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Month dd, 2011
In the United States, policing agencies at all levels participate in various activities and operations. Responsibility, naming, function, authority, and jurisdictions vary at local, state, and federal levels of law enforcement. Although there is little uniformity among them—and the relationships between them need to improve—these agencies face the same dangers, use similar weapons and technology, and geared toward the same future of law enforcement. The Dangers of policing
Police officers are frequently faced with danger; it is part of the job description. Physical harm is one of the greatest dangers for police officers. An officer could be assaulted or attacked by an armed criminal at any time. A lack of adequate back up is another danger for police officers. Although a police officer should not pursue any situation in which he or she is widely outnumbered, and without back up, this is always a possibility. At times, an officer will offer to transport someone who is experiencing car trouble; police never know when a person will try to attack. Physical harm and death are not the only dangers of policing. Stress-related illness and personal-life turmoil are also realistic dangers of police work. Demanding jobs may take a serious toll on an officer’s life and health, if safety and stress are not managed properly (Walker & Katz, 2008). September 11, 2001 brought another realistic danger of policing to the surface. In the past nine years, the federal government has taken precautionary measures toward responding to terrorist threats and attacks. However, local law enforcement agencies must work to prepare their communities for future terrorism. Local police departments must manage community fear associated with terrorism, develop preventative strategies against terrorism, and respond to terrorist threats and attacks. Most local policing agencies within the United States have been working diligently to plan for, prevent, and reduce citizen fear of terrorism. To maximize resource potential in an instance of terrorism, law enforcement officials are developing strategies, procedures, and practices for public security. Nevertheless, terrorism is always a danger for police officers (Eck, 2001). As the United States approach the future, police dangers should help law enforcement take extra precautionary measures toward safety. Better training, improved safety equipment, advancements in emergency medical care, and the development of cutting-edge proactive body armor are essential to the improvement of safety for future law enforcement officials. Although predicting an individual’s behavior is nearly impossible, police will be more secure after gaining experience in new and better training; developing and implementing better emergency and safety equipment will also assist police in maintaining their safety. The best way to improve safety is through preparation (PoliceOne.com, 2010). Less Than Lethal Weapons
Quite frequently, law enforcement officers are faced with controlling perpetrators. Situations in which perpetrators are not armed, non-lethal weapons are often used by police. Non-lethal weapons may include shock devices, chemical agents, directed energy beams, sensory controllers, and other weapons that focus more on control, and less on impact.
Mater Instructor Sergeant Kevin Orcutt recently developed the Orcutt Police Nunchaku (OPN III). Differing from traditional nun chucks, the non-lethal OPN III device was designed to control unarmed criminals, without breaking their bones (Orcutt Police Defensive Systems, Inc., 2010). Oleoresin Capsicum (OC)...
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