Policing in America Police officers are the gatekeepers of criminal justice.

  

Policing in America

Police officers are the gatekeepers of criminal justice. They are the ones that initiate criminal proceedings against those accused of crimes and send them on their journey through the criminal justice system. Policing has evolved immensely over the centuries. Since the inception of policing in 1066, we have seen a transformation from ill-equipped, untrained, corrupt, and unsupervised watchmen to the highly trained and supervised police agencies we see today.

Question 1: Using Chapter 4, “Police in Society: History and Organization,” of your textbook, complete the table below. 

   

History of the

Police

Time Period

Overview of the

Time Period –    What Defined It

Strengths of

This Time Period

Weaknesses of

This Time Period

Key Developments

(list two per time period)

 

1066–1600

(example)

Policing initially began as villages protecting each   other from thieves and marauders. This system was overseen by a constable,   appointed by the local nobleman. This system expanded into the watch system   that patrolled larger cities and towns. Watchmen patrolled at night to   protect against robberies, burglaries, and fires. They reported to a constable   making up a sort of primitive police agency.

Citizens   were responsible for keeping their cities and villages safe. Giving citizens   this responsibility made it tougher for criminals to commit a crime   undetected.

While   the people of the village were responsible for reporting crimes, there was no   formal training involved and no oversight to ensure that those responsible   for preventing crimes were not the same ones committing crimes.

1. Back then, counties were known as shires, and head law   enforcement agents in a county were known as shire reves, which is where we   get the modern-day term sheriff.

2. In 1326, the Justice of the Peace was created and the   role of law enforcement expanded beyond just reporting crimes. Justices then also   served warrants, investigated crimes, and supervised the local watchmen.

 

1800–1900

 

1900–1960

 

1960–1980

 

1980–present
  (Community Policing period)

Question 2: Which time period do you believe has had the greatest impact on policing, and why? Be sure to include your rationale.

Question 3: Social media and technology have greatly affected policing in the past ten years. Please review the links provided for this week on technology and policing along with Chapter 4 in your textbook as you prepare to discuss how technology affects policing in the 21st century. 

· How Technology Is Changing Law Enforcement.

· Social Media’s Impact on Incidents Involving Police Use of Deadly Force.

· How Cell Phone Video Impacts Police Work [Video].

· The Benefits (and Limitations) of Body Cameras on Police Officers [Video].

Choose one of these three—cell phones, social media, or police body cams—and explain how it affects policing in today’s society. Describe the pros and cons and provide examples.