Police Public Information Officers Typically Don’t Make Jokes on Social Media

From a story on niemanstoryboard.org by Lisa Grace Lednicer headlined “Not your usual police report”:

Cop-shop PIOs typically don’t ruminate on life in a small city or make jokes at their own expense. At least, not on social media. But since 2014, Tim Cotton — a lieutenant with the police department in Bangor, Maine (pop. 32,000) — has used the agency’s Facebook page for much more than news releases or photos of “the man putting his thumb down on the citizenry,” as he puts it. In addition to public service announcements about job openings or criminal activity, Cotton dispenses advice about road conditions in the snow (It’s Maine, so there’s a lot of snow.), grumbles about potholes and tells stories about the quirky interactions between officers and citizens. Scrolling through the folksy page is akin to listening to the best days of “A Prairie Home Companion,” but instead of a droll Garrison Keillor you get a wisecracking cop who just happens to be a good writer.