No matter how hard an agency tries, there will always be allegations of misconduct and actual misconduct by law enforcement officers. While the reasons for this are important, you are going to explore how these allegations of misconduct are investigated.
Misconduct is generally investigated in one of two ways:
1. Allegations are investigated by other police officers who understand all the training, rules and regulations of policing, the split second decision making and the “best practices” of policing.
Depending on the seriousness of the allegation, the investigation is either done by a specialized unit, usually called “Internal Affairs,” or something similar, investigates the allegation. This unit is specially selected and trained to investigate allegations of serious misconduct. Or, the investigation, for the less serious allegations, is done by a supervisor, usually a manager (likely a lieutenant, as opposed to a sergeant) in the officer’s chain of command.
2. Allegations are investigated by citizens with no law enforcement experience, who understand what the community expects of it’s police officers. This is usually called a “Citizen’s Complaint Review Board,” or any other similar name
Do some research on how complaints are handled in various agencies. Then write how you, as chief, would have each of the of the following types of incidents investigated. Be sure to include who would investigate the event, why you selected that method, and why you did not chose the other method. Be sure to cite to your source(s) that helped you make your decision in APA format. These choices are the only way to investigate for the purposes of this discussion, there will not be any grand juries.
1. A police-involved shooting.
2. A situation where a prisoner alleges they were beaten, but no evidence exists to support the claim. The person says the officers punched him repeatedly in the face, but there is no signs of injury or evidence of medical treatment.
3. A citizen alleges that an officer used profanity towards them and called them names.
4. An officer loses their name tag.
5. An officer is involved in a minor on duty crash.
6. An officer uses pepper spray to arrest a suspect in a crime.
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