The Dangerous Slope By Lawrence Sherman And His Theory Of The Slippery Slope

701 Words3 Pages
In law enforcement they are put in positions where the public is willing to provide them with gifts for their service within the community. Lawrence Sherman and his theory of the "Slippery Slope" were used to identify the flaws within the police department that can lead to corruption. For Sherman, the environment of temptation in which the recruit worked was the problem. The ‘slippery slope’ from small gifts and gratuities to major graft could only be prevented by police managers being intolerant of minor gratuities (p. 11). According to Sherman theory-allowing officers to accept any form of gratuities can open them up to corruption. For example, police officers working a neighborhood are being offered coffee at no charge and half price on their meal at the nearby restaurant. Each officer that continues to accept these freebees becomes susceptible to the theoretical slippery slope. Gratuities often lead to things like kickbacks (bribery) for referring business to towing companies, ambulances, or garages. Further up the scale comes pilfering, or stealing (any) company 's supplies for personal use. At the extreme, opportunistic theft takes place, with police officers skimming items of value that won 't be missed from crime scenes, property rooms, warehouses, or any place they have access to. Theft of items from stores while on patrol is sometimes called "shopping" (Andrews). It is important that management protect it officers from compromising situations and doing this starts with rule and regulation regarding any gratuities. Establishing rules removes the potential for any officers being exposed to compromising situation. Corruption within the police department has a high potential of success, especially when the availability of... ... middle of paper ... ...s leaders are keeping the actions of corruption a secret. For example, when a officer notice another officer accepting or taking bribes for favors, he or she will not report their fellow officer to protect them from being reprimand or fired for their unethical act. Rotten Apple Hypothesis: Focuses the root of corruption on the character, or lack thereof, of the individual officer. This explanation proposes that corruption is the result of poor selection practices that fail to screen out applicants who are unsuitable for public service (Withrow & Dailey, p. 4). The rotten apple hypothesis beliefs that people are born bad no matter what. These people who are rotten apples usually are exposed to bad behaviors as a child. Officers that are considered rotten apples are usually apart of murders, robberies and extortion. Their act creates a divide within the department.

    More about The Dangerous Slope By Lawrence Sherman And His Theory Of The Slippery Slope

      Open Document