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James S. Prine

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James S. Prine, a veteran of the New Orleans Police Department has written Real Police: Stories from the Crescent City a compilation of stories about police work from a police officer’s point of view.  The term “Crescent City” is one of the nicknames given to New Orleans and refers to the course of the Mississippi River around the city.  James Prine’s second work is a collection of short stories brought together under the title Tales from the Id.  According to his biography, “James Prine is based in New Orleans, Louisiana. Prine served with two different branches of the U.S. armed forces and is a former member of the New Orleans Police Department. His interests include flying, cave diving, sport parachuting, radio, motorcycles, reading, writing, and photography.”

According to the book description of Real Police: Stories from the Crescent City, “This racy jambalaya of war stories, anecdotes, observations and comments was gleaned from street cops all over New Orleans ... America's most exotic and romantic city. Offbeat stories and comments from Patrolmen, Narcs, Detectives, Deputy Sheriffs and State Troopers are mixed with little known facts, forming a spicy Creole gumbo. As one NOPD old-timer remarked, "Some of these stories will make you laugh out loud. Others will bring tears to your eyes." Written by veteran cop James Prine, The Real Police is not for the squeamish, and it cheerfully thumbs its nose at 'political correctness.' These true stories are the part of police work cops usually keep to themselves. If you're a street cop, or if you've ever wanted to be one ... this book is for you.”

According to a review from the New Orleans Gambit, “I wouldn't suggest it to the squeamish, the politically correct or anyone who prefers not to know too much about their neighbors or our protectors.  It is suggested reading, however, for those with morbid curiosities, those who empathize with our police force and anyone planning a career in law enforcement.”

One reader of Real Police: Stories from the Crescent City said, “This book was so true-to-life, it was painful. I found myself either laughing or crying. The insight into the life of a "Cop" as revealed in this book was human, explicit, and exposing. I laud the courage of one who could and would write this material. (Special note: The only reason I did not give this book a 5 Star rating is that it just is NOT for every reader, only the brave.) As a woman, I appreciated the format of the book as it is not really chaptered (sic) or sequenced but individual and brief stories shared with the author. This allowed me to take the material in and digest it's rawness in small doses. Also, the scattering of quotes and facts used to separate the stories was a delightful and unexpected addition. I would recommend this book to anyone who wants the "real stuff" about "real cops." Ironically, however, it offers much insight into the pure and naked reality of humanity.”

One reader of Tales from the Id said, “These stories are so excitingly different from any others I've read! Some of them are very nostalgic, some hilarious, some deadly serious, but all are intriguing and thought-provoking. It is hard to pick a favorite since each one is a gem. A couple of them include a mysterious recurring character I'd like to read more about. I hope Prine shares more of the products of his very unique imagination in future books -- I'll buy those too!”

The Real Police: Stories from the Crescent City
James S. Prine  More Info

Tales from the Id
James S. Prine  More Info

According to the book description of Tales from the Id, “James Prine introduces a variety of interesting characters in this unique collection of short stories: a mysterious police sergeant who knows more about crucifixions than he should; Vikings who got a little more than they bargained for; Leviticus seen in a new way; an unforgettable war-time event in North Vietnam; the quest of a middle-aged man longing for the past; fighting a house fire in New Orleans; attending a policeman's funeral; and an individual who flies like a bird.  These stories are highly recommended for anyone who occasionally enjoys straying off the beaten path.”

About the New Orleans Police Department

New Orleans became a part of the United States by the Louisiana Purchase on December 20, 1803. The city limits at that time were in the restricted boundaries of Canal Street on the South, Esplanade Street on the North, the Ramparts on the West and the levee on the East. Beyond that, there was nothing but swamps and plantations. In 1804 came the patrol militia under James Pitot, the then Mayor of New Orleans. The Guard Deville (City Watch) followed in 1806 but was abolished in 1808. Militia patrols were again established. By 1817, with the growth of the city, the number of constables increased to 46 and for the first time, the city was divided into police districts - French Quarter, Faubourg’s Treme, St. Mary and Marigny. A Guard House was placed in each district.

Today, the New Orleans Police Department is organized into five bureaus who report to the Superintendent of Police: Bureau of Investigations; Operations Bureau; Criminal Intelligence Bureau; Public Integrity Bureau; and, Administrative and Support Bureau.  A deputy chief in charge of policing and planning also reports to the New Orleans Police Department Superintendent of Police.

The Operations Bureau is the largest, with over 17 divisions and 1700 commissioned police officers.

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