Police Discrimination

Good Essays
Claims of the police using excessive force when dealing with unarmed criminals are common in the United States. The increase in the number of homicides perpetrated by police officers in the line of duty has evoked great indignation across the country. The public demands that police officers are held accountable for their actions when they are on duty. In the United States, police are hardly prosecuted for on-duty homicides, in spite of the high number of murders that the law enforcement agents commit (Cooper 46). Numerous factors stop the judges from prosecuting officers who commit murder while on duty. The law gives police officers the right to use force whenever their life or the life of citizens is in danger. Besides, the public tends to…show more content…
Race relations are other factors that make it hard for the courts to sentence cops for on-duty homicides in the United States. In spite of the United States claiming to be a postracial nation, racial prejudice and division pervade the country. Racial discrimination is primarily prevalent in the American judicial system. Jury bias frustrates the attempt to prosecute police officers, particularly in cases that involve a white officer and a black victim (White 302). The study shows that the blacks have a negative attitude towards the police compared to the whites. Unfortunately, the white judges are likely to favor the police without considering the race of the victim or the officer. Such a situation was witnessed in Rodney King judgments in California. A panel comprising mostly of white judges declined to condemn four police officers from the Los Angeles Police Department for brutally beating King (White 312). The judges exonerated three officers. Further, there was a standoff in determining if the fourth officer used excessive force. Later, a panel comprising of different federal judges convicted two of the law enforcement officers for contravening King 's civil…show more content…
Institutional, legal and social hurdles affect the prosecution of cops for on-duty homicides. In the United States, the law gives police officers the power to use force when dealing with uncooperative criminals. Thus, it is hard for the juries to indict an officer. Besides, police receive massive support from the public, which makes it hard for the jury to determine if an officer violated his/her code of conduct in the event of a homicide. A conflict of interest arises amid the prosecutors and police officers in the course of an investigation. The police officers involved in an inquiry decline to provide evidence that can incriminate their colleague. Eventually, the prosecutor is unable to present substantial evidence that can warrant an
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