I heard this somewhere on YouTube and I wish I could recall where exactly. The person was recording himself from a dash-cam while driving, and when he noticed that a cop was following him, he said this to another person that was in a car with him

Hey, hang on. That cop is _________ me.

He used this slang word for following me that I'm curious to know.

I'm referring to American English slang.

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    ........tailing – Edwin Ashworth Aug 17 '14 at 21:48
  • @EdwinAshworth: Thanks, it's a good one. But he used something else. – MikeF Aug 17 '14 at 21:51
  • 1
    Dogging, pursuing with the intent to catch, also is a possibility. Also racially-profiling, as in “Hey, hang on. That cop is racially-profiling me.” – James Waldby - jwpat7 Aug 18 '14 at 0:35
  • tagging/trailing along/behind/after ? – 0.. Aug 18 '14 at 1:58
  • "Tailing" is by far the most common term. Next I would say "shadowing". But there are apt to be a dozen different slang terms. – Hot Licks Jan 18 '15 at 20:16

I would say tailing. That cop has been tailing me for a few blocks sounds the most normal.

Tailgating is not quite what you're looking for—that implies following someone too close, and shadowing is for other contexts.

To further substantiate my answer (from the Oxford American Writer's Thesaurus)

informal the paparazzi tailed them: follow, shadow, stalk, trail, track, hunt, hound, dog, pursue, chase.

on someone's tail a police car stayed on his tail: CLOSE behind, following closely, (hard) on someone's heels.

From those examples, stalk adds a whole slew of other implications to it, trail is similar and sounds awkward to me, hunt, hound, and dog also add implications. Pursue is also a good one, but isn't quite slang, is it? And chase means to chase.

And, I have even more for you—if you're okay taking it beyond slang. In my personal experiences driving around with my friends, I've said and heard things like that guy's creeping and that guy's been on my ass for a few blocks now.


if the words suggested already aren't good enough for you, you have to make something up yourself. Whatever works with people you know, in your area. This guy on YouTube, I'd imagine, was doing just that.

  • Awesome, man. Thanks. I think what he used was, "That cop is maddogging me." – MikeF Aug 18 '14 at 5:43
  • huh - it sounds like "dogging" or maybe "mad-dogging" is a new slang for "tailing". thanks for that MikeF – Fattie Aug 18 '14 at 6:56
  • Heh… that sounds a bit silly to me. – user85526 Aug 18 '14 at 12:42
  • For reference, looks like mad dogging means to give someone a glaring look (according to top googled sources). – user85526 Aug 18 '14 at 15:10
  • @GeorgePompidou: I know. But that's what slang is, silly. I believe that it might have been derived from "dogging", or maybe even vice-versa. – MikeF Aug 18 '14 at 20:39

It might be shadowing. If you look up tail in a thesaurus, there are a few other colloquial terms if this isn't the one you are looking for. (trail, track, stalk, and others.)

In spycraft, surveillance techniques refer to the eye as the one tracking the rabbit. You could say that someone is eyeing your friend.


I would use the word tailing. The cop isn't tailgating because that would mean that the cop is trailing close behind you, but doesn't necessarily mean that their following you. Tailing means they are following you.

  • 1
    Welcome to English.SE! It's generally best to read existing answers before adding your own, as tailing and tailgating have been explained in previous answers. New answers should add something new. – Nate Eldredge Jan 18 '15 at 20:18

hang on. That cop is on to me.


Years ago when my friends and I would ride in separate cars, one following the other, we called it a caravan. I think I also heard that word used as a verb, even if I did not, someone has probably used it that way, as in, "We're going to caravan to the party."

Note: I would simply have agreed with the answer "tailing", but OP already said that was not the word used in the video. So we're looking for other possibilities with less prior likelihood now.


I've been "made."

The cop "made" me.



The cop was tailgating him.


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