What is the source of the terms "cops" and "fuzz" when used to refer to the police?

5 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
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    "The Fuzz" is commonly used as a pejorative for the Police. It is unknown where this term came to its meaning, though it likely evolved from a code used on the streets to communicate the presence of a police officer. The Fuzz can also be seen as a smaller portion of "The Man", and large congregates of the Fuzz will eventually become more accurately described as being The Man.

    The term cop likely comes from "constable on patrol"

  • 1 decade ago

    There is some truth to the other answers that COP is an acronym for "Constable on Patrol". It was in the early days of English law that Constables would make rounds at night and hang a sign on the door that read "Constable on Patrol".

    COP is also associated with the Latin word "capere" meaning to seize or snatch or the gypsy word Kap and Cop meaning to take. In the 19th century, "to cop" meant to snatch grab or arrest hence the word "cop" or "copper". It has also been associated with the copper badges that were issued to early police officers. From the same root came the term "to cop a plea" and to "cop out".

    Source(s): Criminal Justice Sixth Edition James Inciardi
  • Pulse
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    The word "cop" stands for Constable On Patrol.

    The word "fuzz" is a 1970's jive slang term for police.

  • 1 decade ago

    i have never heard the term "fuzz" but cop is a slang word

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  • 1 decade ago

    This site has some possibile answers for you:


    As for "COP", some suggest that it is an acronym for "Constable On Patrol"

    Source(s): www.word-detective.com
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