Oversight in Policing Police Wrongs Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

The decree also requires a negotiation with the police union and representation by attorney. (Simmons, 2008) Thus there are problems and countermeasures that could effectively bring down the power of investigating complaints.

(d) Critique the effectiveness of citizen oversight as a police management tool, and early warning device:

The tracking system essentially consists of identifying personnel who are exhibiting chronic misconduct patterns. This system could check the unconstitutional violations both with the citizens and within the department as a whole. The intervention systems are good in managing the police and are based on the principle of preventing misconduct by monitoring the police. It was as stated by the Christopher Commission's analysis of one thousand eight hundred Los Angeles police officers showed that the top five percent of the officers were involved in 20% of complaints and the top 10% accounted for 33%. (Simmons, 2008)

Following that the early warning system is installed in New Jersey, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, and a host of other cities all across the U.S. As mentioned earlier the use of the consent decrees for use of force and investigation of force incidents are meant to be actual safeguards against errant behavior. In practice it is not possible to use these for monitoring by the citizen groups because of the technical nature of the reports and the departmental interests and nature involved.

(e) Discuss the "sustain rate" and how this issue can affect citizen oversight agencies:

Review showed that there was a lack of political will and citizens were not even aware of the changed facilities. (Goldsmith; Hart, 2000) Mediation is a promising alternative to the handling of citizen complaints against police officers. This therefore has to have a very different approach that seeks to make the progress of citizen complaints transparent. This has to be more conciliatory with communication and understanding rather than blame and fact finding. (Walker, 2002)

There are lots of complex issues involved in mediation and the types of cases that ought to be selected involves multiple dimensions like racial, or ethnic, or gender issues. In these cases a careful plan ought to have been chalked out with an appropriate system designed that is cost effective. Because the city will have to bear the financial burden the sustainability is in question. For example the study conducted in Albuquerque Police Department showed that the City Attorney and the Risk Management office are not functioning satisfactorily with oversight of the police. The City of Albuquerque settles tort claims of over $5 million annually. This has raised questions over the quality of the officers and there was also no exercise their oversight authority. There were the report states a need for the city administrators to oversee the Police Department. ("VIII. Other Oversight") Thus the sustainability is in question.

(f) What other issues do you see as important in discussing citizen review of police conduct?

There is a new growth of private policing which is ignored at the moment. The persons who are anguished over the powers of the public police have not considered the actions of private police that corporate entitles are creating and use as the first line of defense. The private police provide more policing services in the United States than the regular police. There is a distinction in law between the public and private police. Citizen remedies are against the public police and the private police are not constrained by the constitutional criminal procedure or by state regulation. Thus the private police are shielded by the employers and there is no remedy for this paradox in the act. (Joh, 2004) Private police setups must also be brought under the citizen oversight program.


The citizen oversight is a brilliant concept that needs to be implemented with an independent authority that is federally controlled in such a manner that both the citizen and the police are able to get redressal and where it can be reported the possibility of violation by the police so that alternate directives could be passed. As of now the functioning is dismal.


Alexander, Arthur. (2005) "Panel Polishes Police Oversight System"

The Register-Guard, p. d1.

Fielding, Nigel. (1995) "Community Policing."

Clarendon Press: Oxford.

Goldsmith, Andrew John; Hart, Colleen Lewis. (2000) "Civilian oversight of policing:

governance, democracy, and human rights" Hart Publishing.

Joh, Elizabeth E. (2004) "The Paradox of Private Policing" Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology, vol. 95, no. 1, pp: 26-31.

Kenney, Dennis Jay; McNamara, Robert P. (1999) "Police and Policing: Contemporary

Issues." Praeger: Westport, CT.

N.A. (2010) "VIII. Other Oversight" Retrieved 20 January, 2010 from http://www.cabq.gov/council/completed-reports-and-studies/apd-oversight-mechanisms/viii-other-oversight

Simmons, Kami Chavis. (2008) "The Politics of Policing: Ensuring Stakeholder

Collaboration in the Federal Reform of Local Law Enforcement Agencies" Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology, vol. 98, no. 2.

Skogan, Wesley G; Hartnett, Susan M. (1997) "Community Policing, Chicago Style"

Oxford University Press: New…

Sources Used in Document:


Alexander, Arthur. (2005) "Panel Polishes Police Oversight System"

The Register-Guard, p. d1.

Fielding, Nigel. (1995) "Community Policing."

Clarendon Press: Oxford.

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