Police Corruption

2732 WordsOct 31, 200811 Pages
Police corruption is a complex issue. Police corruption or the abuse of authority by a police officer, acting officially to fulfill personal needs or wants, is a growing problem in the United States today. Things such as an Internal Affairs department, a strong leadership organization, and community support are just a few considerations in the prevention of police corruption. An examination of a local newspaper or any police-related publication in an urban city during any given week would most likely have an article about a police officer that got caught committing some kind of corrupt act. Police corruption has increased dramatically with the illegal cocaine trade, with officers acting alone or in-groups to steal money from dealers or…show more content…
At the urging of the Knapp Commission, the investigative body heard Officer Frank Serpico and other police officers describe a citywide network of rogue cops(New York Times, March 29, 1993: p 8). Later, in the same Manhattan hearing room where the Knapp Commission once sat, the new body heard Dowd and other officers add another lurid chapter to the old story of police corruption. Many American cities were now worried that drug money will turn their departments bad (New York Times, April 3, 1993: p. 5). Reports have shown that the large majority of corrupt acts by police involve payoffs from both the perpetrators and the victims of victimless crimes. The Knapp commission in New York found that although corruption among police officers was not restricted to this area, the bulk of it involved payments of money to the police from gamblers and prostitutes (Knapp Commission Report, 1973: PP 1-3). The cops who were engaged in corruption 20 years ago took money to cover up the criminal activity of others, says Michael Armstrong, who was chief counsel to the Knapp Commission. Now it seems cops have gone into competition with street criminals (Newsweek, Oct 21,1992: p. 18). Gambling syndicates in the 1950's were protected by a payoff system more elaborate than the Internal Revenue Service. Pervasive corruption may have lessened in recent years, as many experts believe, but individual examples seem to have grown more outrageous. In March of 1993,

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