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Frederick Egen

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Plainclothesman,: A handbook of vice and gambling investigation, (Arco police library)
Frederick W Egen  More Info

From the History of the New York Police Department 

By an act of ninth February, 1788, justices of the peace were authorized to commit for sixty days, any vagrant, disorderly person, etc., on their own views, without a trial by jury. By an act of March 3, 1820, the term of commitment was extended to six months. Thus the police justices had the power of taking up and imprisoning any individual at their discretion, without the form of trial by jury, although this provision was indirect collision with the Constitution of the United States, which declares that "the trial of all crimes, except in cases of impeachment, shall be by jury." The police at this time, it is alleged, with regard to crimes, were rather remarkable for success in detecting, than for vigilance in preventing them. The police of the city were not, it would appear, over-efficient or zealous.

Published in 1971, retired New York Police Department Frederick Egen published Plainclothesman: A Handbook of Vice and Gambling Investigation.  It has been called one of the earliest books on plainclothes investigations.

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