it might have sprung from the police radio code system and then there is the theory that it kicked off down South, especially in places like Atlanta and Georgia back in the 60s and people would use ’12’ as a kind of quick warning to let others know cops were in the area.

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Why are Cops Called 12 And What Is The Police Radio Code System?

So you know when you see cops in movies or TV shows saying stuff like ’10-4′ or ’10-20′ and those are part of a system called the ’10 codes’, and they use these shortcodes to get their point across fast.

And so, like ’10-4′ means ‘got it’, they do this to communicate quickly and clearly, especially when things are intense or urgent.

However you should get this, the government suggested back in 2016 that it might be better to just talk in regular language and to avoid any confusion or misunderstandings and therefore you might hear more cops just saying things straight up, like ‘Got it’ instead of ’10-4′.

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What is the origin of Police Radio Codes?

So back in the early 1920s when police radio was just getting started, they came up with these cool things came up with these cool things called ’10-codes- to help cops talk faster over the airwaves.

Basically, there are shorthand messages that help officers share info quickly without clogging up the radio and it kept any nosy suspects from figuring out what the cops were up to. Later in 1937 they got more serious about it and started using standardized codes called ACO 10 Signals, and you know the term ’12’ is thought to come from the police code ’10-12′ which basically means an officer needs backup and then people just started saying ’12’ instead of the whole code.

How Have Police Radio Codes Evolved?

So back in the day, police radio codes were the go-to for cops trying to talk quickly and keep things under wraps on the airwaves and they were handy for passing on info without giving away too much to the bad guys listening in and these codes got a big boost in 1937 when the APCO 10 Signals came along, making things more uniform across police departments.

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How Have Police Radio Codes Evolved

However, as time went on, people started seeing some issues with the 10 codes and one big problem was that they were not standardized, so what might mean one thing in one place could mean something totally different somewhere else. Well, that is a recipe for confusion especially when cops from different agencies need to work together, and also in emergencies, every second counts, and codes can slow things down.

Later in 2006, they figured using plain language would make things clearer and help avoid misunderstandings, especially in high-pressure situations, however, a lot of police departments are still sticking with the old codes and they worry that switching over could lead to dangerous mix-ups during the transition and that retraining everyone would be a hassle.

Why Are Cops Called 12 and how has it impacted police-community relations?

So police codes have had quite an impact on how cops and communities relate and they were originally all about making sure officers could share info quickly without tipping off the bad guys.

Additionally, some folks argue that using these codes makes things less transparent, but a lot of departments are hesitant to switch over and they worry about the transition and the chance of things going sideways because of misunderstandings.

That is why there is a big push for standardization, and why are cops called 12 urban dictionaries, and if every department is on the same page then communication becomes smoother with everyone actually being safer, and it is all about finding a balance between keeping officers safe and being open with the communities they are serving.

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What do people say about these codes?

  • Some folks worry that police use super confusing language and why are cops called 12 could make it hard for the public to understand and trust what they are doing. And when they start speaking in coded languages, it feels like they are keeping secrets and only letting certain people in on them.
  • Secondly, changing from 10 codes to plain language has been happening at a snail’s pace and lots of police departments are sticking to the old codes because they are worried about misunderstandings that could lead to dangerous situations.
  • People are also concerned about security breaches, fearing someone might crack into the system, and there is also the worry that technical glitches could cause radio hiccups, leaving communication stranded.

Final Words on Why Are Cops Called 12

In conclusion, we would like to say that these code words have both benefits and disadvantages and it is a subjective matter as to who likes them and who does not like why are cops called 12. And so with that, we end our blog and hope that everything around why are cops called 12 is covered here and there is nothing left unsaid.

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Miranda Cosgrove

My Miranda cosgrove is an accomplished article writer with a flair for crafting engaging and informative content. With a deep curiosity for various subjects and a dedication to thorough research, Miranda cosgrove brings a unique blend of creativity and accuracy to every piece

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