There is a widespread and persistent problem of police brutality across the United States. Thousands of individual complaints about police abuse are reported each year and local authorities pay out millions of dollars to victims in damages after lawsuits. Police officers have beaten and shot unresisting suspects; they have misused batons, chemical sprays, and electro-shock weapons; they have injured or killed people by placing them in dangerous restraint holds.
This fact finding study is concerned with the investigation of factors related to injuries that occur to officers and citizens during use of force incidents. Prior studies have shown that 1-2 percent of police-citizen contacts involve the menace or application of physical force by police, while 15-20 percent of arrests may result in the use of force by police to control a violently resistant suspect. Most applications of force are low level, and usually involve the use of an officer’s hands, arms, and body to to gain control of a suspect. But, not all force is minor and officers are trained and equipped to use a gamete of varying force techniques and weapons to overcome resistance. These include less lethal devices such as pepper spray, batons, Tasers, as well as firearms in the event of threats of death or serious bodily injury. There are various legal and independent departmental policy restrictions that govern the use of force by officers. In most law enforcement agencies, the use of force is tightly controlled by policy, and more serious applications of force are reviewed and investigated by supervisory personnel, internal affairs units and use of force review boards.
As a result of the recent rise of the use of excessive force cases against police and law enforcement, I have chosen to research the definition of that excessive force. When is it considered justifiable? What training do officers receive? What liability issues are there? In an ABC news article, Sascha Segan states there is no specific definition of excessive force. A part of everyday police work is to subdue criminal and suspects. Another everyday task of police officers is personal discretion - making the right decision based on the specific situation. It has been documented in multiple viral videos that law enforcement officer’s discretion is not always favorable in the public eye and is quick to be judged. Yet shouldn’t we be asking if the officer’s actions were justifiable within the court system and if
In most if not all the cases the victim of the excessive force is charged with resisting arrest and or assaulting a police officer, When in fact they are the ones who have been assaulted and victimized themselves. They are now fighting two uphill battles that are very difficult to win in any situation. A lot of the time the victim is from a poor or low income area and may have already been perceived to be a criminal by the police. The police have a great deal of power and they sometimes manipulate situation to make it look like or to hide what may have happen in an arrest situation. My father would tell me stories about the police and the things some officer would do to get away with abusing their power. The police need to be monitored and public needs to be more educated about what Law enforcements job is and how to best help them do it.
There has recently been a demand for the use of less than lethal weapons in the community, and country at large. To meet this demand, the Asheville Police Department will be adopting the use of Tasers. Though Tasers are potentially lethal, they can be used more safely that a handgun, yet are more incapacitating than chemical spray. The use of Tasers will be explained with training as technology and laws progress. The most important thing is that the use of Tasers always falls within the law. Any actions taken should be proportionate to the situation, and the use of force should be no more than what is absolutely necessary. Officers must be prepared to show that they acted reasonably and justly. They must stay within the boundaries of use of force, and take responsibility for their actions. Similarly, superiors must also show justification for any decision or action.
According to Sousa, W., Ready, J., & Ault, M., (2010), the use of conducting energy devices, or CEDs, to regulate or pacify aggressive suspects has become a more common practice across North America. However, there is growing controversy surrounding the use of Tasers. Police departments claim that they can incapacitate suspects without causing any bodily harm and or anguish. When in fact, several studies have been conducted and display that certain deaths have been connected to the use of Tasers Sousa, W., Ready, J., & Ault, M. (2010). Just a mere eight years ago, Canada experienced yet again, what conductive energy devices are truly capable of. On October 13, 2007, Robert Dziekanski left Poland to join his mother in Canada. Upon entering the Vancouver airport to meet his mother, Robert was sitting and or sleeping in the luggage carousel area which is prohibited to the public. After the Canadian Border Service Agency escorted Robert to the waiting area, he became aggressive, banging on the door and screaming to let him back into the luggage carousel portion of the airport. At this time four Royal Canadian Mounted Police officers, or RCMP, were called in for assistance. The officers used the Taser on Mr. Dziekanski a total of four times before he fell unconscious and died on the scene. An autopsy furthered unveiled that Robert Dziekanski’s death can be directly linked to the use of force applied by the
In my opinion the concept of “warrior police” helps better explain cases of excessive force. Excessive force is “the application of an amount and frequency of force greater than required compelling compliance from a willing or unwilling subject”. Police are taught to adopt in the face of a life-threatening struggle. They have the mindset survive a bad situation no matter the odds or difficulty and to never give up even when it is mentally and physically easier to do so.
The use of deadly force by police officers is a very important subject in today’s society. Many consider the use of deadly force excessive in most cases. However, there are many aspects to look at when considering this topic, such as: Why was deadly force required? When did the officer feel it necessary to apply deadly force? What will be the implications for the officer after the fact? How does the use of deadly force affect society as a whole?
Many countries prosecute officers who are guilty of using excessive force, but there are no direct laws to counter all forms of police brutality, as an example, police in New York pepper-sprayed 3 little children (5 month, 2 year and 4 year old) and their mother because they thought that they were trying to fare dodge ...
Police officers are viewed as the gatekeepers of formal social control instead of the law breakers because they are responsible for enforcing the laws and protecting the public. The use of excessive force by police officers in America is covered-up by the agencies chiefs because the system is corrupted. There is no accountability for misconduct, instead, law enforcement agencies have a code of silence that must be followed and respected by all officers which help to continue the vicious cycle. The agencies more than often pay out a civil settlement for police brutality cases due to the use of excessive force. Police officers in different cases have taken the law into their own hand to obtain order and never face penalties for their actions. The use of excessive force is the unwarranted or unneeded infliction of contact by personnel involved in law enforcement while executing their certified duties. Furthermore, the police brutality is regularly concrete in the setting of initiating physical harm to