Concepts of Law Enforcement: Pursuing Criminal Justice
Law-enforcement practices can be traced back to the year 1016 when King William attacked and conquered England. His ruling style was oppressive and never considered people’s right to freedom. The king partitioned England into military areas and assigned each area an officer, who could control it. In addition to these officers, he assigned judges who went round handling criminal cases.
Historical crimes that the judges dealt with were a disturbance of peace, murder, violence, arson, and robbery. Most of the historical law enforcement systems were centralized and had less emphasis on individual needs. Many leaders applied the divide and rule system of ruling. A good example of such a structure was the military ruling system of the Roman Empire, which had no organized police units until the fifth century.
In 1663, London introduced the police system, hence making it the first city to use the police to combat crime. The practice spread to other parts of the United Kingdom and the United States. For instance, in 1834, Canada introduced a police unit known as The Toronto police. With time, the law-enforcing strategies have undergone transitions to meet the changing crime trends.
In the current society, many take the law-enforcement strategies as practices that give certain groups of people power over others. This kind of power directly relates to the amount of force applied by the law-enforcing agencies (Barefoot, 1997, Para.1-17). Law enforcement is the main function of judicial bodies, the police, sheriffs, constables, and bailiffs.
To protect human rights and guarantee that criminals are accountable for their offenses, all law-enforcing bodies must ensure that justice prevails. Justice encompasses ethical and unbiased procedures of handling all individuals by the law-enforcing bodies.
Acceptable practices in pursuit of justice are possible through employing the public’s preponderance views, consulting the authorities, and using the reasoning power (Christensen, 2009, Para. 1-3). My studies at the University of Phoenix and the experiences that I have gone through, coupled with the observations that I have made, have, to a great extent, developed my description and perspective of justice.
Criminal justice is a process undergoing many transitions. Individuals learn justice values and ethics through studies or other theoretical means. Studying criminology and justice does not guarantee one that the application of the knowledge will help to contain criminology. The facts only help one to apply justice practices that emphasize truth and fairness.
Research has shown that most police units never arrest criminals in person, but rather, independent sources do so. Moreover, most criminals are never reprimanded as they should by the justice system, but most of them find their way out of the system due to varying reasons.
As Lindsay argues, a good number of them escape justice due to lack of Crime supporting evidence, poor judicial systems, and reprehensible handling of cases by the police. In addition to local law enforcing bodies, countries have laws that guide international practices.
To ensure global peace, the United Nations Security Council provides additional laws that govern international practices and crimes (2007, Para. 2-5. Main functions played by law-enforcers are providing security, fighting terrorism, investigation of crimes, and prosecution.
Practices of Law Enforcement
When dealing with Crime, law-enforcers follow clearly defined principles and practices. The law’s main aim is to ensure all investigations are successful while guaranteeing the victim’s safety. These practices are social order, pre-empting anti-social behavior, and dangerous event public logistics.
The majority of social issues have effects that affect society either directly or indirectly. For the peaceful co-existence of communities, it is essential for governments to consider social factors when implementing laws. Social order determines a society’s political and economic systems. Common social problems arise during law-enforcement and law-making exercises.
Such problems may possibly arise from the police, justice systems, law-making bodies, and other discipline administering bodies. The disintegration of any social order poses great threats to security. In addition, threats to social order may be in the form of practices that undermine certain power structures. This is most cases violates the valued social morals, values, and individual attitudes (Norcella & Jamrozik, 1998, pp.180-186).
Some actions by individuals deviate from specific cherished societal norms, hence classified by legal systems as crimes. Society members or authorities in power construct social orders, which their members must follow. In addition, outside forces may impose specific social orders through force or war.
These orders determine the electing systems, governing rules, and mode of conduct. In combating Crime, it is very important for all law-enforcing agents to consult a specific social order, be it international or national. For example, many people under murder charges do not face the hangman’s noose in some countries (because such communities view it as a taboo) (Norcella & Jamrozik, 1998, p.184-190).
Antisocial behavior is one of the most common public distresses. Anti-social order is legal cases against individuals who act against the set societal morals. These offenses are often associated with harm, intimidation, alcoholism, stealing, loitering, distress, and harassment.
The police put many efforts when dealing with such problems even though, in most cases, the strategies applied never produce the desired outcomes. Strategies used when introducing new rules in societies pose conflicting challenges to criminal justice.
Due to increased anxiety in the public domain, governments have integrated behavioral change measures that govern their citizenry. Although these regulations have largely solved this problem, many of them have eroded most criminal justice practices (Hodgkinson & Tilley, 2007, pp. 385-400).
Whenever Crime occurs, it poses a great risk to the public. In several cases, the witnesses face intimidation, threats, and sometimes violence from group gangs. Police units, however, help to control and manage Crime even though, at times, the control practices they use to violate human rights due to the amount of brutal force used.
Examples of Changes since September 11, 2001 Terrorism
The September 11 attacks led to many changes in law enforcing bodies in the world. To counter the attacks, the United States, Germany, and other European countries launched a war on terrorism. The war started by attacks on Afghanistan, Iraq, and many other countries, which the United States believed were harboring the Al Qaeda terrorists.
Other countries also have come up with strategies to combat terrorism activities in their soils. The U.S uses two methods in dealing with terrorism: collaborating with dictators and the application of brutal warfare. These practices have violated human rights due to the amount of brutal force the U.S uses.
There has been great bloodshed and the death of innocent people due to warfare. Security agents such as Homeland security made several changes in their working with other local law -enforcing agencies that fight terrorism, which many human rights bodies have criticized (Downes, 2005, Para. 1).
What’s more, instead of targeting specific terror groups, the war on terrorism appeared to target certain countries. In order to tackle terrorism effectively, the law has to analyze and examine the impacts of such attacks on any given country. The United States government has, for many years, arrested and detained many innocent individuals who have not received justice up to date.
In addition to detention, some individuals have been tortured, and many of their rights violated by their captors. The war on terrorism has subjected soldiers to dangerous and life-threatening conditions that analysts call “graveyard empires.” To tame the vice, all terrorism fighting bodies and countries have to respect each other and work closely. (Chronicle, 2009, Para. 1-3).
The communist parties object this war on the grounds that the law-enforcing agents collect and keep evidence on suspects, which is wrong. In addition, they protest their isolation when interviews security agents are conducting an interview on suspects; hence, insists that all investigating bodies should follow state laws in dealing with Crime (Katz, 2001, Para. 1-5).
Of High-Level Figures of Al Qaeda
Due to the attacks, governments gave orders for the arrest and assassination of all Al Qaeda members. For example, the U.S government gave Security organizations key people they were to target. In responding to the same, military officials objected to the proposal because reaching the suspects was dangerous. Criminal investigation agencies, at some point, added names to lists that the government had provided without any legal basis.
In response to the assassination call after the attacks, the director of central intelligence said, murdering of suspects without trial broke international criminal law and national security agreements (Subliminal news, 2002, Para. 1-26). Law agencies suggested, although capturing is very dangerous, governments should use methods, which ensure respect for all human rights and existence.
Securing Country’s Borders
To prevent the entry of criminals and other illegal immigrants, countries use strict immigration laws. These laws control international trade, duty collection, and drug trafficking. In addition, the laws control terrorism by controlling the flow of weapons and terrorists. U.S customs and border protection police arrest; all individuals are entering the U.S illegally.
In addition, laws help to protect U.S businesses and intellectual property. The police unit works in collaboration with the immigrations and customs enforcement (ICE) department. ICE investigates all terrorists’ bodies and criminal gangs that could be aspiring to cross over the American border.
Although the police unit has facilitated the combating of Crime, the unit has also been highly criticized owing to its weaknesses in dealing with exports and imports.
For instance, the court of international trade found the police unit guilty of dishonesty in a laboratory test results on imported chemicals, upon whose evidence was destroyed. Since that occurrence, the American government has implemented more border-patrol regulations and tough immigration laws.
It has indeed coordinated Canada’s security agents together with its own forces to guard the borders. For example, America’s former president, Bush, formed The Homeland Security Unit, while Canada’s prime minister also formed a unit that guarded public safety. Moreover, the two countries came up with The Smart Border Declaration, which was to control the inflow and outflow of goods and people from both nations (Findley & Inge, 2006, pp. 23-28).
On the other hand, many military officers, owing to the associated effects on international peace, met this war with disapproval. For example, Lieutenant Jeff Dahistron reacted by saying that the patriotic act passed, violated the constitution, and all other bills of right. He further added that nine out of11 attacks were just a mere excuse, meant to attack other innocent countries.
This is because the war led to the death of several innocent American soldiers, as well as Afghanistan and Iraqi civilians. Several people with the support of civil bodies also objected to these moves. All the same, the administrators never stopped the attacks but instead gave justifying reasons for war (Is the Label “Conspiracy Nut: September 9/11, 2009, pp.1-2).
Challenges Faced by Law Enforcers
Although law-enforcing bodies perform their duties with a lot of sacrifice and dedication, they face many challenges. Some of these are corruption, rising crime rates, and terrorism. In addition, cultural variations across nations hinder proper Crime preventing initiatives.
Many criminals evade justice due to corruption during arrest or prosecution. Laws, in most cases, judge only the minority groups because they cannot afford to pay the associated costs. In addition, many criminal gangs are pairing with specific security agents and state security bodies. For example, the corruption of America’s security agents in the Mexican border has led to increased drug trafficking cases.
Many drug smugglers target law-enforcing bodies with bribes so that they for them to cross borders. Corruption and drug trafficking have contributed to increasing crime rates.
For example, Yolanda, a former prosecutor, stated that many drug lords had discovered weaknesses in the judicial system, which they use to get through without facing justice. The most alarming issue is that most sheriffs, police officers, and Homeland security agents are involved in frauds. This jeopardizes the security of American citizens (Mendoza & Sherman, 2009, 1-12).
Terrorism poses a major threat to the security of any nation. Its techniques are changing due to increased changes in technology and communication modes. Moreover, the increasing rate of suicide bombings poses security threats to innocent civilians. Some security agents have also joined the terror groups due to the hefty amount of money they are guaranteed. All these factors make the whole process complex for security agents to handle effectively.
Cultural diversity is also a major challenge to justice. All law-enforcing bodies must understand all cultural behaviors, for them to receive cooperation from victims and communities in taming Crime.
Discriminations are clear in the judicial systems, where the law enforcing agents defend people of their culture. Sometimes suspects receive wrong judgment and treatment because they belong to a certain minority group. Hence, to achieve justice, law enforcing bodies should consider cultural variations.
In addition, all judicial bodies must ensure that all individuals face justice. All law enforcing bodies and witnesses must receive security when prosecuting dangerous criminals. In addition to security measures, the government should use policies, monitoring evaluations, and public education in creating awareness crime awareness.
Future of Criminal Justice
Due to changes in crime techniques and patterns, criminal justice is bound to undergo radical changes in order to control the trends. Changes will occur due to innovations in strategic reasoning and devising of appropriate methods of handling criminal offenses. Increased knowledge in criminal justice will improve the working of the judicial system.
This is because professionals in this field have extensive training in crime investigation and prosecution. A combination of knowledge from varied fields, for example, chemistry and biology, help in laying a firm base for criminal justice. Innovations in technology will also improve crime-detecting mechanisms (Radosh & Maguire, 1996, pp. 221-237).
In addition, due to emphasis laid by governments on justice, many law-enforcing bodies will always fight to achieve success and recognition. Criminal codes implemented by the government will help in ensuring fair trials to all citizens. International cooperation will also ensure that all judicial bodies apply the required ethics in combating Crime (Hughes, Jones & Williams, 2008, pp. 46-67).
Global policing is very important for maintaining global security. It ensures respect prevails at all times among nations, and there is peaceful co-existence among global communities. In addition, international police promote ordination between countries in apprehending crime perpetrators. Police working in international scenarios receive diverse knowledge on combating crimes.
Although all these advantages exist, many officers face dangers due to discrimination from the locals. Many societies have changing cultural practices. Thus, it is hard for officers to work in societies where some law-enforcing practices receive an objection. In some cases, officers working in these communities can propagate vices that are unfair to the natives due to less concern about such communities (Zvekic, 1996, pp.1-21).
Law enforcement plays a vital role in ensuring that all offenders receive proper punishment, and victims receive justice. This helps to promote practices that respect human rights and peaceful co-existence of all human beings. In addition, law-enforcement ensures that all individuals receive fair treatment during apprehension and prosecution.
Law enforcing agents sometimes apply brutal force in dealing with crimes, which leads to the violation of human rights. Hence, at all times, to ensure justice, all law enforcing bodies must ensure their practices are fair and just on all individuals.
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