This study is all about ethical practices done by police department based on various theories of ethics.



The occupation of police department is full with ethics and its effective implementation at their every stage of discharge of duties. Ethics in Policing is very important as because it consists of the set of moral values being accepted as standards used professionally while discharging the duties of police officers. The major values that should be present in a police are honesty, courage along with loyalty. This is because of the fact that police officers and the department plays a very important role in maintaining peace in the society and the environment. However, management of the ethics within a police department is a very difficult challenge as because they have to face situations that are very different from each other where the requirement of ethical judgement comes into place. The paper is in relation to outlining of the leadership of police along with the states where organization becomes corrupt and the guidance on recovering from the same.


The “Corruption Continuum” has outlined the details which states how the organisations becomes corrupt. The corruption states as stated in this have outlined the various states into certain sub-heads which are discussed as below:

·         The integrity policy is not fixed and there arises indifference of the same in relation to administration

·         The ethical problems that are very obvious if ignored results in the organization being corrupt and so it requires to have the assessment to the same effectively.

·         The culture which is a fear dominated one and a hypocrite also results in the corruption in the organization

·         Many a organisation have the policy of “survival of the fittest” wherein the employees adopts unethical practices so as to sustain and protect themselves within the organization in long run.

The organization irrespective of their forms always try to make ethical choices as because they operates in an environment which is regulated and being assessed by the government and the police departments. There is a need of the leaders of the organization to have an atmosphere created which will encourage all to make decision ethically. The ethical decision making can be achieved by promotion of the administrators that works ethically, the behaviour having courageous one along with being morale are rewarded. There is also need of having a clear and powerful polices organization which have their major emphasis on the goals and objectives of the organization by way of means being ethical in nature.

The fact that the incentives of the organization such as COMPSTAT have their major influence on the corruption of the organization. As the magazine “The Police Chief”, CompStat is a system wherein the control is strategic and is being designed so that the crime and its related issues can be collected along with the feedback of the same. However, in spite of the fact that this crime-tracking system was very useful in tracking along with cutting crime in US, it has led the police to have too much focus on data wherein the police focussed to making new numbers and improving the numbers of their arrests so that the data in the system looked good. All this resulted in the influence of the corruption of the organization. The CompStat, lead to the perverse incentive being created in some departments of police so that they can make the crime and the numbers of policing favourable. This was done by the department of police at any cost including intentional misrepresentation of crimes.


The theory as laid down by Albert Bandura, popularly known as the Social Learning Theory, has laid the fact that the violent behaviour of any person is actually developed and adopted due to the process that are instinctual in nature. Bandura also had a study conducted so as to have the assessment of the validity of the same. This study had the fact concluded wherein the people tends to imitate the people with whom they are identical viz. of the same sex, age group, etc. The study had the major conclusion wherein the fact that the people learn by way of imitating the behaviour observed by them are being repeated by them. Therefore, the fact that an individual behaviour has a very major impact of the co-workers with whom they work in an organization cannot be denied. This is because if a co-worker is attaining all its objectives by way of unfair practices, then an individual observing the actions of that co-worker will behave likewise thereby leading to increase in the corruption. The theory laid by Bandura had a fact that a behaviour if violent in nature is learned by an individual by way of imitating the same as the co-workers. This is because the activity of the brain of an individual is a response being instinct in nature towards the actions being observed that are surrounded to the individuals.

This topic of having the imitating nature of the individual to the actions of the co-workers is very much related to the supervision of the police as because in cases where in the actions of any worker being unethical in nature is being identified in the first instance will help the reduction of the criminal activities and unethical practices to a great extent.


A framework providing an understanding of the transformation to compromised officer from being an honest cop is constituted and provided in the Continuum of Compromise. This policy refers to the misconduct of the individual police officers. This also helps in identification of warnings signs by the supervisors so that the major threats can be ascertained and actions can be taken accordingly on them. The officers are prepared by the enforcement of agencies of law to meet the challenges of ethics in due course of their action. The first stop on the continuum of compromise is to stop feeling like a victim. The warning signs that the supervisor needs to analyse are the followings:

·         The act wherein the officers justify things they do and responsible with by denying the same. This is known as Act of Omission. Therefore, the supervisor needs to analyse the situation and asses the fact of the person responsible for the unreasonable act

·         The act wherein the officers commits administrative violations are known as acts of Commissions- Administrative. The supervisor needs to assess the break of small rule at the first instance so as to stop them being converted into big crimes

·         The Act of Commission- Criminal is the act wherein the officers engage themselves in behaviours resulting in criminal actions being taken upon. The officers are required to take approaches where in the assessment where things gone wrong and how things like that happened have to be analysed.

The means-end thinking is an ethical system thinking where in the outcomes of an actions are unpredictable. Under this thinking, the means that are unethical in nature are argued to result in good end outcomes. This thinking is actually with an intention of getting the positive outcome at any cost and therefore requires the attention of the supervisors more effectively.


As per Albert Bandura, the continuous process being active in nature wherein there is monitored on the behaviour, the influences and the consequences of the behaviour along with judgement of the behaviour in terms of the personal standards and reaction of the same is the process of Self-Regulation. In case of self-regulation, a person becomes active with respect to analysis of one’s own behaviour thereby analysing the same in a more efficient way if done with honesty. The self-regulation plays a very vital role as the influence on our every actions is being inserted by the same. In case of this, a person is controlled by the person himself. In case of this done effectively, the emotions are kept in check resulting in the impulsive behaviour being reduced. There are two aspects of self-regulation, one being the behavioural self-regulation and the other being the emotional self-regulation. The self-regulation theory is comprised with four major components which are STANDARDS, MOTIVATION, MONITORING & WILLPOWER.

The law enforcement job can however results in one turning away from self-regulation as because it requires focusing on others actions and behaviour so as to analyse the cases that can have a negative impact on the society and environment at large. Moreover, self-regulation for an officer is possible only in cases where the same is being implemented and taken by them with positivity and with ease. In cases, the peer officers sometimes are responsible for the regulation of the other officers so as to effectively implement the same.


The police if accepts gratuities in forms of huge amount of cash, monetary benefits in forms of kind, etc. is not acceptable. This is because it results in police being bias and separating them from being in duty with biasness. The recommendation of mine is to draw a line between acceptance of gratuities and taking bribes so as to discharge the duties of policing with honesty. The gratuities in forms of restaurant meals, low value gifts, etc. are a sign of friendship and the same could also be a mode wherein the officer is required to spend more time at the establishments. The gratuities are not door for corruption but bribes are. Therefore, the line drawn between gratuities and bride should have well explained and documented differences guiding the officers from being influenced by the person offering the same. In case the gratuities being offered to officers are with the intention of getting favour of the officer for certain reason those should be rejected by the officer since it is a bribe in the name of gratuity. The research on this also states the fact that in cases where gratuities being high amount of cash in value in spite of being in kind form is accepted, that results in police being bias towards the person who offered the same.


Therefore, we see that the job of police officer requires huge judgement and ethics from their end so as to have the effective implementation of the peace all along the society and the environment. So the law enforcement agencies, should have a proper checks conducted at regular intervals so that the intention of all the individual police officer along with the cases handled by him can be ascertained. This will result in having the maximum elaws, thical practices being in place and being followed by the officers leading to less criminal activities.The police corruption will also reduce with the help of the analysis of the ethical principal and amendment in case where there is loop.

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