Use Of Force And Use Of Discretion

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Running head: USE OF FORCE AND USE OF DISCRETION IN POLICING 1 USE OF FORCE AND USE OF DISCRETION IN POLICING 13 The Use of Force and Use of Discretion in Policing Shardell M. Thomas American Military University Contents What is Use of Force? 3 Use of Force Continuum 4 Police Code of Silence 6 Role of Training 8 Role of Administration 9 Conclusion 10 References 13 What is Use of Force? Police have been given the responsibility to enforce the laws of a government and to ensure peace in the communities in which they operate. The police have a necessary role to aid the government in maintaining social control, and in carrying out their tasks they have been given the authority to use force. The United States…show more content…
When the public gains knowledge of police misconduct in the line of duty, acts of protests, demonstrations, strikes and civil disobedience are conducted in response (Palmiotto, p.15) When police engage in behaviors that results in them improperly using the authority given to them to oppress, harm or kill individuals without legal justification, the spotlight tends to shine bright on the officer and their department. This creates unwanted complications for law enforcement administrators and can damagingly impact the agency’s ability to carry out its mission. Improper application of force can degrade relationships with the community, disrupt the flow of control within the department, and result in the loss of manpower and financial resources due to legal fees and lawsuits launched by the victims of the excessive force. To prevent excessive use of force from occurring, departments have initiated guidelines for officers to adhere to when deciding to use force to subdue a suspect. These guidelines are a part of the use of force continuum. Use of Force Continuum The use of force continuum is what police agencies use to provide guidance to their departments on the application of force. The continuum takes in consideration the officers ability to handle a situation. If the officer is unable to handle the situation by using the minimum amount of force, then the officer can escalate to a greater level of force until the point of compliance.
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