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Brittany Bates
Professor Dorhout
ENGL 1001-028
November 12, 2015
Police Brutality.
What is it you notice when you are watching the local news? You see drug use, robberies,
murders and more cases of police brutality. Some things have changed in the world throughout
the years, and it may not be for the better. The rate of crimes and homicides are growing each
and every day. Undeniably, some do deserve it, but too many are lumped together in a negative
light. There have been countless complaints and stories of when policemen have taken their job
too far. Is it always necessary for them to use such force on subjects that are complying?
There have been many cases of unexplainable police brutality forced upon innocent
people. Most people do not seem to understand why police officers feel they can abuse their
power and use it for such evil. Over the years there have been a handful of gruesome public
beatings, one being Rodney King, a young black male who was beaten so badly in 1991. Thirty
police men watched as their fellow partners beat him nearly to death. Rodney King had no prior
record and was not armed at the time. The incident was recorded, and eventually King was
awarded a large sum of money for the horrible, unnecessary beating he received. These kinds of
behaviors are still happening today. To blame it on racism is bias, but that is what it has come to
today. The black community is growing angrier with the justice system because all the chaos of
white police officers shooting and murdering unarmed black citizens.
There seem to be more cases publicized due to color than any other crimes. What we do
not observe on the news or social media is when a white citizen is shot and killed by police
officers. Turning it into a racist situation is what causes it to be such a problem. The world is
crumpling and turning into a war zone because of all this brutality and hatred forming between

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whites and blacks. Racism is not as big as it once was, but with all these killings happening at the
hands of police it may be reborn.
Most parents raise us to respect police men, honor and not fear them. What do you do
when you get a glimpse of the news and all the unjustifiable acts the law enforcement are being
accused of? Clearly getting away with any crime they may commit because of the badge they
wear upon them. In an article written by Budimir Babovic, he states that police torture happens
in the most public places. They take their job to an extreme to get the point across during arrest,
protest, mobs and any demonstration of going against their rules. He mentions that police are
trained to be brutal. They will go as far as punching, kicking and beating a person down until
they are unconscious. There are other precautions that policemen can take, being brutal does not
always need to happen. It is an unnecessary step policemen feel they can take whenever they
please. Yet they get away with any crookedness they display (Babovic).
In the city of Cincinnati there have been countless cases where the police officers have
crossed the line and harmed men who did not deserve it. Timothy Thomas was a nineteen-yearold who was shot and killed by Officer Stephen Roach. He had no record besides a couple of
minor traffic misdemeanors, and he was not armed at the time. After violence seemed to be on
the rise, citizens of Cincinnati took to the streets in protest for police to stop ruthlessly killing
innocent people. The riots will never end if justice does not come to those who were harmed by
the police. Having a badge does not stop you from deserving the punishment that comes with the
crime (Baptiste).
Violence within the walls of prison is just as horrific as on the streets. Police treat inmates
with such cruelty it is inhumane. Treating them that way goes against the eighth amendment that
states there should be no cruel and unusual punishment done by the correctional officers to the

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criminals that are in the prison. Complaints have been made by inmates and members of federal
authority that have noticed the horrible treatment of those in the justice system. According to an
article written by Bruce Gross, there were 16,000 allegations of correctional officers abusing
inmates, which included both sexual and physical assaults. In the article, the author mentions a
study that was conducted years ago called the Standford Prison Experiment. The experiment
consisted of researchers putting together two groups of people. One group were the officers, the
other group were the inmates. The results concluded after six days showed guards exhibited
sadistic behavior while taking on the role of their job. Groups that are formed in prison are
extremely dangerous, so the guards who work there are trained to act cruel and vicious towards
the inmates so they will not fight against them (Gross).
The police are men of honor, yet some are being sinister and using their force too
frequently. The worst part of all, as mentioned earlier, police officers are getting away with their
unjustifiable acts. An article written by Salim Muwakkil lists only a handful of cruel acts done by
policemen. A man named Joesph Gould was a black male, unarmed, shot and killed outside of a
night club. The cop that shot him was off-duty, and after his crime he was acquitted from all
charges against him. Another man by the name James Cooper was shot because the officer
thought he was reaching for a gun. The nineteen year boy was unarmed and killed for no other
reason than just a moment of assumption. The officer Michael Marlow was not charged for the
murder of the young man. Aswan Watson was a twenty one year old who was shot when three
off-duty policemen shot him twenty-four times in the chest during a raid. He was unarmed and
posed no threat to those policemen. The officers were not charged for the ruthless act they
committed. All this violence has only escalated and it is growing rapidly within the black
community (Muwakkil).

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The number of those whose lives were lost at the hands of policemen is only growing.
High profile cases that are caught on camera let us see the horrible nature of the police officers
we are taught to respect. Just like any other situation in the world, we cannot let the bad cops
ruin the name of the good ones. Yet some feel that this has all gone too far. More often than not
we hear of cops doing something sinister rather than noble. One high profile case is that of
Johnny Gammage. The article written by Larry Ellis talks about the horrible death of the young
man and what little good came out of it. Johnny Gammage was a thirty one year old black male
who was unarmed and had no record in the system. During a routine traffic stop, he was
handcuffed and beaten by five police officers. Paramedics arrived at the scene in 1995, and had
to fight off the officers beating him. He was pronounced dead at the scene and their reasoning
was because he was driving erratically. The worst part of this situation is that not one of the
five police officers were charged for the murder of Gammage. The only bit of good that
proceeded from this is the law that passed allowing the honest cops to testify against rogue cops
In an article written in The Progressive magazine, the mayor of New York stated
Probably until the day I die, I will always give police officers the benefit of the doubt
(Progressive). Everyone should have the right to speak their peace and tell their side of the story.
There are three sides, there side, your side and the truth. The situation with police, is most of
their audience will believe them because of their title. Sometimes there are the police officers
that are caught being unrighteous, but nothing is done. On the news we see the recordings of the
dash cam and the officer being in the wrong. At the end of the day, though, they always seem to
get away with murder. That is not right and it is causing a nationwide problem.

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Obama said in a paper written by David Von Drehle, that the colored men dying because
of the vile acts of police is a slow-rolling crisis. The city of Baltimore nearly burned down
when a riot escalated so badly over a man named Freddie Gray. This young black male had been
in an altercation with the police when he was forcefully thrown into a police van handcuffed and
healthy. Hours later he was nearly dead with a spinal cord severely severed and in a coma. The
city of Baltimore went downhill after the funeral of Freddie Gray. The incident remained a
mystery, he went into the van fine and came out in a coma and died days later. The violence the
police committed against that poor man is unthinkable. He was handcuffed, unarmed and
vulnerable. He had no chance and there is nothing that can he could have done about it. It is
actually fascinating when famous gangs like the Bloods and the Crips come together and try to
bring peace upon the law enforcement and the black community. No more blood should be shed
in any state because of police violence (Von Drehle).

This graph explains all the accounted for deaths that have been committed at the hands of
policemen. It shows how they committed the crime, if they used excessive force or when they

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kill during a raid. A small percentage of these officers were charged for what they did, that is if
the crime they did was uncalled for. It is a thought we come across as to how much longer will
the world live like this. There are plenty of problems in the United States, people fearing officials
should not be one. We should trust them and be able to depend on them. Today we look at them
and feel hatred, though not everyone may feel that way. The crimes and horrible acts seen on
television everyday does not help anyones thoughts. Hopefully we can regain trust within our
communities and learn to honor these policemen again. Some police officers even have left their
jobs because it is such a hard field to be in. There have been so many wicked things done and
people see only the crookedness that comes from them.
Every accusation of police misconduct includes ambiguous and confusing events. Police
most often either deny that they abused a victim or claim that their physical actions were
necessary as proper restraint of their accuser. Accusers invariably deny any improper conduct
that warrants a physical restraint let alone abuse. And invariably the interactions between police
officers and people in custody are ambiguous, subject to interpretation and, at a minimum,
confusing in the sequence of events that led to physical injuries (Emery, Richard D). This
statement from the article written by Richard Emery, shows in a way how policemen get away
with over stepping there boundaries. They may be accused of an act, but they tell their side of the
story and try to make it sound as if it needed to be done. With that being said, when the top
authorities hear their side of the story they let it go, and justice is not severed for the one who
lost their life.
Not all police officers are bad, there name just seems to be ruined. Thanks to social media
you do notice many ungodly recordings of cops being spiteful and rude to citizens. You get to
view the policemen beating young men and women, and you notice that sometimes they have no

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acceptable reason. On social media like facebook, many have seen the videos of corrupt
policemen beating innocent citizens for the slight act of talking back and being disrespectful. A
video of a young black girl getting snatched up by a policemen went viral weeks ago. Some
thought it was such a horrible act for that policemen to do, yet others thought she deserved it.
Being disrespectful should not earn you an uncalled for beating. You also witness videos of
wonderful cops just trying to do their job right. You eye the men who help the less fortunate, who
help the kids on the street do right and try to keep the peace. You spot videos of the policemen
going shopping for the families that have no food. Also the videos of the policemen in
untrustworthy neighborhoods playing with the children who have no sense of direction. It is
disturbing to know that the respect for policemen is nearly tarnished. It would not be a peaceful
world if there were no police officers here to help us.
The police force is trying to make a comeback. Earning the trust of the citizens within
their community. Cincinnati has come a long way from the brutal acts that have happened there.
They are involved in many programs with the youth and helping out in ways they feel are right.
I always talk about community engagement being the most important thing in police work, that
was said by Cincinnati police chief Jeffery Blackwell (Baptiste, Nathalie). It is refreshing to
know that some are trying to better the city and fix the bond between policemen and citizens.
Imaging a world without police officers is also frightening. We may not like the things
police do in their line of work, but there are those that are still here to protect us. Imagine a world
where all crime is legal, and outbreaks that happened like the one Baltimore were not stopped.
People would not know what to do or how to survive a world like that. Living in a world of
Anarchy, and there were no law enforcement to come and help us when we called. That is a

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world no person would want to live in, so in all honesty we should learn to live with the
policemen we have.
With that being said there are still those good police officers trying to do right by the law.
Though to most, that does not outweigh the damage that has been done. So many cruel and vile
acts out of spite and hate. Beating men and women senseless because you can. Though many
officers do get away with the acts they commit, one day that will change. The world will
eventually fight back at the justice system and it will be ruthless. We live in America and people
killing people is not how it should be. Especially when it is men and women dying at the hands
of our police force. We do not know when the violence will end and what can we do to stop it.
Hopefully soon we figure it out, and people stop acting out at the law.
Reading all these articles and searching through all these facts has been bewildering.
Learning about all these savage acts that have been done by men we depend on to protect us.
These policemen seem to be so spiteful, it is sad when the men they kill are unarmed and had no
sense of protection. In the readings mentioned above, no victim posed a threat to the officers that
killed them. They never tried to attack them, yet the police still did what they thought was right.
When in reality, it looks horrible to us.
No one will ever know, it will forever remain a mystery as to why policemen do the
horrible acts they do. The wish we all hope for is that law enforcement will get the punishment
they deserve when they commit an unrighteous crime. They are just as equal as we are, so they
should not intentionally kill and get away with it because they are the law. Law enforcement can
kill a person, give a weak reason as to why they did it and get away with no questions asked.
Working together and changing the way things are will take years. It is a necessary task we must
do, no more innocent people should die at the hands of our policemen.

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Works Cited

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Baptiste, Nathalie. "Urban policing without brutality: Cincinnati has emerged as a role model of
policing reform--but even the best-in-show has a long way to go." The American
Prospect 26.3 (2015): 62+. Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Web. 28 Oct. 2015.
Budimir Babovic, (2000) Police brutality or police torture, Policing: An International Journal
of Police Strategies & Management, Vol. 23 Iss: 3, pp.374-380
Ellis, Larry. "The Jonny Gammage Law: Federal Prosecution of Police Brutality."
Synthesis/Regeneration Fall 2000: 14. Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Web. 28 Oct.
Emery, Richard D. "Video Cameras Curtail Police Brutality." Police Brutality. Ed. Louise I.
Gerdes. San Diego: Greenhaven Press, 2004. Current Controversies. Opposing
Viewpoints in Context. Web. 12 Nov. 2015
Gross, Bruce. "Prison violence: does brutality come with the badge?" The Forensic Examiner
Winter 2008: 21+. Expanded Academic ASAP. Web. 28 Oct. 2015.
Muwakkil, Salim. "Racism Promotes Police Brutality." Police Brutality. Ed. Louise I. Gerdes.
San Diego: Greenhaven Press, 2004. Current Controversies. Opposing Viewpoints in
Context. Web. 28 Oct. 2015.
Progressive. "Police Brutality Is a Serious Problem." Police Brutality. Ed. Louise I. Gerdes. San
Diego: Greenhaven Press, 2004. Current Controversies. Opposing Viewpoints in Context.
Web. 28 Oct. 2015.
Von Drehle, David, et al. "The Roots Of A Riot. (Cover Story)." Time 185.17 (2015): 34-39.
Academic Search Complete. Web. 29 Oct. 2015.

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