Police Corruption

Overview

The police are meant to enforce the law and not abuse it. And yet the reality has been that policing and corruption are inseparable. This book sets out to explore that worrying but intriguing discrepancy between police as law enforcers and police as lawbreakers. Why do some officers bend and break rules, procedures and the law and why do some effectively become 'criminals'? And what measures should be taken to investigate, prevent and combat corruption?

In seeking answers to ...

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Police Corruption: Exploring Police Deviance and Crime

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Overview

The police are meant to enforce the law and not abuse it. And yet the reality has been that policing and corruption are inseparable. This book sets out to explore that worrying but intriguing discrepancy between police as law enforcers and police as lawbreakers. Why do some officers bend and break rules, procedures and the law and why do some effectively become 'criminals'? And what measures should be taken to investigate, prevent and combat corruption?

In seeking answers to such questions this book argues that corruption is not one thing but covers many deviant and criminal practices in policing which also shift over time. It rejects the 'bad apple' metaphor and focuses on 'bad orchards', meaning not individual but institutional failure. For in policing the organisation, the nature of work and its culture can sometimes foster and even encourage corruption. This raises issues as to why do police break the law and, crucially, 'who controls the controllers'?

Corruption is defined in a broad, multi-faceted way. It concerns abuse of authority and trust; and it takes serious form in conspiracies to break the law and to evade exposure when cops can become criminals. Attention is paid to typologies of corruption (with grass-eaters, meat-eaters, noble-cause and the 'Dirty Harry' syndrome); the forms corruption takes in diverse environments; the pathways officers take into corruption and their rationalisations; and to collusion in corruption from within and without the organization.

Comparative analyses are made of corruption, scandal and reform principally in the USA, UK and the Netherlands. The work examines issues of control, accountability and the new institutions of oversightsuch as the IPCC at a time when external oversight has become increasingly high profile. Overall the book provides a fresh, accessible and much-needed overview of this under-researched topic for students, academics, police and criminal justice officials and members of oversight agencies.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'This book is superb. The standard, as far as I am concerned, for books on police deviance. Straightforward as well as entertaining, the book covers all that I think is known about the genesis, transmission, facilitation, reform, and control of police deviance.' – David Bailey (University at Albany, SUNY)

'At last, from the leading writer and researcher in this field, a comprehensive overview of the study of police misconduct and corruption. Maurice Punch is unrivalled in this field and anyone seeking a reliable guide should consult this book.'Professor Tim Newburn (LSE)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781843924104
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 2/24/2011
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Maurice Punch is a Professor at the Mannheim Centre for Criminology at LSE.

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Table of Contents

List of abbreviations ix

Preface xi

1 Introduction 1

What is really real? Official paradigm and operational code(s) 1

Officer Dowd (New York) 12

2 What is corruption? 18

Definition and forms of corruption 18

Police organisation, police culture and dirty work 34

Inclusion, moral career and slippery slope 44

Conclusion 47

3 The US: from pad to crew 53

Police corruption in America 53

New York and the NYPD 56

Chicago, LAPD and Sea Girt 74

Violence, drugs, police crime and corruption: New York, Miami and Los Angeles 81

Reform and good departments 84

Conclusion 85

4 The Netherlands: Amsterdam and the 'IRT' affair 93

Amsterdam 94

The 'IRT' affair 112

Conclusion 120

5 The UK: London, miscarriages of justice and Northern Ireland 126

London: the Met, Mark and investigations 126

Miscarriages of justice 136

Northern Ireland 143

Conclusion 157

6 'Creatures in between': pathways into police deviance and corruption 163

'Groovy Gang': SERCS and Neil Putnam 165

Prince of the City: SIU and Bob Leuci 167

Joining and leaving 'the Club' 175

Conclusion 184

7 Scandal, reform and accountability 190

Scandal and reform 192

Police accountability in the UK 195

Police accountability in the US 215

Conclusion 219

8 Conclusion: sticky fingers and dirty hands 223

Sticky fingers 223

Dirty hands 232

Appendix: What can be done? 238

References 249

Index 267

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