Philadelphia Police Commissioner Sylvester Johnson is tightening the dress code for his investigators, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports. “I think detectives should look like detectives, and I think they should wear suits and ties,” Johnson said yesterday.
The paper says that dress standards have declined overthe years to the point that some detectives pack their guns and badges inside golf shirts and khaki pants. The practice has been particularly noticeable in the outlying detective divisions. “They were wearing whatever they wanted to wear,” Johnson said. “If we can have a hard-core policy for uniformed officers, then there should be no less standard for detectives.”
Homicide investigators already are dressed to the nines, favoring tailored suits.
Robert Eddis, president of the Fraternal Order of Police, said the dress code “adds to the comfort level of the complainant when the detective arrives on the scene.” Eddis warned that dress directives must be applied in the real world. Sometimes, detectives need to be able to dress down.
Johnson served in the Detective Bureau, including the Homicide Unit, and was always well-dressed. But that was decades ago, when detectives were banned from carrying umbrellas because it did not project the image of a hard-core investigator.