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Police, Crime & 999: The True Story of a Front Line Officer [Paperback]

John Donoghue
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (490 customer reviews)
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Book Description

1 Aug 2011
Ever wondered what really happens behind the scenes in the police? What bizarre 999 calls are made to the emergency services? Why can wearing two pairs of socks make you a suspect? What is the link between police and vampires? Which Royal arrest never made news headlines? What covert sign do officers make when they no longer wish to talk to you? After successful careers in both the military and business, John Donoghue realised that the higher you get in any organisation, the less fun you have. So, after handing back his expense account and company car, he joined the police in search of excitement and thrills... and discovered some surprising answers to these puzzling questions. PC John Donoghue reveals all in his fascinating and hilarious true account of a year in the life of a front line response officer. Names and places have been changed to protect the guilty... but if you call the police, maybe, just maybe, it could be Police Constable John Donoghue turning up at your door. This book will appeal to anyone interested in crime and police, as well as fans of autobiographies and humour.

Frequently Bought Together

Police, Crime & 999: The True Story of a Front Line Officer + Police, Lies and Alibis: The True Story of a Front Line Officer + Confessions of a Police Constable (The Confessions Series)
Price For All Three: 20.87

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Product details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Matador (1 Aug 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1848766858
  • ISBN-13: 978-1848766853
  • Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 14 x 1.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (490 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 20,026 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

John Donoghue never set out to be to be a writer ... he wanted to be a sailor ...and a soldier ...and a policeman.

When he left school, he ran away to sea ...or more accurately, caught the train and joined the Royal Navy. After six years on the high seas, he transferred to the Army, serving Queen and Country throughout the Cold War.

However, when it began to thaw, he took this as my cue to move on. Leaving the army as a Captain, he joined an international security organisation, although it was more budgets and spread-sheets than James Bond and Pussy Galore.

Bored, and in search of more fun and excitement, he handed back his company car, expense account and keys to the executive toilets and joined the police force where he is currently a serving police officer.


He has written three books.

'Police, Crime & 999' covers a year in his life as a front line response officer.

'Police, Lies & Alibis' is the follow up, following the further adventures of 'E' shift.

"We are the cops who respond initially to the 999 (911) calls with the blue lights flashing and sirens blaring. It's your all access view behind the scenes of what REALLY happens in the police."

Both police books have won the coveted People's Book Awards - voted for by members of the public.

Genre: Humour, True crime, Autobiography

'Shakespeare My Butt!' is the tale of his military service on land and sea, how he played Moses to the dog world with 'The Ten Commandments of Dog' and finally, his odyssey around the bizarre named places in Britain - towns and villages with names such as 'No Place', 'Pity Me', 'Wetwang' and 'Twatt'.

Genre: Humour, Military, Travel, Autobiography (NOTE: make sure you get the updated version with Che Sweep on the cover)

It was infamously described in a review as 'Bill Bryson on magic mushrooms'.

John is on twitter @JohnDonoghue64


Product Description

About the Author

John Donoghue served as a commissioned officer in both the Royal Navy and British Army before a successful career as a consultant, advising on some of the country's highest security sites. In search of new adventure, John then joined the police where he is currently a serving officer.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Split your sides laughing, call 999 2 Jun 2012
Format:Paperback
An entertaining twist of life in the thin blue line. Everything from Eyeore to Dracula, from dogs to custody suites. The fun times and the hard times. It's a book you just want to keep reading, loved every minute. Go out and get this book, it's a crime if you don't.
This book was even funnier after reading it for the second time after finding the little bits I missed the first time.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A truly FIRST CLASS book 2 Jun 2012
By Zorro
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book is perhaps THE best Police based book I have ever read! It is very well written, researched and presented. From the opening chapter to the very last it will have you enthralled, laughing and mesmerised by Policing in todays Society. I gave the book 5 stars and it IS WORTH IT! I HIGHLY RECOMMEND this book to you and at under 4.00 it is, pardon the pun, a steal!
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Who'd be a Bobby?! 16 Feb 2012
Format:Paperback
Who in their right mind would be a policeman. After reading this excellent book by John Donoghue, who wouldn't?

In spite of (and probably because of)the nature of their work, there is a unique brand of humour amongst people in the blue light or armed services, often dark and twisted, always funny, and the author has been through both; telling his tales with great aplomb and a comic style which will have you laughing out loud and wanting to re-tell the anecdote to your mates.

This true collection tells of a PC coping on the streets of a typical English town, and dealing with the funny, downright bizarre, dangerous and sometimes frankly dismaying situations that he must deal with on a daily basis.

It is not only a fantastic insight into the life of a copper and his oppos on patrol, and the workings of the police, but also just very funny.

Poignant in places, 'Police Crime and 999' shows us that the Police are human beings with a great sense of humour who can laugh at themselves, and allow us to laugh along with them, as they take on the most difficult of jobs.

I didn't want to finish reading this book, but I raced through it at the speed of a 'blues and twos' and I thoroughly recommend it.

Raoul de Bunsen
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant! 30 May 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A lot of positive reviews about this book and I would echo every one. As a police officer it was easy to identify with the jobs and personalities set down in this book. For people outside of the job it will offer a differing insight to the world of response policing than that provided by the heavily edited fly on the wall documentaries that are endlessly repeated on Dave or UK Gold. It's an insight that accurately reflects the life of a response officer complete with the real and sometimes strange incidents that we are asked to attend, and all written with a very funny sense of humour. Hopefully another book is in the pipeline, (not the one in the custody block....). But I digress, stop reading this review and start reading the book.
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Full of laughs 22 Feb 2013
By T2CXX
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I decided to read this off the back of other reviews and comments from twitter. I am so glad I did. This book is full of fun and laughter and in some cases a real eye opener into what our fine Police force face each and every day.

If you need a giggle, then this will provide many.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It'll have you hooked from the first page .... 22 Feb 2012
Format:Paperback
This book is a must read for all, detailed so you feel like the sidekick of John Donoghue yourself. Travel into the world of policing and experience the shockers to the down right hilarious of situations that police officers find themselves dealing with day to day.From the outrageous 999 calls and the tales of the 'dodgy' estates and the explanations of chavs and BOBO days it's all here for you to get the inside low down of a day in the life.... Live as part of the 'Sandford' police team and start patrolling as once you're on duty you'll never want to put this hilarious book down!!! A great read for all that has now become my god of the bookshelf. Highly recommended!!!
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Police, Crime & 999 Funny, Interesting & True 28 April 2012
Format:Paperback
I bought this book after seeing people talking about it on twitter. This purchase has been a surprising turnout! I expected a serious read about frontline policing duties. What I got was that with all the banter and laughs that come with tackling a hard and demanding job. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book, every page there was a laugh on it. I've also never read a book where the acknowledgements are funny! From cover to blurb a book of laughter! There are some thought provoking and interesting facts mixed in with the banter and the job. I really loved this book, and the style it was written in reminded me of Peep Show. After watching various TV programmes about the police it was nice to see a funny side to the force, one that is normally behind closed doors and only shared with other officers and the criminals. Anybody thinking of becoming a police officer should read this it's a great insight into the year's life of a PC "Panda Commander". This book shows all sides to being a rapid response officer turning up to all manner of instances. But no matter how serious these instances are something funny will either happen or come out of PC John Donoghue's mouth! From responding to time wasters who call because they cooked lunch when the husband was eating a sandwich (that's a crime in itself!), to the real and violent domestics. This book takes you on the journey from responding to suicides, natural deaths, crash scenes, burglary's and the damn right ridiculous to missing person hunts. It's a cracking read that had me laughing from the moment I opened the book. But sadly I have finished the book and now may have to re-read it just so my evenings are filled with a bit of humour before bed. Read more ›
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
An easy, relaxing read; laugh out loud funny and generally uplifting.
Published 3 days ago by James
5.0 out of 5 stars A great read
Again a laugh on virtually every page
Published 4 days ago by HEATHER BURGESS
4.0 out of 5 stars A convincing & amusing account of his first year as ...
A convincing & amusing account of his first year as a PC in a mixed urban/rural area. Plenty to think about here - the kinds of people & crimes the police regularly have to deal... Read more
Published 5 days ago by snowbird
5.0 out of 5 stars This was an absolutely fantastic read! It provides a really witty
This was an absolutely fantastic read!

It provides a really witty, humorous insight into the life of the average police officer. Read more
Published 7 days ago by Andy James
3.0 out of 5 stars it's ok.
A few amusing stories but not the belly laugh every chapter I was led to believe. Four more words needed.
Published 8 days ago by Catherine Hall
5.0 out of 5 stars great book.
Outstanding, honest, witty and without flannel, great book.
Published 10 days ago by Mr B.
5.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious AND interesting-a must read!
Hilarious and interesting insight into one of the toughest jobs out there.
Turns out Police are human too!! Read more
Published 10 days ago by KATE B
5.0 out of 5 stars I was recommended this book before starting my new job with the ...
I was recommended this book before starting my new job with the met, and have since then recommended it to EVERYONE. Read more
Published 12 days ago by Helen Lowes
5.0 out of 5 stars I chuckled a lot!!
Great read. A real life insight into the day to day job of a bobby. There are some hilarious tales. It's a great pick up put down book.
Published 14 days ago by Jennifer Williams
5.0 out of 5 stars I'm a cop and this book is exactly like our lives
I'm a cop and this book is exactly like our lives. I can relate to all the stories John tells, Hillarious!!!!
Published 15 days ago by M. Davey
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