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Police officers refers to the staff mandated with law enforcement and crime prevention in the society. They act under law and are required at all times to fulfill the duty imposed on them, to serve the community and protect all persons against illegal acts, or threats and this is consistent with the high degree of responsibility required by their profession. The police officers are required to respect and protect human dignity and maintain and uphold the human rights of all persons including fair justice to those suspected with criminal acts and also to those who has been offended. The officers are not , by any chance required to at I any form of corruption of favouring anyone since this can be dangerous considering the parties involved and the crime involved. The policing body has to earn public trust to an extent that everyone feels comfortable reporting any form of crime and gets the expected assistance. Police are expected to deal with all cases professionally and this includes peaceful arresting of a suspect, carry investigations and handing the suspect to justice body or the courts within the stipulated time as it constitutional for all to remain guity until proved otherwise in a court of law.
A police officers are mandated with such duties as protecting the life and property of people without favourism , supporting the legal system in investigations, collecting and providing any evidence required to prosecute a suspect in a court of law. They also patrol the area assigned to them in a bid to ensure order and safety of all at all times and also in a bid to scare the wrong doers in any society. While on their routine patrol, the officer checks for any kind of violations of rules and regulations and in case of one they take the necessary measures. The officers act on assignments that has been allocated to them by the senior officer, this may vary according to the professionalism each one has or according to the group mandated with certain duties such as the antinarcotics' police deals with crime related with narcotic and are specially trained to deal with such issues. Answering complaints that are related to criminal activities and accidents also comes under the preview of a police officer.
This may go further to handling the situation at the crime scene which is a crucial task of the police officer and may require professionalism and also speedy coordination with other bodies such as rescue bodies in case of emergencies and medical assistance for any victim which can include the police themselves. Usually some police personnel are trained for extra responsibility such as providing first aid to people injured in accidents and also the duty of obtaining written statements from the drivers of such vehicles in order to remove the vehicles from such a scene and act according to the law. Police have to escort prisoners during their trials and ensure their safety which is one of the dangerous duties they perform. They maintain the custody of crucial information such as evidences, property and records obtained in criminal cases. Controlling mobs during lawful demonstrations and riots is one of the important tasks since the mobs may turn destructive at times, and maintaining law and order in such situations becomes a necessity. Reprimanding of people who commit minor crimes and penalizing them at times is also a duty of the officers. They also act as security guards during rallies, processions and important gatherings. Sometimes, they have to provide security to important public figures or highly ranked personnel in a government in threatening situations.
One of the crucial elements that has to be instilled in any force is the discipline, this is enhanced by the fact that such bodies may be armed and handling of weapons publicly requires one to be of good morals and of sober mind. The discipline is enhanced by the allocation of specific duties to different officers with different ranks in the organization. The chain of command refers to the order of ranking different officers from the lowest ranked to the highest ranked officer, each reporting to the immediately hi in the ranking. This enhances discipline in the force as a close scrutiny of what each one does is maintained at all times. They act in accordance to laws that are passed by a country and help them approach a problem in a systematic manner. The line of command is an important tool employed by most of the forces and ensures a controlled relation and interaction of the different members of the group. The structure makes it easier for problem solving, which is fairly distributed to the different members of the human resource and only reaches the top team if it's crucial or requires special handling.
Though no one is perfect in a chain of command the organization always benefit from a perception of the perfection of every officer when approached with a problem one is required to solve. This perception, rightly or wrongly, keeps any system running efficiently and order maintained all through. The structure is also beneficial in that it's static and usually resistant to arbitrary changes though not immune. If any changes have to be effected, it's done systematically where all the stakeholders are made to understand and the effects of the changes. A pyramid structure is the most common in the police organizations. In the pyramid structure, there's always someone to set, or communicate, clear direction to those lower in the structure.
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The police officers undergo specialized training where different groups are trained according to their requirement while on duty. This involves the different skills to apply In different situations to enhance coordination with the rest without necessarily compromising any form of operation. This includes communication skills employed by the officers. They use different form of communication wile in duty to avoid predictability from anyone who might receive the conversing sides. They may also be expected to be in specified dress code so that they can be distinguished from the public hence improving their interaction with the public.
There is a need for a police to be trained on the common psychological problems or effects that are experienced by humans. This equips them with the ability to solve problems that are psychological and don't necessarily require forwarding to a law institution. The term "law enforcement officials" includes all officers of the law, whether appointed or selected, who exercise police powers, especially the powers of arrest or detention. In countries where police powers are exercised by military authorities, whether uniformed or not, or by State security forces, the definition of law enforcenent officials shall be regarded as including such services.
A police officer (also known as a policeman or policewoman, and constable in some forces, particularly in the United Kingdom and other Commonwealth nations) is a warranted employee of a police force. In the United States "officer" is the formal name of the lowest police rank; in many other countries "officer" is a generic term not specifying a particular rank, and the lowest rank is often "constable". Police officers are generally charged with the apprehension of criminals and the prevention and detection of crime, and the maintenance of public order. Police officers may be sworn to an oath, and have the power to arrest people and detain them for a limited time, along with other duties and powers.
Some police officers may also be trained in special duties, such as counter-terrorism, surveillance, child protection, VIP protection, and investigation techniques into major crime, including fraud, rape, murder and drug trafficking.
Function in the community
In the majority of Western legal systems, the major role of the police is to maintain order, keeping the peace through surveillance of the public, and the subsequent reporting and apprehension of suspected violators of the law. They also function to discourage crimes through high-visibility policing, and most police forces have an investigative capability. Police have the legal authority to arrest, usually granted by magistrates. Police officers also respond to emergency calls, along with routine community policing.
Police are often used as an emergency service and may provide a public safety function at large gatherings, as well as in emergencies, disasters, search and rescue situations, and Road Traffic Collisions. To provide a prompt response in emergencies, the police often coordinate their operations with fire and emergency medical services. In some countries, individuals serve jointly as police officers as well as firefighters (creating the role of Fire Police) or paramedics. In many countries, there is a common emergency service number that allows the police, firefighters, or medical services to be summoned to an emergency. Some countries, such as the United Kingdom have outlined command procedures, for the use in major emergencies or disorder. The Gold Silver Bronze command structure is a system set up to improve communications between ground based officers and the control room, typically, Bronze Commander would be a senior officer on the ground, coordinating the efforts in the center of the emergency, Silver Commanders would be positioned in an 'Incident Control Room' erected to improve better communications at the scene, and a Gold Commander who would be in the Control Room.
Police are also responsible for reprimanding minor offenders by issuing citations which typically may result in the imposition of fines, particularly for violations of traffic law. Traffic enforcement is often and effectively accomplished by police officers on motorcycles - called motor officers, these officers refer to the motorcycles they ride on duty as simply motors. Police are also trained to assist persons in distress, such motorists whose car has broken down and people experiencing a medical emergency. Police are typically trained in basic First aid such as CPR.
In addition, some park rangers are commissioned as law enforcement officers and carry out a law-enforcement role within national parks and other back-country wilderness and recreational areas, whereas Military police perform law enforcement functions within the military.
Entry and promotion qualifications
In most countries, candidates for the police force must have completed some formal education. Increasing numbers of people are joining the police force who possess tertiary education and in response to this many police forces have developed a "fast-track" scheme whereby those with university degrees spend two to three years as a Constable before receiving promotion to higher ranks, such as Sergeants or Inspectors. (Officers who work within investigative divisions or plainclothes are not necessarily of a higher rank but merely have different duties.) Police officers are also recruited from those with experience in the military or security services. In the United States state laws may codify state-wide qualification standards regarding age, education, criminal record, and training but in other places requirements are set by local police agencies.
Promotion is not automatic and usually requires the candidate to pass some kind of examination, interview board or other selection procedure. Although promotion normally includes an increase in salary, it also brings with it an increase in responsibility and for most, an increase in administrative paperwork. There is no stigma attached to this, as experienced line patrol officers are highly regarded.
A motor officer patrolling in Arizona on a motorcycle.
Dependent upon each agency, but generally after completing two years of service, officers may also apply for specialist positions, such as detective, police dog handler, mounted police officer, motorcycle officer, water police officer, or firearms officer (in countries where police are not routinely armed).
In some countries such as in Singapore, police ranks may also be supplemented through conscription, similar to national service in the military. Qualifications may thus be relaxed or enhanced depending on the target mix of conscripts. In Singapore, for example, conscripts face tougher physical requirements in areas such as eyesight, but are less stringent with minimum academic qualification requirements. Some police officers join as volunteers, who again may do so via differing qualification requirements.