Puerto Rico police works mostly like they do in the US, there are a few differences in how they operate. But first, let me give you their contact information and a few resources. Read the Puerto Rico Police Practice section further down for some insight on how the local police works.
Dispatch Phone Number: 787-343-2020
The number above is their main number, if you ever find yourself in a situation where you need to call the police and is not an emergency, 787-343-2020 is the number to call.
Got an iPhone, BlackBerry, or Android phone? Download the free App created by BastaYaPR!
¡Basta Ya! Puerto Rico (Enough! Puerto Rico) is an island-wide movement against violence and its mission is to prevent crime and increasing harmony. The people of BastaYaPR have created an application (called 3432020.com) for iPhone, BlackBerry, and Android phones in which you can report crime directly to the local police through the app. Crimes like assault, animal and child abuse, and even police corruption are a few of the things you can report. Oh, and you have the choice of remaining anonymous if you wish.
Puerto Rico Police Practice.
The main difference between the police in Puerto Rico is that the police here is somewhat more Pro-Active as opposed to Re-Active. This statement however should be taken as a grain of salt because I have personally seen many occasions where someone ran a red light or did some sort of obvious traffic violation with a police officer there and nothing gets done.
What I mean by Pro-Active is that it attempts to prevent crime locally as opposed to having to react to a crime committed. This is done by keeping the police lights on, especially at night.
The logic behind it is that if you see police lights somewhere while you are driving, you will be more likely to drive by the rules because you know there is a police officer nearby. Also, if you are out and about and you feel some sort of threat, the police lights gives you a place to run/walk towards where you can feel safer. Adding to that, let’s say you are about to get mugged and the perpetrator sees police lights then that person is less likely to commit the crime because he/she knows there is a police officer near.
According to my former criminal justice professor, this practice by the local police does work locally, which means that it doesn’t prevent crime everywhere, simply moves the crime in places where no police lights can be seen. So I tell you this so you are not surprised when you see police lights on, it may only mean that they are patrolling the area, not necessarily pulling you over or looking for someone.