Police Brutality Essay

3471 Words Nov 26th, 2012 14 Pages
The Price of Police Brutality
Chris Lawton
Union Institute and University
Applied Ethics in Criminal Justice Management
CJM 303
Professor Toni Bland
October 19, 2012


This paper will differentiate between reasonable force and excessive force. I will describe when excessive force turns into police brutality and how the police culture can influence police brutality. I will discuss some of the many negative repercussions that excessive force / police brutality have on the law enforcement officers, agency, city, community and profession.
The Price of Police Brutality
Is there a difference between excessive force and police brutality? Is one worse than the other? What are some of the negative aspects associated with
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The officer has located and collected weapons from this area in the past. At the time of the incident the wanted subject was within 10 or 15 feet from this area. The officer has firsthand knowledge that sometimes gang member entice officers into chasing them and while involved in a struggle other gang members ambush the officer. The suspect is telling the officer that he and his friends are going to get him. Utilizing all relevant facts, a kick to the face may not have been excessive in this situation. It is extremely important that officers document all relevant information in their reports to help others understand and justify the use of force.
In the scenario above, the use of force gets reviewed through whatever policy or procedure is in place at the agency, and the force is deemed excessive. During the heat of battle the officer made a decision to apply force in order to overcome resistance and take someone into custody. Again, each agency is different, but that officer may be subject to negative discipline, re-training or some other measure to address the issue. In extreme cases, the officer may be terminated or subject to criminal prosecution for his actions. The balance between reasonable force and excessive force is razor thin. There may be times when an officer is striking someone with an impact weapon. Three of the blows may

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