A Day in the Life of a CAST Alum: Brian Greenenwald, Criminal Justice Sciences
The College of Applied Science and Technology’s “A Day in the Life of a CAST Alum” series is designed to shed some light on how CAST alumni spend their days. Our alumni will tell you that every day is different, and this series aims to peek into an alum’s world.
Criminal Justice Sciences alum Brian Greenenwald ’07 has been a Riverside police officer since October 2007. He has been assigned to the midnight shift since 2010 and has made DUI enforcement his priority since that time. He is currently one of less than 100 Drug Recognition Experts in Illinois as well as a standardized field sobriety test instructor. He has been awarded the Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) Hero award four times and was recognized by the Alliance Against Intoxicated Motorists for removing over 500 impaired drivers from the roadway.
10:30 p.m. – Myself and the members of the afternoon and midnight shifts have an informal roll call. The afternoon shift passes along any pertinent information such as houses where they had problems on their shift or the status of any prisoners in our lockup.
11 p.m. – After checking the computer and reading reports from the prior shifts, I get into my squad car to begin patrol. I always check the parks first, looking for anyone that maybe using drugs, breaking curfew or vandalizing any of the equipment. After that, I begin my full patrol, checking the village for people burglarizing cars or garages. I stop any traffic violators that I see and warn or cite accordingly.
1:30 a.m. – I get a text message from my Dad. “Be Smart, Be Safe, Love You. Dad.” I have gotten this same text message every shift that I have worked for almost 10 years.
2 a.m. – While on patrol of one of our main roads, I see a vehicle traveling well over the posted speed limit and having difficulty maintaining their lane. After making contact with the driver, I observe signs of alcohol impairment such as an odor of alcoholic beverage, slurred speech and an open cup of alcohol in the center console. After observing signs of impairment on the standardized field sobriety tests, I arrest the driver for DUI and bring them back to the Riverside Police Department. The subject is read his warning to motorist and observed for over 20 minutes before taking the breath test, showing a breath alcohol concentration over .08, the per se limit. The driver is booked on the DUI charges and bonded out pending his court date.
4 a.m. – I put the finishing touches on the DUI paperwork, finishing my narrative and making a packet to send to the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office. The in-car video from my squad car will be preserved for use at court. After finishing the paperwork, I head back out on patrol, looking for suspicious persons or traffic violators as well as responding to other calls for service.
6:30 a.m. – I pass along any information that I have to the dayshift officers and put away my bulletproof vest and duty bag for the day. Although my 8-hour shift is over, I only have time for a cup of coffee and a bagel before heading to the courthouse.
9 a.m. – Court begins in the Cook County Fourth District Courthouse. With a DUI-heavy caseload, I spend the majority of the morning preparing for trial with an assistant state’s attorney. We will usually put on 1 or 2 trials per day, although some days can be much longer.
3:30 p.m. – After a long day at court and being awake for 24 hours, it is time to go home, give my wife and son a hug and kiss before climbing into bed for less than 5 hours of sleep before going back on duty.
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