The Graveyard Shift Blog

Since 2008, Lee Lofland has written over 2000 articles on his blog, The Graveyard Shift. Topics such as police procedure, forensics, criminal behavior, and what it’s like to be a cop has helped countless numbers of popular and aspiring writers.

His life’s mission – to remind writers that cordite is dead and gone. Just say no to cordite in your books!

How To Order a Book Online, and a Hitman While You're At It

I'm sure most of you have heard of the "dark web," the creepy and ooky, mysterious and spooky part of the internet that isn't indexed by search engines. It's the place where interested parties can buy credit card numbers, usernames and passwords,…
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It's Almost Golden Donut Time, and Here Comes the Judge!

As many of you know, each year the Writers' Police Academy hosts a fun and challenging writing contest called the Golden Donut 200-Word Short Story Contest. Contest rules are simple. Write a complete story about the photograph we provide, using…
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OMG, the Writers' Police Academy's 2020 Anthology Features a Foreword By ...

It's is with great pleasure that I announce that the Writers' Police Academy will soon begin work on a new anthology. This new collection of mysterious stories (details below) comes on the heels of the successful publication of the 2019 book,…
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The Name of the Writers' Police Academy/MurderCon's 2020 Guest of Honor Is ...

ATTENTION EVERYONE!! Please watch this short video to learn the name of the Writers' Police Academy/MurderCon's 2020 Guest of Honor! After clicking the play button, please also click the arrow at the top left to view in full screen since…
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Shooting For Survival: Are Your Heroes Properly Trained?

Ready on the left? Ready on the right? Ready on the firing line. Commence firing! Those words, or something similar, are heard by officers all over the country as they attend their annual mandated firearms qualification. Yes, at least once…
A cry for help
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A Cry for Help: A Drug Addict's Armed Standoff ... At My Front Door

"I'm going to kill both of you, and then I'm going to blow my brains out, right here!" Philadelphia had the ball and were one score away from winning the game against Washington. It wasn't that I was a big fan of either team but I'd watched…

The Day Bugs Bunny Helped Me Crack a Case

1030 hours. Radio transmission - Theft from jewelry store. Items taken - two diamond rings with value exceeding $10,000. Subsequent Traffic Stop Weather - Sunny. 84 degrees. Probable Cause for stop - Vehicle matched description…
Jail Cell
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Researching Cops, and What To Do When A Murderer Comes Calling

Writers are a curious bunch of folks who should never let walls, doors, locks, or the word NO stop them from producing the best stories possible. The tellers of both tall and short tales, in fact, go to great lengths to find detail---the…

Recipe for Death: A 4x4 Truck and an Angry, Drunk Boyfriend

Like all patrol officers and police detectives, I've seen a lot of horror. The real-life kind, though. Not the kind that sprouted from an idea that once lived in a dark, dank corner of Stephen King's twisted mind. Sadly, quite a bit of the…

The Ghost Gun of Santa Clarita: How Crooks and Kids Make Firearms

The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department has indeed confirmed that the .45-caliber handgun used in the Santa Clarita, California school shooting was what is commonly referred to as "ghost gun," a homemade, unserialized firearm. The…

Hardhat in the Belly of the Beasts: My First Day as a Corrections Officer

Thinking back to the days prior to working in law enforcement I recall the intense desire to become a police officer. I especially wanted to work in a sheriff's office. However, openings in the local sheriff's office were as scarce as hen's…

From Ellen, Our Daughter

It's me again. Many of you know me through my dad and by way of the Writers’ Police Academy. Most of you, however, know me from the tragic events of my life. As many of you are aware, I was diagnosed with Endometrial Cancer and underwent…

Bar Fight!

Working the graveyard shift on weekend nights comes with a special worry ... closing time of local bars. Before streets and highways become obstacle courses for pin-balling drunk drivers, comes last calls and the traditional bar fights. And,…

Escape from Dementia: I Want To Go Home

Sometimes we catch calls that grab us by the gut and then pull and tug until our emotions are ripped from their roots. This was one of those calls. I Want To Go Home “I want to go home. I want to go home. I. Want. To. Go. Home.” “Those…
Age Prediction based on bodily fluids

Lucky Thomas: Probable Cause And Collard Greens, A Recipe For Arrest

Lucky Thomas got himself nabbed by a day-shift flatfoot after his latest job, a quick little "in-and-out" B&E of Linda's Ammo Depot. The eager copper spied Lucky climbing out of Linda's office window with a bag of "goodies" in hand.…
Patrick Swayze

The Night I Became Patrick Swayze

I was thumbing through a stack of offense reports, the crimes that had occurred during the previous overnight hours, when the owner of a nightclub showed up at my office door. His business had a widely-known reputation for rowdy bar fights,…

A Cop's Thanksgiving: Save a Drumstick for Me

Morning parade. Smiling faces. Squealing children. Marching bands. Turkey. Pumpkin pie. Eggnog. Football. Pistol. Badge. Vest. Kiss the kids, please. And save a drumstick for me. I'm almost home.   Family. Traveling. Traffic. Bumper-to-bumper. Smiling…
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Officer, Please Button Your Shirt and Zip Up Your Pants!

Working the graveyard shift was always a thorn in my side, and the reason for the ill will boiled down to the simple fact that I like to sleep when the rest of the humans I know are sleeping. Yes, I too, like to go to bed when the moon is in…