Police is one of the state forces which assure social regulations and law functioning. Its aims are the maintenance of control of the crime, assistance in critical cautions, and preservation of public safety. However, this force has always been associated with peculiar negative features. One of the gravest of them is brutality of police officers regarding the citizens. The police brutality may range from occasional psychic deviations to substance abuse and xenophobia; thus, there is a presumption that these issues should be regulated since the police should assure public safety unlike public fear. Therefore, this paper addresses the issue of police brutality revealing its causes and consequences. The focus of the investigation is the NYPD as one of the famous departments in the US. The study investigates the cases of NYPD brutality, proposes a variety of solutions maintaining the problem and discusses their advantages. One may conclude that the brutality of NYPD officers is a problem but advanced training and emphasis on ethics courses for police would assist resolving it.
Establishment of the Problem
The paper suggests that there is a need for describing the problem of police brutality before providing solutions and discussing their impacts. Thus, the news about police brutality appears in mass media from time to time involving description of various ranges of brutal actions performed by police officers. Among such cases, one may name street fights, uncontrolled weapon usage, the usage of electric weapons against people with heart implants and others. Apparently, one of the saddest cases involves lethal shooting of suspects some part of which is not guilty of anything, which indicates the excessive use of force.
By describing police brutality, people mean the excessive use of force. In this respect, National Institute of Justice claims that “Law enforcement officers should use only the amount of force necessary to mitigate an incident, make an arrest, or protect themselves or others from harm” (“Police Use of Force”). However, there are no valid and persistent chracteristics of what identifies the “excessiveness” of force, so the police officers responding to critical situations may apply it. One presumes that such course of events has two reasons, where the first is the shortage of response time and the second one is the lack of ethical training.
Obviously, the application of police force may have grave consequences. One of the common examples of it is the death of Michael Brown and Eric Garner, who died at the hands of police unarmed (Joy and McMunigal). Addressing the cases of police brutality in NYPD, one should mention the event with Thabo Sefolosha, a basketball player at Atlanta Hawks, who was charged with misdemeanor during the unrelated incident of stabbing at the nightclub (McKinley). The NYPD officers had broken his leg during the arrest. Afterward, he was found not guilty by a Manhattan jury (McKinley).
Therefore, it is evident that NYPD officers tend to act brutally when being in charge. The reason for this presumption is the statistics which indicates that since 2006 the percentage of brutality cases involving NYPD had a 150% increase reaching a number of 5,601 (Keller). Likewise, scholars argue that in recent years a peculiar increase of police brutality relates to the cases involving the representatives of the Black community (Cooper). That is why NYPD requires the implementation of advances policies and practices reducing the percentage of the cases involving excessive use of force. Such measures would recover the reputation of officers and would assure social security.
Proposal of Solution
The paper gives a set of strategies aimed at reducing the cases of police brutality and excessive use of force. First, there is a need for establishing adequate policy regulations defining the notion of “excessive use of force” by the police. This definition should discuss all cases of irrelevant application of the police force. For instance, the policy should clearly define the actions of officers in cases of warning actions of retired people, children with plastic weapons or other similar situations. This task is critical since theree were the cases involving citizens occasionally killed by the police, such as police killing of ailing veteran (Rose and O’Brien), and a 22-year-old man with a plastic weapon at Wallmart (Izadi). The proposed policy should enforce additional psychological, ethical and practical training of officers. Such measures are obligatory in order to assure a valid reaction of the representatives of police in a critical situation. It is assumed that in case officers have enough theoretical practice they would be able to identify irrelevant danger within seconds. Consequently, no people with artificial guns would be occasionally killed.
Furthermore, the policy requires additional ethical training of officers regarding the issues of racism and xenophobia. The reason for this is the latest claim that “one black man is killed by police or vigilantes in our country every 28 hours” (Lewis). It shows that the police have a peculiar fear of the African Americans combined with prejudices that they are the most dangerous criminals. Likewise, these dangers are justified addressing the most perilous blocks in New York. However, the profound ethical and professional training should correct the behavior of police towards the Blacks.
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Explanation of Advantages
The paper estimates that the proposed strategy would drastically decrease the number of the cases of police brutality. The principal cause for this is that police would be aware of the nature, sources and definitions of the notion “the excessive use of force.” As a result, police officers would have enhanced critical toolkit regarding the real life situations. In the case of danger, it would be easier for NYPD officers to identify a relevant response to the suspect’s behavior. Moreover, advanced ethical and professional training would increase the level of adequate reaction of the police regarding the events with face community threats, whereas advanced ethical training would reduce the degree of racism and xenophobia in NYPD. The proposed measures would boost the level of social safety assured by NYPD and recover the reputation of its officers.
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