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Jake Gyllenhaal
© Jordan Strauss/AP -- Jake Gyllenhaal
Jake Gyllenhaal recalls harrowing experience during police ride-along

WENN

Jake Gyllenhaal says he was left scarred by his first midnight ride-along with Los Angeles police officers as he prepared to play a cop in the new film "End of Watch." The actor spent months patrolling at night before filming on the gritty new movie began.

He tells WENN, "The very first ride-along that I went on, someone was murdered in front of me. It was a gang shooting that was obviously drug-related. We were the second car on the scene, and I had no idea what to expect when I went on the first ride-along. I was scared at the time because it's really easy to become complacent.

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"You show up for the 5 p.m. to 5 a.m. shift, which is a strange time of night to be working and you don't get a call until 3:30 in the morning. All of a sudden you get a call for a shooting and you have to deal with that and keep your mind in check.

"What was actually scariest was watching these police officers and asking myself, 'How will I function being an actor in the back seat of their car, which is an extra responsibility for them, to make sure we're safe and protected?' You got some pretty incredible guys dealing with both things at the same time. It was really life-affirming.

"My three closest friends are police officers from this adventure, and that's more important to me than any movie."

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7Comments
Sep 18, 2012 8:04AM
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What some people will do for $50,000 dollars for a living for 30 years...
Sep 18, 2012 11:13AM
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What is so sad is the fact we "LEOs" walk amongst the general population of most places and none of the folks we interact with have any idea what we do or see or deal with during our on duty hours. The old thought is we drive around eating donuts and taser people and write tickets to innocent drivers.

The other image folks have is what they see portrayed on the TV or movie screens. If the general public saw first hand, what a typical officer sees and does during their work week most thoughts would change.

I hope what Jake observed on his rides made for better movie making ...Coming home from a "average night" and telling your spouse of a young 18 year old bleeding out and dying in your hands before the paramedics arrive is not a good thing(Cross town gang shot the boy after dropping off his girlfriend before her could drive away from her house in another gang neighborhood). Small city and town officers may drive around, rattle door knobs and cruise the darkness never getting a call all week long. Other officers in larger agencies may go call to call all shift long. Some still might get the nasty calls at the beginning of shift and deal with a single call all shift. Every shift is different but yet the same after years of dealing with the public problems. After 10 or so years you probably have seen about all of what is out there.

 for instance, a call of a stabbing during a domestic violence situation. On arrival you get setup knock on the door and a female calmly answers the door. On getting the door open wide she is standing there with a butcher knife sticking out of her chest,dead center! Live in boyfriend is gone and on talking to the female I learn a fight ensued, she screamed and punched the boyfriend, he left the area, SHE stabbed herself ina fit of "I show you,I'll kill myself and make it look like you did it".

On the ride to the ER she holds my hand like she is afraid she will die if she lets go. On arrival your covered on blood as is she. The ER docs find she stuck the blade tip into the sternum bone and only basically cut the skin and maybe a bone chip. A shot to numb the area and a quick jerk to pull out the knife and she is bandaided and sent to the Physc unit for a day or so to see if she is okay. 2 days later she is out, walking the street on her way home.

go figure. 25 Years is plenty,,,shoulda kept notes for a book or movie script....LOL

Sep 17, 2012 4:38PM
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What some people will do to make 10 million dollars for a few months of working.
Nov 29, 2012 11:04PM
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I went on several police and Sheriff rid-alongs back in the early 90's down in L:.A and Bakersfield. I was constructing a kid's gang prevention coloring book. I just wanted to get more insight on what these guys go thru. WOW!! My first ride was down in the San Grabriel Valley with the L.A. Sheriff's dept. I rode with an officer and he told me that I am going to be his "shadow". He said he didn't just want me to sit in the passenger seat and just watch. As long as he felt it was "safe" for me to follow him, I went where he went. The first call (I had to be at the Dept at 5am! YAWN!!) was at 5:30, we did a drug bust. He had me take notes,too. I don't think they do too many ride-alongs now with the way security is nowadays, I haven't been on one in years.
Sep 18, 2012 11:01AM
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I was more frightened by that scene in the tent featured in Brokeback Mountain.
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