The US Police Force

The US Police Force

Introduction

The fact that the US police are the sole institution with the right to use gun and other weapons, as well as lethal force- they have the power to use coercive force to gain citizen compliance, and this is well stipulated in the 14th Amendment. However, their exercise of this power has sometimes resulted to mass killings and other inhumane activities, and this forms the main arguments of the paper.

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Discuss how the proportionality of police use of force is judged?

The law restricts the police force from using substantially more coercive force that is proportional to the law enforcement aim at stake.

Self and third party defense

The law authorizes the police force to use coercive force for self-defense and in protecting a third party from physical harm (Associated Press, 2016). In the circumstances of an imminent threat of physical harm or death to the police officers or other people in the society, use of coercive and lethal force is allowed in order to subdue the violent crime perpetrator against the act.

Proportion to the threat of harming the society or the police officers

The law restricts the use of non-coercive force when its effect is likely to be substantially beyond the proportion to threat of harm to the public or the officers or to the extent of threatening property damage (Timothy, 2018). For example, in case non-lethal force is utilized in seizure, such force may only get employed as it is reasonably proportionate to the threat posed in conducting the search, and the interests of the society are at a stake while seeing that seizure.

Why is the public often outraged by what the courts deem the justified use of force by officers?

The question of when is force justified?

The police’s use of lethal force is contradicted by the court of law based on the past judicial rulings (Associated Press, 2016). For instance, the case of Tennessee v Garner in 1985 when the Supreme Court hold that a police cannot utilize lethal force against a suspect unless the suspect significantly threatens officers or others in the fleet. Later in 1989, the Supreme Court ruled in Graham v Connor that the police who utilize coercive force should get judged based on the totality of circumstance and standard of “objective reasonableness”.

The police use excessive force

The use of lethal force results to injury or death which is against humanity and the right to live (Jason, 2015). For example, the cases of Graham Leave who was armed by police officers but still was denied justice by the court who argued the police were justified to use excessive force out of suspicion.

What are some possible solutions to this issue?

Rehabilitation

This entails peaceful arrest of criminals and rehabilitating them while in prison to transform their violent behavior (Timothy, 2018). For example, while in the rehabilitation unit- criminals get educated on new courses such as carpentry, masonry and other to ensure that once they get released from jail- they become responsible citizens.

Training of police officers

The US police force should train the officers’ strategies of diffusing situations without the use of coercive force (Jason, 2015). Officers should get trained on how to quickly think and find alternative approaches of cooling and taming violent crime behavior.

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Conclusion

The US police use coercive force to compel citizens to maintain peace and order. When self-defense, defense of others, and protection of criminals from escaping custody is required; coercive force is used. However, the police should proportionally use force significantly to the violence caused. Instead of using coercive force which sometimes gets deadly, the police should be trained of new approaches of conflict resolution in order to rehabilitate the crime perpetrators.

References

Associated Press. (2016). When are police justified in using deadly force? Los Angels Times, 1-6.

Jason, L. S. (2015). When Should Cops be Allowed to Use Deadly Force. The Atlantic, 2-15.

Timothy, R. (2018). Facts About Use of Force in Law Enforcement. Criminology Careers, 1-12.

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