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W.

Mr.Jackson
Composition
2April2015
PoliceBrutality

ManypeoplemayremembertheincidentthathappenedinFerguson,butforthosewho

dontletmerefreshyourmemoryMichaelBrown,wasan18yearoldblackman,whowas
fatallyshotbyDarrenWilson,28,whowasawhiteofficer.ThisshootingoccurredonAugust9,
2014,inFerguson,Missouri.Theexchangecircumstancesoftheshootingresultedprotestsandit
receivedconsiderableattentionintheUnitedStates,andsparkedavigorousdebateaboutthe
relationshipbetweenlawenforcementandAfricanAmericans.

Throughouthistory,theabusebylawenforcementauthoritieshasbeenaseriousissue.

Policebrutalityhasbeenandcontinuestobeoneofthemajorconcernsinsociety.Police
brutalityistheuseofmoreforcethannecessarytosubdueacivilian.Actionsofpoliceofficers
havecometoaworldwideviewandcriticaleye.Citizensworryaboutprotectingthemselves
fromcriminals,buttheymustalsokeepawatchfuleyeonthosewhoaresupposedtoprotectand
serveourcountry.Policeofficershaveactedoutinawaythatmakescitizensofourcountry
wonderifpoliceofficersareactuallydoingtheirjobcorrectly.Inthearticle,RacialProfiling
HasDestroyedPublicTrustinPolice,itwasbroughtaboutthatpoliceuseofexcessiveforceis
anationalproblem,itstatedthat,
revisingandclarifyinglocalpoliciesregardingappropriate
usesofforce,improvingofficertrainingandsupervision
(Natarajan).Thisshowsthatthere

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hasbeenadiscussionaboutthechiefstryingtomakeachangethroughouttheirenforcement
team.
Accordingtoconstitution.findlaw.comthefourthamendmentisdefinedas,
Therightof
thepeopletobesecureintheirpersons,houses,papers,andeffects,againstunreasonable
searchesandseizures,shallnotbeviolated,andnowarrantsshallissue,butuponprobablecause,
supportedbyoathoraffirmation,andparticularlydescribingtheplacetobesearched,andthe
personsandthingstobeseized
.Thefourthamendmentguaranteesfreedomfromunreasonable
searchandseizure.Thisamendmentwaswrittentonotallowlawenforcementofficerstouse
unnecessaryforceoncitizens.Relatingtothefourthamendment,theJustificationlawisquite
similar.Inthejustificationlaw,lawenforcementofficersmayonlyuseforcetoprotect
themselves,othercitizensorprotectpublicorder.Theonlytimeapoliceofficerhastherightto
employforceistoprotectpublicwhenacitizenrefusestocooperatewiththepolice.
Excessiveforcebyanofficerisaviolationofapersonsconstitutionalrights.Even
thoughexcessiveforcecannotbepreciselydefined,usingmoreforcethanwhatisnecessaryis
generallyconsideredexcessive.Inmanycasesthataredealtwithbylawenforcement,the
minimumamountofforceisrecommended.
InFebruaryof2015apolicebrutalitysurveywasgivenouttotheseniorclassatJ.W.
SextonHighSchooltoseehowmuchknowledgethestudentbodyhadonpolicebrutality.Based
onthepolicebrutalitysurveysmanypeopledidnthaveaclueonwhatpolicebrutalitywas
exactly.Afewresponsestothequestionswereyesornoanswers.Ontheotherhand,therewere
aboutagood50%ofpeoplewhohadknowledgeaboutpolicebrutalityandbelievedthatmostof
thepoliceofficersdonotusetheappropriateamountofforce.
Furthermore,themajorityofthe

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peoplebelievethatinmanycasesonpolicebrutalityithastodowithracistandbiaselements
andthatpoliceshouldtakemoreresponsibilityinbrutalityincidents,4%thinkotherwise
(Police
BrutalitySurveys).Thisinformationshowsushowmanypeoplelackknowledgeofpolice
brutalityandhowitisaffectingoursociety.Italsobringstotheattentionofothershowmuch
policebrutalityshouldbefocusedonasfarastheleadingandthelevelofintensity.Police
brutalitynotonlyaffectstheintimatevictimbutitaffectsthetrustthatthecommunityhadonce
hadforofficers.Inthearticle,RacialProfilingHasDestroyedPublicTrustinPolicethey
broughttoattentionthat,
profilingunderminespublicsafetyandstrainspolicecommunitytrust
(Natarajan).Thisshowsthatthecommunitythatoncetrustedthelawenforcementdoesnt
anymoreduetothewrongfulprofilingthatishappening.
Policebrutalityisaseriousissuethatishappeningworldwide.Policebrutalitycanbe
causedbyofficersassumingthateveryoneisuptonogood,racism,andofficersbelievingthat
theyhavethepowertodowhateverthatwant,thisallresultsin,falselyaccusingyoungadults,
deathandabuseofpowerbytroublinglivesofothers.Toavoidsuchcatastrophe,thelocal
policiesshouldberevisedregardingappropriateusageofforce,improvingofficertraining,and
supervision.Makingthesefewchangescanchangetheworldtremendouslyandmaketheworld
abetterplace.
Lookingfromtheoutsidein,manytimespoliceofficersbuilduphatredtowardscertain
races,sexes,and/orreligions.RanjanaNatarjanstated,
Whenlawenforcementofficerstarget
residentsbasedonrace,religionornationaloriginratherthanbehavior,crimefightingisless
effectiveandcommunitydistrustofpolicegrows
(RacialProfilingHasDestroyedPublicTrust
inPolice).Itsbelievablethatofficerstendtothinkthatifonepersontreatsthemwith

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disrespect,thenothersfromthatsamerace,sexand/orreligionwillactthesame.Thiscauses
officerstoactoutbyusingexcessiveforce.Manyofficershavesomuchhatredtowardsothers
whoaren'tthesameraceasthemselves.Bylookingaroundyoucantellthateveryoneisnot
treatedequallybythecoloroftheirskin,sex,and/orreligion.Ifitsjustbyaglanceorbythe
wayanofficercomestoonethehatredisfelt.
Therearemanyfactorsthatcontributestotheactofpolicebrutality.Itispossiblethatthe
stressthatpoliceofficersgothroughisoneofthecausesfortheincreaseofforcethatisbeing
used.Stressplaysabigroleineveryonelives.But,somestressisnotonlyinevitable,itcanbe
good.Foranexample,physicalstressofworkingoutimprovesthecardiovascularsystem,and
thestressthatthatcausesonetostudyharderforanexam.However,jobrelatedstressrefersto
thenegativepressurethatisrelatedtothepolicework.Officerscanbeaffectedbytheirdaily
duties.Dealingwithsuspiciousandhostilepubliccanpossiblytakeatollonthem.Theshift
changes,thelongperiodsofboredom,andeventhedangerthatapoliceofficerhastodoondaily
canbeaseriouscauseofstress.Accordingtothewebsite,buffalo.eduitstatesthat
Thedaily
psychologicalstressesthatpoliceofficersexperienceintheirworkputthematsignificantly
higherriskthanthegeneralpopulationforahostoflongtermphysicalandmentalhealth
effects
(Goldbaum).Theeffectsofphysicalandmentalhealththatanofficerisputthroughcan
causethemtoactoutinanegativeway.Thisisnotgivinganexcuseforofficerstobeabletouse
excessiveforce.Butiftheheadofthelawenforcementknowsoneofficerisinneedofhelp,help
shouldbegiventothatofficerbeforeheactsoutinawaythatcancausepolicebrutality.
Psychologicalreasoningisanothercauseofpolicebrutality.Psychologicalisthemental
orbehavioralcharacteristicsofanindividualorgroup.Thestereotypeofthebadappleorrogue

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cophasbeendisavowedbutsomepersonalitytraitscanleadtotheuseofexcessiveforce.
Personalitydisorders,personalproblems,pastjobrelatedtrauma,andyounginexperienced
officerswholearninappropriatepatrolstylesallfitinthecategoryofpsychological.Inthe
article,TheCopMind,itstatesthat
Theyspendmuchoftheirtimeinthechaoticand
depressingnetherreachesofsociety:bustingupdomesticviolencedisputes,dealingwithdrunks
anddrugaddict,cominguponfatalcarcrashes,managingconflictslargeandsmall
(Brooks).
Therewillneverbeanexcuseforusingexcessiveforce,especiallycasesliketheGarnercase,
butnotenoughattentionispayingtotheemotionalandpsychologicalchallengesofbeingacop
everythingthattheygothroughaffectsthemeithermentally,physically,oremotionally.
Policebrutalityiscommoninsocietytoday,butwhatmanypeoplefailtorealizeisthat
policebrutalityhasbeenanissueformanyyears.Peopledidn'tpayanyattentiontothebrutality
thatofficersdidinthepastyears,butnowithasbecomeafocusduetosomecasesthathave
occurredinthepastmonthsthathavebeenhighlypublicized.Itseemsasifthoseoftheminority
communitieshavebeensubjected,formanyyears,toviolencebythoseofthelawenforcement
intheUnitedStates.Thisisthedepictionofpolicebrutality,thatinmostcasesleadtodeath.
Today,policeofficersuseexcessiveforcethatleadsintoassaults,beatings,andshootings.
A
quarterofthe400annualdeathsreportedtofederalauthoritiesbylocalpolicedepartmentswere
whiteonblackshootings18%oftheblacksuspectswereundertheageof21whenkilledby
thepolice
(mic.com).PolicebrutalityhasastrongeffectonthepopulationoftheAmericans.
Theonesaffectedareminoritiesasstatedabove,whichcausesthemtohavestronghatred
towardsthewhitesinAmerica.Officersoftenabusetheirpowerofhowmuchforcetheycanuse.

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Officersfeelthatjustbecausetheyhaveabadgeandagunthereforeitputsthemabovethelaw
andtheycanuseunnecessaryforceagainstindividuals.
Therearemanydifferentproblemsofpolicebrutality.Identifyingtheprobleminyour
citythatscausingpolicetouseexcessiveforcemaybecompletelydifferentfromthoseofother
cities.Allpolicedepartmentsdifferinsizeandthequalityofhowtheymanagetheirdepartment.
Somedepartmentsmaybecorruptedothersmaypossiblybecleanbutcouldstilllackcommunity
relations.
Whenanofficertreatsayoungpersonsparent(s)orthechildthemselveswithrespect
andprofessionalism,itcanestablishconfidencethatthepoliceappreciatetheirroleaspublic
servants
(policeone.com).Ifanofficertakeshis/hertimetobuildarelationwiththeircommunity
theywouldntbeviewedasuntrustworthyofficers,butrecognizedastheonesthatarekeeping
oursocietyasafeplacetoliveandworkin.
Everypersonhastherighttonotbesubjectedinunreasonableandexcessiveforcebylaw
enforcementofficers.Justlikeofficershavetherighttousethereasonableamountofforceto
makeanarrest.But,itswhenofficersexceedtheiramountofforcethatleadstopolicebrutality.
Eventhoughpolicebrutalityisamajorissueitsnotaseasytostopthebrutalitysinceits
somethingthatisworldwide.Inthearticle,Canpolicebereformed,RonaldWeitzerimplies,
Americansareambivalenttowardthepolice.Wedependonthemandarefascinatedbutthem,
asshowninthepopularityofpoliceshownontelevisionwhichusuallypresentthepolice
sympathetically.Butconfidenceinthepoliceisperiodicallyshakenbyrevelationsofconduct.
Thisevidenceportrayshowthesocietyhadoncelookeduptothem.Nowitsdifferent,many
peopleofoursocietybelievethatwhenofficersactoutinanunexplainableway,shape,orform
theygetletoffeasy.Thelawenforcementofficersthatareaccusedofpolicebrutalityshould

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taketheirconsequencesmoreseriously.Thereshouldbeaclassgivenouttoofficerswhoabuse
theirpowersnotjustacivilcourthearingwithajudge.
Whentrainingisallabouthandcuffing,shooting,andnothingbutphysicalforceandnot
abouttheverbalpartitcancreateanimbalance.Eventhoughtheremightnotbeaperfect
solutionforpolicebrutality,therearestillmanysolutionsouttherethatcanbeputinplaytoput
astoptopolicebrutality.Inthearticle,RacialProfilingHasDestroyedPublicTrustinPolice
itstatedthat,

revisingandclarifyinglocalpoliciesregardingappropriateusesofforce,
improvingofficertrainingandsupervision,andimplementingrigorousinternalaccountability
systems,amongotherthings
(Natarajan).Thisevidenceshowsthattherearemanypossibilities
togetpolicebrutalityundercontrol.Theonlywaythatanyofthesewillbeaccurateisifthehead
officialsofadepartmetnputitintoconsideration.Ifbettertrainingisused,itcanleadtobetter
communityrelationsanditcandefusetheabuse,deadly,andracialconfrontationsthatsadly
havebeenseparatingeveryoneinsocietyforyears.
Justbecausetherearemanysolutionsthatcanputanendtopolicebrutality,itdoesnot
meaneverysolutionwouldproducethedesiredresult.Ifthesolutionsarenotstructuralorifthey
arenotthemainconcerninlawenforcementdepartmentstheywillnotbebeneficialandwillbe
awasteoftime.Solutionsespeciallyforpolicebrutalityarentsomethingthatcanhappenover
night,itissomethingthatisgoingtotaketime.Ifnothingisgoingtobedoneaboutthepolice
brutalitythatishappeningaroundtheworld,thenthebrutalitycaseswillonlyincreaserapidly.
TheincreasingofpolicebrutalitywillaffecttheUnitedStatesasawhole.
Therearemanystepsthatneedtobemadeinordertostoppolicebrutalityandtoprotect
therightsofAmericancitizens.Eventhoughpoliceofficershavemorepowerthantheaverage

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citizen,policeofficersstillneedtorespectthepowerthattheyhaveandnotoveruseit.Attacking
citizenswhenitsnotnecessaryisridiculous.Justlikeeveryoneelse,policeofficersarestill
humanandneednottobeletoffsoeasily.Likethesaying,dothecrime,dothetimethis
shouldberequiredforeveryone.Lawenforcementarerequiredtoprotect,serveandmakethe
communityasafeandcomfortableplacetobe.Iflawenforcementcannotdothat,thereisnoone
forthecitizensofourcountrytorelyon.

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WorksCited
Brooks,David.TheCopMind.nytimes.com.nytimes.com,8December2014.Web.23March
2015.
FourthAmendmentU.SConstitution.constitution.findlaw.com.constitution.findlaw.com,
Web.27March2015
Goldbaum,Ellen.PoliceOfficersStressCreatesSignificantHealthRisksComparedtoGeneral
Population.buffalo.edu.buffalo.edu,9July2012.Web.23March2015
McKay,Tom.OneTroublingStatisticShowsJustHowRacistAmericasPoliceBrutalityIs.
mic.com.mic.com,18August2015.Web25March2015.
Natarajan,Ranjana.
RacialProfilingHasDestroyedPublicTrustinPolice
.WashingtonPost
Blogs.15December2014:n.p.SIRSIssuesResearcher.Web.12February2015.
SextonStudents.PoliceBrutalitySurvey.SurveyedbyAlexisW.Medium.
Weitzer,Ronald.
CanthePoliceBeReformed
?.ContextsVol.4,No.3.Summer2005:2126.
SIRSIssuesResearchers.Web.27March2015
Wetzel,Tom.
ImprovingCommunityRelationsbyFocusingontheYouth.policeone.com.
policeone.com,Web.27March2015.