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Code 33: True California Cop Stories from the 1970s (Paperback)

Code 33: True California Cop Stories from the 1970s Cover Image
By Thomas C. Wamsley, Melanie Mulhall (Editor), Robert Schram (Designed by)
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Code 33: True California Cop Stories from the 1970s has won three CIPA - EVVY Awards, a national and international book competition, for Literary Non-Fiction, Memoir - Autobiography, and Inspirational. It has also received a positive book review and posted in the San Francisco Police Officers Association Journal by Dennis Bianchi, retired SFPD officer and lecturer of literature and criminal justice at San Francisco State University.

Author Thomas Wamsley shares his memories as a San Francisco police officer and a Santa Cruz County deputy sheriff and detective during the turbulent decade of the 1970s. During the late 1960s, San Francisco and the Haight Ashbury became know as the epicenter for the new counter culture in America. By 1970, much of the idealism of peace, love, and joy had given way to drug abuse, crime, violent protests against the Viet Nam war, bombings, and terrorism. During the four years Officer Wamsley served in San Francisco, nine SFPD officers were killed in the line of duty.

Although Officer Wamsley worked some of his times early in his training in the Haight Ashbury District, most of his police stories took place in the Central Police District.. That district covered one of the primary business and financial districts in the Western U.S., Fisherman's Wharf, and other tourist and nightlife attractions, Chinatown, North Beach, and the notorious high crime Tenderloin District.

The author provides some graphic detail of a wide variety of experiences he encountered, some violent, some humorous, but all interesting. He also confesses to some errors and bad decisions he made, including how he came very close to losing his life. These stories show his human side, but he also learned from those errors.

Mr. Wamsley gives a good and rational reason for taking a lateral transfer from the SFPD to move his family to the beautiful seaside and mountainous community of Santa Crua County wher he joined the sheriff's department there. Some readers might think that Santa Cruz County would be an easy place for cops to work. Not quite Unbeknown to Mr. Wamsley at that time, Santa Cruz County was soon to become known back in those days as the serial murder capital of the country.

Deputy Wamsley found that among the many changes he would find in his new job, some of the patrol sectors he would be assigned to would be larger that the city of San Francisco and he would be driving solo. Back up assistance could be as far away as 20 to 30 minutes as compared to a couple minutes or less in the big city. One of the chapters describes an incident that took place while he was a field training officer. In that situation, he relied on his experience and intuition and probably saved his life and the life of his trainee one night during a traffic stop. There are also several chapters in the book that recount some of the major crimes that then Detective Wamsley investigated and which resulted in some interesting outcomes.

Code 33 is a book that is easy to read and keeps the reader's attention from start to finish. Because of some of the graphic and harsh language, the book is not recommended for children.

About the Author

Thomas Wamsley was privileged to serve as a law enforcement officer with the San Francisco Police Department and the Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Department throughout the 1970s as well as the Marine Corps Reserve. He is a graduate of San Francisco State University with a degree in Sociology/ Criminology. After leaving law enforcement, he had a successful career in sales and management. Although retired from the corporate world, he enjoys reading, writing, hiking, and spending time with his large family. He currently lives with his wife in the wild west, which is not nearly as wild as San Francisco and Santa Cruz were in the 1970s.

Praise For…

Code 33 is written in an open, almost folksy manner that comes from the author's heart. Readers with a law enforcement background will have their own experiences revived. Those without a background in law enforcement will have the opportunity to visit a world that is not generally available to them.

--Al Casciato, Captain, San Francisco Police Department (retired)

In his reflections and stories collected from a decade in law enforcement, Tom Wamsley captures his experience as a police officer and a deputy sheriff in both big city and small county policing during the disco decade of the 1970s with unique perception. Wamsley spans a breadth of memories in the bright lights and glitter of the city and those of the solitary mountain patrolman where not only does everyone know your name, they also know where you live.

--Vince Hurley, trial attorney and former San Francisco Police Officer and former Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Department Sergeant

Code 33 readily draws you into the world of law enforcement, from career start to patrolling the streets. The author's daily ride along experiences take murky depths of investigations and the intricacies of prosecuting horrendous crimes. Wamsley was confronted with the complex worlds of good and evil on a daily basis, and he gives the reader a glimpse of what it was like. Being a police officer is not easy; being a motivated professional is even harder. This well written book is a glowing testament to our nations law enforcement community and the ongoing need for restraining evil in society.

-- Grady T. Birdsong, USMC Combat Veteran and author of A Fortunate Passage and The Miracle Workers of South Boulder Road: Healing the Wounds of War.

Product Details
ISBN: 9780998591001
ISBN-10: 0998591009
Publisher: Semper Vigilo Publications
Publication Date: April 15th, 2017
Pages: 238
Language: English


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