What Is a 1032 Police Code

What Is a 10-32 Police Code?

The use of police codes helps law enforcement agencies communicate efficiently and effectively during emergencies and daily operations. One such code that may be heard over police scanners is the 10-32 code. In this article, we will explore what a 10-32 police code means, its significance, and provide answers to frequently asked questions.

Understanding Police Codes:

Police codes, also known as ten codes, were developed in the early 20th century to enable quick and concise communication between law enforcement officers. These codes are a shorthand method of conveying information, reducing radio chatter, and promoting officer safety.

A 10-32 police code is specific to the United States and is used by various police departments across the country. However, it is essential to note that the meaning of police codes can vary slightly between jurisdictions, so it is always best to refer to the specific agency’s code book for accurate information.

What Does 10-32 Mean?

The 10-32 police code typically refers to a request for backup by an officer. It is a signal indicating that the officer requires immediate assistance from other units or officers due to a potentially dangerous situation. A 10-32 call could indicate a variety of scenarios, such as an active shooter, a violent confrontation, or a high-risk traffic stop.

Significance of a 10-32 Code:

The 10-32 police code holds significant importance in law enforcement agencies. It alerts other officers to the urgent need for assistance, ensuring a swift response to critical incidents. By utilizing a standardized code, officers can quickly convey the severity of the situation without providing sensitive details over the radio, preventing potential compromise or escalation.

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Officers responding to a 10-32 call prioritize their response and coordinate their efforts to ensure the safety of all involved. The code serves as a lifeline, establishing a reliable system for officers to call for help when facing dangerous circumstances.


Q: Are police codes the same across all jurisdictions?

A: While many police codes are similar across jurisdictions, there can be slight variations. It is best to refer to the specific code book or policies of the local law enforcement agency to understand the exact meaning of a particular code.

Q: How can civilians understand police codes?

A: Police codes are primarily used by law enforcement officers and may not be commonly understood by civilians. However, some codes have become more widely known due to media exposure. Online resources and mobile applications can also provide general information on police codes, but it is essential to remember that the accuracy may vary.

Q: Can civilians use police codes to communicate with law enforcement?

A: In most cases, it is not recommended for civilians to use police codes to communicate with law enforcement. Civilian communication should be clear, concise, and direct, avoiding the use of codes that may cause confusion or hinder understanding.

Q: What should civilians do if they hear a 10-32 call?

A: If a civilian hears a 10-32 call over a police scanner or witnesses an officer calling for backup, it is crucial to remain calm and stay out of harm’s way. Do not interfere with police operations and allow the responding officers to handle the situation. If necessary, follow any instructions given by law enforcement personnel.

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In conclusion, the 10-32 police code is a vital tool for law enforcement agencies to request immediate assistance. By understanding the significance of these codes, civilians can gain insight into the urgency of certain situations. However, it is essential to remember that police codes may vary between jurisdictions, and civilian communication should prioritize clarity and directness.