The of public order” (Oxford). This civil

 

The police
are “the civil force of a state, responsible for the prevention and detection
of crime and maintenance of public order” (Oxford). This civil force was recognised
in the eighteenth century, as a respected association after the success of the
Metropolitan Police Act 1829 which became responsible for the establishment of
London’s first police force. 27 years after this success, it became mandatory
for each county to attain a police force with the objective of reducing crime
in the community. Since the establishment of police forces, there have been
worries of it weakening, as Newburn and Reiner claim that the police ‘is only
one aspect – and possibly a diminishing aspect – of an ensemble of policing
institutions and processes’. The evidence of this claim can be seen in the
quantity of full time officers resigning. This essay will focus on the reforms
that have transformed the entire civil force and whether they have worked since
the fall in numbers from 2009 to 2014, of 15,861 officers that no longer work
for the police force.  This fall prompted the Police Reform Act 2002 introduced
police community support officers, who were a noticeable consolation as a major
aspect of neighbourhood policing. This was unsuccessful as they had no genuine
powers in contrast with the police, leading to a reform in Section 7 of the
Police and Justice Act 2006 which corrected the police reform act to allow the
Secretary of State to present an arrangement of powers and obligations to apply
to police community support officers.

 

 

Before understanding the reforms, there must
be a discussion of the structure that was changed. In 2012, the police force
was represented by a tripartite system what LK called (in DPP ex p Duckenfield
1999 2 ALL ER 873) the interlocking roles of three key players; the chief
constable, the police authority and the home secretary. The police authority
would select the chief constable, who in turn has an obligation under the
Police Act 1996 to secure an effective power over the force. However, within
the authority, a reform lead to the councillor component being lessened to a
number which was greater by one than half and up to 33% of the authority were
autonomous yet appointed by the secretary of state. The biggest reason for
reform was politics; political parties that come into power have an immense
power over the development of the force. For example, in their manifestos for
the 2010 general election, the conservatives and liberal democrats focused on a
democratic component to police accountability. The home office issued a counsel
paper which prompted the Police change and Social Responsibility Act 2011.  This ordered the conservatives proposition to
replace the police authorities with elected police and crime commissioners. However,
elections for the PCC had a degree of low turnout due to minimal understanding
of this newly developed preposition. Commissioners, do however hold genuine
power as they are the beneficiaries of funding and have obligation to select
and reject the chief constable, and to influence a 5-year plan in light of
local needs.  This however may be viewed
as political rather than a majority rule as 29 out of 41 successful candidates
in 2012 were running under a conservative or labour banner.  The Labour mayor for London, Sadiq Khan
oversees police and crime while the PCC for Surrey is Conservative David Munro.
Leading to the question of whether policing has turned into another political
motive?

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Police conduct is considered to be a very
controversial topic, leading to a number of reforms and developments that have
occurred after widely known incidents such as the Stephen Lawrence case. The
Police Act 1964 required that chief officers of police were to investigate
complaints made against the police by individuals from the general population.
This strategy was condemned, to great extent for having no independent
components in the examination procedure. Especially after it was found that in 1997, over 6,000 complaints of charged inconsiderateness and
incivility by police officers were recorded. Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of
Constabulary commenced an investigation of the level of trustworthiness in the
police since it was perceived that ‘public confidence was becoming seriously
affected by the bad behaviour of a small minority of police’ In Police
Integrity; Securing and keeping up open certainty 1999 her Majesty’s
Inspectorate detailed that ‘numerous examples were found in all forces visited
of poor behaviour towards members of the public and colleagues alike, including
rudeness, arrogance and discriminatory comment’. In regard to independence
within the investigations of this conduct, the
Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 replaced the police complainant’s board
with the police complaints authority in order to ensure that police
examinations could be remotely administered by independent free individuals. All
things considered, this was not completely free of the police and was
insufficient so new police strategies produced results in April 1999; by
incorporating the civil standard of proof, a fast track dismissal system for
the most serious cases and measures to keep the abuse of retirements on medical
grounds to sidestep disciplinary activity. This increased the chance of making
sure that officers would be disciplined for their incorrect conduct. To ensure
that the police would follow a certain conduct, their statutory powers were to
a great extent arranged by the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984, it
approved the secretary of the state to issue a code of practice regarding the
activity by officers of their different statutory obligations. The criminal
Justice act 2003 invalidated the need for revisions of the codes to be affirmed
and are laid before parliament.

 

 

As established, police conduct is of extreme
importance, as the police practice a fragile role in public. PACE has appeared
to make an impact on police behaviour towards suspects, use of violence and
abuse by police is rarer, making the force more ethnical however that doesn’t
mean that there are no officers who are turning against the ethnical codes of
conduct. Sir Paul Condon made a hostile attempt against corruption as the
commissioner of the metropolitan police. He has assessed that there might be
250 corrupt officers, some of whom are associated with intense criminal movement.
A proactive approach can be normal at a national level, as new Scotland Yard
has built up a team focusing on corruption in the police and the relationship
of chief police officers set up in 1998 a team focused on getting rid of
corrupt officers. Over the span of that year, 28 officers were sentenced for
corruption related offenses and toward the end of the year, 153 officers were
suspended for alleged corruption and comparative issues. Are officers really
obeying the code of practice and PACE? And is it really making any difference
to the police force? The time length that a suspect can be held in custody
without charge is managed by part IV of PACE. Police cells according to PACE
must be accommodating prisoners, satisfactorily lit, warmed, cleaned and
ventilated. Access to toilet facilities, food and attire is vital; however,
police cells and custody blocks are frequently inauspicious spots. 700
individuals have died in police custody or in contact with the police since
1990. Few deaths are regular and unavoidable however there can in some cases be
worry over the measure of physical limitation used against the casualty or lack
of checking mentally disturbed or intoxicated individual. A report written by
Vogt and Wadham, called Deaths in Custody; Redress and Remedies 2003, presumed
that these deaths were not being researched enough as not many officers have
been indicted following deaths in custody, and none have been sentenced. The
police, the autonomous police complaints commission and the coroner could all
be included. These examinations were inadequate, hidden, moderate and
deficiently autonomous. Deaths in custody would now be able to be the subject
of a criminal prosecution under corporate murder and corporate homicide act
2007 which may help battle this issue, we could say that there has been some method
of reform. 

 

 

Before 1984, there were a range of powers allowing officers to stop and
search, for example, the Vagrancy Act 1824 which gave constables power to
capture vagabonds, trespassers and loiterers. This law was annulled in 1981
because it was being exploited unreasonably towards black individuals. One area
of development, that is needed in policing is the area of search and stop and
the targeting of ethnic minorities. This prompted the coalition government to
introduce another police code of conduct in August 2014. This applies to all
forces in the UK and contains the ability to monitor stop and search and to
guarantee that there is a reasonable reason in such to practice this stop and
inquiry. However, after the occurrence of Stephen
Lawrence, following the public concern at the treatment of the police
examination concerning the murder, a legal enquiry was begun by Sir William
Macpherson, this report was distributed in February 1999 which found that the
Metropolitan police experienced institutional prejudice. In March 1999, the
labour government provided its action plan in light of the article. In the past,
the race relations act 1976 didn’t have any significant bearing to the police
so there was no lawful solution if a black individual believed they had been
stopped by the police as a result of racial bias. Presently the Equality act
2010 makes it unlawful for public authority including the police to segregate
when completing their role. Police powers have evaluated their provision of
racism awareness training and targets have been set for the enlistment of
ethnic minority officers as 2.6% of officers are from an ethnic minority. Constables are under an obligation forced by
section 3 of PACE to make records of pursuits and chief constables are obliged
to report every year on what number of and what sort of stop and searches have
been done, yet the figures are not a precise record of what number of those who
are being stopped as not all inquiries are recorded. There is still dread that
the power of stop and search will probably be utilised to stop and search poorer
and burdened individuals. In 2014 every one of the 43 police forces in England
and Wales joined an initiative called the ‘best use of stop and search scheme’.
This is a reaction to long held worries that ethnic minorities are largely focused
on and this causes a detrimental effect on the relationship of the police with
them.

 

 

Another criticised reform is the abolition of
the right to silence. The individuals who protested the right of silence
claimed that only the liable would have something to cover up and the innocent
ought to have no complaint to answering questions. It was proposed that the
application of this privilege by offenders was prompting genuine cases to be
dropped for the absence of evidence, and that ambush defences would lead to
acquittals because the prosecution will have no time to prepare.  These contentions were put to the RCCJ, by a
home office working gathering among others, however subsequent to commissioning
its own particular research into subject, the RCCJ rejected the idea of
abolishing the right to silence. This examination by Leng (1993) and Mcconville
and Hodgson 1993, demonstrated that in reality 5% of suspects practiced their
entitlement to silence, there was no proof of inadmissible acquittal rate for these
litigants. Nor was there major issue with ambush defences. As stated, the
previous conservative government chose to disregard the RCCJ’s proposals and
abolish the right to silence.

 

 

In conclusion, four billion pounds is spent on
police patrols, however actually at any one time just 5% of police are out on
patrol in public. The audit commission report; Streetwise; Effective Police
Patrol 1996, takes note of the general society who wish to see more officers on
patrol as this gives people in general a sentiment of security. Further change
that could be developed is the education and training of officers. An officer
requires an extensive variety of abilities, both scholarly and individual skills
in order to successfully fill the role and right now, a candidate does not
require any formal capabilities to join the police force. Yet they have to
battle with paperwork in light of the fact that they have a lacking education, employing
graduates could make the UK have a proficient police force with the aptitudes
to battle crime adequately. There is also the progressing dispute on weapon,
following the deadly shooting in Bradford of an officer, Sharon Beshenivsky,
the Police federation and association of chief police officers called for more
police to be armed in the UK. However, supplying the police with weapons can be
seen as militarisation of the police due to the deadly shooting of Jean Charles
de Menezes at Stockwell tube station in the mid-year of 2005; this expressed
the dangers of officers being armed. In any case, when the police are to go
about as observers in court they are permitted to present together. This
happened following the shooting of Jean Charles de Menezes which drove the jury
at his investigation to be troubled with the police evidence. This should be
developed and reform especially since witnesses to crime cannot present
together so some may suggest that it should apply to officers as well.

 

 

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