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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Men in Blue Show Their Stuff in N.Y.

NEW YORK -- From Serpico to Sipowicz, the lives of New York City police officers have been chronicled in books, TV dramas and shoot-'em-up films. Now the public gets a chance to cross the thin blue line.

A new exhibit puts visitors in the shoes of New York's finest, offering a view into the life of the NYPD - the good, the bad and the scary.

You can find out what it's like to patrol a dark alley, feel a bulletproof vest riddled with bullets and listen to live transmissions from a police scanner.

Visitors to the New York Historical Society enter through a 1888 Rogue's Gallery of most-wanted criminals, listening to angry, muffled voices coming from behind closed doors.

There are lots of hands-on items: Visitors can push one of seven buttons to hear police sirens and sounds from the 1800s, the early 1900s and today.

Visitors can also see old uniforms and old police instruments: a heavy wooden rattle used to summon fellow officers, brass whistles and wooden nightsticks.