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Though the potential for difficulty with the policy is there the standard is set for the concrete results of removing individuals from positions of physical power who do not have the skills to utilize the power in a safe and effective manner to protect and serve without further victimizing the community.
Though some would argue that such tactics do not take into account anomalous actions, such as in cases where individuals show little sign of abuse potential before incidences occur, but it is clear that these are anomalous and should not be regarded as the most significant risk of the program. Another concern would be that the program will deter officers from performing important tasks as a result of the fear of association with a permanent mark on ones record, as a result of a use of force incident. This may be a real fear, as the system may result in such actions by some, but for most officers the skills they have to adequately deal with any given situation will prevail and their desire to perform their work in the best possible manner will likely prevail.
The law enforcement community has weathered many such changes and just as they have prevailed over the growth or technology and the increased burden of documentation this change toward real accountability will not drive the quality officer from his or her essential work but will likely instead simply change the manner in which they perform their non-policing tasks. Accountability and high standards all over the nation and in deed the world, through such preemptive actions as tracking and documentation of actions have improved policing substantially and continually redirect law enforcement officials and individuals to the ideal goals of the field, to protect and serve. Additionally, such a system will serve to further document those officers who are in the best position for commendation as well as promotion and provide the community with a better understanding of the circumstances and needs of the police force and the community in situations of the threat to peace.
5. Discuss the pros and cons of technology in policing today. Think about technology's impact on police officers, police agencies, and citizens. Will federal funding reductions reduce the ability of local law enforcement to purchase technology in the future? If so, how will this be overcome? If not, what resources do you see as replacing the federal funds?
Technology in policing has created a system that is positively groundbreaking in possibilities and also technically challenged by concerns of cost and optimal training and utilization of resources. Areas of communication and safety for officers and the community have greatly improved the speed at which officers can respond to and appropriately deal with problems in the field, in an area where speed of response can make the difference between a potential problem and a real problem.
The utilization of cell technology as well as dedicated wireless laptops and digital cameras in patrol cars have probably change the face of law enforcement more than anything else in the last 50 years. The field of investigation and potentially conviction has also been substantially altered by technology growth and additionally increased the cost of policing substantially. The police force, to a large degree has become dependent on such technologies while still relying heavily on what many would call "good old-fashioned policing." The pros and cons of the use of technology in policing are many, including the cost training and lastly the social collective fear of the overemphasis of technology as a guiding force for reduced rights and privacy.
The level of technology growth has mirrored that of technology growth in the private sector as the possibilities of information technology seem exponential.
With technology, the face of crime has also changed, requiring policing to adapt to new avenues of crime and prevention, including everything from electronic child predators and electronic call girls to identity theft and electronic fraud. In the collective of communication and internet technology it is likely that the police force will be able to continue to utilize unique avenues of technology for policing, as just like in the private sector physical and intellectual technologies will continue to be improved, with a significant reduction in relative cost, with every new technology.
The real problem with technology in policing, and especially with regard to affordability is not really found in enforcement so much as in investigation where technologies are frequently specialized and even databases require significant man hour commitment by many agencies and individuals. Technology of forensics makes for great television drama but is also challenged significantly by the cost of the utilization of such technology. This issue of affordability is especially difficult with regard to forensics, as specialized technology tends not to reduce in cost as significantly as other areas of technology, utilized over many fields do.
While the use of quality forensic science services is widely accepted as a key to effective crime fighting, there currently exists in the United States a crisis... caused by a shortage of forensic science resources. The criminal justice system relies heavily upon forensic science services as an integral part of the investigative and judicial process; however, these services have been long neglected. While billions of federal dollars have been spent on virtually every other criminal justice component -- police officers, the courts, prisons, and information technology -- the highly technical and expensive forensic sciences have received very little federal support. In most states and municipalities, funding has simply not kept pace with the increasing demand for crime laboratory analyses. This neglect has resulted in severe backlogs in forensic laboratories nationwide (Sheppo, 2000, pp. 2-3). (Schwabe, Davis & Jackson, 2001, p. 74-75)
Up to this point many technology-based systems and programs have been supplemented by federal funding, but even in the face of increased threats such funding may run out and leave the individual, especially small police forces in jeopardy of the loss of technology or the inability to upgrade to meet the demands of the changing face of crime or even quickly communicate between individuals and departments. (Schwabe, Davis & Jackson, 2001, p. 46) the foundational issues with regard to the utilization of technology and its cost to departments have yet to be answered fully, but likely they will, slowly and with many changes.
Lastly the society demands for technological policing, coupled with the collective fear of loss of rights of privacy is a puzzle the law enforcement community has yet to fully respond to. The public wishes for police to rely on servaialnce, both private and public to prevent and solve crimes and yet does not wish to be recorded and watched through the same system. This is an issue that will likely escalate in the coming years, partly as a result of terrorism…[continue]
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