Accountability in a Police Department and the Community
You are chief of a large urban police department. For years, the city has maintained an informal practice of settling law suits in which plaintiffs allege police abuse or excessive force. Even those lawsuits that seem weak on their merits are routinely settled. The logic for settlement is simply that it is usually cheaper to settle than taking a case to trial. The city, which has a population of nearly 3 million people, paid out $150 million in settlements last year. This cuts deeply into the cityâ€s budget and consequently the police departments. You are increasingly concerned that unscrupulous people (and their attorneys) are aware of the practice and have begun to file even more lawsuits looking for easy payouts. You are also concerned that morale in the police department has suffered because of the cityâ€s tendency to settle.
Using Chapter Fourteen of Police Administration as a guide, discuss what procedures, departments, training, and guidance would you implement to alleviate this problem in the future for your department.
Our discussion is listed above. Our text is Gaines, L., & Worrall, J. (2012). Police administration (3rd ed.). United States: Delmar Cengage Learning
My answer is below
Police liability involves holding both individual law enforcement, as well as law enforcement agencies accountable for successfully delivering basic services of crime control and maintaining order, at the same time, treating people equally, and within the bounds of law. Police are expected to uphold laws, regarding due process, search and seizure, arrests, discrimination, as well as other laws relating to equal employment, sexual harassment, etc. In a democratic society, the political process and elected officials serve to keep the police accountable and that they reflect the “will of the peopleâ€ Walker, 2005, pp. 7-8). Law enforcement needs to be held accountable in order to maintain the publics â€œfaith in the systemâ€ (Walker,2005, p. 42).
Under the Warren Court in the United States Supreme Court case decisions led to many important changes in policing with respect to civil rights and constitutional law (Walker ,2005, p. 29). Some of these case are Mapp v. Ohio, Miranda v. Arizona. Mapp v. Ohio found that evidence obtained in violation of the Fourth Amendment protection against “unreasonable searches and seizures” may not be used in criminal prosecutions. Miranda v. Arizona required that criminal suspects must be informed of their right to consult with an attorney and of their right against self-incrimination prior to questioning by police. These decisions began to set national standards for policing (Walker,2005, p. 30).
In eradicating this problem in the police department in the city I will introduce an exchange program with different city police so that police department can basically learn importance of solving community problems effectively. This will help the department from making this mistake next time by creating an understanding regarding the problem at hand. Secondly, I will consider a regular training and reminder on police ethics so as to reduce cases of the police unethical action like in this case. This will help in reduce cases of police using much force to the public and avoid being brutal to the public. I will also introduce police oversight department that will be responsible to watch over the operations of the police officers to reduce cases of police problem in the country.
Finally, I will set up a disciplinary action on any police officer caught being unethical to their duties and oath. This will help in streamlining the department. Training all officers in the city the need to follow the due legal process would help in making things right in the city to avoid brutality among other problems. I will also advocate for regular transfer to avoid police being integrated into local terror cartels in a location this will also reduce integrating police officers into unethical act (Pollock, 2012). Finally, I will ensure that police officers in the city are being taken for performance evaluation to see their effectiveness each and every time. This will help in reduce issues in police department kin community policing process.
Pollock, J. M. (2012). Ethical dilemmas and decisions in criminal justice. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Cengage Learning.
Walker, Samuel (2005). The New World of Police Accountability. Sage.
Make any changes you feel ncesary, however i need discussion today thanks
Early efforts at police reform often involved external commissions, such as the Wickersham Commission, that spelled out reforms but left to the police to implement them, often with limited success.
A series of U.S. Supreme Court decisions under the Warren Court led to important changes in policing, with respect to civil rights and constitutional law. Mapp v. Ohio in 1961 and Miranda v. Arizona in 1966 were two highly influential court decisions. Mapp v. Ohio found that evidence obtained in violation of the Fourth Amendment protection against “unreasonable searches and seizures” may not be used in criminal prosecutions. Miranda v. Arizona required that criminal suspects must be informed of their right to consult with an attorney and of their right against self-incrimination prior to questioning by police. These decisions began to set national standards for policing.
Special commissions, such as the Knapp Commission in New York City during the 1970s, have been used to bring about changes in law enforcement agencies. Civilian review boards (permanent external oversight agencies) have also been used as a means for improving police accountability. Civilian review boards tend to focus on individual complaints, rather than broader organizational issues that may result in long-term improvements.
The 1994 Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act authorized the United States Department of Justice‘s Civil Rights Division to bring civil (“pattern or practice”) suits against local law enforcement agencies, to reign in abuses and hold them accountable. As a result, numerous departments have entered into consent decrees or memoranda of understanding, requiring them to make organizational reforms. This approach shifts focus from individual officers to placing focus on police organizations.
The police professionalism approach introduced by August Vollmer and advocated by O.W. Wilson largely ignored issues of police accountability and how officers should handle situations involving discretion. Without some guidance or directives, there may be wider disparities in how citizens are treated by police, including greater potential for abuses.
Use of force by police against civilians may involve firearms, as well as other means. Prior to the 1970s, there were generally no written policies or review procedures regarding use of force by law enforcement in the United States. In 1972, New York City Police Department Commissioner Patrick V. Murphy instituted a new policy that confined discretion in use of force to situations only where the officer’s own life, or that of other people are in danger. This defense of life rule replaced the fleeing felon rule. The 1985 Supreme Court decision, Tennessee v. Garner ruled that police may only use deadly force to prevent escape when the officer has probable cause to believe that the suspect poses a significant threat of death or serious physical injury to the officer or others.
Since the NYPD instituted new policies on use of force, many other law enforcement agencies have followed suit, establishing written policy that set guidelines as to when use of force is appropriate. Procedures may include requiring officers to file written reports following each incident. For incidents involving firearms or other use of deadly force, internal investigation and review is often required. A mechanism in place for administrative review of other use of force incidents may also be part of the policy.
Not all law enforcement agencies in the United States had instituted reforms in the 1980s and 1990s. The United States Department of Justice investigated patterns of abuse within the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police, among other agencies, and brought legal action to force changes.
Less-than-lethal weapons, such as chemical sprays, are used as alternatives to deadly force. These weapons also require policies on their use, along with training on proper use. Police officers are also encouraged to consider a use of force continuum, and try to deescalate situations with verbal warnings and persuasion.
Vehicle pursuits are another use of police power that can involve much discretion on part of the officer. Though, if a pursuit is conducted negligently, resulting in death or injury, the law enforcement agency can be held liable under civil law in the United States. Vehicle pursuits have increasingly been covered under written law enforcement agency policy, to help regulate circumstances and manner that they are conducted.
There are several police accountability organizations in the United States that intend to curb instances of police abuse. The organizations may focus on changing legislation, on promoting awareness or on encouraging people to document incidents police abuse.
- Coalition Against Police Abuse, a Los Angeles focused group that focuses on police abuse against marginalized communities
- Committee Against Anti-Asian Violence, a New York City focused group that deals with police abuse along with many other issues
- Communities United for Police Reform, an internet campaign founded in the wake of NYPD’s Stop and Frisk policy
- Cop Block, a libertarian internet platform reporting on police abuse stories
- National Police Accountability Project, a project of the National Lawyers Guild
- Peaceful Streets Project, a national grassroots organization founded by Antonio Buehler
- We Copwatch, an Oakland based grassroots organization founded by Jacob Crawford
Â· Rumbaut, RubÃ©n G. and Bittner, Egon (1979). “Changing Conceptions of the Police Role: A Sociological Review”. Crime and Justice: A Review of Research 1: 239â€“288. doi:10.1086/449063.
Â· Walker (2005) p. 29
Â· Walker (2005) p. 30
Â· Walker (2005) p. 20
Â· Walker (2005) p. 37
Â· “Department of Justice Police Misconduct Pattern or Practice Program (FAQ)”. United States Department of Justice. Retrieved 2007-11-14.
Â· Walker (2005), p. 5
Â· Walker (2005), p. 23
Â· National Academy of Sciences (2004) p. 15
Â· Walker (2005), pp. 41-42
Â· Walker (2005), p. 43
Â· Walker (2005), p. 41
Â· U.S. Department of Justice (January 2001). “Principles for Promoting Police Integrity”. U.S. Department of Justice. NCJ186189.
Â· Walker (2005), pp. 45-46
Â· Walker (2005), p. 52
Â· Walker (2005), pp. 54-55
Â· Kennedy, Daniel B., Homant, Robert J., Kennedy, John F. (1992). “Comparative Analysis of Police Vehicle Pursuit Policies”. Justice Quarterly 2: 227â€“246.
Â· National Academy of Sciences, Committee on Law and Justice (2004). Fairness and Effectiveness in Policing. National Academies Press. ]
Police Accountability and Community Policing – …
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to ensuring the
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