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Essay about Approaches to Reduce the Use of Excessive Force by Police

Project id 1012131
Subject area Other
Document type Essay
Words 2494
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Using force, particularly with respect to officer morale and/or inadequate education/training, has come to be particularly problematic. Measures should be taken to decrease the harm to suspects, particularly bodily injury resulting from poor officer tactics or malicious motives not associated with upholding the law. All these are problems, which, if correctly handled and rectified, will lead to improved officer morale, improved connections with the public as well as guarantee a continued upstanding reputation for the oldest police force in the nation. The use of Electronic Control Devices (ECD's) such as the popular taser X26 in the discretion of police officers can be a very practical instrument so as to temporarily disable and get custody of a non-compliant suspect. When used appropriately it may even reduce the risk of a defendant physically hurting the officer, himself or others through temporary physical incapacitation. However these devices need not be used unnecessarily, and officers who do employ their usage liberally and without just cause should not go without proper disciplinary measures proportionate to the size of the situation. I'd like to shed light on a few examples of ECD usage where officer discretion have come under scrutiny. The October 2013 use of a taser on a 8 year-old South Dakota girl who was threatening to harm herself has lately raised many eyebrows. Questions are raised regarding whether the age of the suspect should play any role in the decision to shoot an ECD because of the small size of a child and the potent electrical force of those weapons. Taking into consideration the obvious metal fragility of the child, an individual must consider the risk of considerable emotional trauma to the child.

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