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Law Enforcement Liability Issues - Research Paper Example

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Police Liability Instructor Name Date Abstract Law enforcement liability is a constant source of questioning and accountability within a department. Law enforcement has many policy and procedure in place as ways to decrease and prevent liability issues from arising in their day to day actions…
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Law Enforcement Liability Issues
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Download file to see previous pages Officer’s not only protect and serve the public; at times they themselves need protection from liability law suits and claims. Individuals not happy with the outcomes of an action may file suit just to ease frustrations and to gain a sense of control over a situation. Officers are provided some protection with the Police Manual of Arrest, Seizure, and Interrogation, designed to assist an officer in making a correct decision in most circumstances and protect from liability claims. Further protection is provided to officers individually, holding departments financially responsible, by the Crown Liability Act. Finally the BC offense act states what specific offenses can be legally used in a court of law against an officer. Body Being a law enforcement officer takes more than just training. Common sense and compassion for the public are also incredibly important. In order to succeed in dealing with the people and the numerous challenges that they face every day, a law enforcement officer needs a specific type of personality. This particular personality is a combination of the above things, common sense being right there at the top of the list. Liability issues and concerns are faced not only by law enforcement officers, but by everyone, all the time. Even though there are a variety of different types of law enforcement in this day and age, their risk of liability issues remain the same. That is where training, government law, and personality come in handy for all individuals involved. The first thing people need to learn about liability is this: What is it? According to Oxford, liability is ‘being liable; troublesome person or thing; handicap; debts for which one is liable.’ (Oxford University Press,1995). Liable, according to Oxford is ‘legally bound; subject to; under an obligation; exposed or open to; answerable for.’(Oxford University Press,1995). In translation, liability means that one needs to answer for what they have done. Every action or reaction has a consequence, and the individual who made the action needs to own up to the consequence that goes with it. For example, if Officer A punched Drunk Driver 1 in the face because Drunk Driver 1 refused to get out of the car, Officer A would be liable for that action. In other words, Officer A would have to own up to and pay the consequence of his/her action, likely in a court of law. The opposite of this scenario would be if Drunk Driver 1 punched Officer A in the face, then proceeded to state that he had been punched in the face by Officer A. Drunk Driver 1 would then be responsible for what he/she had done in a court of law. Whether an officer is on duty or off, they must reflect their actions with reason. There has to be a good, liable reason for them to do what they do. The Use of Force Continuum is an important tool for law enforcement officers around the world. It is an important guide that has the ability to dictate what an appropriate action for the officer is under any given circumstances. This continuum is often used in a court of law by lawyers, and even by the officers themselves. It is a direct, easy to follow guideline. The Use of Force Continuum is built in a circular pattern. At the start there is ‘Officer Presence’, and at the end there is ‘Lethal Force’. ‘It promotes a continuous assessment and evaluation of each situation, and helps officers understand and make use of a variety of force options to respond to potentially violent situations.’ ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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