Police and Community Relations: Will “To Serve and Protect” be Words the Public Can Ever Trust?
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In today's society police officers are constantly being criticized as having too much power over the citizens they are sworn to "serve and protect". Unlike before current technological advances, citizens can now see when a police officer uses force. In-squad video cameras, smart phones and police body cameras make it possible for violent encounters with police to be recorded and conveyed to millions of viewers within seconds. And the viewers don't like what they see! Even if the officer's force is well-grounded in the Constitution, there may still be serious negative community reaction to the way the officer handled the incident. This article examines the lost trust between police and they community they serve, and, more importantly, some things that are being done to possibly regain this trust.