Essay On Police Discretion and Discriminatory Enforcement
1. Discretionary enforcement refers to the decision by a law enforcement officer not to administer a power, that is within their right and authority to do, based on their judgment and analysis of the situation (Tieger, 1971). An example of discretionary enforcement would be a police officer who stops a car for driving over the speed limit but decides not to issue a speeding ticket because the driver is from the officer’s home town. Alternatively, selective enforcement refers to the decision by a law enforcement officer to administer a power, that is within his right and authority, against some parties but not others. An example of selective enforcement would be when a district attorney decides to prosecute an indigent defendant arrested for possession of marijuana but not prosecute his wealthy friend that was also arrested for the possession of marijuana.
2. Sir Robert Peel’s “Principles of Law Enforcement” absolutely have applications in today’s policing efforts. For instance, one of the more recent trends in policing id community oriented policing (COPS) which emphasizes the establishment and development of police-community relations that allow police to understand potential criminal threats, criminals, or the underlying issues that produce criminal behavior in a community. Peel’s principles, provides a regulatory framework. In order to effectively accomplish these goals. For instance, Peel stressed that police effectiveness depends upon “public approval” of its existence and acts. Moreover, Peel also argued that police must side-by-side with the community rather than from above t in order to get the best results.
3. Alice Stebbins Wells is important to American policing because she is considered to be the first ever female appointment to police officer. Accordingly, she broke the male-female divide in law enforcement (Higgins, 1951). The story of Ms. Wells was not simply that she was chosen by her colleagues to be recognized as a police officer. Instead, the story is that after working for a number of years as a social worker for the Los Angeles police force, Wells had to petition the city authorities to issue a formal acknowledgement of her contributions to policing but also the role that woman officer play in all policing activities especially those that involve, are focused on, or touch on issues that woman have traditional shown more concern for than men such as domestic violence, child abuse, and sexual assault.
4. Implied powers refer to those powers of the government that are not explicitly stated in the U.S. Constitution or the relevant state constitution, but believed to be necessary for state authorities to achieve activate or implement those powers of the government that are explicitly stated in the federal and/or state constitutions. Most crime is local, which means that the regulation of most criminal activity is the duty and responsibility of state and local governments (Kaci, 1998). Under the Constitution, state and local authorities have broad “police powers” to enact laws that, among other things, protect the safety, order, and security of the community. The implied powers within this definition suggests that state and local authority may take whatever actions are necessary and proper for it to ensure that they can fulfill their duties to provide for the safety and security of the commission.
5. Stress is a fundamental fact of law enforcement. Accordingly, programs and initiative that offer police officer the ability to manage how they approach, deal with, and manage stress will necessarily relate to their ability to eliminate or decrease the adverse influences of stress in their police work.
Higgins, L. (1951). Historical background of policewomen’s service. Retrieved from http://scholarlycommons.law.northwestern.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?aricle=3865&context=clc
Kaci, J.H. 1998. Criminal Procedure. Incline Village, NV: Copperhouse Publishing Company.
Tieger, J.H. (). Police discretion and discriminatory enforcement. Retrieved from http://scholarship.law.duke.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=2345&context=dl