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Principles of Law Enforcement - Essay Example

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The Blue Code of Silence is the notion that police officers do not report violations of the law or police procedure when these occur involving police officers. Instead, they stay loyal to their department and fellow officers and develop this "us against them" mentality. The…
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Download file to see previous pages strength of the police culture is based upon a mission and anything that is done in pursuing that mission is serving the greater good of the community (Reiner as quoted in Hall, 2002, p.1). One of the reasons why this situation exists is because police officers are in such a difficult and sometimes hostile environment. In order for them to work well, it helps when they have the assurance that other officers will have their back if something happens. Since the world of police work is unpredictable, it helps police have peace of mind when they know that the other officers will help them in external and internal investigations by keeping silent. According to Hall (2002) there are eight reasons why the Code of Silence exists. Here are a few::
With this information in mind it is easy to see why this Code of Silence is an integral part of law enforcement. The interesting issue about this is that each officer decides how much of this they will do and it is usually based on their own moral code of ethics. In research done by The National Institute of Ethics in 2000, it was found that 52% of officers were not bothered by the Code of Silence (as quoted in Hall, p. 3). In other words, they were fine with it. Hall also suggests that the root of this comes from the fact that we were told as children not to tell on our siblings and the fact that we were punished if we did. Walker (2001), in his book on police accountability says that the reason this Code of Silence exists is because "officers learned that there was no risk of punishment for backing up fellow officers responses no matter how credible the tale." (Walker, p. 109).
Another issue that comes up for officers is that some have compassion for people who have experienced brutal crimes. Because of this, they may begin to think that since the public wants to get rid of an individual like this, whatever they do to get rid of the individual will be seen as the right thing to do. They ignore due process for the perpetrator ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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