Essay Example: WA Police Could Be Brought Into Disrepute Over Facebook Post

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Sewanee University of the South
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Some WA police were on their regular patrol duty when they spotted a suspicious grey vehicle driving past them in the opposite direction. The police decided to confirm on the number plates from the security system which appeared to have been stolen. They followed the vehicle, and when the suspect realized that he was being chased, he abandoned the vehicle and tried to escape on foot. The police however caught up with him and arrested him through the help of their patrol dog which bit the man hence could not run further. The man was taken to the hospital to seek medical help on the bite. The police also discovered that not only the number plates of the vehicle were stolen, but the vehicle too had been reported lost two years ago (Foster, 2017).

As a norm, the police reporting department made the news available to the public through their social media site, Facebook. However, the post went viral to the inappropriate language used by the reporters. They described the suspect who was a twenty-four years old man as one who was a cerebrally challenged and a waste of skin. Moreover, the Facebook post said that the suspect was driving a grey ute which also appears as an inappropriate word. It is abusive and unnecessary to call the man a terrified piglet as the post suggest. The post says, "With a noise like a terrified piglet and the face of someone trying to pass a pine cone, he grudgingly surrendered and was led whimpering to a waiting police van." These utterances coming from the police department drives a lot of attention as it is the same department that should be helping fight for the citizen's right. It, therefore, brings the law enforcement into a dispute (Foster, 2017).

The report posted on Facebook violates the code of conduct of the WA police as it states that the police should observe empathy to the communities which are vulnerable in the society as well as the accused. The code of conduct also advocates for respect of human dignity, awareness, culture, and respect for the needs of individuals as well as the differences. Moreover, it advocates for respect in the police communications to suspects and other people in the community. The post also violates the South East Metro District WA Police Facebook page terms of use. It terms state that when making comments on the page, the police restrain themselves from posting messages that are prejudicial or off the topic, offensive, inflammatory, discriminatory, repetitive, defamatory, inappropriate as well as denigrating.

The police media spokesman defended his staff saying that they were managing many social media accounts and it was hard to control every post placed. He said that the police would have been reminded to use professional tone and receive training on the use of social media having access to the guidelines (Foster, 2017).

Second case: Misconduct from Ferguson officials.

Ferguson official/police were responsible for a canine bite on a fourteen years old African-American boy who was in an abandoned house in December 2011. The boy was unarmed contrary to the police and was waiting for his friends in the house. Concerned neighbours had made a call to the police reporting that people had gone in the abandoned house. Four police officers including a canine had responded during the mid-morning. The police however arrested one of the boys on the ground reporting the case as a burglary. This was not the case as facts indicated that the boys were trespassing the property. This can be deduced from the canine officials report that indicated one of the boys located by a dog hiding in a storage closet that was located under the stairs in the basement. The police statement appeared to be offensive as he says, "The officer peeked into space and saw the boy, who was 5'5" and 140 pounds, curled up in a ball, hiding" (Frieder, 2015).

The second boy who was found in the basement was attacked by the police dog on their watch as he was forced to show his hands. After an interview with the boy, news reporters discovered that the boy was not hiding in the storage as they would always sneak into the basement with his friends when they skipped school. He said that he was not warned by the police to show his hand hence was attacked by the dogs unexpectedly. The boy had heard footsteps at the door and thought they could be his friends whom he was to meet. On approaching the door, he saw a dog and tried to escape, but it quickly bit his ankle followed by the thigh. The dog was just about to bite his face when it bit his left arm as the boy tried to push it away. The officers struck him with one of them putting a boot on the side of his head.

There is no sufficient information to prove which party is accurate. In case the police report is valid, then they used excessive force on the boy. The boy was unarmed hence it was not necessary to allow the dog bite his hand to comply to with their demand. Four officers were dealing with teenagers; therefore, they could have handled the issue with less violence. The report from the canine officer would also have provided a hint to the other officers that the boys were playing or trying to try to run away from school (Frieder, 2015).

Apply a problem-oriented policing (POP) framework and address the problem using the SARA model (Scan, Analyse, Respond and Assess).

A Problem-oriented policing (POP) framework assists the police officers in developing strategies which reduce and prevent crimes. The police agencies are therefore expected to systematically analyze community problems to come up with effective solutions and evaluate the impact of their efforts. The existing challenge on policing presentation needs to be addressed urgently as it affects both the accused and community as a whole. Problem-oriented policing presents the efforts led by the police in the aim of changing the underlying problems which could lead to the repetition of the crime. By use of the POP framework in solving the policing presentation, different approaches are used including the progressive law enforcement agencies (Braga, 2002). SARA model is used to address policing presentation. The initials stand for Scan, Analyse, Respond and Assess. It is a four-step model where the initial step in scanning (Center for Problem-Oriented Policing).


SARA model is among the implementation methods used for Problem-oriented policing. First is to identify the problems challenging the community. The language used by the police during the report presentation is inappropriate, especially in the first case. Police use abusive language which in the long run affects the prosecution. Information presented in also exaggerated and in most cases not factual. For example in the second case, the police provide different information from the accused making it difficult to identify the party which is providing facts.

The second step is to confirm that the problem exists (Center for Problem-Oriented Policing). The criminal aspects of policing presentation exist as is evidenced in most of the police reports made. The issue has repeatedly been reported in the daily newspapers and magazines where the accused are always complaining that their cases are exaggerated or even make. Moreover, the human rights body have occasionally blamed the police departments on their unfair or discriminating arrests and judgment.

The third step under this is to identify the possible consequences of the problem (Center for Problem-Oriented Policing). The criminal aspects of policing reports could lead to loss of faith in the police department. People or citizens expect the police department to be of integrity and practice equity and justice to all the people. When abusive language in posted on their social site, it causes doubt and mistrust. Citizens want to rely on their administration when challenged with any form insecurities hence the department need to work on their presentation skills.

Finally, is determining the how often such incidences occur (Center for Problem-Oriented Policing). The challenge of criminal aspects of policing presentation is frequently reported. The growth in the country's economy and increased cases of unemployment has fuelled illegal activities worldwide. It is therefore expected that policing presentation will continue to face challenges as recruits on the police officers are made where each of them is allowed to monitor their social sites accounts.


This is the second step of the SARA model which also involves some steps. The first stage under this is to identify and analyze relevant information from the criminal aspects of policing presentation. Most of the presentations are using false information, inappropriate and unreliable information. For example in the first case, the post made on Facebook uses inappropriate language or abusive language which draws the attention of the public. In the second case, the information presented appears to be inaccurate and abusive too as it differs from that of the accused.

The second stage is taking note of how the problem is being addressed (Center for Problem-Oriented Policing). Different legal bodies have intervened and requesting the police departments to provide factual or realistic information to the public about the cases they handle. They are also asking them to follow the legitimate or legal ways in handling cases. Regarding the information posted on the social sites, police are requested to be very sensitive on the same and provide reliable information. The criminal aspects of policing presentation is a legal concern that should be addressed fast.

The third stage is to identify additional sources used in developing a clear understanding of policing presentation. In Bergman article on "A Simple Solution to Policing Problems" published in 2016 would be a source. The article suggests that some of how police would reduce brutality in their patrols or duties are exposure to effective training, improved selection models as well as changes in the organization arrangement. Schmalleger et al. in the book "Criminal justice today," identifies the criminal justice system as well as its components including the police and their roles.


This is the third step where the police look into one of the responses provided above based on the analysis. It involves the creation of a response plan by the data provided, objectives and the responsibility of the police who are involved in the implementation of the response (Center for Problem-Oriented Policing). The first stage of "Response" is to brainstorm new interventions. The police presentation should be made in the form of groups or committees. For a piece of information to be published or posted for public viewing, a panel should first analyze it then authorize posting. The panel should be selected from the police in the department with a communication expert included. This would prevent abusive or inappropriate information reaching the public.

The second stage is researching what other bodies have done to solve such problems. Blogging companies are also challenged with presentation problem where they land into a problem when they post information on their social sites but are criticized as information is exaggerated or inappropriate. However, these cases have continued to reduce. They have selected a group of experts who analyze articles of information before being released to the public. The committee provides their views about the post and make changes or disapproves the info.

The third stage is to choose the best interventions among the ones mentioned. The best response is the selection of a committee among the police who verify the information or r...

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