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  • civilian review

    why are civilian review boards opposed by most police unions?

  • #2
    Originally posted by leopold99
    why are civilian review boards opposed by most police unions?
    I'm opposed to them simply because they have limited knowledge about police work. I equate it to the military calling me at home and asking me to give a FULL critique on the invasion of Normandy during World War II. I spent a little time in the military, I have spoken with many veterans, and I have probably watched every movie and documentary on the subject, but that doesn't make me an expert on the operational planning and execution of the mission.

    Does that make sense?

    Comment


    • #3
      Civilian Review Boards

      The key word in Civilian Review Board is "Civilian". it's much the same as me attempting to judge a Vascular Surgeon's decision concerning a procedure. Most civilians have little or no knowlege of police training, or proper police procedure. Most members of so called Civilian Review Boards are composed of liberals and minorities with a bone to pick with the cops. Let me give you one example. Shortly after the Rampart Scandal, Former Secretary of State Warren Christopher headed a commission to examine LAPD's actions, which admitedly were flawed at the time. Now, let me take you back to the Iran Hostage Rescue attempt. Christopher is the same clown who urged Col. Charlie Beckworth, the mission commander to only "wound" any Iranians attempting to stop the operation. Christopher could absolutely not understand the need for fatal force when it was clearly required. He still can't understand it. This is the type of mentality that pervades Civilian Review Boards. I'm certain you'll recieve other replies and examples as well. Don't misunderstand me. Cops are not above the law, nor should they be. I do feel though, that an agency should essentially be one that polices itself. I'm a Retired Sgt of the Alabama Dept of Public Safety. My Agency has a very strong internal review policy and procedure in place. It works very effectively for the citizens of the State of Alabama. Perfect? Certainly not. Better than a Civilian Review Board? Absolutely!!!

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      • #4
        Originally posted by leopold99
        why are civilian review boards opposed by most police unions?
        Because it is an ignorant idea. Goes to show that everyone thinks they know how to do our job better than we do.

        I wouldn't even consider going into a fighter pilots debrief and educate them on a better way to deploy weapon systems while maintaining fuel for longer on station time.

        I would expect the same courtesy.
        Prov 17:17 A friend loveth at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.

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        • #5
          Every one expects the police to be like CSI.
          You can now follow me on twitter.

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          • #6
            what's the difference between civilians serving on a jury of a murderer and civilians on a review board?
            are you saying there is no such thing as an informed, objective civilian?

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by leopold99
              what's the difference between civilians serving on a jury of a murderer and civilians on a review board?
              are you saying there is no such thing as an informed, objective civilian?
              Have you seen some of the verdicts that juries return?

              First and formost, there's (supposed to be) a big difference between what a jury does and what a civilian review board does. Also, juries are supposed to be impartial and the processes through which they are chosen at least tries to promote this. Civilian review boards are generally comprised of volunteers or political appointees, which opens up the distinct possibility of people with grudges or alterior motives.

              Also, civilian review boards are tasked to make informed decisions on things which they don't understand. Policies and procedures of a police department, for example, should never be made by people who have no knowledge of law enforcement. And, before you respond "So, teach them!" it's not that easy. Law enforcement isn't something that's taught from a book. Perhaps you can teach someone the basics of criminal justice through books and seminars or explain the use of force continuum with PowerPoint presentations and diagrams, but you can't teach someone the job of law enforcement in a classroom. It's not a job where knowledge is obtained through lecture...it requires hands-on experience. ALOT of hands-on exprience before you become proficient and have a good grasp of the job, in fact.

              Other professions with review boards comprise those boards of other professionals. If a doctor's license is reviewed because of malpractice, the board is comprised of other, experienced doctors. If a lawyer is accused of inapproprate practices, his license to practice law is reviewed by the bar (comprised of other lawyers). Only in law enforcement is there an expectation that a review board should be comprised not of other law enforcement officers, but by members of the public with no understanding of the job they are tasked to review.
              "He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you."
              -Friedrich Nietzsche

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              • #8
                Originally posted by leopold99
                what's the difference between civilians serving on a jury of a murderer and civilians on a review board?
                are you saying there is no such thing as an informed, objective civilian?
                Can you, civilian, tell me how to deal with a home invasion suspect in a pursuit through a major metropolitan area? Or how about a felony stop on a stolen car occupied times five, with no back-up, and the passenger jumps out and runs into the desert, with what might have been a Glock, or a wallet? I don't tell anyone else how to do their jobs, please don't attempt to tell me how to do mine. No offense, but how is Joe Blow going to tell me how to deal with a Jumper, or a barricaded suspect in a meth lab, or a five vehicle fatal with other subjects still trapped. That's my problem with Civilian Review Boards, you don't know how to do the job, so don't tell me how to do the job.
                "People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf." - Orwell

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Bing_Oh
                  Other professions with review boards comprise those boards of other professionals. If a doctor's license is reviewed because of malpractice, the board is comprised of other, experienced doctors. If a lawyer is accused of inapproprate practices, his license to practice law is reviewed by the bar (comprised of other lawyers). Only in law enforcement is there an expectation that a review board should be comprised not of other law enforcement officers, but by members of the public with no understanding of the job they are tasked to review.
                  okay. i understand now.
                  does law enforcement have a review board?

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                  • #10
                    We are reviewed every day by Media, Supervisors, Chiefs, Lawyers, Judges, Juries and regular every day civilians!

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Night_Cop
                      We are judged and then crucified every day by Media, Supervisors, Chiefs, Lawyers, Judges, Juries and regular every day civilians!
                      There fixed it...
                      "Oro En Paz, Fierro En Guerra"
                      "We sleep soundly in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm."
                      - Attributed to both George Orwell and Winston Churchill (unsourced)
                      Californian by birth, Cardinals fan by marriage!

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                      • #12
                        Leo, all the LEOs here are correct but to answer your question about being "reviewed"---seriously, yes. Our supervisors assess what we did & why & at least here, to goute my Lt." Our (suprv.) job is to catch you at what you do wrong". . While I personally don't buy into that attitude, "they" obviously do other wise "they" wouldn't be supervisors. Now you may ask "How can the police, "police" the police"? The answer is, IMO, basic--"they" don't want to be cops. "they" would rather scrutinize, criticize, & second guess the people doing the work. It's not a gret system for officers but it does seem to satisfy (somewhat) the public's concern.

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                        • #13
                          technically then law enforcement doesn't have a review board.
                          if doctors and lawyers have review boards then why doesn't law enforcement?

                          the reason i am pressing this point is because i am in the fight of my life on another board about taser use and police brutality and i need help.
                          the thread can be viewed here:
                          http://sciforums.com/showthread.php?t=59815
                          any help you can give me will be greatly appreciated.

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                          • #14
                            LE review is called IAD, or in our case. Criminal Investigative Unit, which investigates both crimes by inmates, and actions of staff.
                            A review board comprised of LE professionals from other jurisdictions might be more appropo, as we had in our Blue Ribbon Panel, which was comprised of corrections professionals from other states, who examined us top to bottom after the Lewis Hostage situation. However, the "thin blue line" theory would mean civvies wouldn't trust it, as LE tend to stick together, the "us versus them" mentality, etc. Perhaps a board built of mostly other jurisdiction LE, and a few civilians, might work better.
                            But, not being street LE, I don't know how well it would work.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Civilian Review

                              Leopold, you seem to be asking if there is one, nationwide, all powerful, police review board. The answer to that is no. What has been described to you in various posts,are the internal review procedures in use at several different agencies. Let me put this another way. An Attorney accused of incompetence in California , will not be reviewed by the Alabama Bar Association, but by the California Bar Association. The same would be true of a physician accused of mal-practice, except he would judged by the Medical Association of the state where he had his license to practice. I'm not going to repeat all the reasons why Officers don't especially care for Civilian Review Boards, you've recieved plenty of them. I have a question for you though. At the start of this thread, why didn't you tell us you were attemting to determine whether the use of a taser was proper or not? Probably wouldn't have made a whole lot of difference in the answers,but I would have appreciated it.

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