Police Abuse And The Police

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Police brutality occurs when there is an abuse of authority and force by the police towards civilians. Police abuse is a topic that has been controversial because some argue that police should use their force while others argue the opposite. One thing that is certain is that police brutality does occur. Many wonder what leads to police abuse and a criminological theory that explains it is Edwin M. Lemerts labeling theory. According to Lemert labelling theory is a theory that argues that there are two types of deviance which are primary and secondary. These two types of deviance lead an officer to abuse of their power. A solution to stop police abuse is based on John Braithwaite’s reintegrative shaming theory. Labelling theory is the most…show more content…
They start with low offenses towards citizens and since they don’t seem to be punished for their acts then they constantly do the same thing and in other cases they commit higher offenses as they go. They can start with insulting people for no reason and escalate to police brutality since they never received a punishment to stop their behavior. “They want to deflect the focus of what’s going on. And they want to jam up the cop by making a complaint.” (Police Foundation) A survey done to police officers and those in higher ranks believe that citizens just file complaints against police officers as a way to be seen as a victim rather than an offender. If the authority believes this then complaints will not be taken seriously therefore police officers will abuse of their power because they have nothing to lose. They do not get punished and they do not get classified as a certain type of person. In addition, Lemert introduces secondary deviance by stating that it occurs when labelling starts happening and the individual or group starts to accept that label as their identity. (Lemert 1972:251) For instance, there are police officers who are involved with police brutality and it may have been going on for a long time but it was until very recent that it has become a serious and delicate issue. Now that almost everyone carries a camera around (cellphone cameras) it has been easier for citizens to record when an officer is brutally beating someone. A key factor in
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