Police Brutality

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Policing places men and women in an often dangerous and stressful role, dealing with suspects at every level of criminal offenses. In such situations, an incident may arise that needs to be dealt with decisively. Policing agencies have strict guidelines, categorizing forcible coercion into separate levels of severity. It is when an officer uses a more than acceptable means of coercion that this physical manipulation becomes excessive. Police brutality is arguably the most publicized form of Police misconduct, especially in recent history. There are several points of view to be examined, including the offender’s, the victim’s and the public’s reaction to the incident. It is clear that this is one of the most controversial aspects of policing, concerning the dangers that come along with the delicate balance of power and discretion allowed to a select group and amount of observation required. Any interaction between police and the public could easily turn into a situation leading to violence. A simple traffic stop could turn violent, but the deciding factors are the officer in question and the suspect. Because there is no concrete definition to the amount of force reasonably required to deal with a suspect, it is hard to follow the growth or declinations in police brutality across the country. It seems that the most closely examined and often the most controversial cases of police brutality are those that are accompanied by tape of the incident. The most famous being the Rodney King Assault in which a black motorist, following a high speed chase, was pulled from his vehicle and beaten. The following year, after the four officers in question were acquitted of charges, the Los Angeles Riots of 1992 ensued, though there ... ... middle of paper ... ...y (pp. xi-xiii). New York City: NYU Press. Retrieved April 14, 2009 Lawrence, R. G. (2000). The politics of force: media and the construction of police brutality (pp. 13-15). University of California Press. Retrieved April 14, 2009 Kleg, M. (1993). Hate, Prejudice, and Racism (pp. 13-15). Albany: State University of New York. Retrieved April 14, 2009 Street Battle's at Night [Editorial]. (1919). New York Times. Retrieved April 14, 2009 Cohen, H. (1986). Exploiting Police Authority. Criminal Justice Ethics Volume:5 Issue:2 Dated:(Summer-Fall 1986). United States. National Criminal Justice Reference Service. Goldstein, H. (1975). Police Corruption – A Perspective on its Nature and Control. United States. Police Foundation Newburn, Tim. (1999). Understanding and Preventing Police Corruption: Lessons From the Literature. Research Development Statistics.

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