History UsefulNotes / AmericanLawEnforcement

23rd Jan '17 8:32:20 PM ObssesedNuker
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The main role in terms of law enforcement is in the field of riot control. The Posse Comitatus Act of 1878 [[note]] passed as a result of ex-Confederate states being extremely displeased with Federal troops enforcing civil rights during Reconstruction [[/note]] prohibits the use of the regular military in domestic law enforcement (except for when ordered by the President under exceptional circumstances, such as the Insurrection Act), but does allow the National Guard to be used. The Guard's other main role has nothing to do with law enforcement at all -- they're typically called out for disaster relief operations when a state gets hit by something really nasty.

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The main role in terms of law enforcement is in the field of riot control. The Posse Comitatus Act of 1878 [[note]] passed as a result of ex-Confederate states being extremely displeased with Federal troops enforcing civil rights during Reconstruction [[/note]] prohibits the use of the regular military in domestic law enforcement (except for when ordered by the President under exceptional circumstances, such as the Insurrection Act), Act, or by a specific act of Congress), but does allow the National Guard to be used. The Guard's other main role has nothing to do with law enforcement at all -- they're typically called out for disaster relief operations when a state gets hit by something really nasty.
20th Jan '17 11:40:53 AM Morgenthaler
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For the most part, if you don't work on a military base, you'll never encounter the [=MP=]s. They also have additional duties while deployed overseas, but by then it's out of the scope of this article. There is a separate civilian police force guarding ThePentagon, the Pentagon Force Protection Agency (PFPA), which pretty much does the same things there as the various military polices forces does elsewhere. Many military installations will also hire civilian police officers to work alongside the uniformed policemen, though you're less likely to see one of these civilian cops in a military movie.

to:

For the most part, if you don't work on a military base, you'll never encounter the [=MP=]s. They also have additional duties while deployed overseas, but by then it's out of the scope of this article. There is a separate civilian police force guarding ThePentagon, UsefulNotes/ThePentagon, the Pentagon Force Protection Agency (PFPA), which pretty much does the same things there as the various military polices forces does elsewhere. Many military installations will also hire civilian police officers to work alongside the uniformed policemen, though you're less likely to see one of these civilian cops in a military movie.
18th Jan '17 4:22:00 AM manofwarb
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The [[UsefulNotes/CoastGuard U.S. Coast Guard]] used to be part of the Department of Transportation but after 9/11 was moved to the Department of Homeland Security. Originally, the Coast Guard was a Treasury Department agency concerned with stopping smugglers. Its additional duties became ocean/waterways safety and rescue, as well as checking shipping. During wartime, the Coast Guard could be moved to the Department of Defense, serving as part of the US Navy while maintaining its status as an independent service, and would also handle coastal and waterway defense[[note]]as well as carrying out other duties including operating landing craft for the Marines, which is how Coast Guardsman [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Douglas_Albert_Munro Douglas Albert Munro]] earned the Medal of Honor. [[DyingMomentOfAwesome Posthumously.]][[/note]]. Since the "WarOnDrugs", the Coast Guard began to change and now spends 95% of their efforts in drug interdiction.

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The [[UsefulNotes/CoastGuard U.S. Coast Guard]] used to be part of the Department of Transportation but after 9/11 was moved to the Department of Homeland Security. Originally, the Coast Guard was a Treasury Department agency called the Revenue Cutter Service concerned with stopping smugglers. Its additional duties became ocean/waterways safety and rescue, as well as checking shipping. During wartime, the Coast Guard could be moved to the Department of Defense, serving as part of the US Navy while maintaining its status as an independent service, and would also handle coastal and waterway defense[[note]]as well as carrying out other duties including operating landing craft for the Marines, which is how Coast Guardsman [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Douglas_Albert_Munro Douglas Albert Munro]] earned the Medal of Honor. [[DyingMomentOfAwesome Posthumously.]][[/note]]. Since the "WarOnDrugs", the Coast Guard began to change and now spends 95% of their efforts in drug interdiction.



The main role in terms of law enforcement is in the field of riot control. The Posse Comitatus Act of 1878 prohibits the use of the regular military in domestic law enforcement (except for when ordered by the President under exceptional circumstances, such as the Insurrection Act), but does allow the National Guard to be used. The Guard's other main role has nothing to do with law enforcement at all -- they're typically called out for disaster relief operations when a state gets hit by something really nasty.

to:

The main role in terms of law enforcement is in the field of riot control. The Posse Comitatus Act of 1878 [[note]] passed as a result of ex-Confederate states being extremely displeased with Federal troops enforcing civil rights during Reconstruction [[/note]] prohibits the use of the regular military in domestic law enforcement (except for when ordered by the President under exceptional circumstances, such as the Insurrection Act), but does allow the National Guard to be used. The Guard's other main role has nothing to do with law enforcement at all -- they're typically called out for disaster relief operations when a state gets hit by something really nasty.



* The US Navy police is the M.A.s, short for Master-at-Arms. Those assigned to duty on land are also known as the Shore Patrol.

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* The US Navy police is the M.A.s, short for Master-at-Arms. Those assigned to duty on land are also known as the Shore Patrol. A notable difference between Navy Shore Patrolmen and Masters at Arms, versus other services' Military Police, is that MA and SP designated personnel still retain their original occupational rating and duties. Therefore, a cook who becomes a MA doesn't stop being a cook. In other services, the MP is a full time policeman.



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17th Jan '17 7:25:06 PM manofwarb
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Added DiffLines:


[[folder: Internal Affairs - Those who police the police]]
While nearly every Western democracy's police forces have InternalAffairs departments, none of them are featured as prominently in popular culture as Internal Affairs for American law enforcement. This is most likely because American citizens are generally not as deferring to police authority as other societies, and have an innate need to see even police authority kept in check. Therefore most, if not all American law enforcers have some agency or other acting as watchdogs to ensure they don't go too far. However, not every police force has an Internal Affairs Bureau - many small town local police forces and sheriff's deputies just don't have the funds to hire dedicated IA cops. Such forces will therefore be "policed" by the State Police's IA division. Another misconception is that only IA cops can investigate ''all'' bad acts committed by cops. In actuality, outright felonies such as murder, rape, larceny etc committed by cops are still investigated by detectives whose job is to investigate such crimes. Internal Affairs only deals with ''abuse of power''. Therefore, a cop planting evidence, taking bribes, harassing civilians, beating up suspects etc, would be investigated by IA, but a cop who commits a rape will be investigated by rape investigators. IA can get a cop suspended or fired, but only other regular cops and prosecutors can get a cop incarcerated.

Although some larger well funded police departments have IA divisions, large scale corruption cases can sometimes only be investigated by State Police, or in some egregious cases, the FBI. When systematic civil rights violations are involved, such as what is alleged to have [[RuleOfCautiousEditingJudgement happened in Ferguson Missouri]], the IA work is done by the Federal Department of Justice's Civil Rights Division. This division can go after policemen who have been cleared of wrongdoing by state or local IA divisions, because civil rights violations are a federal matter.

At the federal level, the FBI, ATF, DEA etc are "policed" by the Department of Justice Office of Professional Responsibility. Unlike state or local police IA divisions, where an IA cop is still a cop, federal law enforcement do not police their own. Rather, it is the prosecution service that polices them.
[[\folder]]
4th Dec '16 1:16:39 PM bwburke94
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* Third, Post 9/11, one trend police forces in general seem to be following is equipping themselves with secondhand military grade gear. Due to a number of anti-terrorism policies set forth by Congress, police departments may request to be equipped with surplus military gear such as body armor, assault rifles, and armored vehicles, to the point where some police departments have become virtually indistinguishable from a military unit. Any local police department can take advantage of this, regardless of location or size. Police agencies also increasingly cross-train, certifying officers as SWAT or other specialized "operators," and are heavily marketed to by weapons and tactical gear manufacturers and trainers to spend tax dollars on specialized equipment and training. While some people won't question the LAPD or NYPD getting better gear to protect their respective cities, they do question whether it's really necessary for a small town police department in the middle of Alabama, or a small campus or public transit police department, to be packing assault rifles and MRAP vehicles designed to survive [=IEDs=] in Iraq, ''especially'' when they start using said gear to carry out arrests or serve warrants for relatively small offenses. This "militarization of the police" has [[{{Understatement}} not been without controversy]].

to:

* Third, Post 9/11, one trend police forces in general seem to be following is equipping themselves with secondhand military grade gear. Due to a number of anti-terrorism policies set forth by Congress, police departments may request to be equipped with surplus military gear such as body armor, assault rifles, and armored vehicles, to the point where some police departments have become virtually indistinguishable from a military unit. Any local police department can take advantage of this, regardless of location or size. Police agencies also increasingly cross-train, certifying officers as SWAT or other specialized "operators," and are heavily marketed to by weapons and tactical gear manufacturers and trainers to spend tax dollars on specialized equipment and training. While some people won't question the LAPD or NYPD getting better gear to protect their respective cities, they do question whether it's really necessary for a small town police department in the middle of Alabama, or a small campus or public transit police department, to be packing assault rifles and MRAP vehicles designed to survive [=IEDs=] in Iraq, ''especially'' when they start using said gear to carry out arrests or serve warrants for relatively small offenses. This "militarization of the police" has [[{{Understatement}} not been without controversy]].
controversial, and [[RuleOfCautiousEditingJudgment that's all we'll say on the matter.]]
30th Nov '16 2:36:15 PM tommythegun
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Some non-governmental entities, like universities and railroads, have also been given authority to establish forces on their properties with full police power -- including, of course, the legal right to carry and use firearms. The decline of importance in the public eye of the railroads in America is probably why no major works of fiction deal with railroad police, but they are trained and sworn law enforcement officers with both state and (limited) federal authority. Campus cops also rarely appear in fiction unless it's as the butt of a joke, but you have to learn the trade '''some'''where. Still, in some cases campus police are a force to be reckoned with. For example, the University of California system's force covers all 11 UC campuses, and the California State University system's officers are responsible for all 24 schools. In addition, due to the fact that most public universities in the US are technically State land, campus police forces at many state universities are drawn from the State Highway Patrol and have the training that one would expect for State police. [[note]]For example, the University of Oklahoma.[[/note]] Given the fact that college and university campuses are large public spaces with thousands of students, faculty, and visitors in attendance, and can all too often be the site of things such as unruly sports mobs, violent protests, active shooters, or terrorist incidents, many campus police departments maintain qualifications in operations such as crow and riot control, SWAT, and bomb disposal, as well as close cooperative relationships with other local police agencies in emergencies. The Hyde Park neighborhood of Chicago, where President Barack Obama maintains a home, is widely regarded as one of the safest neighborhoods on the traditionally crime-ridden South Side of Chicago, due in part to the fact that the University of Chicago located there has its own police department which patrols the neighborhood alongside the Chicago Police Department. The distinction between "campus security" and "campus ''police''" is sometimes lost on new students...until they drunkenly assume they don't have to listen to a "rent-a-cop." HilarityEnsues.

to:

Some non-governmental entities, like universities and railroads, have also been given authority to establish forces on their properties with full police power -- including, of course, the legal right to carry and use firearms. The decline of importance in the public eye of the railroads in America is probably why no major works of fiction deal with railroad police, but they are trained and sworn law enforcement officers with both state and (limited) federal authority. Campus cops also rarely appear in fiction unless it's as the butt of a joke, but you have to learn the trade '''some'''where. Still, in some cases campus police are a force to be reckoned with. For example, the University of California system's force covers all 11 UC campuses, and the California State University system's officers are responsible for all 24 schools. In addition, due to the fact that most public universities in the US are technically State land, campus police forces at many state universities are drawn from the State Highway Patrol and have the training that one would expect for State police. [[note]]For example, the University of Oklahoma.[[/note]] Given the fact that college and university campuses are large public spaces with thousands of students, faculty, and visitors in attendance, and can all too often be the site of things such as unruly sports mobs, violent protests, active shooters, or terrorist incidents, many campus police departments maintain qualifications in operations such as crow crowd and riot control, SWAT, and bomb disposal, as well as close cooperative relationships with other local police agencies in emergencies. The Hyde Park neighborhood of Chicago, where President Barack Obama maintains a home, is widely regarded as one of the safest neighborhoods on the traditionally crime-ridden South Side of Chicago, due in part to the fact that the University of Chicago located there has its own police department which patrols the neighborhood alongside the Chicago Police Department. The distinction between "campus security" and "campus ''police''" is sometimes lost on new students...until they drunkenly assume they don't have to listen to a "rent-a-cop." HilarityEnsues.
30th Nov '16 2:32:43 PM tommythegun
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Some non-governmental entities, like universities and railroads, have also been given authority to establish forces on their properties with full police power -- including, of course, the legal right to carry and use firearms. The decline of importance in the public eye of the railroads in America is probably why no major works of fiction deal with railroad police, but they are trained and sworn law enforcement officers with both state and (limited) federal authority. Campus cops also rarely appear in fiction unless it's as the butt of a joke, but you have to learn the trade '''some'''where. Still, in some cases campus police are a force to be reckoned with. For example, the University of California system's force covers all 11 UC campuses, and the California State University system's officers are responsible for all 24 schools. In addition, due to the fact that most public universities in the US are technically State land, campus police forces at many state universities are drawn from the State Highway Patrol and have the training that one would expect for State police. [[note]]For example, the University of Oklahoma.[[/note]] The Hyde Park neighborhood of Chicago, where President Barack Obama maintains a home, is widely regarded as one of the safest neighborhoods on the traditionally crime-ridden South Side of Chicago, due in part to the fact that the University of Chicago located there has its own police department which patrols the neighborhood along with the Chicago Police Department. The distinction between "campus security" and "campus ''police''" is sometimes lost on new students...until they drunkenly assume they don't have to listen to a "rent-a-cop." HilarityEnsues.

to:

Some non-governmental entities, like universities and railroads, have also been given authority to establish forces on their properties with full police power -- including, of course, the legal right to carry and use firearms. The decline of importance in the public eye of the railroads in America is probably why no major works of fiction deal with railroad police, but they are trained and sworn law enforcement officers with both state and (limited) federal authority. Campus cops also rarely appear in fiction unless it's as the butt of a joke, but you have to learn the trade '''some'''where. Still, in some cases campus police are a force to be reckoned with. For example, the University of California system's force covers all 11 UC campuses, and the California State University system's officers are responsible for all 24 schools. In addition, due to the fact that most public universities in the US are technically State land, campus police forces at many state universities are drawn from the State Highway Patrol and have the training that one would expect for State police. [[note]]For example, the University of Oklahoma.[[/note]] Given the fact that college and university campuses are large public spaces with thousands of students, faculty, and visitors in attendance, and can all too often be the site of things such as unruly sports mobs, violent protests, active shooters, or terrorist incidents, many campus police departments maintain qualifications in operations such as crow and riot control, SWAT, and bomb disposal, as well as close cooperative relationships with other local police agencies in emergencies. The Hyde Park neighborhood of Chicago, where President Barack Obama maintains a home, is widely regarded as one of the safest neighborhoods on the traditionally crime-ridden South Side of Chicago, due in part to the fact that the University of Chicago located there has its own police department which patrols the neighborhood along with alongside the Chicago Police Department. The distinction between "campus security" and "campus ''police''" is sometimes lost on new students...until they drunkenly assume they don't have to listen to a "rent-a-cop." HilarityEnsues.
30th Nov '16 2:05:29 PM tommythegun
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State police agencies are responsible for apprehending criminals on State highways or across county lines, and also for investigating crimes involving state property and protecting state-owned facilities. (Hawaii is the only state without its own state police agency.) In most of the States, they are also (and primarily) responsible for enforcement of traffic laws, and are tasked with patrolling the Interstate highways that pass through their particular state. The State Police can also be called in if there is a conflict of interest with the local police force or accusations of corruption. They are variously called the State Police, the State Troopers, the State Patrol, the Highway Patrol, or the State Highway Patrol. Traditionally, many of these state police agencies were set up along paramilitary lines, especially in the Northeastern United States, and often use military-style uniforms, ranks, and organization (e.g., the use of the title and rank "Trooper").

to:

State police agencies are responsible for apprehending criminals on State highways or across county lines, and also for investigating crimes involving state property and protecting state-owned facilities. (Hawaii is the only state without its own state police agency.) In most of the States, they are also (and primarily) responsible for enforcement of traffic laws, and are tasked with patrolling the Interstate highways that pass through their particular state. The State Police can also be called in if there is a conflict of interest with the local police force or accusations of corruption. They are variously called the State Police, the State Troopers, the State Patrol, the Highway Patrol, or the State Highway Patrol. Traditionally, many of these state police agencies were set up along paramilitary lines, especially in the Northeastern United States, and often use military-style uniforms, ranks, and organization (e.g., the use of the title and rank "Trooper").
"Trooper," and commonly a "Smokey Bear"-style campaign hat as part of the uniform).
30th Nov '16 1:55:30 PM tommythegun
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State police agencies are responsible for apprehending criminals on State highways or across county lines, and also for investigating crimes involving state property and protecting state-owned facilities. (Hawaii is the only state without its own state police agency.) In most of the States, they are also (and primarily) responsible for enforcement of traffic laws, and are tasked with patrolling the Interstate highways that pass through their particular state. The State Police can also be called in if there is a conflict of interest with the local police force or accusations of corruption. They are variously called the State Police, the State Troopers, the State Patrol, the Highway Patrol, or the State Highway Patrol. Traditionally, many of these state police agencies were set up along military or paramilitary lines, especially in the Northeastern United States, and often use military-style uniforms, ranks, and organization (e.g., the use of the title and rank "Trooper").

to:

State police agencies are responsible for apprehending criminals on State highways or across county lines, and also for investigating crimes involving state property and protecting state-owned facilities. (Hawaii is the only state without its own state police agency.) In most of the States, they are also (and primarily) responsible for enforcement of traffic laws, and are tasked with patrolling the Interstate highways that pass through their particular state. The State Police can also be called in if there is a conflict of interest with the local police force or accusations of corruption. They are variously called the State Police, the State Troopers, the State Patrol, the Highway Patrol, or the State Highway Patrol. Traditionally, many of these state police agencies were set up along military or paramilitary lines, especially in the Northeastern United States, and often use military-style uniforms, ranks, and organization (e.g., the use of the title and rank "Trooper").
30th Nov '16 1:53:08 PM tommythegun
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State police agencies are responsible for apprehending criminals on State highways or across county lines, and also for investigating crimes involving state property and protecting state-owned facilities. (Hawaii is the only state without its own state police agency.) In most of the States, they are also (and primarily) responsible for enforcement of traffic laws, and are tasked with patrolling the Interstate highways that pass through their particular state. The State Police can also be called in if there is a conflict of interest with the local police force or accusations of corruption. They are variously called the State Police, the State Troopers, the State Patrol, the Highway Patrol, or the State Highway Patrol.

to:

State police agencies are responsible for apprehending criminals on State highways or across county lines, and also for investigating crimes involving state property and protecting state-owned facilities. (Hawaii is the only state without its own state police agency.) In most of the States, they are also (and primarily) responsible for enforcement of traffic laws, and are tasked with patrolling the Interstate highways that pass through their particular state. The State Police can also be called in if there is a conflict of interest with the local police force or accusations of corruption. They are variously called the State Police, the State Troopers, the State Patrol, the Highway Patrol, or the State Highway Patrol. \n Traditionally, many of these state police agencies were set up along military or paramilitary lines, especially in the Northeastern United States, and often use military-style uniforms, ranks, and organization (e.g., the use of the title and rank "Trooper").
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