The Law Enforcement In England And Wales Criminology Essay

Police officers are perceived as the “ gatekeepers ” of the condemnable justness system ( Mendias & A ; Kehoe, 2006:70 ) .

They are in charge in guaranting safety and security of the populace, forestalling offenses, and groking wrongdoers.Law enforcement in the England and Wales traces its roots back to the “ family ” patroling established in the 1800s to supply protection in the communities. This signifier of patroling flourished until increasing menaces brought by terrorist act compelled the authorities to implement alterations in the constabulary force in the sixtiess. The decennaries following this transmutation gave manner to assorted constructs aimed at heightening the quality of constabulary service. Today, England and Wales follow a jurisprudence enforcement manner of patroling in each of their decentralised forces.This paper aims to supply a critical assessment of the policing manner in the England and Wales. The following subdivision of the paper presents the development of the constabulary force. This is followed by a treatment of the different characteristics of the England jurisprudence enforcement.

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Critical assessment is presented in the treatment subdivision. Last, a decision is presented.

Law enforcement in England and Wales

Harmonizing to Alpert and Dunham ( 2009 ) , patroling in England started as a private force for the elect members of society. Those who can non afford to engage their ain guards rely on a shared and informal signifier of patroling called the “ family ” policing. Peoples are expected to guarantee their ain safety, serve as defenders of their ain community, and convey forth condemnable Acts of the Apostless to the tribunal of jurisprudence. Harmonizing to Beckley ( 2007: 938 ) , this signifier of policing was employed until the sixtiess when terrorist act menaces prompted the development of more appropriate policing schemes. The Police Act of 1964 provided for the constitution of more “ scientific ” and organized jurisprudence enforcement to run into the altering demands of the populace. Police professionalism criterions such as the Metropolitan Police Principles and the Association of Chief Police Officers ‘ Statement of Common Purpose and Values of 1985 were established.

Assorted advanced alterations in the constabulary force followed these developments and continued to this twenty-four hours.Despite these alterations, patroling in England and Wales still exhibit some features of its older signifier as evidenced by the deficiency of centralized constabulary system. Today, jurisprudence enforcement in England and Wales consist of 43 single county constabulary forces. Having this system implies diverseness in patroling schemes between the different counties ( Hawdon, 2008: 191 ) . Moore ( 1992: 107 ) on the other manus observed that despite all this, professional jurisprudence enforcement remained the chief footing of any policing scheme.

Features of jurisprudence enforcement in UK and Wales

Das and Verma ( 2003: 190 ) contend that “ police organisations are shaped by civilization, political precedences, and immediate demands of the state of affairss environing them.

” Law enforcement in England and Wales has distinguishable characteristics that separate it from other constabulary forces in the universe.


Das & A ; Verma ( 2003: 204 ) noted that jurisprudence hatchet mans in Europe are noted for their professionalism. They are among the best in footings of preparation and instruction. Despite this advantage, Moore ( 1992: 110 ) argued that professionalism in constabulary force is an ambivalent construct. He believes that constabularies professionalism should non merely concentrate on “ condemnable Torahs but besides those Torahs that protect citizens from arbitrary action by authorities agencies- including the constabulary. ” Therefore, the constabulary officers ‘ accent on the offense control instead than the jurisprudence contradicts the kernel of their professional responsibility.


McGarrell, Freilich, and Chermak ( 2007: 143-4 ) contend that jurisprudence enforcement has changed more than any other bureau in the public bureaucratism since the sixtiess.

The writers added that the developments in England ‘s constabulary force were non merely brought by menaces of terrorist act but besides by the societal and political alterations in the past two decennaries. Police force had to set to run into the altering demands of the populace. Police officers are non merely expected to implement Torahs but besides to guarantee public safety and security, investigate offenses, do job-related community service, control traffic, and respond to public ‘s call for aid ( Das & A ; Verma, 2003: 224 ) .The battalion of undertakings expected from the constabulary makes it difficult to mensurate police public presentation and therefore consequence to ambivalent perceptual experiences about the force.

Alpert and Dunham ( 2009 ) assert that people have conflicting positions of the constabulary. They are courageous “ offense combatants ” and “ heroes ” on one manus and “ corrupt ” , “ heartless ” , and “ barbarous ” on the other. Public perceptual experiences about the constabulary are frequently based on selective positive and negative experiences and non on their corporate public presentation.Beckley ( 2007: 939 ) besides noted the deficiency of centralised constabulary organisation like the National Guard or Compagnie ReA?publicaine de SeA?curiteA? in the United States and France in the UK. This map is decentralised to the assorted constabulary forces. UK constabulary officers are in charge of community patroling undertakings every bit good as specializer constabulary responsibilities.

They have to execute undertakings from traffic supervising and community patrol to condemnable probe.

Technologically advanced

Harmonizing to Swanson, Territo and Taylor ( 1993 ) , police officers non merely necessitate human and conceptual accomplishments but besides proficient accomplishments. They have to be able to utilize computing machines ; analyse grounds ; use direction rules ; and execute planning, accounting and budgeting maps. The usage of wirelesss, nomadic phones and vehicles in policing enables constabularies to react to name for aid rapidly. Computers made coverage and record maintaining more effectual and efficient. The promotions in forensic scientific discipline brought probes to a different degree. However, critics say that the usage of patrol autos alternatively of pes policing bounds interaction between the community and constabulary, therefore lending to the debasement of constabulary and community dealingss.


Weisburd and Braga ( 2006:13 ) stressed the constabulary ‘s capableness to execute their undertakings without public invasion. Despite the fact that they are established by the authorities and accountable to the populace, they remain independent ( Moore, 1992:109 ) . Alpert and Dunham ( 2009 ) contended that constabulary officers are provided with tremendous discretional power which may non be good to the populace. Das and Verma ( 2003:224 ) argued that the fact that the UN General Assembly formulated the Code of Conduct for Police Officials in 1979 attests to the authorization of the constabulary and the demand to forestall maltreatment and abuse of this power.

Reactive policing

Moore ( 1992: 112 ) besides recognised the reactive feature of patroling.

Police officers tend to trust on patrols and calls from the populace to work out offenses. The advantage of this scheme is that it prevents the constabulary from interfering in private lives of the people without their consent. This ensures that the engagement of the constabulary in the state of affairs is necessary, official and acceptable to the community. However, this scheme is debatable because it implies that a offense has to be committed before action can be taken. While this is an effectual jurisprudence enforcement scheme, it is non a good offense control method. Moore besides observed that it can non be utilised in offenses where there are no victims or informants or where victims refuse to come frontward.

Discussion and assessment of the jurisprudence enforcement patroling

Based on the treatment provided above, it is evident that the jurisprudence enforcement manner of patroling in England and Wales has advantages and disadvantages.

Although constabulary officers in the England are known for their professionalism, their inclination to concentrate on offense bar instead than jurisprudence enforcement reflects ill-conceived apprehension of their professional responsibility. As a consequence, constabulary legitimacy and effectivity remains debatable. Harmonizing to Moore ( 1992: 111 ) , there is no indicant that patroling has delivered in their diverse maps. He noted that: there are no positive correlativities between policing and offense bar ; police offense probes are non ever fruitful ; response systems do non vouch apprehensions ; and condemnable penalties do non ever ensue to rehabilitation. This shows that execution of policies like the UN General Assembly ‘s Code of Conduct for Police Officials and the UNDP Police Act ( UNDP Bureau for Crisis Prevention and Recovery, 2003 ) are necessary to guarantee police answerability ; better efficiency and effectiveness ; and forestall constabulary abuse and maltreatment of power.The battalion of police maps makes public presentation rating hard and inconsistent.

Beckley ( 2007: 939 ) noted the absence of specialized responsibility deputation in the UK constabularies. Police officers are expected to be able to execute responsibilities from the community policing to offense probe. While this is advantageous in the overall growing of constabulary officers, it prevents the development of specialized and quality accomplishments that can merely be learnt from changeless exposure to a specific undertaking. The multiple maps required of the constabulary force prevent them from specialising and optimising their potency in a given map. They are dispersed excessively thin to be efficient and effectual.Technological promotions on the other manus have doubtless promoted the efficiency and reactivity of the constabulary force. They are able to supply seasonably response to citizen calls.

However, excessively much trust on engineering discourages the constabulary to depend on their ain resources and hone their accomplishments. By utilizing vehicles alternatively of pes patrolling, the constabulary loses the chance to mix and link with the people. Some constabulary officers obtain information from the cyberspace and database records alternatively of traveling to the field. Investigation and prosecution proceedings are trusting more and more on forensic scientific discipline to supply grounds. This reduces if non eliminates the demand for people engagement in the procedure. Employment of engineering reduces interaction and prevents the creative activity of a better and more concerted relationship between constabulary and the people. As a consequence, the spread between constabulary and community expands.

Peoples are non comfy covering with the constabulary and may waver to name for aid or assist them in their probes.Hillyard and Tomlinson ( 2000: 400 ) believe that constabulary officers have political, legal and fiscal answerabilities. However, closer review of the constabulary force reveals that police officers are merely accountable to their professional authorizations and non to anyone else ( Moore, 1992: 116 ) . Despite the debut of the “ value for money ” service in jurisprudence enforcement under the Thatcher authorities ( Long, 2004 ) , the constabulary force still have the discretion to make up one’s mind which public concerns are of import and which are non portion of the constabulary work.

They can decline aid if they deem the work to be irrelevant to patrol maps. This promotes public misgiving to the constabulary. Although there is increasing acknowledgment of the demand to implement constabulary answerability, the inquiry about how and to whom they should be made accountable remains.The authorization and autonomy given to the constabulary force on the other manus creates dangers on the manner constabulary plants. While the thought of a jurisprudence enforcement emancipated from the authorities is tempting, the unrestrained power it afforded the constabulary can be dashing.

The constabulary maps as an nonsubjective bureau that protects the people from felons and from the authorities abuses ; nevertheless, there are beliefs that the people are besides susceptible to dangers from the constabulary force itself. Administrations like the UNDP acknowledge the authorization of the constabulary force and how this could ensue to mistreat and misapply of power. There is a demand to pull the line between answerability and authorization ; between patroling and coercion ; and between public safety and citizen autonomy. Furthermore, Moore ( 1992: 117 ) besides argued that the deficiency of governmental ordinance and public control in patroling besides consequences to their stagnancy. They remain unmindful of the authorities and citizen ‘s positions, therefore they are limited by their ain perceptual experiences and authorizations and fail to do appropriate betterments in their services.

The UK constabularies force is now perceived as an industry instead than an bureau. They have become productivity-oriented ( high clearance rate, high apprehension rate and high productiveness ) instead than community-oriented. As mentioned earlier, the deficiency of centralized constabulary bureau in the UK gives the constabulary force more authorization and duty.

Their engagement is non merely limited to the community but to the full state. They have more authorization than their opposite numbers from other states. They have excessively much power and excessively small ordinance, therefore, the hazard of constabulary domination.Reactive policing requires the constabulary to take action after a offense is committed.

This ensures that the constabulary are non unlawfully irrupting into the lives of the citizens. However, this promotes retrospective alternatively of preventative action. It relies on victims and informants in order to implement the suited constabulary action. Besides, reactive policing does non guarantee the apprehensiveness of the wrongdoers.

Therefore, this scheme does non assist cut down offense.Another issue is the impairment of relationship between constabulary and the populace. Negative issues like constabulary favoritism, aggression, maltreatment and corruptness had resulted to the populace ‘s misgiving of jurisprudence hatchet mans. This prevents the populace from collaborating with constabulary officers in community patrols and offense probes. They do non believe that assisting the constabulary will take to safer and more secure community. The flow of information to the constabulary is non every bit strong as it used to be. Harmonizing to Moore ( 1992:117 ) , some people choose to remain quiet than cooperate with the constabulary to avoid revenge from the lawbreakers. This implies non merely the people ‘s deficiency of trust on the unity of the constabulary force but besides on their capableness to protect them.


The jurisprudence enforcement manner of patroling in the UK and Wales is both favorable and damaging to the public presentation and effectiveness of policing and the populace ‘s perceptual experience of the constabulary force. It promotes professionalism of the constabulary force. The assorted characteristics of patroling in England and Wales reflect the authorities ‘s effort to better the constabulary force and run into the altering demands of the populace. The integrating of assorted schemes such as reactive policing addresses the concern of engagement and intervention. Technological promotions are incorporated for more efficient, effectual, antiphonal, and up-to-date system.

However, the battalion of maps makes public presentation rating problematic. Despite these imperfectnesss, jurisprudence enforcement manner of patroling in the UK and Wales is effectual as it provides a common background to the assorted constabulary bureaus in the said topographic points.


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