Criminal Complaint against Darrelle Revis

Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis has been charged with robbery, terroristic threats, conspiracy, and aggravated assault. You can read the story at this link: http://s.pennlive.com/MS4KEmh. You can read the police report at this link:  http://wp.me/p76x19-2st4 .

The report is well written: professional, objective, thorough. What I’d like to focus on today is efficiency. Even a report as well written as this one can be written more concisely.

Dallas Cousins is one of the alleged victims. Here’s the officer’s interview (278 words):

I first spoke with Cousins who stated that he was walking eastbound on E Carson St when he noticed a male standing at the intersection of S 23rd and E Carson St that looked like the NFL player Darrelle REVIS. Cousins described the male as a black male with a black ball cap, black zip up jacket, and dark colored jeans. Cousins stated that he asked the male if he was in fact Darrelle REVIS and he confirmed that he was. Cousins stated that he was in disbelief stating “No you’re not’ and the male stated that he was in fact Darrelle REVIS. Cousins stated that REVIS began becoming irate and began waving his hands in his face telling him to get out of his face. Cousins stated that REVIS pushed him in the chest and told him to get out of his face and that is when Cousins started recording video on his cell phone. Cousin stated that REVIS began walking away from him headed eastbound on E Carson St while he was recording him. Cousin stated that he wanted to get what REVIS was wearing and his actions on video. Cousin stated that once REVIS saw that he was recording him, REVIS pulled the phone from his hand and attempted to delete the video. Cousin stated that he attempted to get his phone back from REVIS by pulling it out of his hand but was unsuccessful and REVIS threw his phone in the middle of E Carson St attempting to break it Cousins stated that another black male showed up on scene as he and REVIS were arguing over him throwing his phone and Cousin stated and Cousins stated that he believed that he was REVIS’s friend Cousin stated after arguing his phone, the next thing he remembers was getting punched and then waking up to talk to police.

The interview is a long block of text, making it difficult reading if you’re preparing for a court case. And there’s a great deal of repetition: Cousins stated…Cousins stated…Cousins stated.

Here’s the same information written as a list (207 words). Of course you wouldn’t write an entire report in list format! Notice that the opening sentences are written normally.

On 2/12/17 at 0243hrs, I (Officer Burke) was on foot patrol in the South Side Flats when I was dispatched to the intersection of E Carson St and S 23rd St for an assault where two males were knocked unconscious. When I arrived on scene, I spoke with victims Dallas Cousins, Zacheriah Jarvis. and Nathan Watt, who stated that a male named Darrelle REVIS had assaulted them.

I first spoke with Cousins, who stated:

  • he was walking eastbound on E Carson St when he noticed a male standing at the intersection of S 23rd and E Carson St
  • the man looked like the NFL player Darrelle REVIS
  • he was a black male with a black ball cap, black zip-up jacket, and dark jeans
  • the man confirmed that he was Darrelle REVIS
  • REVIS became irate
  • REVIS waved his hands in Cousins’ face
  • REVIS told Cousins to get out of his face
  • REVIS pushed Cousins in the chest
  • Cousins started recording video on his cell phone
  • REVIS began walking away from him headed eastbound on E Carson St during the recording
  • Cousins wanted to video what REVIS was wearing and doing
  • When REVIS saw that Cousins was recording him, REVIS pulled the phone from his hand and attempted to delete the video
  • Cousin tried to get his phone back from REVIS by pulling it out of his hand but was unsuccessful
  • REVIS threw his phone in the middle of E Carson St attempting to break it another black male showed up on scene as Cousins and REVIS were arguing the man was REVIS’s friend
  • REVIS punched Cousins
  • Cousins remembered waking up and talking to the police

Bottom line: Lists make police reports more readable and efficient. I’m seeing lists more often in police reports, and it’s a trend that makes sense.

    Darrelle Revis

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