Term Paper: Excessive Psychological and Physical Force

Pages: 4 (1461 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 0  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Criminal Justice  ·  Buy This Paper


[. . .] 482). Stress therefore must be considered a critical factor with regard to police violence and use of excessive force.

Gallup poll conducted in March of 1991 suggested that 20% of citizens knew someone who had been "mistreated" or abused by police" and estimates of excessive force from observational studies "range from 1.05 to 5.1% of citizen contacts" (Alpert & Smith, 1994, p. 482). Other studies suggest that excessive force may be used more frequently. The aim of this study will be in part to examine to what extent use of excessive force is problematic.

Some studies suggest that police are out of control and use excessive force in unnecessary situations (Maier, 2000, p. 10). There is a large body of research to support this opinion. The survey conducted will in part measure public opinion regarding this issue.

The total number of excessive police reactions noted in the media in the last 14 years surpasses the records set by previous violent riots during the 60s (Hale & Ross, 2000, p. 2).

There is much evidence to suggests that acts of police violence and excessive force are often similar, but the consequences are often different; according to some researchers "when police engage in violence it is uncertain whether individuals, groups and institutions remain passive or press for changes in the system" (Hale & Ross, 2000, p. 2). At best, one may conclude at present there is little known about the variety of responses to incidents of police use of force and the actual number of instances where excessive force may be used.


The preliminary literature review suggests that excessive use of force by police agencies is very much an issue in modern society. The goal of this study will be to examine the outcome, impacts and implications of such violence for the future.

Proposed References:

Abraham John D. et al. 1981. "Police Use of Deadly Force: A Toronto Perspective." Osgoode Hall Law Journal, Vol. 19, No. 2, pp. 199-236.

Adcock Thomas Larry. 1984. Precinct 19. New York: Berkeley Books.

Albrecht S.L. And M. Green. 1977. "Attitudes Toward the Police and the Larger Attitude Complex: Implications for Police -Community Relationships." Criminology, Vol. 15, pp. 485-494.

Alpert, Geoffrey P.; Smith, William C. (1994). "How Reasonable is the Reasonable Man? Police and Excessive Force." Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology, Vol. 85, Issue 2; pp. 481-501

Bass, Sandra. (2001). "Police Space, Policing Race: Social Control Imperatives and Police Discretionary Decisions." Social Justice, Vol. 28, Issue 1. p. 156

Cao, L., Deng, X., & Barton, S. (2000). A test of Lundman's organizational product thesis with data on citizen complaints. Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies and Management, 23(3), 356-373.

Cao, L., & Huang, B. (2000). Determinants of citizen complaints against police abuse of power. Journal of Criminal Justice, 28, 203-213.

Decker, S.H., & Smith, R.L. (1980). Police minority recruitment: A note on its effectiveness in improving Black evaluations of the police. Journal of Criminal Justice, 8, 387-393.

Fyfe, J. (1981). Who shoots? A look at officer race and police shootings. Journal of Police Science and Administration, 9(4), 367-382.

Fyfe, J. (1988). Police use of deadly force: Research and reform. Justice Quarterly, 5, 165-205.

Goldstein, H. (1977). Policing a free society. Cambridge, MA, Ballinger Publishing

Hale, Donna C.; Ross, Jeffrey Ian. (2000). "Making News of Police Violence: A Comparative Study of Toronto and New York City." Westport: Praeger Publishers.

Harring, S., Platt, T., Speiglman, R., & Takagi, P. (1977). The management of police killings. Crime and Social Justice, 8, 34-43.

Henry, S., & Hinkle, W.G. (2001). Careers in criminal justice: The inside story (2d ed.). Salem, WI, Sheffield.

Holmes, M.D. (2000). Minority threat and police brutality: Determinants of civil rights criminal complaints in U.S. municipalities. Criminology, 38, 343 -- 367.

Kurke, Martin I; Scrivner, Ellen M. (1995). "Police Psychology into the 21st Century." Hillsdale, Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Langworthy, R.H. (1986). Police shootings and criminal homicide: The temporal relationship. Journal of Quantitative Criminology, 2, 377 -- 388.

Langworthy, R.H., & Travis, L.F. (1999). Policing in America: A balance of forces (2d ed.). Upper Saddle River. New Jersey, Prentice Hall.

Maier, Timothy W. (2000). "Fed Up Police." Insight In The News, Vol. 16, Issue 25. page 10.

N.A. (2000). "Police Brutality Must End." The Progressive, Vol. 64, Issue 4, p. 8.

Smith, Brad W. (2003). "The Impact of Police Officer Diversity on Police-Caused Homicides." Policy Studies… [END OF PREVIEW]

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