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Critical Issues in Policing
Roxabel Perez Garcia
November 6, 2014
Clifton Scott Franklin




Critical Issues in Policing
Patrol is the backbone of policing with many responsibilities to protect and serve the
community. Patrolling can be also dangerous for officers on and off the road. Officers often may
find themselves in dangerous circumstances they may often be afraid and end up getting insured
or killed. The dangers they often faced requires them to wear body armor (vest) while on duty.
Regardless of all the precautions police officers are killed while on duty day to day. On
September 11, 2001 the most officers were killed on one single day a total of 72 federal, state,
and local officers. There being many officers killed in arrest situations, ambushed by their
assailant, during traffic stops and investigating suspicious circumstances also during hostages
situations, while handling a mentally deranged individual and while under investigation activities
as well as many feloniously arrests.
Less lethal weapons are for use of violent combative suspects which includes tear gas,
chemical irritants sprays, impact weapons, foams, nets and k-9s. If a suspect assaults an officer
he/she can use either hand maneuvers or the use of a baton. Last resource being lethal force or
deadly force only used if officers life is threatened or of a civilian. This is an issue in agencies
often police officers tend to misuse the force continuum and make drastic decisions that does not
benefit the officer being a cause of police brutality.
Police technology is being more advanced day by day there being new ways of
communication and information share. It can be overwhelming to older generations in the
industry to get use to the chance and accept the change, some of the changes include. Police
technology has made and will make a change in our future. New applications such as database
information and technology computer aided dispatch, records management system and mobile



Database and information Technology aids police agencies to develop database.
Computerize rational databases are much more like index cards file that were use in the past
which contained basic information such as suspects names, date of birth, case number and
criminal history record. The developed database allows the police officer to store and retrieve
from a variety of sources. It has the capacity to identify areas that need larger levels of police
enforcement service and provide information on criminal activity on specific neighborhoods.
The Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) is a method to effectively and efficiently manage
calls for service from the public. This service has many advantages it offers police departments a
faster and more effective method of communication, it reduce officer confusion, enhance safety
by monitoring officers status, the CAD updates their status automatically, as well by alerting the
dispatcher to contact someone to check on their safety. CAD systems helps dispatchers and
officers prioritize calls for service and prerecord types of calls according to their seriousness and
guide dispatchers and officers on appropriate action.
Records Management System (RMS) organizes, stores, and collects paper reports.
Without it there would-be lots of lost paperwork, the RMS has the capacity to organize
information from different types of reports in one easy format reducing the amount of time that
officers spend on paperwork. RMS are easy access to information and some programs allows
many types of reports such as crime reports, field interview contacts, traffic citations, booking
reports, criminal history reports and investigative reports which can be displayed and access at
Technology as mentioned before has developed in many different ways aiding law
enforcement agencies to better service the community and country with advance technology that
can detect and identify criminals called biometrics. Technology used in the field such as



COMPSTAT which provides timely data on crime and disordered neighborhoods. Early
Investigation Systems (EI) is an application of personal records management, being a
computerized database with performance data on each officer. Also, license plate readers used by
local police agencies across the country to identify the owner. Such technologies are being used
today and are still under development.
There has been issues within the homeland security and local police agencies were
individual believed that the homeland security derives attention and resources away from
taradional policing responsibilities. Since most police agencies focuses on issues regards local
concern and conducting within the community beats and precincts police officers do not involve
or address the homeland security. Homeland security plays a very small role within the agencies,
that’s why local police agencies provide patrols in areas where there are risks of terrorism and
any location where there is a large amount of people.
Besides the dangers police face day to day, how less lethal weapons are used, the new
technologies and the issues within agencies. There are other bigger issues that policing face and
that is police corruption and misconduct as well as police brutality within the agencies. There
have been many cases were officers misuse their authority to corrupt not just civilians but
criminals as well. This misuse is used for personal gain and power. There are many ways of
corruption and misconduct whether is accepting gifts and favors from non uniform individuals to
demanding and bribing people for protection. Cases like ex-patrol officer Ashley Roane whom at
the time was 25 years old was found guilty of obtaining personal agency information for a
supposed drug dealer, providing him with social security numbers to benefit on tax frauds, also
assisting in a drug trafficking transaction. Roane was also accepting large amounts of money for
protection payment that later was found guilty and sentence to approximately 5 years with a



possibility of 17 years in prison. This is not the only case on police corruption and misconduct.
There has been a recent case of 5 Sherriff Deputies of the Richland County Police Department in
Columbia, South Carolina that were found guilty of tax scheme. Also, all the cases that has been
on the news about police brutality such as the Rodney King incident who was an African
American beating L.A officers, and the death of Sean Bell whom was fatally shot at by
undercover police officers .This are relevant issues to this paper, because police officers are
suppose to protect and serve the community , to deter crime and prevent crime which is still a
problem, because some police officers use their power to become a criminal but turn around and
try to correct the criminal when they are criminals themselves. Having access to these new
technologies to benefit them and use their authority to harm others.



Grant, B.H., & Terry, J.K. Chap 9 , 12 , 13(2012). Law Enforcement in the 21st Century (3rd ed.).