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Allen V. The City Of Oakland

1640 words - 7 pages

Allen versus the city of Oakland was one of the largest lawsuits filed and won against the Oakland Police Department for police misconduct. Misconduct has always been an issue with law enforcement. Starting in the early years of law enforcement there were policies set to keep officers from committing these actions. In time, the policies have been changed, reconstructed, and updated to increase effectiveness and efficiency. To get a better view on how these policies are implemented, the actions of the police officers in Allen versus the city of Oakland will be examined and the justifications for their actions will be reviewed. Not all actions can be justified though. For those types of actions with no justification, an observation of the legal and policy issues surrounding them can demonstrate how strong policies can help deter officers from misconduct. The perception of prosecution is also useful by giving an overall representation of the case after reviewing it, deciding if there is enough evidence to let the case go further, and deciding on the charges that will be given. In court, a useful tool used by both sides of the case is using case law to get the court to side with their argument. Case laws are a good way to see one of the many ways judges come to their decisions on a case and how the outcome of a case is affected. When there is no case law that can be used, the case in progress can be used as precedent for similar cases that follow.
Early and Contemporary Administrative Practices: Misconduct
Police misconduct has been a concern since the introduction of policing. The issue of misconduct was counteracted by the creation of policies that would assist with lowering the misconduct by officers. Some of the earliest misconduct policies were put in effect in the months around June of 1893 when police officer McManus beat a suspect in his custody, which left the suspect in the hospital for days (“Police Officers in Trouble”, 1893). This was the first recorded time that the phrase police brutality was used (Merrick, n.d.). Not long after the McManus beating, police Sergeant McCarton was charged for beating a driver, which was also considered police brutality (“Police Officers in Trouble”, 1893). The Sergeant at the station officer McManus worked at knew this was not a way for officers to behave, so he immediately excused officer McManus from duty (“Police Officers in Trouble”, 1893). At this time, there were no policies on police brutality so it was hard to determine what punishment should be applied or what the department would need to arrange in order to prevent these types of incidents from occurring. After a period of deliberation, policy to help lower police misconduct was created. One of the new policies created for police officers that came about was training, which included some training with firearms on a shooting range (Zacks, 2012). This was a way for police officers to be trained to do what they are supposed to...

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