Prof. Sarah J Heim
In the United States today, the average citizen is unaware of the corruption that goes on in our Criminal Justice System. Law enforcement and Police Officers are abusing their power. If this goes unnoticed it could grow larger and cause bigger problems in our country. The United States Criminal Justice System is one of the best in the whole world. In other countries there is little or no policing. Police officers in the US are well-trained and it is hard to reach their position without a strong education. A huge quality of a perfect Police Officer is a perfect control of temper because a quiet determined manner has more effect than violent action. But everyone isn’t perfect and there are Police Officers out there that abuse their power and create a dangerous environment for the people around them.
During the 1960’s Police Brutality was at an all time high. Police were being biased and attacked those that they did not like because they had the power to do so. On March 3, 1991 when Rodney King and his friend Bryant Allen were driving in Los Angeles, they refused to stop for an officer trying to pull them over. Instead they increased their speed and when the Police finally stopped the car they viciously beat King for a period of two minutes. He was left with 11 skull fractures, brain damage, and kidney damage. The police officers did not realize though that their actions were being videotaped. They were eventually tried and found not guilty by an all white jury. This set off 6 days of rioting and the case prompted an era of reform. In the book, “Essentials of Criminal Justice” written by Larry Siegel, it notes some of the things done by Police Departments to make sure that Policemen are not abusing their power. These include, “increasing the intelligence standards on the Police Force, officers to be given mental exams to weed out officers that are mentally unfit for the job, and oral boards, which are...
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