Eras of Policing Essay

1533 Words 7 Pages
Policing as we know it today has developed from various political, economic, and social forces. To better understand the role of police in society, one has to know the history of how policing became what it is today. Policing has been categorized into three basic eras, which include the Political Era, Reform Era, and lastly the Community Problem-Solving Era that is the present form of policing. Most all of modern-western democracies are based on Sir Robert Peel’s Metropolitan Police Force, which was instituted in 1829. Sir Robert Peel was the founder of modern day policing. He represented Tamworth in Staffordshire for eighteen years. As Home Secretary, he reformed the organization of London‘s weak police force known as Bow Street …show more content…
There was a growing middle class during this time with growing industry and corporate bureaucracy. Criminal law and police professionalism were the bases of police legitimacy. The basic means for the Reform era was to reconstruct the corrupt police departments. The reform was also to redefine the duties of the police to uphold the law which was not being done during the nineteenth century (Police: History-Reform). During the Reform Era, policing became more centralized, and the social distance between police and the communities increased. Technology became more important with patrol cars, the two-way radio, the telephone, which helped to organize officers more efficiently. During this period, patrols would respond to service calls to help citizens. This is a period of policing in which police only dealt with crime, and all other community problems were seen as a responsibility of other city and community agencies (National Institute of Justice). The new technology of the Reform era had unintentional consequences on policing. Now that the policemen had patrol cars, they were not using foot patrol as an every day means of policing. The patrol car now acted as a as a barrier to the neighborhoods that were once known to the officers on foot patrol. This is what began to broaden the social distance between the police and the citizens of the

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