The beat cops are the backbone of any city police force, having been around since the early 1800s. Also called bobbies (Great Britain), gendarmes (France), carabinieres (Italy), Polizist (Germany), guardia (Spain), and among other names, depending on the part of the world, they walk the streets or patrol in cars, and they are the first responders to any police call. They have evolved over the decades from the “tough love” kind of law enforcement co the modern part social worker, part investigator.
Beat cops are easily identified as they wear a specific uniform and a badge. Most carry guns, and all carry some form of baton and handcuffs. Most modern-day cops also wear a Kevlar vest under their cloches for lifesaving protection.
They are considered the bottom of the rung in law enforcement as all new rookies start off as beat cops and work their way up the ranks of the police force. They patrol certain areas (or beats), and they can operate alone or in pairs.
With the increasing sophistication of crime in the 1800s, there arose a new brand of police official: the detective (or inspector). Detective are police officers with some years of experience. Their position on the force allows them to devote their time to investigating a few crimes. They usually dressed in business attire and carry a concealed service pistol, usually on their belt. If they know they are going into a hostile situation, they may don a Kevlar vest with “POLICE” emblazoned across the front and back. They generally operate in pairs.
These individuals as a group are skilled at interviewing and information gathering. They tie together all the witness interviews, interrogations, forensic work, autopsy results (if any), and outside information to present to the prosecutors for court. While prior to the 1960s their tactics may have been brutal at times, they proved to be effective in closing their cases. Now they rend to use more psychological tactics to gain information from suspects and people of interest.
With the advances in forensic science came the crime scene investigator. At first, they were simply there to dust for finger- prints and collect obvious clues under the direct control of the detective in charge. In more recent years, they have taken over running the investigations at the crime scene, and they supply the detectives with all the information that they find, from the obvious evidence to fibers, hair, and DNA. The CS!, however, is still responsible for delivering testimony on what the evidence they gathered means.
The CSI is always dressed in dark coveralls and a jacket, if needed, with CSI emblazoned on the back. They also carry a large case containing their tools and, sometimes, a camera. They usually work in groups of two or more, but they may operate alone depending upon the size of the force and the crime being investigated.
These individuals are skilled at lifting fingerprints, finding, retrieving, and analyzing blood, fiber, hair, and DNA samples. They can compare minute striations on bullets, tools, and cut or corn objects to determine where they came from or if they match with another clue.
One of the oldest law enforcement officials is the sheriff. They and their deputies are charged with policing large areas, usually counties in the United States and Great Britain. Over time, the position has gone from one of a political appointee to that of being elected.
The sheriff is usually accompanied by at least one deputy, who’s the county’s equivalent of the city’s beat cop. In most jurisdictions, deputies ride alone but cover for each other when time allows.
Sheriffs often dress in suits with wear jackets to conceal the service revolver that they carry. In other cases, they wear a uniform similar to that of the deputies, which includes a light brown shirt, dark brown trousers, black pistol belt and holster, six-pointed star badge prominently displayed on the shire or matching coat, and a wide, dark brown felt hat.
Marshals are specialized federal agents who are charged with apprehending wanted federal criminals and holding them for trial. They were the ultimate law enforcement officers in the U.S. territories in the west in the late 1800s to early 1900s. They almost died out after the territories became states, but their job descriptions were soon expanded to include seeking federal criminals throughout the United States.
The marshals of the 1800s were indistinguishable from other individuals unless they were wearing their badge. Today, they were dark business suits and windbreakers or vests with “MARSHAL” emblazoned on them. They have always carried sidearms – sometimes concealed, and sometimes displayed openly. Marshals historically have operated alone, but in modern days, they have adopted a partner system. They may even operate in groups on a large enough mission.
The rise of the federal agents occurred in the 1930s with the prohibition act. Their job was to shut down the illegal flow of liquor and those that were making money off of it. Ever since, then they have been used by the federal executive branch to crack down on whatever group is currently seen as a threat, including anti-war movements, civilian militias, drug runners, international spies, or terrorists.
Federal agents dress in dark business suits and carry concealed weapons. Many modern agents also have hidden communication devices. They always work in teams of two; in more important cases, several teams come together to form a squad.
Special weapons and tactics (SWAT) teams are specialized police officers that are primarily dedicated to recapture of dangerous subjects, high-risk entries, hostage situations, mob and riot control, and armed standoffs. They spend most of their time waiting, tensed and ready to spring into action on a second’s notice. These are young yet seasoned officers who have proven to be cool under pressure. SWAT officers in most police forces are regular beat cops and detectives until a situation arises that calls the team into action.
These police officers dress in an all-black coveralls, black boots, black bulletproof vests, and black baseball caps or Kevlar helmets. They operates in six-person teams. The team consists of a commander, a communications-electronics person, a sniper, a entry specialist (or doorman), a grenadier, and a raider. The may also have a negotiator attached to them if needed.
The commander, communications person, and raider are all equipped with small submachine guns and police pistols; the communications-electronics person also has appropriate cools. The sniper uses a military sniper rifle and police sidearm. The “doorman” is provided with a heavy battering ram, sledgehammer, shotgun, and police sidearm. Finally, the grenadier is equipped with a carbine version of the U.S. Army assault rifle with a grenade launcher, a police sidearm, and hand tossed “flash-bang” and tear gas grenades.
Some SWAT reams also deal with criminals possessing extraordinary abilities. In addition to a more heavily armored version of their normal outfits, they also wear fully concealing black helmets. The helmet is armored and packed with electronic displays, including thermal and infrared vision readouts, and communications equipment. The helmet also acts as a shield against telepathy and psionic attacks.
The raider also carries an average-sized metal backpack, which contains the power source for an electronic net gun, the weapon of choice for ultra-human SWAT teams. The gun itself looks like a 700-centimeter long cylinder with a pistol grip extending from the bottom of it.
Typical Law Enforcement Officer
Reflexes 3D+2: brawling 4D, dodge 4D, melee combat 4D
Coordination 3D+2: marksmanship 4D+2, piloting 4D+1, throwing 4D
Physique 3D: lifting 3D+2, running 4D
Knowledge 2D: medicine 2D+2, scholar: police procedures 4D
Perception 3D: investigation 3D+ 2, search 4D, streetwise 4D
Presence 2D+2: intimidation 4D, persuasion 3D+1, willpower 3D
Strength Damage: 2D
Fate Points: 0
Character Points: 2
Body Points: 19
Wound levels: 3
Advantages: Authority: Law Enforcement (R1); Contacts (R2), police force Disadvantages: Devotion (R1), to community or partner; Employed (R1), as law enforcement officer
Special Abilities: none
Equipment: handgun (see “Additional Weapons” below); additional ammunition; baton (damage +1D+1); handcuffs; small medical kit; law enforcement identification (+2 to relevant persuasion or intimidation totals). Modern officers may also wear light Kevlar armor (Armor Value +2D+1) and ocher weapons as needed by the assignment.
Specific Types of Law Enforcement Officers
The following example bonus are cumulative with the “typical” law enforcement officer. Use these packages as inspiration for modifying the basic law enforcement officer for various special duties.
Crime scene investigators have +1D to medicine, investigation, and search and 3D+2 in security and tech. Their equipment bag (if properly stocked with containers, swabs, tweezers, brushes, dusts, adhesives, chemicals, magnifying lenses, gloves, and other items) grants a +1D to investigation rolls for those who know how to use it.
Marshals, federal agents, and SWAT team members have +1D in brawling and marksmanship, 3D+2 in security, and 4D+2 in sneak, hide. and tracking. SWAT team members also wear heavy Kevlar armor (Armor Value +3D). Ultra-human SWAT teams generally also carry electronic net guns (damage 8D stun only; range 20/40/60; can fire 5 shots before requiring recharging)
single-shot pistol: pre-I 850; damage 3D; range 10/20/40; requires 4 rounds to reload
cap and ball revolver: 1850-1865;damage 3D+ l; range 10/20/40; ammo 6
heavy revolver: 1865-1900; damage 3D+2; range 10/25/50; ammo 6
.38 caliber service revolver: 1900+; damage 4D; range 15/30/60; ammo 6
9mm caliber standard service pistol: 1980+; damage 3D+2; range 15/30/70; ammo 8
bole-action sniper rifle: 1960+; damage 6D; range 200/300/600; ammo 5
carbine assault rifle: 1966+; damage 5D; range 20/35/45; ammo 30)
submachine gun (1960+; damage 4D; range 15/30/55; ammo 30)
shotgun: 1880+; damage 6D; range 15/30/45; ammo 2
conducted energy weapon: 1990+; damage 6D stun only; range 1/3/7; ammo 1; requires 1 round to reload
40mm grenade launcher: 1960s+; damage per grenade; range 100/200/400; ammo 1
flash-bang grenade: 1970s+; damage GD stun only to all within burst area for 2 minutes; rangePHYS-4/PHYS-3/PHYS+3; burst area 10 square meters
tear gas grenade: 1920s+; -1D to all Reflexes, Coordination, and sight-based Perception rolls for 2D rounds; range PHYS-4/PHYS-3/PHYS+3; burst area 9.5 square meters; disperses after 1 minute or less, depending on wind