Police Brutality

2853 Words Feb 2nd, 2014 12 Pages
Police Protality: Introduction Police brutality has been and continues to be of major concern in society. First of all, police brutality is a term used to describe the excessive use of physical force, assault, verbal attacks or slurs, and threats by any law enforcement officer. Efforts to police communities, throughout history, have been tainted by brutality ans abuse of power to some degree. The term police brutality is commonly used very loosely to any and all forms of police misconduct. When in reality, the excessive force element of police misconduct is what clearly defines police brutality and abuse. By taking a quick look at http://www.injusticeeverywhere.com/?page_id=3336, we can see that …show more content…
Cases of police brutality appear to have been frequent then, with "the routine bludgeoning of citizens by patrolmen armed with nightsticks or blackjacks."[5] Large-scale incidents of brutality were associated with labor strikes, such as the Great Railroad Strike of 1877, the Pullman Strike of 1894, the Lawrence textile strike of 1912, the Ludlow massacre of 1914, the Steel strike of 1919, and the Hanapepe massacre of 1924.
Portions of the population may perceive the police to be oppressors. In addition, there is a perception that victims of police brutality often belong to relatively powerless groups, such as minorities, the disabled, the young, and the poor.[6]
Hubert Locke writes,
When used in print or as the battle cry in a black power rally, police brutality can by implication cover a number of practices, from calling a citizen by his or her first name to a death by a policeman 's bullet. What the average citizen thinks of when he hears the term, however, is something midway between these two occurrences, something more akin to what the police profession knows as "alley court"—the wanton vicious beating of a person in custody, usually while handcuffed, and usually taking place somewhere between the scene of the arrest and the station house.[7]

Screenshots of King lying down and being beaten by LAPD officers
In 1991, Los Angeles police harshly beat African American Rodney King while a civilian videotaped the incident, leading to extensive media coverage

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