The first example of the SWAT Team raiding a suspected meth house showed no ethics at all. The officers probably assumed no one was home since they pulled over their suspect away from his home, When they see a man coming down the stairs they should have noticed a golf club un his hand not a gun. The use of their power in this case was not justified even if he resisted non of the officers would have been hurt by the helmet and body armor they wear. Their use of power was unjustified (Balko, 2013). The second example where a homeless man is carrying a knife and would not drop it was shot. It was legal for him to have and carry the knife and if a bystander has to ask a police officer why he shot him tells me that he was not doing anything threatening with the knife. He was shot because he did not drop it.
This is the shortcomings of the officer culture of leadership in his department because the officer was cleared of any wrong doing. His use of power was unjustified (Balko, 2013). The third example is where the police raid a recording studio thinking there are a large quantity of drugs located there. They only find personal consumption quantity and they try to decide what equipment in the recording studio they will take on asset forfeiture grounds. The police conversations were recorded because the equipment was left on when they raided the home. This is clearly an ethical problem within their agency with the leadership and the culture they have developed.
Their use of power was unjustified (Balko, 2013). When you see your own leadership in your own agency does things that are not quite by the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP), it can give you the understanding that if you copy what they do or their wrong you would be justified. The author of this paper watched a correctional sergeant spray a can of pepper spray into a cell just to mess with the inmate that was inside, no other reason. An investigation was held and the sergeant was given a verbal reprimand.
The officers who worked directly for this sergeant also felt that if they broke the SOP, this sergeant would have their back and help in justifying their actions like not pulling inmates out of their cells for showers during their shower time, purposely dropping their food trays on the floor or spitting in their food. This action happens and in the report that is turned in it gets justified by that sergeant signing off on the action.
Balko, R. (2013, September 10). Radley Balko on the 3 Worst Cases of Police Abuse in 2011 [Video file]. Retrieved from University of Phoenix Media Library website: https://portal.phoenix.edu/medialibrary/videodetails.05V110608001512139.html
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