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Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

In cases of domestic abuse, which trumps best, the law, or the code of the shield?

Asked by Hypocrisy_Central (21138 points ) August 8th, 2011

Thinking back to this question and this link Largest Street Gang in America, provided by @incendiary_dan. I get the strong impression that cops have no compunction of sticking up for their pals behind the shield even if skirting or obliterating the law. The question came to mind, if a cop is beating his wife, who can she turn too? If she calls 911 because he is chasing her around the house with a fireplace tool, his buddies are going to be the one to show up. Had it been you or I we would leave that night in handcuffs, especially if we had laid one cm on her. What if the cop not only chased her with it but struck her three to five times leaving obvious bruising? What would happen, would he go to jail, would they bust her, would they make her leave? If he was taken away would he be released after he calmed down and would never have been booked? Seeing cops don’t want to bust cops, if one viciously attacked his wife or G/F who does she call?

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10 Answers

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

Sometimes ya just got to disappear and work things out from the shadows.

Sometimes backwoods justice is more efficient than civil procedings.

snowberry's avatar

Actually I’ve seen it happen, and it continues until the corruption in the department is uncovered and eliminated. It’s a scary situation.

marinelife's avatar

You turn to a different level or group of law enforcement. Abuser cops are dealt with legally.

john65pennington's avatar

Okay, please let me set the record straight.

Police officers are no better than anyone else, especially when it comes to domestic violence in their own home. We are given letters to sign stating that we will be arrested and lose our jobs, if convicted.

It may have been this way in the past, as you have described, but there is a new sheriff in town and that’s the Federal Government. New rules and regulations have been given to state and local police. This governs the actions and authority under which the police operate. These new rules do not give state and local police autthorities the choice of making an arrest or not making an arrest. This law is very specific. Instead of may arrest, it states SHALL arrest. This new law is in lieu of so many deaths committed, because of domestic violence in America.

To put it bluntly, if I assaulted my wife, I would expect to be arrested and without a job.

Hope this answers your question.

A final note. A police Captain had left a dinner engagement and had too much alcohol to drink. The Captain sidewiped one vehcile and almost hit a pedestrian. She was given a field sobriety test and failed. She was placed under arrest and handcuffed, just like any citizen.

My department does not have the good ol’ boy system anymore.

We are suppose to set the example, not be part of the problem.

snowberry's avatar

Good to hear, @john65pennington I’m hoping they’ll all follow suit.

Hibernate's avatar

There’s always Internal Affairs. If ti comes to that, the police officers backing up their buddy, then she can make a complain then leave a memo to IA so they can check the corrupted cops.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

@john65pennington These new rules do not give state and local police autthorities the choice of making an arrest or not making an arrest. This law is very specific. Instead of may arrest, it states SHALL arrest. For the sake or argument, lets say I was a cop. Aside from that one questionable incident where some dealer said I rough him up more than was needed I have a spotless record. I develop a drinking problem and in an intense argument with the old lady she hurls a glass of wine at me. I go ape, and grab a sand wedge from the golf bag and go on a tear after her. I am swinging and taking out lights, lamps, bric-a-brac, etc. She tries to make it up the stairs and I catch her by an ankle. I am hacking at her with the golf club striking her several times. She kicks free, and grabs the phone and locks herself in the bathroom and dials 911. Three prowl cars show up, they already know it is my house. The sergeant that mentored me as a rookie is there, the guy I partnered with four years ago is there, and the cop I am friends with and play on the station basketball team is there. We all know what the Feds say but really which of them, since we are all virtually buddies, is going to throw me under the bus? If none of them wants to do it, if they don’t bust me and they don’t talk, the Feds are not there, how are they going to know buttkus? Maybe in a really large station where the personal ties are not so close knit, one of the cops on the scene will toss me to the lions, but many times they won’t. None of the cops wanted to toss Mehserle under the bus after the BART shooting, they either didn’t say anything or tweaked what they said as to not make it seem he did anything wrong or made a mistake. Unless the neighbors have their cell phones recording how would the Feds know the law was not being followed?

@Hibernate There’s always Internal Affairs. In many cases the people working Internal Affairs are officers or past officers of that same precinct, so it is not as if they are going after faceless strangers but people they know. If the super will let people he knows slide with non-dangerous infractions or being late at the plant of office, it is plausible those officers would not be quick to toss those they are friendly with under the buss.

john65pennington's avatar

Hypocrisy, you did state there was a surpervisor on the scene of your scenrio, right? Do you really beleive this Sgt. is going to take the chance on losing his pension, because of this incident? Don’t think so. Also, what’s to prevent the victim from calling the Mayor and complaining? It’s too big a risk to take to lose your job and your pension. Our department is a very close knit group of men and women. Upfront, we understand the new rules and regulations and the consequences. Like I said earlier, small country town police and deputy sheriffs may not abide by these new rules, but it’s their livlihood that’s on the line.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

@john65pennington Do you really beleive this Sgt. is going to take the chance on losing his pension, because of this incident? Logically I would not think that would be the case. Logically I would not think they would not steal or peddle drugs, but some do. If he did decide to risk his job and pension behind friendship, how would anyone know what really went down if all the cops dummy up, or get together and get their stories lined up?

Also, what’s to prevent the victim from calling the Mayor and complaining? They can, and around here they do, for many things as police brutality, shooting pets, shooting wild animals stuck in urban situations, or shootings of mental ill people. It will make the news, the Mayor says he/she will look into it. They let the officer review board, mostly cops, look into it and it fades away or it is said off their investigation no wrongdoing was done. Maybe in other places it works better, but I can’t see the word of one lone woman being seen higher than three or more cops unless they have such bad records if is a wonder they are still behind the badge.

Taking into account all the stations, and precincts across the nation any cop going over the line would be a small percent, but it takes only a small percent to muddy the whole pond. For those who stick to friendship, a powerful draw, over duty I just wondered who watches the watchmen? It is not like a citizen can place a cop under citizen’s arrest.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

”...cops don’t want to bust cops…”

Cops don’t want to bust anyone. They’d much rather everyone obeyed the laws we make for ourselves and they be relegated to govern public tragedy incidence such as broken traffic lights and missing persons. We pay them bust those of us who choose not to obey the laws we make for ourselves.

I’m a photographer. I have no preference in testifying for or against someone based upon their occupation. Suggesting otherwise is suggesting that all photographers are somehow criminal and incapable of separating the person from their occupation. Making the claim about cops is suggesting the same.

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