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One More Day Left: Guess How Many Cops Were on Duty the Afternoon that Mescaline Franklin Came into Town?

Can you guess the number of BPD patrolmen on duty across the 9 precincts on a shiftless day in mid-October? The answer will be posted Monday, 10/21/17. Checkout the missed guesses below.

I promised my BPD source that I would not name the day or the number of officers on duty one day this past week, as he does not want to get busted.

This anonymous BPD officer told me that due to quitting, retirements, the time required to train newly hired officers and "other factors, like exhaustion and call-outs" that on one afternoon last week there was a certain number of officers on patrol in Baltimore City.

Let me give you a clue: it was less than the optimal number of officers.

If you can guess the number I will confirm the total and send you a PDF of a book of your choice.

If you are wrong, I will give you the bad news, but you can guess again the next day.

So, ma reada, do tell a snow nigga how many poleese was on patrol in Harm City during one particular daylight shift last week!

Email Answers


Tony Rooster

The goddess Fortuna came unto me as in a vision and revealed to this mere mortal that the number is 7.

That answer is incorrect.

One middle-aged white man's opinion

1.I would assume that BPD has minimum staffing standards arrived at through a collective bargaining agreement arrived at between the City and the BPD Union/Guild. Therefore, they would put out a call for OT volunteers at time-and-a-half to prevent falling below the red line. So many cops are paying alimony and-or overextended on houses, cars, boats, etc. that there should be no shortage of “OT whores” willing to come in and go through the motions.

2.The time from roughly 2 pm to 5 pm (give or take) SHOULD be the “fattest” time of day, since swing shifts come in around 2 and day shifts head for the barn at 4 or 5. However, even on full staffing this seldom leads to a flood of cops on the street, because that overlap time is taken up with court appearances, collateral duties, or what is laughingly referred to as “training”.

3.So excluding the detectives cuddled in their cubicles at HQ, Traffic units busily ticketing middle-class commuters, and social-workers-with-badges such as School Resource Officers and Community Liaison Officers; and given that B-More is a vibrant, diverse city of 600,000+, I would be greatly surprised if there were fewer than 30 patrol doggies out on the street at that time.


this well-reasoned answer is...incorrect!

Add Comment
EricOctober 22, 2017 11:17 PM UTC

Maaan, just rose from a nap, having dreamt that I saw 6 of BPD's finest batoning the holy, quivering faaak out of a Nikki Sixx piñata with Kickstart My Hesrt blaring. Gents, call into work tomorrow 'cos I'm feeling mighty six!
responds:October 23, 2017 3:23 AM UTC


That is correct, Eric.

8 days ago only six of Baltimore's wardens patrolled the streets from 11-5—in 9 precincts.

I was shocked, guessing 80!

I mean, with 2,000 heads of pork on the rolls, how bad could it be?

Decide what book you'd like an e-version of and email me at
Tony RoosterOctober 22, 2017 6:30 PM UTC

If it's not 2, I'll eat my hat.
responds:October 23, 2017 12:14 AM UTC

I hope it tastes good, bro!

I think you kind of laid this up so Eric could dunk it...
BobOctober 21, 2017 3:37 AM UTC

Eric looks primed for a bit more piñata-bashing, ha ha.
BobOctober 20, 2017 6:41 AM UTC

# 9, Doctor's Orders.
responds:October 20, 2017 2:50 PM UTC

Boy, Bob, isn't it fortunate that my readers are not trying to make a living off of this paddock-like?

9 is incorrect, though the correct total is a single digit.

The answer is not zero either.
EricOctober 19, 2017 11:18 PM UTC

3 public servants!!! The answer pool is shrinking, my friend!
responds:October 20, 2017 3:37 AM UTC

Eric, your answer is wrong—see you tomorrow bro!
EricOctober 18, 2017 8:51 PM UTC

In my best Count from Sesame Street voice:"One!!! Ha ha ha!!!"
responds:October 19, 2017 10:01 AM UTC

Eric, your cynical answer has been noted—and noted to be wrong!

You did, however, use the correct number of digits.
Bran Mak SwornOctober 18, 2017 9:24 AM UTC

Wow I know alot if major cities have minimum staffing requirements around there.

5? How many precincts in Harm City?
responds:October 18, 2017 4:02 PM UTC

There are 9 precincts.

5 is wrong!
JryyErnqRqOctober 18, 2017 4:16 AM UTC

I'm guessing 4
responds:October 18, 2017 10:16 AM UTC

This appropriately depressing area is incorrect. more hints on Bran Mak Sworn's comment
Bran Mak SwornOctober 17, 2017 9:14 PM UTC

20 or so agents of the state.
responds:October 18, 2017 10:17 AM UTC

This is Baltimore, sir.

Think in single digits.

By the way, I guessed 80!
EricOctober 17, 2017 8:45 PM UTC

I'm guessing there were zero?
responds:October 18, 2017 10:28 AM UTC

This is wrong, Eric, but you are closer than Bran Mak Sworn's ridiculously optimistic 20!
SteveRogers42October 17, 2017 5:57 PM UTC

James—more info needed. Was this day shift, swing shift, or overlap hours (if any) in between?

Also, this refers to patrol only, but does it includes Sgts. or just the basic patrol grunts?
responds:October 17, 2017 11:04 PM UTC

Just patrol officers.

He did not specify rank.

This was a period from 12-5 p.m. in which only that number of officers were on patrol. I take it the time given is strange because the call outs, overtime and sickness.