Key Points: Recruitment, hiring, training process, background investigations, polygraphs, psychological testing; socialization, learning from other officers, first-page test.
Objective: Discuss explanations for police deviance, its incidence, and methods of controlling it.
Deviance focuses on any behaviors that could range from accepting a gratuity to excessive use of force. A major responsibility of managers is to eliminate any form of deviance as such instances reflect on the ability of the agency to deliver police services to their community. If an individual or agency is engaged in any form of deviance community support will be affected and the reputation of the agency may be negatively impacted. If an officer engages is some deviant behavior who is liable, the individual or agency? Previous discussions have addressed the potential for 1983 actions.
The general excuse is “rotten apple” which is intended to inoculate the agency reputation. However, where did the officer learn to become corrupt? Was it a characteristics they possessed before becoming an officer or was it the result of an organizational culture that either allows or promotes deviance. There are many issues that you can address on this topic – feel free to do so.
Do you believe the rotten apple theory or environmental/socialization factors to be the primary cause of police corruption? Why? include references