Policing relies on the public trust, police legitimacy and accountability, which can be destroyed by unjustifiable police shootings (Squires and Kennninson, 2010). Within this country, there is a recognition that the police do not always adhere to the rule of law (Newburn and Reiner, 2012: 809), which has led to consistent public outrage at the lack of effectiveness and legitimacy the police has maintained. Therefore the deliberate decision to enforce police to attend to the streets unarmed was employed to reassure the public that the police were not to be feared (Waddington and Wright, 2010). Ultimately, concerns derive from the belief that the police are completely ineffective when dealing with gun crimes (Farrell, 1992: 20). However, whilst arming police with guns can act as a protector when on duty it can also cause an increase in police misconduct. This issue will be discussed throughout this essay.
Firstly, it is important to consider that policing is wholly dependent on public consent. More recently, there can be seen to be a breakdown in the relationship between police and the public, which has ultimately led to the belief that the police are illegitimate due to a disproportionate use of force. Some researchers maintain a belief that brutality is used by the police to control a population considered undesirable, whilst they go beyond the law, it is a method used to achieve social order (Skolnick and Fyfe, 1993). Thus, whilst it may seem like the police are supported in their duties, the idea of allowing all police rights to carry guns on duty could be something problematic (Squirres and Kennison, 2010). If police abuse their basic powers, then they can easily abuse the powers to use extreme force which can become dangerou...
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...T., Reiner, R. (2012) ‘Policing the Police’ in The Official Handbook of Criminology. Ed. By Maguire, M., Morgan, R., Reiner, R. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 806- 838
Skolnick, J., Fyfe, J. (1993) Above the law: Police and the Excessive use of force. United States: The Free Press
Skogan, W., Meares, T. (2004) ‘Lawful Policing’ The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 66 (18)
Squires, P., Kennison, P. (2010) Shooting to kill: Policing, Firearms and Armed Response. Sussex: John Wiley & Sons Ltd
Waddington, J. A. P., Adang, O., Baker, D., Birkbeck, C., Feltes, T., Gabaldon, G. L., Machado, P, E., Stenning, P. (2006) ‘Singing the same tune? International continuities and discontinuities in how police talk about force.’ Crime Law and Social Change. 52, 111-138
Waddington, J. A. P., Wright, M. (2010) What is policing. Exter: Learning Matters
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One of the most disturbing trends in American policing in recent years has been the militarization of police weaponry and tactics. In his new book, “The Rise of the Warrior Cop”, author Radley Balko traces the roots of American law enforcement from the constables of colonial times to present day SWAT teams and special response units. With the high controversy surrounding the “war on drugs” and the “war on terrorism,” policymakers have signed off on a dangerously aggressive style of policing that too often leads to unnecessary deaths and injuries. Some people say that modern law enforcement is on a collision course with our Bill of Rights and is unconstitutional. In the book “ Rise of the Warrior Cop” the author talks about how modern day policing are adapting mostly all military tactic. These wars are more than just metaphors designed to rally public support and secure all the money they can to support these programs. They change the way we think about what the police do. Wars mean shooting first and asking questions later. Wars require military tactics and weaponry. Wars mean civilian casualties. Are we at war with our own people?
Carter, D. L. (1985). "Police Brutality: A Model for Definition, Perspective, and Control," in A.S. Blumberg & E. Neiderhoffer (Eds.), The Ambivalent Force. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston.
Use of Force Ambrose Bierce, a social critic known for his sarcasm and wit, once described the police as "an armed force for protection and participation." In this pithy statement, Bierce identifies three critical elements of the police role. First, by describing the police as "armed," their ability to coerce recalcitrant persons to comply with the law is emphasized. Because police carry weapons, it follows that the force they use may have lethal consequences. The capacity to use coercive, deadly force is so central to understanding police functions, one could say that it characterizes a key element of the police role. Second, the primary purpose of police is protection, and so force can be used only to promote the safety of the community. Police have a responsibility for safeguarding the domestic well-being of the public, and this obligation even extends in qualified ways to protecting those who violate the law, who are antagonistic or violent toward the police, or who are intent on hurting themselves. In dealing with such individuals, police may use force in reasonable and prudent ways to protect themselves and others. However, the amount of force used should be proportional to the threat and limited to the least amount required to accomplish legitimate police action. Third, the concept of participation emphasizes that police and community are closely interrelated. Police are drawn from the community, and as police they continue to operate as members o...
This paper compares and contrasts popular opinions and professional assessment of police brutality and acceptable use of force. This is not only a sensitive subject, but one that proves hard to identify. The main takeaway is that each encounter is different. Within each situation, the details and contributing factors are also different. Police have to serve the public and are entrusted with an inherent amount of power. The line when that use of power becomes abuse of power is not always so easily defined. There are occasions where the evidence shows a clear abuse of power by the police. There are instances where the public opinion views a situation as excessive, however, the police are following acceptable practices and procedures.
In today’s society, it is vital for police officers to be armed with the necessary weapons needed to assure protection to the people of the world while rates of crime rise dramatically. The usage of firearms that are carried by cops are critical to stop possible future crimes and make the safety of many people in the world a top priority even easier. Cops can intimidate future criminals to not be criminals, because they would know that there is a chance they could get hurt commiting a crime. The assurance that cops have the needed material to keep not only me but many people in the world today as save as they can.
American law enforcement agencies are based off the English models which began in the early 1800’s. In 1829, the English Parliament passed the Metropolitan Police Act (Walker, 1983). Sir Robert Peel who has been credited as the father of modern policing introduced this act to Parliament (Walker, 1983). This act established the London Metropolitan Police which was the model for American policing. This method of policing incorpor...
The use of force is a power inherited with the role police hold given the authority granted to them by the state to satisfy the objectives of law enforcement, such as the prevention of crime and the maintenance of law and order. The use of this power however is an option to be utilized as a last resort within reasonable levels and only in regards to resistance. On occasion an officer may be required to use force, this is determined by the act and level of resistance that can range from verbal resistance to the threat of life. With each incidence of resistance and the factors driving the police-citizen interaction, there is the potential for misjudgment in the use of force resulting in excessive force or to overstep authority to use force. Though the abuse of this authority has been expressed as an international issue, as highlighted at times in the media, it is a rare occurrence in comparison to the daily actions and interactions that police have among the citizenry. Still in the United States it remains a pervasive abuse of citizens’ rights.
The focus is on the issues of police accountability in modern society, and in particular why their accountability is more important than other professions. This is not surprising considering the amount of power and discretion police officers have, and the level of trust that the public holds with these civil servants. Police officers accountability is the biggest thing in their profession which has been an issue of concern they have to be accountable to the police department who want the officer to be an effective and responsible person, to people in the community who have best expectation from an officer and being accountable to themselves for their acts. An ordinary citizen of a country cannot obtain the powers that police officer’s have.