Expectations of First-Line-Supervisor in Law Enforcement

Topics: Law, Law enforcement agency, Police Pages: 4 (1180 words) Published: July 25, 2013
Expectations of a First-Line Supervisor in a Law Enforcement Agency By
Daniel Parra

Supervision in the Criminal Justice Field
Professor Chavez
May 15, 2013


The first-line supervisor in law enforcement is commonly referred to as a Sergeant. These positions are of great importance to a law enforcement agency. There are many pros and cons to becoming a first-line supervisor. These positions are tasked with the expectation of maintaining a level of balance within the patrol ranks, as well as remaining fair and impartial among those ranks. There are also many expectations of subordinates. In order for both parties to meet these expectations requires a close working relationship.

The first-line supervisor in a law enforcement agency is expected to assume the role as a liaison between an administration and subordinates. Administration depends on their first-line supervisors to be responsible and handle all incidents that could possibly bring precarious liability upon the agency. They must possess the skills necessary to relay information from administration to the subordinates. Some information from an administration may be difficult to understand, it is the first-line supervisor’s responsibility to translate the information to their subordinates. When a law enforcement agency does not have a strong group of first-line supervisors, that agency will suffer greatly with communication issues. The supervisor must be able to understand the law enforcement department’s written policy and be able to translate this information as well. Failure to translate this information exposes the supervisor to the possibility of civil liability. The first-line supervisor is expected to make on the spot legal decisions, which could impact not only themselves but the agency as well. One of the difficult expectations of the first-line supervisor is the ability to maintain a close working relationship with all subordinates. A supervisor must be able to...

References: More, H. W., & Miller, L. S. (2007). Effective Police Supervision. (5th ed.). Cincinnati, Ohio: Anderson Publishing.
The Problem: Ineffective first line supervisors. (n.d.). Retrieved from www.srassociatesinc.org/files/TheProblem.pdf
Scarano, S., & Jones, T. (2000). Following by example. law and order. (Vol. 48).
Hilgert, R., & Haimann, T. (1991). Supervision: Concepts and practices of management. (5th ed.). Cincinnati, Ohio: South-Western Publishing Company.
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