Police Brutality in NYC

such incidents may exist. With increased attention being paid to incidents of police brutality, lawsuits being brought against both the officers and the government for which they work, and a focus on the psychological conditions that may affect those officers that violently abuse citizens, there is hope that police brutality can be better understood, reduced, and eventually eradicated. When Americans think of the history of police brutality, there are several historical events that form the backdrop for this social problem.
Although thousands f undocumented and unrecorded incidents of police brutality undoubtedly have occurred, it was not until the advent of videotape that Americans who previously had no knowledge of police brutality began to truly understand this issue. The Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s was accompanied by many incidents of police brutality committed against African Americans and their supporters. The pictures and videos of these incidents, broadcast on national television, included nonviolent protestors being tear-gassed, beaten with billy clubs, and even sprayed with fire hoses.
In February 2012 in New York City, an amateur video posted online shows four New York City police officers kicking and punching a nineteen year old man who was laying on the ground unarmed. His mother said that her son required staples in his head and arm. Jatiek Reed, the nineteen year old Bronx resident, who has suffered from constant headaches and nightmares since then, announced he was requesting a special prosecutor to investigate. Reed’s attorney said the Bronx district attorneys office wasn’t capable of investigating because its close relationship with police.

The fficers involved have been placed on desk duty and their guns and shields have been removed while the New York Police Department investigated, according to US News Online in 02/09/2012 and AP Regional State Report-New York City, 02/0112012. Many police killings receive little mention in the media. Therefore, the topic usually goes unnoticed by general public until an incident hits home or a major tragedy occurs. According to recent statistics by October 22nd Coalition to Stop Police Brutality, 21 people were killed by New York police throughout 2012, averaging two killings per onth.
It increased the previous year’s sum by seven fatalities. The same statistic shows that nearly 90 percent of those killed were Black or Hipic. Last year’s victims of police shooting varied in age: Antwoine White, 17 years old, was killed in Bushwick, Brooklyn, on January 29; Ramarley Graham, 18 years old, was slain in his own Bronx bathroom Just four days later. On August 24, Jeffrey Johnson, 58 years old, was shot dead by the New York Police Department outside the Empire State Building after killing a former co-worker he had a grudge against.
Shereese Francis was killed in the basement of her house in Queens. The New York Police Officers used excessive force by pressing her face into a mattress while handcuffing her, causing her to suttocate. Then on June an e Davis was snot in a vehicle in East Flatbush, Brooklyn. There was no weapon involved and she didn’t represent any threat to the police to warrant the use of deadly force. (New York Amsterdam News from January 31 to February 06, 2013). Still, though, the Justice Department has failed to prosecute the vast majority of police brutality cases.
This problem stems from, among other things, difficulty in proving allegations, absent evidence such as unbiased eyewitness testimony, or videotape recordings of the abuse. Also, there exists a perception in society that police officers are to be believed and trusted. Because such a high percentage of police officers can be trusted and do not engage in police brutality, Juries and Judges often encounter difficulty in disbelieving an officer’s testimony that he or she did not abuse a citizen. Most people who become police officers do so because they ave a strong desire to protect their communities and its citizens.
They work hard and receive appropriate training on how to handle a wide variety of situations, both ordinary and dangerous. Unfortunately, despite the fact that most police officers work very hard to keep their communities safe and provide a good example to its citizens, there are some individuals who abuse the power and authority they receive as a result of their positions in law enforcement. Sadly, allegations of police brutality are not uncommon, with many accusations coming from people in poor eighborhoods, minority neighborhoods, and major cities.
Because police forces are governmental entities, common citizens–either individually or through their elected officials–do have a say in how their local police force is operated. If police departments make attempts to increase sensitivity and participate in training designed to reduce violence, and if groups of citizens actively work to encourage their local police departments to reduce violence and adopt enforceable early warning systems, police brutality can be reduced.
However, while the vast majority of olice officers are good and honest people, the problem of police brutality is significant enough that it cannot be ignored. Sources Citations: Ethnic News Watch 21 killed by the NYPD in 2012. (2013, ). New York Amsterdam News. Retrieved from
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