Excessive Force Essay

1669 Words 7 Pages
The use of force by police officers has been under scrutiny by both citizens and law enforcement officials, for decades. As issues of police brutality and civil disobedience have been increasing at an exponential rate, the perception of excessive force has been viciously debated and redefined through the investigation of multiple cases. According to the definition, excessive force is “the use of force greater than that which a reasonable and prudent law enforcement officer would use under the circumstances is generally considerable to be excessive” (Excessive Force Law & Legal Definition). Due to the nature of the job, law enforcement officers are given an abundant amount of discretion when it comes to their authority, persuasion and force; …show more content…
Graham ask his friend William Berry to drive him to a local convenient store to buy orange juice to counteract the insulin reaction. Upon arrival at the convenient store, Graham fleetingly exited the car and entered the store – only to find an unusually long line. He then agitatedly ran back to the car and asked that Berry drive him to a friend’s house near by instead. M.S Connor, a Charlotte Police Department Officer, had observed Graham’s erratic behavior from sitting in his patrol car that was located near the convenience store. Because of Officer Connor’s spiked curiosity, due to his observations of Graham’s behavior he began to follow Berry’s car on his next pursuit – Graham’s friends house. Connor, wary of his haste, made an investigative stop shortly after Berry drove away from the convenient store. Connor, approached the vehicle and Berry informed the officer that Graham was having a sugar reaction. Despite this alleged critical emergency, Connor ordered that the two men wait until he received confirmation of what actually occurred during Graham’s visit to the convenient store (Graham v. Connor. …show more content…
Connor was undoubtedly one of the most monumental and echoing cases that has helped shape our court and justice system today. However, this reasonableness standard – despite it’s precedents – is usually left open for interpretation by the officers themselves which leads to severe situations such as the Ferguson, Missouri, shooting involving Michael Brown – an unarmed man who was shot and killed based on one officer’s declaration of “reasonableness”. Issues like that, and others of police brutality and excessive force are dramatically increasing. That, combined with the public perception that is forced upon viewers through the media, has lead to many American’s demonstrating a severe intolerance for law enforcement. This case has undoubtedly served its purpose in justifying and declaring our fourth amendment rights. Yet, it neglects to address the meditated acts of prejudice that haunt and degrade our justice system. With the issues involving police profiling and an increase in the marginalization of our country, we must exercise an even distribution of Fourth amendment rights to our citizens and further train our law enforcement officials to live by the objective reasonableness standards that have been

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