Law Enforcement Technology

JUL 2015

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A F R E S H A P P R O A C H T O M A N A G E M E N T ON YOUR WATCH Carole Moore A 12-year veteran of police work, Carole Moore has served in patrol, forensics, crime prevention and criminal investigations, and has extensive training in many law enforcement disciplines. She is the author of "The Last Place You'd Look: True Stories of Missing Persons and the People Who Search for Them" (Rowman & Littlefield, Spring 2011). She welcomes comments at Keep up with Moore online: Amazon: B004APO40S 54 Law Enforcement Technology July 2015 Peel's 9 Principles… Are they still relevant? Yes. Yes they are. I n 1829, Sir Robert Peel convinced the British Parliament to establish the London Metropolitan Police (the Met) as an alterna- tive to the military, keeping law and order among the civilian population. His ideas still guide and influence police work nearly two cen- turies after he wrote them. • The basic mission for which police exist is to prevent crime and disorder as an alternative to the repression of crime and disorder by military force and severity of legal punishment. This mission has not changed. • The ability of the police to perform their duties is dependent upon public approval of police existence, actions, behavior, and the ability of the police to secure and maintain public respect. • The police must secure the willing cooperation of the public in voluntary observance of the law to be able to secure and maintain public respect. The above two principles go hand-in-hand with one another. Police must be able to work within the framework of society in order to be effective. • The degree of cooperation of the public that can be secured diminishes, proportionately, the necessity for the use of physical force and compulsion in achieving police objectives. Community cooperation trumps the use of force. No good cop prefers to fight rather than to find common ground. • The police seek and preserve public favor, not by catering to public opinion, but by constantly demonstrating absolutely impartial service to the law, in complete independence of policy, and without regard to the justice or injustice of the substance of individual laws; by ready offering of individual service and friendship to all members of the society without regard to their race or social standing ; by ready exercise of courtesy and friendly good humor; and by ready offering of individual sacrifice in protecting and preserving life. Despite what the mayor of Baltimore and others have intimated, the vast majority of police officers not only believe this, but uphold this principle. • The police should use physical force to the extent necessary to secure observance of the law or to restore order only when the exercise of persuasion, advice and warning is found to be insufficient to achieve police objectives; and police should use only the minimum degree of physical force which is necessary on any particular occasion for achieving a police objective. This is what we are taught in the academy and it still holds true, whether on the streets of a major city or a remote rural highway. • The police at all times should maintain a relationship with the public that gives reality to the historic tradition that the police are the public, and that the public are the police; the police are the only members of the public who are paid to give full-time attention to duties which are incumbent on every citizen in the interest of the community welfare. The only thing that separates us from the people we protect is our badge, training and their consent. Period. • The police should always direct their actions toward their functions and never appear to usurp the powers of the judiciary by avenging individuals or the state, or authoritatively judging guilt or punishing the guilty. We are neither judge, nor jury. • The test of police efficiency is the absence of crime and disorder, not the visible evidence of police action in dealing with them. Our numbers have been very good. Modern polic- ing keeps our population and our streets safe. Keep Peel's principles in mind when you hit the streets. There's a reason they've endured. ■

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