This paper explores the problem of corruption in the police departments, its typography, causes, and solutions.
The police department in many cities and metropolitans is infiltrated by corruption. Corruption refers to a scenario where a public official violates the organizational norms by accepting the monetary or non-monetary gift in order to influence on their decisions. Corruption is a form of deviance against the organization's policies and practices. The other popular forms of deviance in the police departments include, but not limited to: discrimination, misconduct, sexual harassment, intimidation, excessive force, illegal surveillance, and the use of restricted weapons. The problem of deviance though widespread in the American police agencies may be difficult to measure in the actual terms. The police deviance can be classified as the occupational deviance and the abuse of office. The occupational deviance refers to both criminal and non-criminal activities that may be done by a police officer under the guise of the police authority. On the other hand, the abuse of authority refers to those actions committed by an officer without any motive or malice that tend to injure, trespass, or insult the human dignity (Berry, 2000).
The acts of corruption in the police agencies are broad and vary widely. Some of the common corruption activities include: kickbacks, the corruption of authority, opportunistic threats, the protection of illegal activities, the shakedown of criminals, the traffic citation fixes; the misdemeanor or felony charge fixes; and some direct criminal activities and internal payoffs, e.g., the off-days and work assignments. As a result of numerous cases of the minor corruption, the police departments have become ranked as the most corrupted institutions in America.
The journal explains that the corruption in police agencies is caused by a number of reasons. One of the most common and popular explanations for the corruption in police agencies is the 'bad/rotten apple theory'. Many police chiefs traditionally explain the corruption to be a result of the 'bad apples' in their ranks. The ‘rotten or bad apples’ are the weak individuals that have slipped through the elaborate screening process of most police departments and submitted to temptations found in police work, or those aberrant characters that continue their deviant practices in an environment which provides them the ample opportunity. The corruption in police agencies could also be blamed for the vast opportunities to commit the corruption. Police offices are constantly exposed to multiple opportunities for the corruption as a result of the nature of their work. Coupled by the fact that this work in an environment that lacks the direct supervision, and that they have to make some life-altering decisions any minute of their lives - this makes the police work a hub for the corruption. Because the police regulates the vice activities, they face the numerous opportunities to collect graft on a regular basis. Another cause for the corruption may be the belief of some police officers that they are not paid enough. They may believe that the risks they take deserve more compensation than what they are paid, and, thus, they may feel entitled to more money than their standard payment and benefits. The extent of corruption activities in the general society also influences on police departments. Societies that are plagued with graft can even affect police agencies. If the police operate in the environment full of graft, it is highly likely that they will also be corrupted.
Another cause of rampant incidences of the graft in police departments is the tolerance of citizens and police departments themselves. Where the general populace tolerates the graft and views it as the part of life, the corruption will thrive. If the citizens are being strongly against graft, i.e. they refuse to give bribes to the police officers, then the rate of corruption will reduce. Police departments have also let their guard down on corruption activities and view them as a part of their job. The strict code of silence on the matters in police agencies, and the inadequate leadership are two other contributing factors to prevalent corruption activities in the police force (Hewitt & Regoli, 2009).
The corruption in police agencies has adverse effects that spill over to the public. The widespread corruption may lead to the attrition of public trust. Some measures, therefore, need to be put in place to curb the police corruption. One of the primary ways of curbing the police corruption is to improve pay scales for the police officers. The study of ethics should also be incorporated into the police curriculum at the academy. In addition, the police agency should conduct the regular inter-department transfers of police officers who are likely to be the victims of the corruption. Internal affairs departments should be instituted and the top police chiefs should be outsourced from other departments. For instance, the NYPD boss could come from Los Angeles.
The writer of this journal has explored the various issues and problems facing many police institutions all over the world. The paper is well written and addresses the issue of corruption. The journal emphasizes on the duty of the police being to serve and protect. The corruption erodes the face of the police department and reduces the level of trust held in the force. The journal defines the problem of corruption and gives the boundaries to it. The paper goes on to give in details the causes and possible solutions to the problem of corruption. The writer gives the in-depth analysis of the problem. However, the writer spends less time explaining the effects of corruption on the society. This omission leaves the journal incomplete in the terms of content. The regular use of referrals to other academic writings makes sure that the journal comes out as objective and well-researched. The use of real life case studies in the journal paints the picture of corruption clearly. The writer also uses this as a method to show that corruption is real and it happens in the modern day societies. The results shown in this journal should be enough to sober up the general public and the government and police institutions. Corruption is a problem that gnaws and eats the development and growth of our country. All efforts and methods should be used in a bid to alleviate it.