DC Homicides in the News Again
According to an article by the Washington Post, “D.C. Homicides: In 15 Percent of Closed Cases, No Charges and No Arrests,” there have been many closed cases that were not approved by the families of the victims: “A Post examination of nearly 2,300 homicides in the District between 2000 and 2011 finds that police closed at least 189 cases without an arrest, leaving some families of victims wondering” (Thompson 1). Also, the protocol of most investigations is to conduct interviews with the suspects and victims of each case, with integrity and honor. This has not been the case with Washington, D.C. police officers according to many victims:
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Police corruption could be the case in Washington, D.C. and not misconduct. After all, what could the police officers possibly gain from their supposed negligent behavior. The Rodney King incident did put more focus on the actions and inactions of police officers, and videotapes were put into all police vehicles. What could have been the cause of such a disturbing statistic for inaction on the part of the Washington, D.C. police officers in the impending investigations? The inaction could have been due to police corruption:
Police corruption is defined as any proscribed act involving the misuse of the officer’s official position for money or money’s worth” (Barker 60). Other than for a few minor word changes this is the same definition developed by Julian Roebuck and I over 30 years ago. Three elements identify police corruption: (1) the behavior must be foridden by law, rule, regulation, ethical standard. (2) The behavior must involve the misuse of the officer’s official position, i.e., the officer must do something that he or she should not do, or fail to do something that he or she should do” (Barker 60). Corrupt behavior does not necessarily have to involve the exchange of money. The lack of justice in Washington, D.C. metro area could be the cause of police corruption if the allegations made by victims and their families are investigated to be of merit.
Even if the corruption allegations against the Washington, D.C. police department are not true, they have harmed the reputation of the police department indefinitely. After all, the citizens must be able to trust police officers to protect them from harm:
“Police corruption is a breach of trust. In the worlds of Herbert Jenkins (1970), who was the Atlanta, Georgiz, chief of police for more than twenty-five years: ‘Respect for law is the policeman’s Hippocratic oath. It is his guiding star of survival in a democratic society. The newest police...