Our history has progressed from the English law. Many technological advances have
helped shape law enforcement today. Also new ways and ideas of policing have
influenced the change in law enforcement. Law enforcement has become less corrupt
over the years. Women are playing a big role in enforcement. New rules, laws, and
procedures have been put in place to help improve or society.
The criminal justice system of England in the 18th century seems very different
from the view from people that are more familiar with modern institutions. The two most
striking ideas is the way the institutions prosecuted the offenders and the range of
punishments. Prosecution of almost all criminal offenses was private, usually by the
victim. Intermediate punishments for serious offenses were absent. Most people say that
in the early years of the century, English courts imposed only two sentences on convicted
felons. The perpetrator would either be turned them loose or be hung (Beattie, 20-23). It
is hard to believe how far we have come from the early English law.
There have been many dramatic changes since the political era ended. Hard work
and determination is the key to success in the criminal justice system. Officers now
advance through the rank system in progressive steps. This ensures that those promoted
have the necessary background and skills for their new position. By going through the
ranks a level of fairness and properly trained officers are hired. It is very rare for one to
skip from the patrol unit and become an investigative lieutenant. This differs from years
past when a family member or friend was promoted. Politics have still not completely
been abolished from the promotion system, but promotions are now based more on skills
and qualifications not who you know (Kelling).
Community oriented policing is a recent wave in American law enforcement. It
has stemmed after the political and reform era. It turns away from reacting to crimes.
This is a proactive ways of policing. It is not the typical type of crime fighter perspective.
The idea of this is to prevent crime before it happens (Trojanowicz, p2).
A few examples are responding to citizen calls for police assistance, enforcing the
law, maintaining order in the community, providing emergency services, preventing
crime, investigating criminal activity, organized crime intelligence gathering and
investigation, vice control, investigating drug related crimes, crime prevention,
community education, providing police service for special community circumstances, and
working with other law enforcement agencies at the local, state and federal levels
(http://www.chiefwalters.com/philosophy/). This new way of preventing crime has been
strongly approved by many. Typically minority officers approve of community oriented
policing more then white officers. So far community policing has made gains in
improving the safety of communities.
Police abuse is a serious national problem. Both in the past and now police have
been abusing their power. This especially affects young people and minorities. While
many police officers do try to be considerate, and while we all understand the stress and
danger involved in policing, all citizens have a civil right to be treated with respect and
without abuse by the police. Over the years police districts have made improvement in
cleaning up corrupt officers. This is a problem that will always be around. Community
policing is helping fix the relations with the community and the police.
Women have made great strides in law enforcement careers since the 1960's. A
combination of societal changes and legal mandates, have helped pave the way for
women to enter law enforcement in record numbers today. From less than 2 percent in the
early 1970's to just...