Police Systems, Practices and Administration

1. Explain why force and authority are at the core of the police role. Identify the behaviors that police most commonly exhibit in their encounters with the public. See what you can learn about police use of force from the most recent national study, available here and summarize it: http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/pub/pdf/cpp08.pdf

2. Explain the purpose of organizational values and identify four that might apply to a police organization. Read Case Study 3 (Strategic Planning in Spokane, Washington) in the text. Compare the vision and values adopted by that agency with the discussion in this chapter. Identify several characteristics of systems. Make a list of entities in the environment of a police organization. Then rank them in what you think is their order of significance, i.e., which ones have the most impact on the police organization?

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3. Explain what distinguishes auxiliary services tasks, and give a few examples. One of the auxiliary services tasks is telecommunications. Visit a police department communication center or regional 9-1-1 center. If possible, stay for a couple of hours to get an appreciation for the level and complexity of the activity that goes on there. Explain what distinguishes administration tasks, and give a few examples. One of the administration tasks is internal affairs. Visit a few police department websites and see what their procedures are for filing a complaint against an officer. Are they all the same?

4. Explain the four key organizational principles presented in the text. Two of the case studies in the back of this text (Case 1, Cod Bay and Case 2, Rixton) describe situations in which some officers perform improperly. You might consider how their behavior might be improved by using the basic principles of police organization as well as policies, procedures, rules, regula¬tions, and discipline. Then answer two question in each case from the discussion questions.

5. Explain how the six management functions are distributed across levels of the organization. Here’s a very short video about the importance of first-line supervisors: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t7ue3XwGMAw. What are its implications for police departments? Identify the five basic steps in the planning process. Identify the main components of the police staffing function.

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