Essay about Police Corruption As A Form Of Police Misconduct

752 Words Feb 28th, 2016 4 Pages
Police corruption is a form of police misconduct in which law enforcement officers, such as police, break their social contract and abuse their power for personal or department gain. "For a corrupt act to occur, three distinct elements of police corruption must be present simultaneously: 1) misuse of authority, 2) misuse of official capacity, and 3) misuse of personal attainment" (PoliceCrimes.com, 2004). Police corruption is one of oldest and most persistent problem in American policing. Although it has a broad definition, it can mean any major form of police wrongdoing and improper behavior. There are several factors that can contribute to police corruption including rapid hiring of personnel, civil service and union protections that make it difficult to fire officers, and temptations from money and sex.
Knapp Commission, who investigated police corruption there in the early 1970s, says that there are two primary types of corrupt police officers: the “meat-eaters” and the “grass-eaters.” Meat-eaters spend a great amount of their working hours aggressively seeking out situations that they can exploit for financial gain, including gambling, narcotics, and other lucrative enterprises. Grass-eaters are not aggressive but will accept gratuities from contractors, tow-truck operators, gamblers, and the like. There are two theories which suggest and explanation to police corruption. The first theory is the "rotten apple" theory which suggests corruption is the result of having a…

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