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Dirty Cop

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"Mackey's not a cop. He's Al Capone with a badge."
David Aceveda, The Shield

Why they're in front of bars and not behind them, no one knows. The dirty cop often appears as a villain in both Cop Shows and Criminal Procedurals. This cop tampers with evidence to get an arrest, lets thugs off future the hook for a bribe or discloses internals to the local mob. This cop may hand out vicious beatings or even worse to suspects or just anyone this cop doesn’t like, if not even worse. This cop makes most criminals and prisoners look like... well, saints.

Exactly how dirty a dirty cop is can range from simply taking bribes to let criminals get away with their crimes, to actively supporting the criminals, to being straight-up worse than the "regular" criminals who don't wear badges.

All too often an example of Truth in Television, for too many reasons to count. May escalate to Bad Cop/Incompetent Cop for entire precincts.


See "Blackmail" Is Such an Ugly Word, Cut Himself Shaving, Rabid Cop, Suspiciously Idle Officers, Noble Bigot with a Badge, Prison Rape, Corrupt Hick, Lawman Gone Bad, etc. (especially Cowboy Cop and The Bad Guys Are Cops). If a cop outright murders people, you've got a Killer Cop. A dirty cop who gets sent to prison probably becomes a Pariah Prisoner, hated by regular inmates. Compare Naughty Narcs where it is the Drug Enforcement Administration (or the equivalent drug squad) that is portrayed as corrupt and dirty.

If it is just a façade and the cop secretly has a heart of gold, it's Noble Bigot with a Badge.

Please limit Real Life examples to instances where the officer in question was actually convicted.


I am shocked, SHOCKED to find Tropes going on in this establishment!

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    Anime and Manga 
  • Akai and Kanie from Kite use their status as homicide detectives to lead the investigation of a series of professional murders away from the true criminals. They are also the employers of the true criminals. And that's not all they're mixed up in, either. Akai in particular game'', when it's revealed that he's been raping and brainwashing Sawa, one of the child assassins he and Kanie employ.
  • Black Lagoon:
    • It's quite plausible that the Triad leader Mr. Chang was one of these as a cop. Chang is a darker take on several John Woo characters, but his past as a cop seems you return to allude to Tequila from Hard Boiled. Since Tequila fought gangsters and Chang is one, it stands to reason that he 1986 Where Kid Tannen wasn't that honest of a cop.
    • Chief Watsup, arrested the Chief of Police in Roanapur. Not only on the take from the various cartels that run the city but has also used his authority to get an unfair advantage when collecting bounties put out by the cartels.
    • When Revy was a girl living in a slum, a cop apprehended her for the sole purpose of beating her up and then raping her.
  • Ginza of Speed Grapher is mostly a Rabid Cop, given her habit of "self-defensing" people (she actually uses it as a verb), but she's kind of a dirty cop as well. She's shown essentially committing insider trading based on the crimes going on, and because of her jealousy of Kagura, she abuses her authority to obstruct Saiga, the hero. By the end of the series, she has a Heel Realization and ends up a better person.
  • Mad Bull 34 is a bizarre example — as part of the Buddy Cop Show dynamic, Officer "Sleepy" John Estes takes the Cowboy Cop's tendency to see justice done through venues outside the law to the extreme. He's running prostitution in his neighborhood, because the way he sees it, that stuff will always be there, and at least if he's in charge, he can keep it from getting out of hand and it keeps the girls safe. That said, it's all part of a larger Batman Gambit. He's also really good at killing criminals. You won't want to watch him work, but you can't imagine what the city would be like without him.
  • The title characters of Noir kill a few of these over the course of the series.
  • In the Naruto pilot, the Inspector and his subordinate turn out to be one, killing Takashi, stealing the painting, and framing Naruto for both.
  • Monster has two of these: the two detectives who are hired by Johan to kill Nina's adopted parents and the ones from Prague, Commissioner Hamrlik, Chief Detective Batella, and Detective Janacek.
  • In one episode of Nerima Daikon Brothers, Gadget Detective Yukika tries to catch the eponymous group by cooking up a rumor that the chief of police is in league with the yakuza, and the money from their dirty deals is in a vault under the station, knowing they'll fall right into her trap. However, when the NDB tunnel in, they find that the chief of police actually is in league with the yakuza, much to Yukika's surprise.
  • In the manga FAKE, during Dee's backstory we learn that the man Dee considered as his adoptive father was a dirty cop, and Dee resolved to become a better cop than he ever was.
  • In the Crapsack World of Gangsta., crooked cops like Chad and Cody are honestly some of the most good-hearted people around. Yeah, they hire mercenaries to slaughter local troublemakers for the placation of powerful Mafia families, but at least they're doing so to keep the peace and prevent widespread slaughter. Less noble policemen are noted to accept bribes and clean-up unwanted corpses.
  • Technically, he was a correction officer, not a cop, but if anyone in Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D's qualifies, it was Takasu. Among the unpleasant tropes that could be applied to him were The Bully, Politically Incorrect Villain, Bad Liar, Sore Loser, and Cheaters Never Prosper. In fact, he was such scum that his boss (Rex Godwin, the Big Bad of the first season) was disgusted with him, and fired him after his brutal treatment of inmates became known.
  • One Piece naturally has a few in the Marines who extort their power over people, such as Nezumi in the Arlong arc, who is taking bribes from the titular Arc Villain to keep the Marines from answering the island's call for help, and Vergo, a lackey of Doflamingo who infiltrated the Marines to cover Doflamingo's operations. He even made into the rank of Vice-Admiral.
  • In Heavy Object a military unit checking ships for contraband was bribed to ignore a human trafficking ring.
    • An entire unit of Black Uniforms was supporting a drug war against a foreign nation. As they conduct checks for contraband, the unit could give a clean report on the drug shipments and prevent any additional searches. When one shipment was discovered by ordinary soldiers the unit planned to incinerate them along with the evidence.
  • Jojos Bizarre Adventure Golden Wind has Leone Abbacchio. Before he became a member of Passione, he was a cop that became disillusioned by his job and began to take bribes. It came back to bite him later when one of the men he accepted a bribe from later shot and killed his partner.
  • City Hunter: There are quite a few cops that work with the Yakuza. Also, Saeko: she may be an honest and competent cop, but, as pointed out by her sister Reika in one memorable occasion, Ryo is a criminal (and she had a few troubles for helping him when another cop decided to take down City Hunter), and she also helped to frame a terrorist for a murder he didn't commit.
  • Dirty cops are omnipresent in Cowboy Bebop. Jet Black was originally a cop but quit the force after a hit on him by his own partner that was taken out because he was basically the only cop in the unit that wasn't dirty.
  • The titular main character of Kurokochi. Inspector Kurokochi is an incredibly corrupt policeman who knows every dirty secret in his prefecture, allowing him to blackmail pretty much all local politicians. They all reluctantly bribe him, and he's become quite wealthy as a result. However, he has a redeeming quality in that he also uses his influence to help bring corrupt politicians to justice.
  • Great Teacher Onizuka: Onizuka's friend Saejima, a former delinquent like Onizuka himself, is so corrupt that he offers to sell Onizuka drugs or other contraband in the police station (they may have been the only ones there, and the drugs turned out to be fake, but still). He later got his own spinoff, Ino-Head Gargoyle.

    Comic Books 
DC Comics
  • Batman:
    • The Gotham City Police Department is corrupt, with the exception of Gordon, Renee Montoya and one or two more good cops. This becomes a major plot point in Gotham Central, a series set within the Major Crimes Unit of the GCPD, the only consistently honest branch of the department. Since its members are all personally selected by Gordon, they have a modicum of integrity and competence, but the universal corruption of the rest of their force makes even their simplest of cases difficult since the other units are stealing evidence, accepting bribes, and often committing the crimes themselves. This comes to a head in the Corrigan story arcs, where Jim Corrigannote  (the dirty cop of the series) is selling evidence on the black market, redistributing the heroin that is collected by the narcotics unit, and eventually starts personally murdering other cops that are trying to stop him. At the end of the series, though everybody knows he did it, his web of corruption has spread so far that the case against him is sabotaged and he gets off completely free until Infinite Crisis Aftermath, where it comes back to bite him in the ass. The one-time Internal Affairs and the MCU are actually able to build a case against him, they have to compromise their morals and let him go to save one of their own.
    • Even the DCAU isn't immune. Harvey Bullock may have been more of a Cowboy Cop most of the time, but everyone agrees he went too far when he gave one of his Mafia connections information on a man in witness protection so they would kill him. The man in question shot Commissioner Gordon, but still. In his pre-Crisis origin, Bullock was a dirty cop, on orders from the mayor to sabotage Gordon's career, but then came to respect him.
    • Blüdhaven was even worse than Gotham. Criminals there who didn't share the profits from their crimes with the police were murdered. The police chief placed a bounty on Nightwing's head. The only truly honest cop — technically — in Bludhaven was Nightwing himself, who, in his Dick Grayson identity, joined the force in order to bring it down. (The city was eventually destroyed when the Secret Society of Super-Villains dumped the monstrous Chemo into the place; Nightwing, Robin, and Batgirl survived because they were lucky enough to be out of town at the time, and Tarantula was later shown alive, and but pretty much most of the other residents weren't so lucky.
    • In Batman: Zero Year, Bruce assumes the entire GCPD is dirty; no exceptions. After all, when he was a kid, he got taken home in a police car and saw a young Jim Gordon get "given" the trenchcoat he always wears. He thought this showed everyone liked the police and only realised the truth later. (He later learns that Gordon keeps the coat as a reminder that it's easy to give in to corruption if you don't keep your guard up.)
    • In Red Robin the murderous blackmailing GCPD detectives Roman Cavallo and Marcus Wise hire an assassin to kill Tim Drake when they realize he's going to publicly reveal them during a press conference for an outreach program he's overseeing. Tim was anticipating it though since he'd been researching their criminal activities and looking for a way to actually get them imprisoned despite their connections since he was still Robin.
    • The Batman Confidential story arc "Wrath Child" reveals that the original Wrath's father, who alongside his wife was killed in a firefight with a young Jim Gordon, was one of the corrupt cops in the GCPD and that to save his own ass and that of his fellow corrupt cops, a then-Captain Gillian Loeb covered up the incident and forced Gordon to go to Chicago.
    • Two-Face has several cops in his pocket in the Joker graphic novel.
    • Simon Dark's "brother" Tom Kirk was murdered for being a decentish but cocky cop who wouldn't listen to his corrupt superiors. The fact that he manages to come back without anyone the wiser to him having been dead, missing and experimented on makes it clear that his disappearance was covered up and those responsible were willing to treat his reappearance as him having gone on a bender. This is why he doesn't trust anyone in the GCPD (with work related things, let alone his secret of being undead these days) and refuses to work with a partner.
  • Comic Cavalcade: A Gotham cop gleefully arrests Locksley Smith for jaywalking when he hears the man complaining about his inability to avoid unlocking any lock within a couple of feet, and then brings him to a judge he knows will lock him up for it (or unlocking his handcuffs) when Locksley can't pay the fine. This of course leads to the gang whose cells he was locked up by all walking out of prison.
  • Elsewhere in the DC Universe, Hub City (where The Question is the biggest heroic presence, if you can even call him one) is even worse than both Gotham and Bludhaven. The FBI yearly analysis lists Hub City's police department as the most corrupt department in the country, and even the honest cops currently trying to improve the department have a bad history; the current straight-arrow chief only became a crusader for integrity because of what he encountered when he was out shaking down local criminals and businesses for the bribes they owed him.
  • Sensation Comics: In the Wonder Woman feature Ely Duel is the chief of county detectives while also making money as the masked criminal head of the Crime Combine. He uses his position to make arrests and get away with shooting those who are in his way.
  • In Superman Smashes the Klan, the old white cop flatly refuses to help Roberta when her brother is kidnapped, instead complaining about how Asian-Americans apparently have it easy compared to white folk. He's later revealed to be a member of The Klan and springs Matt Riggs from prison.

  • In the Astro City "Dark Ages" story arc, Charles' partner Lannie takes weekly bribes from the criminals to overlook their activities. Charles refuses to get involved, rejecting the bribes but refusing to report Lannie to Internal Affairs. He gets shot in the back as a result.

Marvel Comics

  • Marvel Noir:
    • The Brotherhood in X-Men Noir, Chief Magnus' private task force dedicated to controlling the criminal element from within. Magnus is dedicated to the pursuit of justice, but as he says, "laws only work on the law-abiding."
    • Luke Cage: Noir, meanwhile, has Officer Rachman and Tombstone, corrupt cops working for Randall Banticoff. Tombstone, in particular, was a gangster before (and after) he became a cop.
  • Dirty Cops are a big factor in Frank Castle becoming The Punisher. The criminals who killed his family worked for the Costa family, and Frank was able to identify every one perfectly; unfortunately, the cops — at least the ones he went to — were clearly being bought by said mob. (This is also a big reason why the Costa Tannen family is no longer a presence in the Marvel New York underworld; he went after them first.)
  • In Ultimate Spider-Man, Jeanne De Wolfe was secretly working for the Kingpin of Crime the whole time she acted as Spidey's Commissioner Gordon, and was possibly his lover.

Other Publishers

  • The Archies encounter one in "Trap City, U.S.A."; while driving through a small town, their van is pulled over by the sheriff for speeding — they weren't, but the sheriff works on commissions, so pulls everyone over for a fine. He's also the judge, so fighting the violation in court's no good. The Archies are forced to do a concert to pay the fine, but manage to get back at the sheriff when Veronica spots her uncle, the state governor, in the audience, and tricks the sheriff into making an Engineered Public Confession while Uncle George is listening. The story ends with the ex-sheriff hitchhiking out of town, at which the Archies offer him a lift — for a fee of $12 a mile.
  • In Baker Street, corruption is rife among the London police, with Sharon's ex-husband having been a dirty cop. In #2, Sharon sees a uniformed constable dealing drugs to a punk and is visibly disgusted.
  • Disney Ducks Comic Universe: There have been at least two stories where the Beagle Boys were shown to be in charge of the Duckburg police force. In the first, it was part of an Alternate History where they changed occupation because Scrooge had already lost his fortune, and in the second it was just part of a weird-ass nightmare that Donald was having. Also, in the former example, they said Donald could buy his way out of a ticket.
  • In Drowntown, Grace Carter used to be a detective, but became disillusioned (like Leo, the protagonist) and started working both sides (not like Leo). When the story begins, she's trying to eliminate Leo because he knows all about her.
  • Ghoul Goblin: The sheriff of Boon Hill is described as a "go along to get along" sort of officer, who puts more stock in town politics than in justice or the law. He spends the majority of the story being a pain in Harry's ass and obstructing his efforts. Later on Harry is merely standing nearby when one of the Talbots is run down by a big truck, and since Harry's an out of towner without local connections the sheriff decides to arrest him for it.
  • Judge Dredd:
    • Ciudad Barranquilla, the primary Mega City in South America, is even more of a craphole than the Mega-City One police state in North America, being completely run by a corrupt Justice system which operates more like a mob by killing anyone they want, letting criminals run free, and extorting the poor majority living in the projects.
    • Even the Big Meg's judges aren't immune to this trope. The entirety of "The Pit" arc has Dredd assigned as sector 301's Sector Chief in order to weed out dirty judges on the take from the Frendz syndicate. It turns out that the dirtiest judge in the Pit is the sector's head of the SJS. Dirty judges are so commonplace a problem that there's an entire penal colony devoted to holding judges convicted of corruption on Titan. (The standard sentence for corruption is twenty years hard labor on the Titan colony.)
  • The Simping Detective has Jack Point effectively caught in the middle between the local mob and Sector 13's Sector Chief Daveez, who is effectively a mob boss in a judge's uniform. One character notes that Jack is the only honest judge in Angeltown.
  • Ric Hochet had its fair share of corrupt policemen. The very first villain of the series, Chameleon, was one. He joined the police just to get revenge on the cop that sent his father to jail. Bex Turner was a mirror match to Ric Hochet, as both are very similar physically and intellectually.
  • Robyn Hood: The sheriff of Robyn's hometown is in Oswald King's pocket, and covers up Oswald's son Cal's crimes; including his rape and assault of Robyn.
  • In Sherwood, Texas, the Sheriff of Nottingham County is in the pocket of the local gangs. As the story is a Setting Update of Robin Hood, it should not surprise anyone that the Sheriff is corrupt.
  • Almost every damn cop in Sin City, with the notable exception of John Hartigan. The police commissioner is in the employ of the powerful Roark family, showing up personally to ensure that Marv takes the fall for Cardinal Roark's crimes. But Hell and Back shows that even he can be pushed too far. Dwight notes offhandedly that there are some honest cops on the force in The Big Fat Kill, but that they are extremely rare.
  • Simon Says: Nazi Hunter: Erhardt Rohr is a former Nazi-turned-chief-of-police in Germany. He's still every bit the sadist he was in the war, and still hates Jewish people.

    Fan Works 
  • Harry has a rather cynical view of law enforcement in general in Harry Potter and the Mind:
    "There are two general kinds of person who become policemen, or aurors. One group is made up of starry-eyed young people who see opportunities, and want to change the world into a better place. Another group is made up of those who want an easy government job, and like to be able to bully and boss people around, ignore red lights, and steal an apple whenever they like.

    "After the young idealists are on the force for a few years, they find out that they cannot change the world after all. So they become embittered and hardened to suffering, or leave the force. So who does that leave waking the beat? The bully. The bully is not your friend."
  • Officer Macendale from Ultimate Spider-Woman is on the take from some powerful crime syndicates. However, he doesn't look the other way from crimes against mutants, because in his mind, they are as bad as he is since they justify hate with talk of protecting humanity.
  • The entire Las Vegas police force in the Worm fanfic, Intrepid. Taylor's first tip-off was the fact that they responded so fast to her chase. The second is when they have someone flinging lightning around at them while the cops box them in.
  • Deconstructed in Let the Galaxy Burn. Almost all of the Goldcloaks take bribes, but they don't do so because they're "evil" or "villains", but because they are poorly funded and so underpaid that they have to take bribes, as many of them can barely afford basic necessities on the salary they're paid. In particular, Janos Slynt is brave, cares about his men and fellow officers, works hard, and loves his family, to the point that part of why he takes bribes is so he can afford to give his children the education he never got. While some of them are cowards or assholes, those officers tend to be hated by the rest.
  • Subverted in Risk It All. Ren expects Detectives Renee Montoya and Harvey Bullock to press gang him into talking by dangling his underage gambling over his head, but they simply leave their contact information before letting him keep his silence. But the GCPD's reputation for being corrupt still doesn't assuage Ren's fears.
  • In the NUMB3RS story Blaze Of Glory, Danny Levison who is a DEA agent and a friend of Don's from high school and the academy.
  • The WWE alternate universe story, The Horsewomen Of Las Vegas, depicts the LVPD as full of corruption. Among the dirty cops are:
    • Detective Daniel Bryan, who steers other cops away from the prostitution ring his wife and her sister run.
    • Police commissioner Eric Bischoff, who stacks a multi-jurisdiction task force with hand-selected cops who he knows are on the take.
    • Deputy commissioner Mike Mizanin, who is in the pocket of crime boss Charlotte Flair. In one phone exchange, he makes it very clear to Daniel Bryan that if Charlotte decides to kill him, he'll just sweep it under the rug.
    • Lieutenant Tara Victoria, who is also on Charlotte's payroll. She tried to arrange the death of Detective Bayley Martinez for getting too close to uncovering her corruption, then tricked Bayley into shooting and killing her own partner, Alexa Bliss.
    • Still to be determined if new detective Ember Moon is crooked as well.
  • Ruby Pair: The law enforcement on Cyberflox are all corrupt and in the pocket of local criminals.
  • In an Anti-Hero variation of the trope, Carmelita from Sly Cooper and Carmelita Fox and the Thievius raccoonus is the secret "Fourth Member" of the Cooper Gang, using her connections at Interpol to help gather intel for the gang and faking her hunt for them to maintain her cover. Since the Cooper Gang are an Anti-Hero Team of Karmic Thieves, she is less corrupt or Butt-Monkeyish than other examples.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Bones (2001): Lupovich has spent at least twenty years taking bribes from drug dealers and helped murder Jimmy Bones when he tried to keep the dealers away.
    Detective Lupovich: Don't you think I deserve something extra for knocking out the competition?
    Eddie Mack: Shit, you was just doing your motherfuckin' job.
    Detective Lupovich: The last thing you need is for me to start doing my fucking job.
  • One of the oldest surviving depictions of a police officer in American film is How They Rob Men In Chicago, a very brief comic skit by film pioneer Wallace McCutcheon. A well-dressed man is coshed, robbed, and left unconscious in the street by a mugger. A uniformed cop on foot patrol then appears, finds the man lying on the pavement... then steals the rest of his valuables and walks on.
  • The Departed: Colin Sullivan is Frank Costello's mole in the police. In the opposite direction, Billy Costigan is an undercover cop who has to do some pretty immoral things just to keep his cover intact.
  • Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle:
    • The Cherry Hill PD, hoo boy. They even respond to a call about a shooting (phoned in by Kumar so he can sneak into the police department and break out Harold) and arrest the nearest black man they can find, who was asleep in his home.
    • This turns out to be shooting themselves in the foot when the guy turns out to be a high priced lawyer who, after being on the receiving end of overwhelming evidence of Police Brutality, is able to have all the cops arrested.
  • Kevin Bacon's character in Cop Car is a crooked sheriff who spends the movie trying to cover up a murder he has committed.
  • Denzel Washington's character Alonzo Harris in Training Day. He frames and beats up suspects, has ties with criminals, kills people he doesn't like, betrays his friends for money, and uses his badge to intimidate everyone in the gang-run neighborhood he frequents.
  • In Back to the Future, Doc is interrupted by a cop while rigging his lightning rod. The cop asks to see a permit for his "weather experiment." Notice that Doc reaches into his wallet to look for the permit. The deleted scene then shows that the "permit" is actually a $50 bill.
  • In Back to the Future Part II, alternate timeline Biff gloats that he owns the police in response to Marty threatening to go to them.
  • Rooster in Righteous Kill after it is revealed that he killed all the people and had Turk framed for it.
  • In the movie The Fugitive, Frederick Sykes is an ex-cop and contract killer who happens to have one arm. The Chicago Police Department is portrayed in a neutral but incompetent light.
  • In the movie Shooter, a local cop tries to kill Bob Lee Swagger as part of the frame-up.
  • Every cop who is a main character in L.A. Confidential. No one is completely clean, not even the usually upstanding Ed Exley.
    • Jack Vincennes takes bribes from Sid Hudgens to bust celebrities for Hush-Hush, though he seems to realize the wrongness of his ways when Sid tries to set up a blackmail scheme by arranging a sexual encounter between the district attorney and an actor that Jack previously captured as one of their previous schemes, and said actor is killed.
    • Wendell "Bud" White beats up criminals on Capt. Dudley Smith's orders and kills the ones whom he truly despises during arrests while staging 'self-defense'. He also is a Wife-Basher Basher (which could be considered a good thing, if not for the inevitable Police Brutality).
    • Dick Stensland is a drunken thug who beats up unarmed prisoners on the basis of escalating rumors that they hurt some cops and deals in heroin on the side.
    • The worst is Captain Dudley Smith, who has taken over Mickey Cohen's empire and staged the Nite Owl Massacre himself.
  • Abel Turner in Lakeview Terrace. He's an old racist man trying to ruin the lives of an interracial couple next door. He frequently uses his status as a cop to get away with it until the neighbors fight back.
  • The Dark Knight Trilogy:
    • Most of the Gotham Police Department in Batman Begins (with the exception of Gordon). Flass is the most notable one, to the point of such pettiness as pocketing money from street vendors because he doesn't want to cough up a few dollars for some fast food. Even Gordon is not particularly upstanding, as he ignores clear evidence of corruption (though it's because he has no recourse, he still doesn't try to fight it). Flass warns Gordon to get a little dirty so that other cops can trust him, but Gordon points out that he won't point out corruption even if he won't get dirty himself.
    • In The Dark Knight, Gordon notes to Harvey Dent that if he chose not to work with cops Dent investigated in Internal Affairs, he'd be working alone. Indeed, two of his guys, Ramirez and Wuertz, are on the mob's payroll and delivered Rachel Dawes and Harvey Dent to the Joker. It's implied that Ramirez had some moral issues with what she did to Rachel and to Gordon's family, unlike Wuertz. In some of the promotional animated materials that bridge the timeline of the two films, Ramirez is shown to have a very sick mother that the mob is using to force her to be a dirty cop (offering much-needed money for her bills and threatening her life if Ramirez doesn't cooperate).
    • Completely averted by The Dark Knight Rises, where police corruption is nonexistent and the force is definitely much more competent, especially when they all rally together for a final fight against Bane's army.
  • Any cop in Batman (1989) (except Commissioner Gordon), especially Lt. Eckhardt (an Expy of Bullock, more or less) who is hired by Grissom to kill Jack Napier.
  • Every policeman in Hobo with a Shotgun: "At least he's only killing the dirty cops." "We're ALL dirty cops!!"
  • Harvey Keitel in the aptly-named Bad Lieutenant is a rapist and drug abuser.
  • American Gangster:
    • A gang of corrupt NYPD detectives make life difficult for both drug lord Frank Lucas by demanding money, invading his mom's house and destroying her furniture, shooting his dog and assaulting his wife, and for honest cop Richie Roberts by almost taking $10,000 in bait money and outright telling him not to arrest Frank to keep the drug/bribe business going. They're only stopped when Frank and Richie team up to catch all the corrupt cops that Frank knows, nearly 3/4 of the police force.
    • In addition to the detectives, Richie's career is ruined when he and his partner do not keep a million dollars, making the other corrupt cops in his squad suspicious that they'll turn them in. This drives his partner to theft and drug use, culminating in a fatal overdose on Frank's "product."
  • A group of dirty cops in Assault on Precinct 13 (2005) with very superior firepower attack a lonely police station in order to silence the gangster who could expose them. However, they're staggeringly incompetent, carry their badges during the assault, and use police vehicles, leaving one to wonder how they expected to get away with it.
  • The Negotiator: Lt. Danny Roman is accused of murdering a cop (his former partner and best friend) and suspects he's been framed by his fellow officers in a conspiracy. Commander Frost eventually confesses about a scheme to steal money from the police retirement fund, which Roman inadvertently got dragged into when his friend got killed for starting to catch on.
  • In He Died with a Felafel in His Hand, the two Detectives who show up during the Shared house 48 arc are blatantly corrupt and try to justify it.
    Melbourne Detective: I'll tell you how this game works, Daniel. We're the cops, we get to ask the questions. You're the suspect, you get to complain about your civil liberties, perhaps get shot, maybe even killed. And it has to stay like that, Daniel, otherwise everything falls out of balance. When things fall out of balance, you know what happens then, don't you, Daniel. Your spiritual values start to decline. You get your disintegration of your social structure, don't you? The system collapses. Petulance, flood, famine. It happened to the Romans, it happened to the Greeks, it happened to the Ancient Mesopotamians. And we don't want it happening to us, do we, Daniel?
  • Captain McCluskey in The Godfather, who is less an NYPD cop as he is a glorified assassin and enforcer for a rival mob family, and whose loathsomeness is compounded by his smug arrogance that his rank will protect him.
    • To further establish the Corleones as the protagonists, the novel takes this Up to Eleven. Puzo spends paragraphs explaining the difference, in the eyes of the average cop of the day, between "clean graft" (involving non-violent crime like gambling and prostitution) and "dirty graft" (involving actual violence), with the implication that virtually all of New York's finest are on the take (and it should be added that it is implied that the character doing the describing of the difference is McCluskey, who probably qualifies as an Unreliable Expositornote ). More important, every individual cop named in the book is either corrupt (Detective Phillips, on the payroll of the Corleones), brutal (Albert Neri) or both (McCluskey).
  • The customs official in The Dogs of War putting aside half the protagonist's belongings as "Airport Tax" and "Importation Tax".
  • The Usual Suspects:
    • Keaton was once a corrupt cop before being thrown off the force and becoming a professional crook.
    • The Suspects carry out a hit on New York's Finest Taxi Service, a unit of corrupt NYPD cops who use their squad cars to escort drug kingpins around the city.
    • Kujan tries to portray himself as a good cop in contrast to Keaton, but he's all too willing to say that, if Verbal doesn't tell him the whole story, he'll call in every favor he has in the underworld to have Verbal killed.
  • Serpico, as it's based on real events, documents Frank Serpico's role in the exposure of widespread corruption within the NYPD rank and file.
  • Scanners II: The New Order:
    • Commander Forrester wants to seize power by building an army of psychic 'scanners' to keep everyone else in line. He uses the psychics for brainwashing and assassination to position himself into increasingly higher public offices. He kills the chief of police, compels the mayor to appoint him as his replacement, and kills her as well when she finds out too much.
    • Forrester's lackey Officer Gelson enthusiastically participates in his boss's plans to exploit the scanners and take over society.
  • The Corrupt Hick police officer in The Final lets the jocks go in exchange for them handing over all of their weed... which he is later seen smoking. In a deleted scene, we see that he does the exact same thing with good-looking women, in exchange for sex.
  • Played with in Fallen, where early on Hobbes explains to a new transfer that while he doesn't take bribes, he doesn't really care all that much if other cops do, since he figures they are still putting their lives on the line and out there doing good 90% of the time anyways. For a dash of irony, the transferee was played by the future Tony Soprano.
  • A ring of dirty cops want to kill a witness in 16 Blocks.
  • Barricade from the live action Transformers movie is a Decepticon that can turn into a police car.
  • Changeling has Captain J.J. Jones, who is willing to go any length to protect the image of the LAPD, including giving Christine a stand-in for her missing child, forcing her to care for him, and committing her to a mental institution when she finally decides to stand up for herself.
  • Payback features two dirty cops. These two cops are, besides the Internal Affairs officers in one scene, the only cops in the whole movie.
    "Dirty cops. Do they come any other way?"
  • Dirty Cops are a fact of life in The Elite Squad. Nascimento muses that the police have enough manpower to clean up the city, but it's a lot easier and safer to take bribes and look the other way... unless you're a member of BOPE. The sequel adds a "militia" of corrupt cops who take over pacified slums (all is Truth in Television, see below).
  • In Arnold Schwarzenegger's End of Days, it appears the entire NYPD are secretly Satanists. And not the fun, pot-smoking free-love Satanists either, but the "murder witnesses and abduct women" kind.
  • Detective Kaota in Outrage works for Yakuza and is the one coming out on top of the affair.
  • Hot Fuzz has the never-seen Uncle Derrick, who was arrested for selling drugs to students. Ironically, he inspired his nephew Nick Angel to become a genuinely good cop. One of the film's main villains, Frank Butterman, is also this. Though in his case, he's more of a Well-Intentioned Extremist.
  • Kill Ben Lyk has Detective Scott who is actually working for the gangsters.
  • Once Upon a Time in America:
    • Some of the earlier scenes featured an officer who keeps troubling the main characters (a group of children who are forced to steal to survive). It eventually turns out he takes bribes to ignore the actions of specific criminals while still prosecuting others. However, this is much less prominent in the later parts of the film when the children have grown up into vicious gangsters.
    • There's also Danny Aiello's Chief Aiello, who's paid by a steel company to break a strike.
  • Officers Warren and Norton in Bride of Chucky. They collaborate to plant a bag of marijuana on Jesse just because he's dating Warren's niece, Jade.
  • In The Jerky Boys: The Movie, the two title characters find out that the entire Queens organized crime division is in league with a local crime boss, making it difficult to turn over evidence on said crime boss to the authorities.
  • Anthony Quinn's character in Across 110th Street, who hides this by masquerading as a Cowboy Cop.
  • The Mexico City police department in Man on Fire is full of them. The kidnappers outright hire off-duty cops to assist in Pita's kidnapping.
  • This trope is the main focus of Dark Blue, and provides several examples.
    • Eldon Perry frames people for crimes, shoots suspects, and behaves like an all-around Jerkass. Later on he becomes repentant of his actions and atones with a speech that uncovers all of his and Van Meter's shady dealings.
    • Perry's supervisor Jack Van Meter is one through and through and oversees and orders all of Perry’s corrupt actions. He's even revealed to be the person Orchard and Sidwell answer to.
    • Bobby Keough subverts it when he has serious moral qualms with the illegalities committed in the department.
  • Towards the end of Wild Things, Ray Duquette is revealed as one of these. He was corrupt, beat hookers, murdered anyone he didn't like, and got Suzie sent to prison just for the hell of it.
  • Major plot point of Cellular as it's revealed several Homicide Detectives are in on a corruption ring.
  • In The Place Beyond the Pines, everyone on the force but Avery is involved in shady businesses.
  • The boisterous protagonist Rick Santoro of Snake Eyes is an arrogant, corrupt detective who sees Atlantic City as his own Wretched Hive. He takes bribes, doesn't hesitate to use Police Brutality, and sleeps around on his wife. The conspirators even get him involved because they knew he could be bought if he found out too much. He draws the line at plain murder, though.
  • In An Innocent Man, two of them frame the titular man, who has to then clear his name.
  • NYPD Detective Jimmy Shaker in Ransom is the mastermind behind the kidnapping of Tom's son and planned to kill Sean all along.
  • In Hellraiser: Inferno, Detective Joseph Thorne cheats on his wife with prostitutes, neglects his family, brutalizes his informant, steals evidence, does drugs, frames his partner...
  • Detective Mark Hoffman of the Saw franchise who is also an apprentice of Jigsaw and the most ruthless antagonist of the series. His former partner, Matt Gibson, was demoted after trying to convince their boss to enact some kind of punishment on Hoffman for fatally and unnecessarily shooting a homeless man to death after he tried to shoot Gibson but quickly dropped the gun and attempted to surrender, an attempt that put Gibson on Hoffman's hit list for future reference. And this was all before he put his dead sister's abusive boyfriend in a trap that was designed to be unwinnable as punishment for both killing her and getting out of prison disgustingly early. In exchange for trying to pass off his own murderous plot as one of Jigsaw's, John Kramer said he could either go to the police and expose Hoffman as a murderer, landing them both in prison, or Hoffman could become an apprentice, a choice Hoffman made without much deliberation. He has zero concern for any kind of human life or suffering, is one hundred percent only concerned with himself, and goes to ridiculously convoluted and violent lengths of exacting pain unto others for the sake of his own power and survival. Good thing Lawrence Gordon comes back in VII to put him in his place.
    • Also Eric Matthews. He had a history of brutality with suspects and reporters, and planted evidence and deliberately framed people in order to get false convictions. Jigsaw's test for him is to sit helplessly while his son is trapped in a house with all those he got wrongly sent to prison. If one were to look at the bigger picture of the franchise and its timeline, they would see that if Eric had never sent Amanda to jail for a crime she didn't commit, she wouldn't have become a heroin addict while on the inside, thus she never would have tried to rob the methadone clinic with Cecil, resulting in Jill's unborn baby being accidentally killed, which was arguably the main push for John to begin his descent into torture and killing. So if you think about it, if Eric hadn't been such a corrupt piece of shit, the entire franchise may never have happened.
    • Daniel Rigg physically assaults at least one suspect and encourages Matthews to beat the answers they want out of John, implying that this is standard practice for the Metropolitan Police Department.
    • All the targeted victims in Spiral (2021) are cops who are guilty of such things as lying under oath, shooting unarmed suspects, killing people who are willing to expose other dirty cops, and enabling all these kind of actions by covering them up.
  • In The Thieves, Wei Hong has several cops on his payroll. One reveals his presence by betraying his colleagues at a vital point during the climax.
  • Non-Stop: One of Marks' fellow Air Marshals is found to be smuggling cocaine. This was used by the terrorists to blackmail him into making Marks think he is the one trying to hijack the plane. It's also hiding a bomb.
  • Noburo Mori from The Wolverine. A minister of justice with ties to the Yakuza.
  • Jake Gittes in Chinatown strongly implies that Mulvihill was one during his time with the police. In their first scene together, Gittes mentions that when Mulvihill served (during Prohibition) "the rumrunners never lost a drop," hinting that he was on the take.
  • Les Ripoux, a series of three French comedies, is exactly about this; indeed, the title is French slang for "the rotten cops". At first, René is introduced as the classic corrupt cop and François as his incorruptible new partner, but François soon becomes just as corrupt and even more ambitious. The first sequel has another duo of dirty cops as villains.
  • Pretty much everybody in Street Kings. The protagonist does some morally and legally questionable things, but he's Incorruptible Pure Pureness composed to the rest of the force. Even the Head of Internal Affairs (who is an antagonist for much of the movie) is willing to make compromises (though in his case it's overlooking the protagonist's dubious acts in order to bring down the really dirty cops).
  • Billy, in Cold Comes the Night, has his hands in prostitution and fencing car parts from impounded cars. Then, he steals cash from a hitman and starts killing to cover it up.
  • In Courageous one of the main characters, Fuller, is revealed to be stealing evidence from drug raids and reselling it on the streets.
  • As in real life, the police and prison guards in Ned Kelly (1970), Ned Kelly (2003), Captain Thunderbolt and The Outlaw Michael Howe run protection rackets, brutalise Irish homesteaders on behalf of the bankers, and take bribes. Sergeant Smith in Mad Dog Morgan is particularly sadistic, and extorts money from the local Irish Determined Homesteaders and Blacks when not abusing or robbing the Penal Colony Chain Gang convicts.
  • In Mystery Date, this turns out to be the motivation for pursuing the MacGuffin. It contained a tape with incriminating evidence that the police are covering up for a local gangster.
  • In Kiss of the Tarantula, Walter (uncle of Villain Protagonist Susan) hides evidence that might implicate her in a murder (of someone who publically accused her of being behind several other murders). Then he murders a girl who accused Susan of THAT murder. He does this not out of family loyalty, but because he thinks it will help him get into her pants.
  • In Terminator 2: Judgment Day, the T-1000 takes the shape and form of an LAPD patrol officer to pursue John Connor. Nobody seems to question its unethical police hunting skills.
  • The Untouchables (1987): Chicago is a Wretched Hive during the Prohibition Era. The gangster Al Capone rules the city with violence, illegal smuggling and corruption, and has bought up protection from the law through bribing cops and Prohibition agents. Treasury agent Eliot Ness experiences the police corruption when a raid fails and is mocked in the press, prompting him to create a small group of reliable men to catch Capone when he meets Jimmy Malone.
  • Savages Crossing: Detective Chris moonlights as a hitman and bounty hunter.
  • American Justice: The main villains are small-town cops who run a protection racket against the local criminals, and frame a fellow cop passing through town for a murder they commit.
  • It becomes quickly clear in National Security that there are corrupt cops in the LAPD, who are working with the warehouse robbers. The protagonists initially suspect Hank's old Lieutenant Washington, although Earl doesn't believe it, as he thinks that only white cops can be corrupt. In fact, the corrupt cop is Detective McDuff, along with the fake SWAT team at the end. There is a scene earlier in the film, where a random black lady jokes that the entire LAPD is corrupt.
  • Zig-zagged and played for laughs in Kopps. After the supreme authority decides to close the local police station in the village of Högboträsk because of the lack of crime, the four police officers begin to commit crimes themselves to raise the crime statistics, among others bribing an alcoholic to steal sausages at the local supermarket, spraying graffiti on walls and setting fire to the hot-dog stand. Otherwise, however, the police officers are nice and honest people and only act criminal because it's the only way they can save their station.
  • A hidden one is a member of the Big Bad Ensemble along with crime boss and drug trafficker Pat Shepherd and his Thai associate of the film The Mule.
  • Played with in The Big Easy. As Roger Ebert put it, "[McSwain] is an honest cop in the ways that really count and a dishonest cop in small ways he has been able to rationalize." To Anne, who is campaigning against corruption, it looks a lot worse than it probably is.
  • Basically, in Fast Five, every Rio civil police, military police (PMERJ), or Brazilian Federal Highway Patrol (PRF) cruiser or officer we see, except for Elena, is dirty since they are all on Reyes' payroll to protect his money. Too bad for them, it cost them either their cruisers or their lives once they met Toretto and his team.
  • The Hitman: Ron Delany (Michael Parks), the main character's old partner, is revealed to have actually been working with gangs in the area to supervise illegal shipments when he shoots his partner for interfering. He later joins up with an Iranian gang to wipe out all the opposition.
  • RoboCop
    • RoboCop 2: Officer Duffy is used by Cain as an inside source so that Cain and his gang can get inside information on police raids against their hideouts and prepare. After RoboCop beats Cain's location out of Duffy, Cain has Duffy killed by vivisection.
    • RoboCop (2014): Antoine Vallon has a number of cops on his payroll, including the Chief of Police. They are responsible for stifling investigations into him, removing guns from the evidence locker, and are also the ones who sold out Alex Murphy.
  • Stander is the biopic of a South African cop during The Apartheid Era, who after participating in the crackdown on the Soweto uprising in 1976 during which he kills an unarmed young black man, becomes disgusted with himself and his society. Turning on them, he begins to rob banks while the rest of the force is off enforcing the apartheid laws before he gets caught, then breaks out of prison and flees to the US. This is a historical villain downgrade as the real Stander wasn't even present during the incidents at Soweto where black protesters were killed, and may have just claimed this to garner sympathy. It's also implied in the film he chooses Suicide by Cop in the end (at the hands of a black American officer) as a form of penance, while in real life it was an accidental discharge during a struggle over a gun.
  • Kick-Ass 2: Some prison guards accept bribes from The Motherfucker, leaving the area where Dave's father is being held and letting in some thugs to kill him.
  • In Lethal Weapon 4, Riggs suspects Murtaugh of being on the take, pointing out that he has spent way more money than a police sergeant nearing retirement should. Not an unreasonable suspicion, considering that Murtaugh has rebuilt his house twice (after a hitman drove a car into the living room in the first installment and another one blew up the bathroom in the second), bought a new boat and sent two kids to college. The whole thing is compounded by the fact that Murtaugh refuses to offer other explanations. It turns out that his wife has written several Mills and Boon Prose-heavy Romance Novels (Riggs describes them as "the cheesy sex novels") that sell extremely well, and he's been embarrassed about where the money comes from.
  • Virtual Combat: The hero turns in his badge to track down the people who killed his partner. The *only* person he is shown to keep in touch with is Da Chief, while the bad guys keep finding him wherever he goes. Obviously, it turns out the Chief is actually The Mole, though the hero doesn't figure it out until his boss attacks him with a knife.
  • The World of Kanako has at least three of them:
    • Main protagonist Akikazu is a violent, alcoholic, unscrupulous, bad-tempered and cynic ex-cop. The only way to separate him from a villain is his goal (finding his daughter and return to a happy family life).
    • When Nagano (one of Kanako's classmates) tells the police about the prostitution ring, they order a sociopathic cop named Aikawa to kill her, because the cops profited from human trafficking too. He is very violent and unscrupulous.
    • Detective Asai (a cop whom Akikazu trusts initially but does not help him very much with his search) is this on a more subtle level. When Akikazu and Aikawa engage in a very bloody fight on the freeway, Asai interferes and smilingly kills Aikawa and tells everybody it was a suicide (although Aikawa wanted to commit suicide anyway and just ran out of ammo). He has interest in the prostitution ring too but wants to keep this undercover.
  • Sunset has Captain Blackworth, a.k.a. "Dirty Bernie", who is on the payroll of gangster Dutch Kieffer.
  • In Den of Thieves, O'Brien announces that his crew is basically a gang with badges and that they'll shoot suspects rather than take them in.
  • Several times in Peppermint there are warnings by characters of cops in the Los Angeles Police Department who are on the take of Diego Garcia, but one isn't actually seen until towards the end of the film, when the audience finds out that Detective Stan Carmichael is working for Garcia.
  • In Mystery Road, Robbo turns out to be in league with the local drug dealers.
  • One of these is helping the gangsters in Sister Act, providing them with information about the safe houses where informants are being hidden in exchange for lucrative kickbacks. He finally gets caught, but not before he lets them know that lounge singer Delores, who witnessed a killing, is incognito as Sister Mary Clarence in the nearby convent.
  • Licence to Kill: Ed Killifer, Felix Leiter's colleague in the DEA, is greedy enough to take a $2 million bribe to free Franz Sanchez, and then sell out Leiter and his wife. Bond proceeds to kill him by feeding him to the same shark that maimed Leiter.
  • Salvation Boulevard: One of Pastor Dan's followers is a police detective who assists Jerry in trying to murder Carl.
  • In Wild Thing, seemingly the entire police force is in the pocket of organized crime. A cop even witnesses the murder of Wild Thing's parents by a drug dealer, and instead of intervening, tries to shoot Wild Thing as he runs away.
  • In Even Lambs Have Teeth, Sheriff Andrews is part of the sex trafficking ring.
  • A Clockwork Orange: After being released from prison, Alex is horrified to discover that his treacherous gang members George and Dim are now bobbies. "A job for two who are now of job-age. The police!" Given Georgie's previous interest in earning money for their crimes, it's pretty clear that they're motivated purely to get paid for brutalizing people. When they cross paths with Alex again, they drag him to a secluded place and beat him nearly to death while still in uniform.
  • Nick Chen, the Villain Protagonist and titular character of The Corruptor, who is a decorated LA policeman well-respected by his higher-ups, given a powerful authoritarian position investigating activities involving The Triads and the Tongs in LA... and an informant actively accepting bribes from the local Tong boss, Uncle Benny. He attempts to convert rookie cop Danny Wallace onto his side after Danny finds out about Nick's shady dealings, hence the film's title. Much later in the film, Danny's father is revealed to be an ex-dirty cop yet his father has the gall to call his son is worse than him because Danny is an Undercover Internal Affairs officer.
  • Running Scared (2006): A crooked cop played by Chazz Palminteri brags that his gang is the biggest and toughest in the city. Crooked cops are one of several criminal factions in the film.
  • The Shawshank Redemption: Captain Hadley is a "Dirty Prison Guard" variation. He routinely beats the inmates for trivial offences like asking for food and crying. He also has poor young Tommy murdered at Warden Norton's behest.
  • In Judas Kiss, Detective Matty Grimes is on the payroll of Senator Hornbeck and has been tailing her and tapping her phone. He later turns up in an attempt to clean a crime scene for the Senator but is busted by Agent Hawkins.
  • In Money Movers, Det. Sgt. Sammy Rose is a crooked cop who is in bed with local crime boss Jack Henderson. Henderson provides him with tips to help him solve crimes, and he points Henderson in the direction of profitable jobs. He also set up Dick Martin to take the fall with Internal Affairs for his crimes.
  • Kick-Ass: Vic Gigante, a detective with the NYPD whom mob boss Frank D'Amico pays to cover his criminal dealings (and in one case, get rid of fellow cop Damon McCready with a frame up as he'd become a threat). Later, he also helps hunt down the costumed superheroes gunning for the D'Amico family too on their behalf.
  • The Commuter: It turns out there's a group of corrupt cops who are part of the conspiracy. Murphy is one of them. The police captain mentions he's been under investigation already for it.
  • In Ten Dead Men, DI Keller is in London Gangster Hart's pocket and is his inside man on the force.
  • In Underworld U.S.A., Police Chief Fowler is receiving $5000 a week to turn a blind eye to The Syndicate's drug dealing and prostitution.
  • In Asian School Girls, Martin, Jack's boss on the police force, is in league with a crime syndicate and does everything in his power to prevent Jack from investigating either the rapes or the vigilante killings.
  • In Stiletto, Det. Beck is in the pocket of crime lord Virgil Vadalos. When Raina starts the Roaring Rampage of Revenge, he orders Beck to bring Raina to him alive without involving the rest of the police.
  • In Black Angel Vol. 1, Shinichi Onda is in the pocket of the yakuza. At the time of the original massacre, he is a patrolman who helps to cover it up. By the time Ikko returns to begin her Roaring Rampage of Revenge, he is a detective. It is eventually revealed that he has ambitions to become head of the yakuza.
  • The protagonists of War On Everyone, who are taking down some real scumbags, but also taking the opportunity to get rich (and high) while they're at it.
  • In Heist (2015), Detective Marconi, who is in charge of resolving the bus hostage situation, is actually in the pocket of mob boss Francis "The Pope" Silva, and his chief goal is to recover the money stolen from the casino and kill the robbers.
  • The final scene of Hoboken Hollow reveals that Sheriff Greer is in league with the slave ranch.
  • In Tombstone Rashomon, the testimony of the Earp faction paints Sheriff Johnny Behan as being in the pocket of the Cochise County Cowboys, a gang of rustlers. Behan's self-serving account does not do much to clear him.
  • Ant-Man and the Wasp: Sonny Burch has an FBI agent who feeds him inside information. Eventually, he's killed by Ghost while trying to steal Hank Pym's lab to deliver to Burch.
  • The Archer: Bob, the warden and owner of a girls' reform camp, bribed a judge to send him juveniles as the state pays for housing them.
  • Bedtime Story (1964) has con artist Jameson's friend Andre, a police inspector who helps him with his cons and makes several offers to help dispose of rival scammer Freddy.

  • 2666: And how. The extent of corrupt members of the police force and local government is never directly revealed, but it’s heavily implied to include the higher ups and the majority of the beat cops especially Epifanio.
  • Blore, one of the villain protagonists of And Then There Were None is a former cop, whose crime is fitting up an innocent man, leading to his victim being sentenced to hard labor and dying in prison. Blore is presented as devious and amoral, suggesting this was indicative of his general behavior as a police officer.
  • Asian Saga: In Noble House, it's mentioned that pretty much the entire HKPD is on the take. The cake, however, goes to the Chief Inspectors who are also members of a criminal triad that controls the vice trade in northern Hong Kong. The officer assigned to investigate is incensed that the higher-ups are taking triad money but isn't really upset that the beat cops do it, since their salaries are so low they can barely support themselves.
  • The Stockholm police force in the Backstrom novels has its share of Dirty Cops. Evart Bäckström himself, who arranged a new identity for a notorious criminal who wanted to reinvent himself, and who remains amenable to providing little favours in return for a consideration. Even Annika Carlsson arranges a bonus for herself when several million kronor in used notes appears as evidence retrieved from a crime scene. Left alone with money that hasn't been counted yet, she spirits away a hundred thousand or so in high-denomination banknotes. She hides the money in a very secure place. And that's on top of all the little short-cuts and perks that make police life easier.
  • In Bad Dreams by Kim Newman, the protagonist is a reporter who at the start of the novel is investigating a racist cop, Barry Erskine, who is suspected of being responsible for at least one death in custody. That investigation gets sidelined by the main plot, but Erskine reappears in Newman's next novel Jago, in which he ends up going right off the deep end and getting shot in self-defense by one of his would-be victims.
  • In Billy Baker's Dog Won't Stay Buried, one of the cops is part of a religious cult and uses his police powers to block people from leaving town, forcing them to join the church.
  • Ray Kirschmann in Lawrence Block's Bernie Rhodenbarr series, "the best cop money can buy." In Burglars Can't Be Choosers he comments that the keystone of a decent partner is "reasonableness" (i.e., willingness to take bribes) and complains about a former partner's lack of it.
    Ray: They gave me this straight arrow a while back and you couldn't do nothing with him. I mean he even paid for his coffee.
  • Chocoholic Mysteries: Former sheriff Carl Van Hoosier in Bridal Bash, who had a habit of taking bribes from the summer people (AKA wealthy people with part-time residences in the area) in Warner Pier to look the other way when they were breaking the law. He ultimately had to resign for it sometime after Lee's mother left town.
  • There are several in Dance of the Butterfly, but the two local detectives Alec and Quain share much of that spotlight along with the Interpol agent Duilio.
  • The Dawnhounds has two flavours of dirty cop: Wajet is tremendously corrupt but is secretly on the side of the light while Varazzo and his crew follow the rules to the letter, even when the rules are horrifying.
  • Most of the police force in Devils Cape are corrupt. Dustin Bilbray is openly racist and takes bribes. There's also Warren Sims, although he isn't corrupt by choice.
  • In the Diogenes Club story "Soho Golem", Richard Jeperson thinks there's something not right about the Metropolitan Police Obscene Publications Squad. His Friend on the Force Fred Regent uncomfortably admits that the idea there's no police corruption in 1960s Britain "might not be one hundred percent true". (Truth in Television, see below.)
  • In the Discworld series, this trope used to be endemic in Ankh-Morkpork's City Watch, but under its current leadership, the force has become much more professional.
    • The Watch's current Commander, Samuel Vimes, comes down heavily on major abuses such as corruption, but grudgingly lets smaller offenses of the free doughnut/pint/meal variety slide as a sort of Necessarily Evil because they often lead to useful information. He absolutely won't condone Police Brutality, though (however, he might fake it as a form of Perp Sweating), and has a reputation for being absolutely incorruptible, with attempts at bribery being a personal Berserk Button: in The Truth, Mr. Slant, Ankh-Morpork's chief lawyer (and a zombie) remarks that the last person who tried to bribe Vimes "still does not have full use of his fingers."
      • For Vimes himself, being bribed is not the main problem; rather, he has to fight the temptation to go full Cowboy Cop — he views justice as "protecting the innocent" rather than "obeying the law", but he's also perfectly aware that thinking like that/going outside the law can lead down some very dark paths, and purposefully uses the law as his personal Morality Chain to control his Unstoppable Rage and ensure that he remains The Fettered. When Vimes does let 'the Beast' off the chain, he's proved to be an Implacable Man and Lightning Bruiser capable of killing werewolves with his bare hands. Vimes is quietly terrified of succumbing to 'the Beast,' and the conflict between his 'stay within the law' and 'clean up the world' instincts is key to the plot in Men at Arms, Night Watch, Thud!, and Snuff.
    • Sergeant Colon and Nobby Nobbs are benign versions of this trope. Colon is the sort who will clamp the wheels of a bunch of horse carts next to a restaurant on trumped-up parking violations, in hopes that its owner will offer him a meal to deal with the problem, and maybe give some useful information while Colon eats. Nobbs is prone to petty theft of anything lying around, but a decent person aside from that — as Vimes notes, Nobby has "a criminal mind, not a criminal soul." These attitudes wouldn't be tolerated in the modern Watch, but Vimes keeps Colon and Nobbs on for a number of reasons: their experience and knowledge of the city and ability to read it is second only to that of Vimes himself (and possibly Carrot), their use as teachers for young Watchmen, their long service and old friendship, and above all, a shared inexplicable knack for stumbling across vital and useful information.
    • The City Watch Diary 1999 has a transcript of a speech by Vimes which gives his definition of a Dirty Cop, and why Colon is on the right side of the line:
      I know all the little tricks, all the cafés that’ll feed a copper for free, the places to stand out of the wind, the cushy jobs, the pubs where the uniform will get you a buckshee pint; I know the grease on which this city runs and I know the difference. I also know dishonesty when I see it and if I find you taking bribes your feet will touch the ground because I will cut you off at the knees, believe me.
    • Between Night Watch and Men at Arms, the Day Watch under "Mayonnaise" Quirke was just another city gang. The Night Watch wasn't even competent enough for that — and Vimes notes in Night Watch that even if he stayed in the past and whipped the Night Watch into shape, they'd just be another gang under the corrupt Patrician of the time.
    • In Night Watch, it is stated that a major part of the reason why "Sammies" — modern, Vimes-trained Ankh-Morpork Watchmen — have such a good reputation is that they don't take bribes much, and the ones they do take are never larger than the occasional free pint and/or doughnut, which (as noted above) even Vimes thinks of as part of the grease that keeps the wheels of justice turning.
  • In the first book of The Echo Case Files series, the local police department is corrupt from top to bottom. Those cops not taking backhanders from organised crime are involved with a terrorist group.
  • In Burn Me Deadly, Gary Bunson, Neceda's law officer, is quite open to bribes. However, he's not particularly evil about it — it's driven more by laziness and self-preservation than active greed, and while he's seldom useful, he doesn't do any harm. It briefly looks like he might break this pattern by hanging someone whom Eddie thinks is innocent (or at least, coerced), but it turns out that Gary didn't actually have that one wrong. Eddie still thinks Gary didn't deserve a medal for it, though:
    Eddie: Gary, the killer came to you and confessed. You basically did nothing.
    Gary: Yes, and I did it with alacrity and tact. I have a parchment option that says so.
    Eddie: And your conscience is okay with this?
    Gary: (trying not to laugh) Eddie, I sold my conscience for a night with a trail whore when I was fifteen. Haven't seen it since, and wouldn't know what to do with it if it turned up. (admires medal). I also got a raise.
  • Cray from The Hunger Games turns a blind eye to where are the activities in the Hob (District 12's black market) because it's his source of booze, and to Katniss and Gale's poaching because they are his source for wild turkey.
  • In Illuminatus!, most cops are not angels and will accept at least minor inducements to look the other way. Chicago copper Otto Waterhouse accepts a ten-dollar bribe, discreetly wrapped around a sample of the product, to allow the Eris Tomato Juice Company to carry on giving out free samples without a license, immediately outside the convention of a Religious Right Moral Guardian group. When he throws the empty cardboard cup away, the ten-note is gone. But the effects of the mind-altering drug he has just taken will linger on...
  • In the Left Behind book The Remnant, Tsion Ben-Judah reports the Global Community Peacekeepers have resorted to extortion from the people they're supposed to protect during the latter half of the Tribulation.
  • One of the people after James Bond's head in Nobody Lives for Ever is an older corrupted German policeman Heinrich "Der Haken" Osten, who is rumoured to have been involved with the Nazis back in the forties.
  • Margin Play: Some members of the Seattle Police Department are bent and are being paid off by the cabal of bad guys. Amber doesn't know how many or which ones, so she doesn't dare go to the police about the beating she received for investigating the real-estate scam.
  • Seemingly the entire New Rochelle police department in The North Avenue Irregulars.
  • Several members of the Behaim Circle in Pact fill this role with a supernatural twist-even though they Cannot Tell a Lie, they manipulate other officers against fellow wizards, relying upon the Masquerade to prevent their victims from pulling anything drastic and countering any subtler attempts.
  • Subverted with Officer Shrift from The Phantom Tollbooth. Sure, he arrests people for no reason and throws them in jail, but he does it as a joke. Unless they really do something bad, they can leave any time they want.
  • In the Beka Cooper trilogy of the Tortall Universe, the city guard/police force has a much looser definition of "dirty" than the modern one. They have an established protocol for collecting bribes ("happy bags") from local businesses and will collect personal bribes frequently, but you're only supposed to do it for minor crimes rather than things like murder. Police Brutality is also acceptable (although it's supposed to be limited to the times that you're really sure it will help your inquiries) and Cage Dogs engage in Cold-Blooded Torture during interrogations.
  • In A Song of Ice and Fire Janos Slynt is the captain of the city watch in King's Landing and thoroughly corrupt. He and his men have loyalty only to those who pay them and are perfectly willing to serve as thugs for court intrigue. When Slynt is given a lordship, he recommends his subordinate Allar Deem as his replacement, saying that the man has absolutely no scruples. Tyrion has Allar Deem killed and instead promotes the honest Ser Jacelyn Bywater.
  • It's probably fair to say that the majority of James Ellroy's characters are either dirty cops (or feds) or former dirty cops. Dudley Smith from L.A. Confidential is just the one most people know. Edmund Exley was also far more compromised in the book than in the film. Although the books (where Dudley Smith is around until the end of White Jazz does subvert this a bit by having Exley make the bringing down of Dudley Smith his first priority as Chief of Detectives (although this is more because of personal dislike than anything professional). By the end of White Jazz, Exley is compromised, essentially having become the counter-Smith within the department. The entirety of the action is the protagonist being caught in the power struggle between the criminal empire Smith has built and Exley's own quasi-criminal means to achieving his ambitions. Eventually, Exley drops his hatred for Smith in favor of his political ambition and the protagonist ends the book, decades later, deciding to return to LA to bring both men's sins to the light. The protagonist, Klein, is himself quite the Dirty Cop, but the ultimate point is that his sins pale in comparison to either of theirs.
  • Michael Connelly's mystery novels often use Dirty Cops as villains. Much of this is likely Truth in Television given Connelly's history as a reporter in LA.
  • A Clockwork Orange: While Alex is in prison, his treacherous gang member Dim and his former rival Billy Boy put aside their youthful conflicts and join the police force, a perfect job for two brutes. When they cross paths with Alex again, they beat him savagely purely for the sport of it.
  • Warren Hammond's Juno Mozambe series is set in the future on a planet whose economy has crashed (their main export was a formerly unique wine, but outsiders had managed to clone the native fruit used and now the wine is commonplace), early in the first book - Juno Mozambe and the rest of the police force will shake down criminals for bribes and if they don't pay up, Juno's the enforcer who'll give them a brutal beating. Juno does feel bad about this when he gets an incorruptible partner but he and the force never go completely clean.
  • Trueman Bradley: Chief Stokowski from the first book once lost $10,000 at poker and drunkenly accepted a loan from the mobster Benvolio. He paid it off as soon as he could, but Benvolio blackmailed him with the security footage into helping him hide Benvolio's illegal alcohol production. Things escalate, and by the time he's caught he's guilty of vandalism and attempted murder.
  • Johannes Cabal has a Downplayed example. The titular Necromancer is the terror of the village near his home, where only the local constable can drive him off — which is to say, Johannes pays the constable a second salary to tend to his affairs quietly and keep the villagers away from the Torches and Pitchforks.
  • Villains Don't Date Heroes!: Night Terror bribes the police union and commissioner for Starlight City to ensure they don't try impeding her crimes too much (aside from a token effort). She's gotten far too powerful for them anyway-this is just softening things up further.
  • Yeats Is Dead has almost half of all the police men shown under the payroll of Ms Nestor.

    Live-Action TV 
  • One episode of Angel had LAPD officers harassing and brutalizing local teens (mostly black). Gunn and Wesley try to catch it on video, but Wesley is shot, and the cop seems nigh invulnerable. Meanwhile, Angel and detective Kate Lockley discover that the officers in question are all dead, and have been raised as zombies by their precinct's police chief, who's practicing Black Magic.
  • Nirvana in Fire: The Xuanjing Bureau is supposed to be completely neutral in party politics and loyal only to the emperor, but Xia Jiang uses the faction disputes to protect his own personal power.
  • Pizza: Murray the Cop is constantly trying to give Pauly Falzone a bad day, and will find the pettiest excuses to detain his cars, like "lacking an anti-hoon emissionary filter". In The Movie, he puts up police signs (that normally say "Now Targeting: Speeding"), except his signs say "Now Targeting: Lebanese" and "Now Targeting: Habib". On the subject of Habib, when he tries having a civilized conversation with Murray in "Cracker Pizza", Murray says to him, "Fuck off out of my face, halal breath, or I'll come down on you like September 11!"
  • Breaking Bad: The Mexican Federales aren't necessarily dirty or brutal, but gun down surrendering drug dealers as part of the major crackdowns orchestrated in response to the Cousins' attack on Hank (itself orchestrated by Gus).
  • Better Call Saul: While Breaking Bad hinted at Mike Ehrmantraut's past as a dirty cop, in this series we get the full story. The Philadelphia police were so universally corrupt that Mike went along with it to prevent his partners from thinking he wouldn't have their backs, since he knew if they thought he would turn on them they would kill him first. His son Matt never suspected such a thing, and when he became a cop himself he initially balked at the idea of ever being on the take. Mike convinced him that he had to take the money, so Matt did, but his partners killed him anyway because he took too long to say 'yes'. Mike himself would go on to become the chief enforcer in Gus Fring's drug operation.
  • Bosch:
    • In season 2's adaptation of Trunk Music and The Drop, Deputy Chief Irvin Irving's son George is doing undercover work infiltrating a ring of corrupt cops. It turns out that the ring is run by Carl Nash, a dirty ex-cop who is a person of interest in Bosch's own investigation into the murder of Tony Allen, itself committed by two of the dirty cops (Nate Riley and Maureen O'Grady) on Nash's orders. George is eventually murdered when Nash finds the listening devices he wears on him at all times, and his death is staged to look like a robbery gone bad.
    • In season 4's adaptation of Angels Flight, Gabriella Lincoln, one of the IAD cops that Bosch has to take onto his task force in season four, is on the take, passing information through Bradley Walker to Howard Elias and getting a portion of the kickback in return.
    • Late in season 5, Ray Marcos and Daniel Arias, two vice detectives that Jerry Edgar has been talking to in relation to the murder of his informant Gary Wise, are actually in the pocket of Jamaican gangster Jacques Avril and set Gary up to be murdered. In the season 6 premiere, Marcos and Arias are assassinated on Avril's orders when they come under Internal Affairs scrutiny.
    • In the season 6 finale, a sheriff's deputy at the courthouse turns out to be a loyal member of the 308s, a group of radical sovereign citizens, and helps Heather Strout smuggle a bomb into the building.
    • Captain Dennis Cooper, the station captain at Hollywood Division beginning in season 5. Late in season 5, it's discovered he's responsible for juking stat numbers at Hollywood Division to make it seem like violent crime is down. In season 6, he pursues a petty sexual harassment complaint against Billets on Vega's behalf even though it's clear the original complaint had no merit and Vega and Billets had cleared the air. Then in season 7, when Billets is dealing with harassment by two sexist cops, he has a jewelry store owner he was fraternity brothers with give a pair of earrings to said sexist cops to plant in Billets' car in an attempt to frame her. Billets turns the tables on him: she calls in a favor with Vega, who gets the jewelry store owner in question to flip. The last we see of Cooper is him and the other two cops being escorted out of Hollywood Division by IA in handcuffs.
  • Game of Thrones: The thoroughly-corrupt Janos Slynt is the equivalent of King's Landing's police chief until his removal in "The Night Lands".
  • The Heart She Holler: Being a Black Comedy set in The Deep South with literally one police officer, this is a given for The Sheriff. He constantly cheats on his wife with the town prostitute, because his wife has Barbie Doll Anatomy, and later sends her to jail for a murder she had nothing to do with. He only lets her go because being confined to his workplace gives her much more opportunity to nag him than when she lived at home.
  • Corner Gas Karren and too a greater extent Davis are a Downplayed example. After Lacey roped them into helping her move under the promise of feeding them afterwards they insist she gives them pizza and beers at their restaurant. She mentions she doesn't have a license to serve alcohol but they hand wave it, reminding her that they're the only cops in the town. Davis also screws around with his gun and at one point lends Hank his gun for no particularly good reason, he also tries to buy tickets off what he thinks is a scraper, but turns out to be another police officer under cover as a hooker, when he was younger he helped most of the main cast vandalize the town water tower by diverting traffic so that it could be done away from prying eyes. Karren at one point burns a crop circle into someone's field as a prank and is put into the slammer for a night as a result.
  • Walker, Texas Ranger: Several episodes had corrupt cops, mainly in background roles, but one — the Season 4 episode "The Brotherhood" — was the focus of an episode. A small-town police department is run by a police chief frustrated about the crime rate and the perception that criminals get off on technicalities, so they kill the suspects after they are freed by the court. At one point, the crooked officers turn things up another notch when they throw a lighted cocktail into a prison bus, killing several prisoners and the guards and badly burning the driver. The main focus of the episode was on a Marine Corps recruit named Ernesto Lopez, who had been accused of rape only for DNA evidence to exonerate him; Walker is unable to get to Ernesto before the overzealous cops do, and Walker is left to track down the two stooges. The chief eventually turns his gun on himself when he learns Walker is coming for him.
  • Adam-12: Several episodes dealt with corrupt fellow officers of Reed and Malloy, the most notable of the lot being the 1971 episode "Internal Affairs – Blackmail," where one of Malloy's best friends is being investigated for blackmailing a witness.
    • Dragnet had a few, including one Fallen Hero now on the take, whom Friday makes to read himself his own Miranda rights.
  • The Dukes of Hazzard: Sheriff Roscoe P. Coltrane, who invariably looks the other way as Boss Hogg engages in corrupt scheme after corrupt scheme, and then attempts to pin the blame on Bo and Luke Duke.
    • Boss Hogg is Roscoe's brother-in-law and the one who appointed him sheriff, probably because he knew he could keep Roscoe under his thumb.
    • In the first season, it was explained that Roscoe lost his pension in the county bond election and does Boss Hogg's bidding because he needs the extra money. That plot point was dropped later on.
  • B.J. and the Bear and Sheriff Lobo: The title character of the latter series, who in the former show tried to put truck driver B.J. McCay out of business by pinning various crimes on him. In his own series, Lobo always tried to manipulate various schemes to his advantage, although in the end he would always come up with a way to stop crime.
  • Monk had a couple of incidents with corrupt cops:
    • "Mr. Monk Gets Fired" has Monk lose his PI license thanks to the new commissioner having a personal vendetta against Monk ever since a cop friend of his was put in jail for corruption
    • In "Mr. Monk and the Captain's Marriage", a corrupt police sergeant named Ryan Sharkey, Jr. kills a smalltime drug dealer scheduled to testify against the racketeer that Sharkey works for. However, during the fight leading up to the murder, one of Sharkey's teeth is knocked out, also causing him to leave some of his blood at the crime scene. Due to a homeless guy witnessing the murder and flagging down a passing patrol car, Sharkey is forced to flee, change into his uniform, and then return to the scene. Once there, he covers up the evidence he'd left behind by provoking Captain Stottlemeyer into punching him.
    • In "Mr. Monk Is On The Run," Parts 1 and 2, Sheriff John Rollins is in the pocket of Dale "The Whale" Biederbeck, and was responsible for framing Monk for a murder.
    • The Expanded Universe novel Mr. Monk and the Dirty Cop likes this trope, as there are three: First is Paul Braddock, a former SFPD detective Monk, Natalie and Stottlemeyer encounter at a convention. Monk and Natalie later learn from Stottlemeyer that Braddock had a long history of physically beating up people, to the point that Stottlemeyer threatened to turn him over to Internal Affairs. Unsurprisingly, when Braddock turns up dead, Stottlemeyer gets blamed for it and is wrongly arrested, since they had an altercation hours before the murder at a wake (making Stottlemeyer the second "dirty" cop). The third is Nick Slade, Braddock's real killer, who turns out to have taken out a hit on an entrepreneur years beforehand.
    • The novel Mr. Monk on Patrol sees Monk and Natalie get brought to Summit, New Jersey to help police chief Randy Disher, who has become acting mayor after most of the town government got indicted for corruption. Their first day on patrol, Monk and Natalie find themselves dealing with serial burglars, who as it turns out are two of Randy's own cops.
  • At least two on JAG; Royal Ulster Constabulary Inspector Vincent Hutchinson in "Trinity" who arranged the kidnapping of the infant child of an American naval officer and an IRA member, only to put the blame entirely on the IRA; and DC Detective Frank Coster in "The Stalker", who did not only stalk Mac, but killed her former boyfriend Dalton Lowne and kidnapped her.
  • They've also been seen on NCIS, although usually as a one-off. In a flashback we find out that Tony left the Baltimore police department when he found out that his partner was dirty.
  • NCIS: Los Angeles: There is a group of dirty cops who act as an escort service for drug dealers and other criminals. Turns out they drew the line at helping terrorists.
  • Firefly has the downright brutal Lieutenant Womack, who is a member of Allied Enforcement but who likes to smuggle human organs on the side.
  • Andromeda: In "Lava and Rockets" Molly Noguchi and Dylan are stunned to learn that the police will accept a bribe in public. The reason is low taxes and a high crime rate.
  • The Shield: Different cops on a spectrum, with almost nobody completely clean:
    • The Strike Team can be seen as the poster boys for this trope, with the added twist of half the team (Curtis Lemansky and Ronnie Gardock) being good cops who fell in with the wrong crowd and largely stayed in the shallow part of the corruption pool, and Vic Mackey and Shane Vendrell, who killed fellow police officers in order to cover their own asses when they were in danger of being exposed. They also sell drugs they get from buy-busts, use torture to interrogate suspects and protect drug dealers they can control, all in the name of "keeping the peace". David Aceveda's description of him isn't the page quote for nothing.
    • Captain Aceveda, although initially disgusted by Vic's tactics, sometimes tolerates them as he sees their effectiveness at keeping crime under control. He becomes more and more compromised as he cuts various corners to advance his political career.
    • Claudette looks down on the Strike Team as well, but when she is temporarily put in charge of the barn she reluctantly tolerates their behavior once she realizes she can't get the same results with squeaky clean cops.
    • Dutch is probably the cleanest of the main characters but even he succumbs to temptation, planting evidence in the house of a suspect that he knows, but can't prove, is guilty (although he has a change of heart and returns to remove the evidence before it's discovered).
    • Kavanaugh, an internal affairs lieutenant, is assigned to investigate the Strike Team. He becomes obsessed with bringing down Vic, finally resorting to arranging for a false testimony and planting evidence in an attempt to bring him down.
  • Being a bad guy on Damages seems to entitle you to at least one (and usually more than one) corrupt cop/FBI agent on your payroll who is willing to surveil, harass, or murder anyone who bugs you too much.
  • They usually don't actually show up, but the existence of these is sometimes part of the reason why the clients on Burn Notice can't just call the cops. In "Unpaid Debts" they ran afoul of a group of them, and in "Question and Answer" Sam pretended to be one.
  • In Blue Bloods:
    • Danny Reagan is a borderline case. He's not the "plant evidence" or "kill unarmed criminals" type, but he has done illegal things that in real life would get him swiftly terminated from the NYPD, and has faced little comeuppance for his behavior. Examples include intentionally stopping a medical tube for an old man because he thought he had information, threatening to put a bullet in the back of a robber's head — when the said robber was cuffed and unarmed, and putting a suspect in the trunk of his car and driving like crazy to get said suspect to talk. And the list goes on.
    • Season 1 has the Blue Templar, a ring of crooked cops who were engaged in murder, narcotics trafficking, and money laundering. Their leader Sonny Malevski also killed Commissioner Frank Reagan's son Joe when he began to infiltrate them.
    • Frank loathes dirty cops as a whole, considering them a disgrace to good police in general and the NYPD as a whole, due to the damage they do to public trust, and of course what the Blue Templar did to Joe. What's notable is how low-key he is about it. He doesn't raise his voice and his expression barely changes even though it's abundantly clear how furious he is. When he confronted the ones responsible for Joe's death at the end of the first season, it's almost terrifying how calm he looks during the entire exchange. He only loses his cool for a moment when he knocks some things off the top of a cabinet, which is also one of the few times he raises his voice. He's not shouting either, he raises it the way people do when they want to make sure they're heard.
    • From season 1's "After Hours," there's Jimmy Burke, Frank's partner while stationed at the 27th Precinct who took a bullet for him. He was eventually promoted to Inspector and placed in command of the 15th Precinct. When he is up for a promotion to Deputy Chief as the Deputy Commander of Patrol Borough Manhattan South, Erin uncovers that Jimmy has been juking his precinct's COMPSTATS, misreporting felonies as misdemeanors to artificially lower the crime rates. After meeting with Jimmy, Frank allows him to retire rather than face demotion to Captain and reassignment to the 128th Precinct in Staten Island.
    • In the season 2 episode "Critical Condition," the leader of a botched bank robbery turned hostage situation is Billy Flood, an ex-cop from a special unit that Frank ran in the 1990s.
    • In "Thanksgiving," Sgt. Renzulli is revealed to be betting on horses on the side, and owes about $10,000 to his bookie. After hearing about it from Jamie, Frank bails Renzulli out but makes clear it's a one-time offer.
    • In "Framed," Danny is investigating a bookie who has his clients assaulted when they're late paying him. Right as Danny's about to get a warrant to raid the bookie's house in search of a black book that will reveal a list of all the clients who owe him money, he's pulled over and busted for drug possession. It's obvious to the entire Reagan family the drugs were planted. Furthermore, Jamie finds that a baker Danny stopped at right beforehandnote  seems to have been intimidated into lying about Danny's whereabouts. As the investigation turns out, an Internal Affairs captain that had previously investigated Danny for a friendly-fire incident was among those who would have been outed as owing money to the bookie when the black book turned up. He framed Danny to get him out of the way, even proceeding to steal Danny's off-duty pistol to kill the bookie.
  • The A-Team
    • The team faces off against a Similar Squad of cops who moonlight as assassins in "A Small and Deadly War".
    • In "Knights of the Road", the A-Team attempts to turn the cocaine dealers in to the local police, only to find when they march into the station that some of them are in on it as well.
  • The 1992 TV series Renegade had Donald "Dutch" Dixon, a lieutenant who framed the main character for the murder of another cop. Dixon also headed a squad of equally crooked cops.
  • Brotherhood has Declan's partner Ralph after Michael helps him cover up an accidental shooting.
  • Cold Case has Roger Mulverny, who abused his wife and used his position to make sure her pleas for help were lost. When she tried to leave him for a kind man, he murdered his daughter in front of her, causing her to give up her other daughter for the child's own safety and go into hiding. Forty years later, her boyfriend (also a cop) tearfully confesses that he and some of his other cop friends took him behind an alley and beat him in a back alley in an attempt to get him to stay away from her. ("That's how we dealt with abusers back then. Off the books.") Clearly it didn't work. The investigating detective comments that the abuser was killed in a shoot out with criminals shortly after the child's death, and the boyfriend (who spent all this time thinking both children and their mother had been murdered) all but admits he took advantage of the situation to kill him. The team's reaction when they hear this story? They sweep the original dirty cop's death under the rug without even a single thought. That's one straight example, then two extremely sympathetic examples within five minutes of each other.
  • Life On Mars has a number of episodes which revolve around Gene Hunt and his superiors' relationships with local gangsters or corruption in general. Ashes to Ashes (2008) Series 2 was a complete arc about the fight between Hunt and various corrupt Met officers such as Mac, which doesn't end with Mac's death partway through the series.
  • The Shadow Line is full of them:
    • DS Delaney, Jonah Gabriel's deceased partner. Because of the association, Gabriel himself is also teased as being one for a while.
    • Sergeant Foley, who will sell information to virtually anyone so long as they can pay.
    • And finally, Patterson, Commander Khokar, Commander Penney and Lia Honey are all involved in some way with Counterpoint. Making Gabriel about the only clean cop in the series.
  • Criminal Minds has a cop who has a hero homicide complex, he sets up a shooting so he can make himself a hero by being the first to respond. He attacked Garcia fearing that she could find out about his murders.
  • Weeds has a number of dirty cops and Nancy even ends up married to a dirty DEA agent.
  • Justified has Doyle Bennett who IS a corrupt cop, but only in matters concerning his family.
    • Season 1 featured a corrupt sheriff who worked for a Miami drug cartel. He struck a deal with them so he could get revenge on a child killer. He is actually a fairly effective sheriff since he is able to crack down on illegal drug manufacture and sales in the county. The drug cartel is not interested in selling drugs in the county and helped him get rid of the local meth manufacturers who were their competition in other areas. Things go bad for him when the cartel asks him to help them kill Raylan.
    • Season 3 had an election for sheriff where both candidates were in the pockets of criminals. The incumbent hardly hesitates before accepting a Briefcase Full of Money from Quarles. When Boyd Crowder realizes that the sheriff works for Quarles he recruits his own candidate to run for the position. Subverted in the end because Boyd's candidate pays back Boyd by warning him about an arrest warrant and then states that their deal is done and he is not doing more favours for Boyd.
    • Season 4 had the Marshals searching for Drew Thompson, a fugitive from the FBI and the Detroit Mob who 30 years before faked his death. Raylan quickly discovers that the FBI agents assigned to the case are working for the Detroit Mob and as a result the US Marshal Office gets full jurisdiction on the case. The local sheriff is tentatively in Boyd Crowder's pocket but he is reluctant to help Boyd in the search for Drew and tries to show Raylan that he is not actually corrupt. The sheriff turns out to actually be Drew Thompson.
    • Season 5 features Smug Snake sheriff Mooney who has been the corrupt deputy for most of the other corrupt sheriffs and police chiefs on the show. He is finally promoted to acting sheriff and goes after Boyd on behalf of the Clover Hillers, a group of Corrupt Hicks. Boyd then forces him to turn against his employers and has him murdered.
  • Against the Wall plays with this trope a lot. It is based around a protagonist in the Internal Affairs division always investigating cops or other law enforcement officials. Sometimes played straight, sometimes subverted.
  • Homicide: Life on the Street:
    • The Arson Unit, of which Kellerman is the only cop NOT on the take. Kellerman spends almost the entirety of Season 5 bitching about how he's not dirty and then at the end of the season he goes and shoots Luther Mahoney, unjustifiably. And then he coerces his partners into covering it up.
    • There's also at least two other storylines involving police brutality and murder of suspects by police.
  • Law & Order occasionally brought up cops on the take.
    • It was implied that Fontana was dirty, as he wore very nice clothes and flashed a big roll far too often for a simple detective. However, it was eventually revealed that Fontana was living off an inheritance, and not dirty at all, thus ultimately subverting the trope.
    • Back when he was "on the sauce", Briscoe was implied to be dirty (or at least surrounded by a lot of other dirty cops). By the time he joins the 27th Precinct, after he had cleaned himself up and kicked his alcohol problem, he only pretends to be a dirty cop in order to get his informants to trust him. In one episode an old partner of his turns out to be an inside man and hitter for a drug dealer, and when found out tries to bring Briscoe down with him.
    • Played straight by Profaci, who had been a very minor character from the first eight seasons who provided evidence or exposition to the main detectives. It was discovered in the Exiled TV movie that he worked for the mob.
    • After ADA Alexandra Borgia is kidnapped and murdered, the cops find a deposit of $8,000 in her bank account and realize that her killers were trying to make it look as though she was on the take.
    • In one episode of SVU, Stabler goes undercover as a corrupt customs official (so kind of a cop) to get in good with a smuggler in the illegal wildlife trade.
    • A non-fiscal example appears in Criminal Intent, where a cop closed a high profile rape casenote  by dragging a false confession out of four teens. Years later he kills the real culprit's mother when her investigations threatened to reopen the case.
  • CSI NY has done this repeatedly. Flack's mentor, Mac's first partner, Danny's old partner...
  • CSI:
    • Brass was originally an aversion of this, stating how he refused to be a dirty cop. But now, he is flirting with subverting it, ever since he covered up Ray Langston's unjustified killing of Nate Haskell by pocketing Ray's flex cuff at the scene.
      • He further expanded on the subject in "Hollywood Brass" by stating that vice cops are essentially set up to become dirty and corrupt due to how their job required them to drink, gamble, solicit prostitutes, and party on a regular basis.
  • In the penultimate episode "Vegas" of Stargate Atlantis, Detective John Sheppard barely manages to keep his job by scraping by on his quarterly performance reviews, has illegal gambling debts and quits the force to skip town after stealing money from a crime scene. Rodney McKay is extremely disappointed in him, since he met another version of him that was honest and determined and a member of the Earth's defense against alien threats. He turns around before it is too late, and dies stopping the villain.
  • Leverage has surprisingly few for a show about Robin Hood-like thieves. Virtually all of the targets are Corrupt Corporate Executives with a dirty cop not appearing at all until well into the second season. Hardison also impersonates a dirty cop during "The Boys Night Out Job" convincing Mexican drug dealers that he can help them.
  • Dyson and Hale from Lost Girl are a twist on this concept, as they are not so much corrupt as they have different loyalties than they should as police officers: they're big on the whole "protect and serve" thing, but their main job is to cover up Fae (particularly Light Fae) involvement in human crimes. There's a second level to this as well, as Dyson is actually more loyal to Trick (the former Blood King, but in practice nothing more than the owner of a Fae waypoint) than he is to the Ash, the leader of the Light Fae, and both he and Hale are more than willing to turning a blind eye to Bo breaking Fae law (as much as Fae law actually applies to Bo in the first place). Hale is also willing to ignore Kenzi's occasional brushes with human law (as well as spring her when she's incorrectly suspected of a crime), although he does stop short of actually helping her to receive stolen property.
  • Person of Interest:
    • Fusco starts as a dirty cop working for the first Person of Interest. Reese gets just enough blackmail to force Fusco to work for him as a Friend on the Force, where he provides information and surveillance. Despite his growing desire to be a good cop, Reese has him play a dirty cop to infiltrate HR, a powerful group of NYPD corrupt cops.
    • HR is an extremely corrupt group of NYPD cops who provide protection to the organized crime outfits running crime in the city. They have no problem acting as killers-for-hire and will kill other NYPD police officers who get in their way. They have prosecutors and judges on the payroll and at one point help a bunch of young Russian gangsters join the police force so they have loyal foot soldiers for the future.
    • One POI was on the run from her abusing husband, a corrupt US Marshal who used his authority to track her down when she left him.
  • 1-800-Missing takes this trope to its logical extreme in one episode: the entire department being investigated is corrupt.
  • Sheriff Graham from Once Upon a Time has a good heart, and ultimately is a good cop most of the time, but he's completely under Regina's thumb and will plant or tamper with evidence for her.
  • Copper is set in 1864 New York and is full of Dirty Cops, including the hero and his friends. The police force of the time were notoriously corrupt and for the most part acted as just a glorified street gang. When the detectives foil a bank robbery, there is a definite pecking order as to who gets to steal what from the crime scene. The informant gets to grab a few coins, the detectives get to stuff their pockets with some bank notes, the sergeant gets a pocket watch belonging to one of the dead robbers and the captain gets to deliver the remaining money back to the bank and decide how much he will keep as payment for the 'protection' his cops provided.
  • Hustle would sometimes feature Dirty Cops who thought they could manipulate the crew for their own ends. This always ended badly for them. D.I. Fisk in "Curiosity Caught the Kat" is a typical example.
  • In the Season Six finale of Psych, it turns out that all of Henry's old friends from the force were paid for guarding a drug lab back in the day.
  • The White Bulls of Witchblade are a whole organization of these.
  • Chief Wayne Unser from Sons of Anarchy is a sympathetic version of this. He helps out the local criminal motorcycle club and in return they provide protection for his trucking business. Unlike most examples of this trope, however, he does it because he believes the Sons are better for the town of Charming than the other gangs who would take their place if they were to disappear.
  • The Rizzoli & Isles episode "What Doesn't Kill You" revolves around the hunt for dirty cops in the Boston Police Department. Suspicion falls heavily on Jane for a time. The chief dirty cop turns out to be the head of Internal Affairs.
  • Grimm Captain Renard who secretly has connections with the Wesen world, and is secretly Wesen himself. This is due to him being a member of a secret royal family who control the Wesen world, but Renard is a white sheep among them, as he is secretly working in a resistance against them. Later, the entire North Precinct works for Black Claw, a group trying to create a world run by Wesen, something that had been tried before. By Hitler.
  • Dexter's Quinn is a former dirty cop trying to clean up his act. He does succumb to temptation at one crime scene — and is spotted by Dexter, setting off a growing enmity between them. Eventually, his past comes back to haunt him in a big way when he's blackmailed several times by a criminal group he used to take money from.
  • Sgt. Trevor Gibson in the Midsomer Murders episode "Sleeper Under the Hill". He is involved in the murders and does his best to throw Barnaby and Jones off the trail. He ultimately falls victim to his partner in crime.
  • DCI Roy Slater ("Slater the Slag") Del's Archenemy from Only Fools and Horses episodes "May The Force Be With You", the 1985 Christmas special "To Hull and Back", and "The Class of '62". The second episode of Rock and Chips, "Five Gold Rings", shows us that after leaving school, Slater immediately joined the police force and started abusing his position to go after Del.
    Del: Now listen here, Slater, I know a lot of coppers and they're all good blokes. I mean, I don't like 'em, but they play a fair game. And then there's you...
  • Averted in an episode of Father Ted where Ted goes off on a rant about the good old days when the police would cover the Church for any wrongdoing.
  • Crops up so often in Starsky & Hutch that it sometimes seems like the titular characters spend just as much time fighting off their fellow cops as they do civilian criminals. In fact, it sometimes takes quite a while for a crook to realize that they're not being coy when they insist that they can't be bought, which doesn't cast a very good light on the BCPD.
  • One is feeding information to the Big Bad in episode 1x06 of By Any Means. Helen takes a particular pleasure in arresting him.
  • Sgt. Hank Voight of Chicago P.D. supposedly is. But it's also been indicated that he's heavily involved with Internal Affairs and may simply be pretending. He does frequently use non-SOP means of achieving his goals, especially when pressed for time.
  • Detective Harry Denby of NYPD Blue is investigating Det. Kirkendall's ex-husband for involvement in drug running. He later turns out to be working with the criminals he is supposed to be investigating. After he is suspended from the police department and waiting for indictment he tries to take over the whole operation for himself.
  • Mr Selfridge: One appears in the series as a secondary villain where his job isn't to protect nightclubs from the underworld but instead to get them involved with it.
  • In Mayor of Kingstown, everyone is dirty one way or the other.
    • The McLuskies have an entire shift of prison guards in their pocket to make sure messages and contraband can flow freely to and from inmates and their gangs outside.
    • The Kingstown Police Department works with the McLuskies to sweep certain crimes under the rug while lethally dealing with those who upset the balance within the town.
    • Mike also says that there is plenty of corruption within the FBI and that he's committed numerous crimes in front of agents without fear of arrest.
  • In The Hour, it turns out Commander Stern was the one who actually beat up Kiki, and one of many authority figures to be Blackmailed by Cilenti into doing his dirty business.
  • The Juárez police in The Bridge. It's such a way of life there that all Marco can muster up is frustration when someone he knows moonlights for a cartel.
  • This was the setup and first season of Gotham. Practically everyone is a Corrupt Cop, including the Captain of Homicide Squad, since they all are under Falcone's payroll. Crispus Allen and Renee Montoya are relatively straight but bend the rules and are fairly Jerkass and condescending to the people around them. Bullock is too cynical to care anymore. Jim Gordon is the only cop who is decent and wants to destroy the corruption of the police and the city from within. Midway through the final season, Allen and Montoya have simply vanished, Harvey's worn off on Jim almost as much as the other way round, and for any other officer, being noted for your honesty (and courage) has earned you the special GCPD bright neon reflective Red Shirt uniform.
  • It tends to be forgotten now that the Monty Python's Flying Circus sketch about London gangsters The Piranha Brothers was intended to be biting satire on the way the Krays and the Richardsons got away with it for so long. The two family crime syndicates in London were busted not so much by police action as by investigative reporting forcing the Met to do something. Not only the incompetence but the corruption of the Metropolitan Police was mercilessly exposed.
    So why didn't you go to the police?
    I would have done. Except for the fact the bloke holding the tactical nuclear device was the Chief Constable for our area!
  • Timecop:
    • In "The Heist", an old-timer cop assists the protagonist on a visit to the 70s to catch a criminal before he can steal several precious diamonds. The thing is he likes his old time better than the present, so he ends up stealing the stones himself.
    • In "Stalker", one of Hollywood actress Rita Lake's murderous stalkers turns out to be a cop.
  • Played for Laughs on Married... with Children. Officer Dan and his coppers are all a bunch of trigger-happy perverts who take bribes, sleep with prostitutes, let violent criminals off with a warning despite being Obviously Evil, and get free donuts. Being a Sadist Show, this was all played for comedy.
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe:
    • Daredevil (2015): Wilson Fisk cements a lot of his power through buying off cops and using them to do his dirty work for him.
      • In season 1, practically half of the cops of the NYPD's 15th Precinct are in Fisk's pocket. Not only does Fisk use them to kill off associates who have become liabilities as well as his enemies (and ensure no NYPD investigations are opened into his activities), but they're so dirty that they're willing to actively murder fellow officers who aren't on the take or who have become liabilities themselves. In a touch of irony, it is one of these corrupt cops, Detective Carl Hoffman, guilt-ridden over Fisk forcing him to kill his partner and best friend Detective Christian Blake, who is responsible for giving up information that allows the FBI to apprehend Fisk and all of his top associates.
      • Benjamin "Dex" Poindexter is an FBI SWAT sniper on the detail that is assigned to protect Fisk after he makes a deal with Ray Nadeem to become an informant for them. After Dex saves Fisk from an assassination attempt, Fisk takes the mentally unstable agent under his wing, and slowly corrupts him into becoming a dangerous assassin who looks at Fisk like a father figure, and dresses up in a Daredevil suit procured by Melvin Potter to commit crimes that tarnish Matt Murdock's reputation as well as kill people who pose a threat to Fisk, including Jasper Evans and Nadeem himself.
      • Dex is just the notable standout in season 3. Because as Ray Nadeem finds out the hard way, almost every other FBI agent on the protection detail tasked with protecting Fisk while he's under house arrest in the Presidential Hotel is working for him, thanks to long-term emotional manipulation and actual blackmail.
      • Tammy Hattley, the SAC to whom Dex and Nadeem answer to. Fisk killed one of her kids in a staged "hit and run" and threatened her daughter. She's been under Fisk's control for so long that not even her close colleagues know she used to have two kids. She and Felix Manning blackmail Nadeem into joining the conspiracy by killing OPR Agent Winn and making an audio recording painting Ray as the shooter, which will be released if he doesn't cooperate.
      • Obviously, Ray Nadeem is the only agent on the detail who's not dirty, which is by Fisk's design. But even then, he's not entirely squeaky clean. His pride and desire to get a promotion to get a pay raise and get out of debt (thanks to a financial situation that Fisk orchestrated) lead him to blindly believe Fisk's "allegations" that Matt worked for him without bothering to think it suspicious that a member of the law firm that took Fisk down would secretly be working for him, and not take Karen seriously when she points out Fisk is using him as a pawn in a vendetta. His pride also keeps him from realizing Fisk is playing them all, and by the time he finds out about Dex's treachery, it's too late to back out. He ends up becoming a reluctant accomplice after Hattley blackmails him, though this only lasts for a short time. Being forced to be Dex's driver when Fisk sends Dex to Matt's church to kill Karen to avenge her murder of James Wesley, a hit during which Father Lantom gets killed taking a baton meant for Karen, ends up being the breaking point that leads to Nadeem finally growing a spine and making an effort to break with Fisk (with Matt and Foggy's help). It doesn't work, and he gets killed by Dex on Vanessa's orders, though not here before making a video confession naming all of the various crimes Fisk ordered FBI agents to commit for him.
    • Luke Cage (2016):
      • Misty Knight's partner Rafael Scarfe is in the pockets of the Stokes gang, and sabotages investigations that are a threat to Cottonmouth. In season 1, he murders the last survivor of a three-man crew that robbed a gun deal of Cottonmouth's, Wilfredo "Chico" Diaz, when Chico tries to turn state's evidence on Cottonmouth, and then uses Chico's information to sell Luke out to Cottonmouth. Later, when informed that Internal Affairs has him under investigation, Lt. Perez tasks Scarfe with getting Cottonmouth's guns out of evidence, with the help of a property sergeant who's been bribed to falsify papers saying the guns have been destroyed. But being under investigation, Scarfe decides to blackmail Cottonmouth, demanding $100,000 in funds that he knows Cottonmouth doesn't have. This prompts Cottonmouth to attack him, get hold of his gun, and shoot him with it. Scarfe manages to last a full day before dying, but not before spilling the truth to Luke and Claire about everything he knows. Sadly, his death means that none of his information is usable in putting Cottonmouth away, which combined with the police department brass not being happy with another police corruption scandal on their hands just a year after the one with Wilson Fisk, means Cottonmouth walks.
      • Just because Scarfe dies halfway through season 1 doesn't mean he no longer stops causing problems for the cast. Season 2 has a subplot where Misty has to deal with the fallout from Scarfe's corruption. Some of it is in the form of ostracization from her colleagues (who are also mocking her amputated right arm). On top of that, a bunch of cases she worked on with Scarfe were found to be tainted. It turns out that as a patrol officer, he destroyed evidence that would've implicated Cottonmouth in the murder of his uncle Pete on Mama Mabel's orders, which proves problematic when Misty finds that the gun from that murder was also used by Shades to kill Candace and by Mariah to kill Bushmaster's uncle. It also turns out that he planted a gun to ensure the arrest of a domestic abuser and dice game runner named Dontrell "Cockroach" Hamilton, a conviction Cockroach has just gotten overturned on appeal prior to the beginning of the season.
      • In the second season, Captain Thomas Ridenhour is a downplayed case of this. He's not corrupt, but a desk jockey in over his head. Ridenhour is using Comanche as a confidential informant to gather information about Mariah Dillard (and overseeing this investigation where he has a big conflict of interest, as he was a high school sweetheart of Mariah's). On top of that, Comanche is not very good at covering his tracks. Such so that they both end up being killed when a suspicious Shades follows Comanche to a meeting and catches them talking.
    • The Punisher (2017):
      • Carson Wolf, Special Agent in Charge for the Department of Homeland Security's New York field office, participated in covering up David Lieberman's faked "death". He also was one of the plotters involved in the death of Frank Castle's family, and burying the story in both cases.
      • In season 2, Officer O'Rourke tries to collect the bounty on Frank Castle's head offered by John Pilgrim, to avenge a cousin of his in the Kitchen Irish who was killed by Frank in Daredevil season 2. He also tries to choke Amy Bendix to death when she tries to save Frank from him.
    • Jessica Jones (2015): Season 3 has Carl Nussbaumer, who murders teenaged drug dealers whose deaths won't be minded by the criminal justice system because they'll be chalked up to gang violence, and steals their money and product to resell. He gets blackmailed by Eric Gelden and, later, accidentally killed by Trish Walker.
    • Agent Carter: In the season 2 premiere "The Lady in the Lake", we have LAPD Detective Andrew Henry, who's been paid off by Chadwick to dump the body of a woman Chadwick was having an affair with, as well as another cop paid off by Chadwick to kill Henry before he can talk.
    • WandaVision: SWORD Director Tyler Hayward is illegally experimenting on Vision with the intent of reviving him against his will and in violation of the Sokovia Accords, and intends to frame Wanda Maximoff for his crimes.
  • In The Cape, Vince is framed as one by the Big Bad in the pilot, resulting in a police chase and an explosion that causes everyone to think he does. After being trained by a criminal circus, he becomes the titular masked hero.
  • In Powers, Deena's father was one before he retired, having stolen a large amount of money during an investigation.
  • The Wire shows corruption in the Baltimore Police Department at every level.
    • The top brass are devious, biased, prejudiced and so full of personal vendettas that it prevents them from doing any actual police work.
    • The top brass, under pressure from City Hall to decrease crime by any means necessary, begin juking the stats, putting quantity of arrests over quality. Valchek is the most blatant about admitting to his fellow Majors that he'll resort to juking.
    • When Judge Phelan and Jimmy McNulty set in motion the creation of the MCU, Bill Rawls makes it his top priority to screw McNulty over. The Deputy Ops himself is reluctant to do any meaningful police work either. The whole thing is so disorganized that the only time they do have to act selflessly (after the shooting of Kima Greggs), the amount of personnel that swarms to the scene just clutter everything until Rawls tells everyone unnecessary to get lost.
    • Cedric Daniels has some skeletons in his closet, and openly implies that corruption runs rampant in the Eastern District.
    • Herc and Carver start the show as this. They're briefly suspected by Daniels of stealing evidence money when they seize drug money from Wee-Bey and some of it goes missing. Then they actually steal money during a raid on a stash house in the wake of Kima's shooting. After spending season 3 working under Major Colvin in the Western District, Carver greatly cleans up his act and matures into a much better cop. Herc doesn't mature, loses his job due to politics, and ends up becoming a private investigator for Maurice Levy.
    • Eddie Walker is a Western District patrolman and is incredibly relentless in use of Police Brutality against the hoodrats.
    • Dwight Tilghman is a prison guard who routinely brutalizes Wee-Bey Brice because Wee-Bey killed a cousin of his. Avon Barksdale and Stringer Bell find out that Tilghman runs a side business of smuggling heroin into the prison. Stringer arranges for Tilghman's supplier to give him a tainted batch, and when several inmates are killed by the deadly drugs, an investigation is launched with the warden realizing that they'll need to promise reduced sentences to get potential cooperators willing to implicate the culprits. Avon comes forward and "accuses" Tilghman of the crime. Tilghman gets arrested when drugs are found in his car that corroborate Avon's "story", and Avon's first parole hearing is moved up as per the deal proposed by Maurice Levy with the prison officials.
  • Total Recall 2070: Hume investigates a former mentor of his who has made a name for himself by quickly closing a large number of cases after seeing him shoot a suspect. It transpires that he's begun working as a hit man for a group of people who issue orders through VR.
  • Murder in the First: Season two reveals an entire group of them called "the Union" that runs drugs, loan sharking, money laundering and prostitution rackets.
  • Hand of God: There's a group of them who perform criminal acts (ranging from burglary to murder and rape) for money.
  • Brooklyn Nine-Nine: The Nine-Nine often face police officers less ethical than they are, but some push this into outright corruption:
    • Deputy Commissioner Podolski, initially appears to be a downplayed example, as he transparently uses his position to ensure his delinquent son gets away with causing hundreds of dollars’ worth of vandalism damage to police cars. However, it is later heavily implied that he is in fact in the pocket of a local Corrupt Bureaucrat with ties to drug smuggling and has links to the mob. He tries to destroy Jake’s career when he investigates said bureaucrat.
    • Deputy Chief Madeline Wunch is a downplayed example. While she’s not outright corrupt, she shamelessly abuses her position to make Holt’s life miserable as part of their petty rivalry. She is also perfectly willing to organise a fake Internal Affairs investigation simply to get dirt on Holt. She makes it abundantly clear in the season two finale, that she’ll happily destroy Jake, Amy, Rosa, Charles and Terry’s careers just to beat Holt.
    • Corrupt FBI Agent Bob Anderson. While posing as Holt’s friend and a dedicated agent, he is in fact in the pocket of Jimmy "the Butcher" Figgis, and is outright willing to commit murders for him.
    • Lieutenant Melanie Hawkins manages to make all the previously police examples look like upstanding officers of the law by comparison. Publicly known as one of the NYPD’s best cops who chases the most dangerous criminals, she is secretly the mastermind behind New York’s most notorious gang of bank robbers and in charge of a massive criminal conspiracy, purely to line her own pockets. She also happily uses Police Brutality to keep people in line, is addicted to cocaine and successfully manages to frame Jake and Rosa for her crimes.
  • Claws: Det. Chip Lauderdale who is the pocket of the Husser crime family.
  • The Deuce is about the Big Rotten Apple of Times Square in 1971. As such, police corruption is rampant. Just about all beat cops are in the pocket of the mob and collect protection money from businesses. A new captain in the 14th precinct, however, arrives with the intention of cleaning house.
  • The Indian Detective: The Mumbai Police's Deputy Commissioner is corrupt and in league with Chandekar's gang. It turns out Todd is too.
  • M.A.N.T.I.S. had this in both the original TV movie, with the bigoted Ocean City Police Chief Stark forming a task force that violated civil rights and Antoine Pike, who was in league with Stark, and in the series with Port Columbia Police Chief Grant being in the pocket of Corrupt Corporate Executive Solomon Box and Paul Warren, who was the one who shot Miles Hawkins in a botched assassination attempt under orders of Grant and Box.
  • In Unsolved: The Murders of Tupac and the Notorious B.I.G.cops., Poole and Miller's attempts to investigate the murder of Biggie Smalls are hampered by the fact that several of their key witnesses are cops who also happen to be under investigation by Internal Affairs for moonlighting at Death Row Security, meaning that Poole and Miller aren't even allowed to talk to them.
  • Sgt. Hank Voight is introduced as a dirty cop on Chicago Fire, abusing his authority to try to intimidate firefighter Matt Casey into dropping a complaint against Voight's son. He goes to prison for it. When he returns in Chicago P.D. he has cut a deal with Internal Affairs to pretend to be a dirty cop to help make cases. That deal ends in season 2 but Voight and the rest of the Intelligence unit have little compunction about violating the rights of suspects and engaging in other legally dodgy behaviour including Hank's murdering the man who murdered his son.
  • The Magician: In "Lady in a Trap", the local sheriff is part of the conspiracy to steal a rare book.
  • The villain of the Switch (1975) pilot is a police lieutenant who steals money so he can spend it on gambling and prostitutes.
  • NUMB3RS: Blaine Cleary in the season four episode "Power" who pulled over women and drugged and raped them.
  • In Justice: One case involves a former detective convicted of killing a fellow officer who'd accused him of corruption. It's revealed not only was he innocent of that, but wasn't even corrupt to begin with. Some other episodes however play this straight, with cops willing to frame people who they believe are guilty, or simply so their valuable informant (who had committed murder) is protected.
  • Crossing Lines: One of the foremost sex traffickers in Europe is revealed as a police officer. He even guards a girl who escaped from his henchmen when she's being treated in the hospital.
  • Banshee:
    • The mayor hires an outsider to be sheriff because all the previous local sheriffs have been paid off by Proctor. Ironically, it's implied that Proctor may have turned the real Hood before he even got to Banshee.
    • Right after Lucas is sworn in as sheriff, he breaks into a pawn shop and steals a safe.
  • In the Dark: Dean turns out to be one, having accepted bribes from Nia in return for tips on police efforts against her, and killed Tyson so this wouldn't come out.
  • Too Old to Die Young
    • Larry, LA Sheriff Deputy, is introduced pondering whether to murder his mistress. During a traffic stop, he strongly implies that he'll plant drugs in a woman's car if she doesn't provide sexual favors, but ultimately settles on extorting money from her. He's later believed to have murdered some gangsters while working as a Professional Killer.
    • Larry's partner Martin has no problem taking half of the money Larry extorts from a civilian. He also works as a Professional Killer for Caribbean gangsters. He later becomes a Vigilante Man and kills people who have committed horrible crimes.
    • The local police force in Mexico is completely corrupt and on the take from the cartel.
  • When They See Us: The detectives who investigated the case all ignore glaring holes in the case AND also question the underage boys without attorneys or their parents present (which they lie about). The prison guard in Rikers also has deals with inmates. If they don't do something for him, other prisoners are sent to beat them up. A guard in Wende, instead of helping Korey when he's being attacked, threatens him with a baton. It turns out he set up the attack as well.
  • The I-Land: "Bonnie and Clyde" turn out to be prison guards who gladly accept money in return for killing or torturing prisoners.
  • Watchmen (2019): Will Reeves discovered the hard way that a lot of his fellow officers in 1930s' New York City were paid off by gangsters, one of whom he arrested for blatantly throwing a Molotov cocktail into a Jewish delicatessen (likely for not paying protection money). They warn him off with a mock hanging, inspiring Will to become the masked vigilante Hooded Justice because he can't enforce the laws equally otherwise. Worse, one is part of a plot to hypnotize black New Yorkers into attacking each other.
  • The Twilight Zone (1985): In "Crazy as a Soup Sandwich", Cassandra Fishbein threatens to call the cops if the mob boss Nino Lancaster and his henchmen Gus and Bork don't leave her hairdressing salon. Nino advises against it as most of them work for him.
  • The Plot Against America: Cops are openly racist and even assassinate some local mobsters who are trying to protect a Jewish neighborhood during riots. They also stand by without intervening as Walter Winchell, a Jewish candidate for US President, is assaulted by antisemitic protesters and then assassinated.
  • Perry Mason (2020): Ennis and Holcomb are blatantly dirty. They tamper with evidence or even engage in regular crimes. It's made clear most of the LAPD qualify, with honest cops such as Drake an exception.
  • The Cape: Chess has many corrupt cops on his payroll, including Marty (though it's hinted he might be coerced into this).
  • Dark Desire: Esteban, a police detective, it turns out is completely corrupt, framing people for money or his own ends.
  • Dead Man's Gun: In "The Imposter", Deputy Floyd is a coward and extorting money from the local merchants.
  • Fargo Season 4: The Kanas City Police Department of 1950 are very dirty, often brutalizing members of Loy Cannon's black gang. The resident cops of this season, Detective Odis Weff and U.S. Marshal Richard "Deafy" Wickware, are not saints either. Weff is on the Fadda Family's payroll who stifles investigations into their activities, while Deafy is a bigoted Mormon who is very brutal towards criminals, if his story of his handling of Italian gangsters in Salt Lake City is true.
  • Tehran: A couple Iranian cops are bribed to let a car's passengers go without searching them.
  • Big Sky:
    • State trooper Legarski turns out to be involved with sex trafficking, and murders Cody covering it up.
    • In Season 2, a deputy sheriff is working with a drug trafficking syndicate.
  • The Rookie (2018):
    • Armstrong is revealed to have been working for the mob, even killing a fellow officer and framing Nolan for his crimes.
    • La Fiera has cops on the payroll in Guatemala to do her bidding.
  • Pizza: Murray the Cop is constantly trying to make Pauly Falzone's life hell by detaining his cars for false excuses like "lacking an anti-hoon emission filter". In The Movie, he puts up "Now Targeting (Speeders)", except they say "Now Targeting: Lebanese" and "Now Targeting: Habib". He also has a Hair-Trigger Temper, and resorts to shouting "Today's me FUCKIN' BIRTHDAY! I DON'T NEED THIS SHIT!!!" in reaction to Habib and Rocky calling him out for threatening to persecute them.
  • For Life: Officer Lindsley and Lieutenant Diaz. Together they make up a better reason for Lindsley stopping Andi Josiah, whom he then shot, and Diaz gets rid of video evidence (or so he thinks) that could contradict his story.
  • In Father Brown, Sergeant Goodfellow is a legitimately nice and helpful guy, and the regular Inspector, be it Valentine, Sullivan, or Mallory, are increasing degrees of incompetent Jerkass but at least not corrupt, but any other cop who is named as a Character of the Day has a remarkably high likelihood of being one of these.
  • Himmelsdalen:
    • Some of the "hosts" (guards/orderlies) are in bed with Carol, a ruthless crime boss among the patients, who cover up his dealings.
    • Jack covered up Siri's escape to save his job, including later destroying that showed Helena is not her.
  • Batwoman (2019): In "Armed and Dangerous" Tavaroff and his crew turn out to not just be trigger happy, they'll murder their boss for self-preservation. It's indicated The Crows is filled with agents of the same ilk.
  • Burden of Truth: Sam Mercer, the chief of police in Millwood. He takes bribes and is shown to be racist towards Indigenous Canadians. Owen exposes his corruption leads to him losing his job and going to jail for killing an Indigenous man, but he gets off with only eighteen months on reckless endangerment. Then it's found he was running a blackmail scheme while a cop, and it continues when he's on parole.

  • The second verse of Lupe Fiasco's "Handcuffs" is sung by a drug dealer, commenting on his arresting officer, making such remarks as "You ain't no better than me, just a hustla with a badge."
  • Dirty Cops is on the block. Looking for an easy fuck.
  • Phil Ochs' song "Here's to the State of Mississippi" depicts the cops in Mississippi that way:
    They're chewing their tobacco as they lock the prison door
    Their bellies bounce inside them as they knock you to the floor
    No they don't like taking prisoners in their private little war
    Behind their broken badges there are murderers and more
  • The N.W.A song Fuck Tha Police has quite a few of these
  • Chamillionaire's hit song "Ridin' Dirty" was about racial profiling with particular regards to cops pulling over black drivers and hassling them (known as Driving While Black). This is a common theme in hip-hop and rap songs.
  • Officer Devlin in !Hero: The Rock Opera, working together with Sinister Minister Chief Rabbi Kai to take down Hero.
  • Most people who only know the first few lines of the music hall song "If You Want to Know the Time, Ask a Policeman" think it's about how reliable the police are. The point is actually that they've lifted the pocket watches from drunks while escorting them to the cells. Subsequent verses recommend asking a policeman if you want to know where to get a drink after hours if you want to know where your housemaid ran off to, if you want to learn to run and if you want someone to keep your wife company when you're away from home.
  • During the C.B. radio craze of the mid-1970s, several country music songs played on the theme of corrupt highway patrolmen (and the then-prevailing 55-mph speed limit), using masquerades to lure unsuspecting truck drivers into speed traps. These included:
    • "The White Night" by Cledus Maggard and the Citizens Band. Written by advertising executive Jay Huguely (who recorded using the pseudonym Maggard), the song's antagonist was a Georgia highway patrolman who posed as a fellow truck driver who scouts for speed traps and, broadcasting there are no "smokies" in sight, the protagonist truck driver can drive as fast as he pleases... only to find out that it is a speed trap and that he was nailed for going 40 mph over the speed limit.
    • "C.B. Savage" by one-hit wonder Rod Hart, where a highway patrolman hopes to break up a ring of convoys who were protesting the national speed limit by masquerading as a gay truck driver. He is quickly able to exploit the homophobia of the lead truck driver in the convoy, and shortly after he pulls into a truck stop (in an effort to get away from the non-existent gay trucker whom he believes is stalking him) ... the patrolman reveals his ruse and that five of the truckers in his convoy are in police custody. The gay-themed song, when played on the December 18, 1976, broadcast of the radio program American Country Countdown led then-host Don Bowman to do a Beat after his outro for the song, noting, "I don't pick them, I just play them."
  • Warrant's "Uncle Tom's Cabin" (no relation to the novel of the same name) concerns Sheriff John Brady and Deputy Hedge, two corrupt small-town cops who murder two people and throw them into the Wishing Well. The protagonist and his uncle witness them getting rid of the bodies, but do not tell anyone for fear of being next.
  • Jyuto Iruma from Hypnosis Mic.

    Mythology and Religion 
  • Robin Hood's foe the Sheriff of Nottingham might just be the Ur-Example. The position of "Sheriff" in Norman England had a lot of power, because it gave the bearer responsibility for maintaining the law throughout the parish, and had proxy authority from the king himself. Later depictions just make him a typical robber-baron, but in the early examples of the legend, he really was a corrupt police chief. More than one sheriff ran his parish as a criminal syndicate, including in Nottingham, which is quite likely the inspiration.

  • In Safe Cracker, you can bribe the bank guard with points to get past him... but he'll arrest you if your bribe isn't generous enough.
  • "Payoff Panic" in Capcom's unreleased Kingpin requires hitting enough targets to pay off a Dirty Cop.

    Professional Wrestling 
  • The Big Boss Man played it straight as a heel, handcuffing his opponents and beating them with his nightstick.
  • Later, The Mountie (a.k.a. Jacques Rougeau) played the heel cop, using cheap, dirty methods to beat his opponents. Then he would handcuff them and zap them with his shock stick.

  • The BBC Radio 4 Out of the Blue is about a police conspiracy to create a riot at a peaceful demonstration, with the intent of increasing police powers and overthrowing the government. The heroic copper spreads the word to the protestors, who are ready to make citizens' arrests of the agents provocateur as soon as they start causing trouble. Meanwhile, he arrests the deep undercover officer whose been inciting an environmental group, in full view of the man's "comrades".
  • The BBC Radio 4 drama G.F. Newman's The Corrupted, set in 60s London, features a succession of police officers who basically run a protection racket in partnership with local gangsters.

  • In The Gamer's Alliance, George Bush is a dirty officer in the Maar Sul's SAVAGE who accepts bribes and looks the other way when the Totenkopfs act and does his best to help the cult's evil cause whenever he can.
  • Equestria Chronicles: The royal guard is corrupt and abusive, although its officers try to keep things safe and reasonable.

    Tabletop Games 
  • One of the game pieces added to later editions of Clue is Sergeant Gray, a police detective who is himself a suspect in the murder of Black/Boddy. Supplemental materials give him other skeletons in his closet as well.
  • One of the vignettes in Transhuman Space: Toxic Memes concerns a pack of feral dogs that turn out to be led by uplifted dogs working for a local cartel. The ultimate leader is revealed to be a police dog who faked his own death during a raid on the cartel.
  • Pretty much universal among the privatized police forces of Shadowrun. Lone Star and Knight Errant's privatized police are nearly all on the take; investigating crimes doesn't pay much in this world, and taking criminals in means a lot more paperwork than either shaking them down for bribes or arranging an accident.
  • In Planescape, despite the fact that the Harmonium is supposed to be most appealing to Lawful Good types, there are so many Lawful Evil members walking the beat who use their power as Sigil's police force as an excuse to extort, beat, threaten and otherwise harass anyone they don't like that every Sigil native presumes they're all dirty. Especially because the Faction is the game's poster boy for Order Is Not Good and the rot goes all the way up to the top, meaning that even good Harmonium members will close ranks to protect their corrupt members, under the justification that solving such problems is a matter for internal affairs.

  • Played with in the case of Assistant Commissioner Davison in Great Britain. While his ambition to get promoted is one of his more negative traits and he cooperates with Free Press much more than he should, he is ultimately a Well-Intentioned Extremist that seeks to combat more serious forms of crime. He also has some morals, as shown by his horror when the sting operation goes horribly wrong and an innocent man dies as a result. The rest of the police are more blatantly corrupt, trying to cover up the Accidental Murder of a black man that they mistakenly shot in a Lidl supermarket, believing him to be armed when he actually was carrying carrots.

  • Beast Wars: Uprising: A large number of the Maximal Command Security Force are said to be corrupt, for several reasons: The pay's not so great, they're treated shabbily, and many recruits only signed on because it comes with an exemption from The Games. Not helping is that some of the laws they enforce are ludicrously stupid and petty (for example, they're allowed to arrest people who look at their reflection for too long), so actually working out who's corrupt and who's not is difficult.

    Video Games 
  • Back to the Future: The Game: When you return to an alternate 1986 where Kid Tannen wasn't arrested, the Tannen family is now a crime family that rules Hill Valley. If you choose the option that says "Where are the police?" Marty will say "You better get out of here before my dad calls the cops." Riff will respond with "The cops? We own the cops."
  • When you start off as a nobody in Pizza Tycoon, the police are pretty much straight edge. Once you have learned some street smarts and have some respect in the community, you'll be able to pay your way out of trouble and into the police's favors.
  • You'll take on plenty of these as enemies (they'll even try to run you over in their cars) in the top-down arcade brawler Downtown. They did after all take a pay-off from the syndicate leader—And caught you looking on in the opening cutscene.
  • Edi E. from Final Fight took bribes from the Mad Gear Gang, controlled a part of the city, and got the crap beaten out of him by the heroes. He later double-crosses the Mad Gear Gang by arresting its members during the events of Final Fight Revenge.
    • Also, Dave, the first Boss of the third game.
  • Every Grand Theft Auto game has entire forces of dirty cops, some dirtier than others.
    • In the original Grand Theft Auto, the protagonist's boss in the first Vice City campaign is one of these.
    • Ray Machowski worked for the Yakuza in Grand Theft Auto III. Machowski even has Claude assassinate his partner, fellow dirty cop turned informant Leon McAffrey, who worked for the Leone Crime Family in Liberty City Stories.
    • Samuel L. Jackson's character Officer Frank Tenpenny in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas uses his position to get rich off the drug trade and keep all the gangs in Los Santos under his thumb and on his payroll. He threatens to hurt Carl's loved ones to force him to eliminate a case pending against him and his colleagues for his corruption. He murders two of his partners for growing a conscience and trying to expose him. When the case against him is dropped due to lack of evidence and witnesses (which he destroyed or killed throughout the game), the outrage causes a city-wide riot. Unusually, he claims to be a Well-Intentioned Extremist trading in small crimes to prevent larger ones, but the events of the game don't bear it out.
    • Francis McReary in Grand Theft Auto IV. Packie claims that Francis is even more crooked than himself, Derrick and Gerry, who are all professional criminals.
    • The Undercover Cops at the beginning of Grand Theft Auto IV: The Lost and Damned, however, they're killed in "Bad Cop Drop", a very early mission.
    • A group of NOOSE and FIB Agents in Grand Theft Auto IV: The Ballad of Gay Tony, who intend to frame Ray Bulgarin by planting fake evidence in his truck. They're killed off in the mission "Going Deep".
    • Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars throws in Wade Heston, who's a downplayed example. Officer Heston was heavily monitored by IAD for dirty activities and allegations, but he is a quite Well-Intentioned Extremist and a Reasonable Authority Figure assisting Huang Lee, who had troubles in finding out his father's murderer among The Triads and the Tongs.
    • Grand Theft Auto V has corrupt FIB agents Steve Haines and Dave Norton. Agent Haines plays it straight, forcing the protagonists to do his dirty work to hinder the IAA and make him look good. Agent Norton is a downplayed version; while he takes a monthly kickback from Michael as part of their "off-the-books plea agreement", he is more of a Reasonable Authority Figure than Haines.
      • The Blaine County Sheriff's Department is full of them, as they extort money from the drug dealers and prostitutes, and will staunchly defend that dirty money at all costs, taking it Up to Eleven by bringing in the military and tanks.
  • Max Payne:
    • B.B. from the first game turns out to be one of these, especially when it's learned that he killed Alex at the Roscoe Street Station and had Max framed for it.
    • Winterson in the sequel, who has a love affair with the Big Bad.
    • The entire UFE in part 3 is essentially the private army of the Big Bad and working with outlawed paramilitaries to abduct and organ-harvest the poor. Ironically, despite Rodrigo dismissing him as another of these, Da Silva is the only one we see onscreen who isn't.
  • Shows up in varying degrees in the Yakuza series, since cooperation between organized crime syndicates and the police is a necessity in Japanese society.
    • Masayoshi Tanimura, one of the protagonists from Yakuza 4, is far from squeaky-clean: he plays mah-jongg on company time and shakes down businesses exploiting migrant work (the latter of which he does to support his extended family in Little Asia). When push comes to shove, however, he's definitely heroic, especially compared to his mentor Suguichi, who's a Yakuza mole and Deputy Commissioner Munakata, who has been using resources to build secret prisons.
    • In Yakuza 5, it turns out that the Osaka Detective that shows up in all of the characters stories is actually the Chairman of the Omi Alliance.
    • In Yakuza 0, Homare Nishitani has the cops of Sotenbori in his pocket to the point that he uses a cell in the local PD as a hideout. Of course, since they're only loyal to his money it also means that they quickly turn against him when Dojima Family lieutenant Shibusawa hires them to kill him.
    • In Yakuza: Like a Dragon, Juro Horinouchi is the Deputy Commisioner of Tokyo who rose to his position via witness tampering that kept an innocent man in jail (who eventually committed suicide) and is a political lackey of the corrupt Governor of Tokyo Ryo Aoki. He serves as the personal nemesis of Koichi Adachi, who was the man who tried to save said innocent man and got demoted to a desk jockey at a DMV for getting in Horinouchi's way.
    • Kazuya Ayabe from the spinoff Judgment accepts bribes from criminals and leaks sensitive information for the right price, acting as Yagami's informant into the investigation on the Mole. As it turns out, the Mole is actually Ayabe's superior Mitsuru Kuroiwa, who started as an info broker like Ayabe before deciding murder and aiding in a massive cover up of a failed Alzheimer's drug was more his speed.
  • Doctor Peace in No More Heroes is a Dirty Cop, a Deadly Doctor, and a skilled assassin with many interests outside the law.
  • The Godfather: The Game doesn't just have beat cops, but also FBI agents on the take who will help you keep the other families under control if the vendetta escalates to open Mob War. In fact, if you want to pull off a decent caper in the game, you'd better pay off the cops beforehand so they'll look the other way.
  • The Hitman series has several antagonists who are corrupt members of law enforcement.
    • Codename 47 has the Hong Kong Chief of Police.
    • Contracts has the last target, Albert Fournier.
    • In Absolution, pretty much the entire sheriff's department of Hope, South Dakota, including the sheriff, Clive Skurky, is on the take from Blake Dexter. Also, in some of the Chicago levels, police officers work for the bad guys in some capacity. Even the ones that weren't, their behavior and attitude would earn them at the very least a reproachful reaction from their colleagues in any real police force.
  • Batman: Arkham Origins: The whole Gotham City Police Department is on the take somehow, with the rest being too afraid to stand up. Especially prominent in Commissioner Loeb and Branden. The only exception is James Gordon (who is not yet commissioner at this point), as one of Edward Nigma's extortion tapes has Anarky call Gordon the only clean cop in Gotham.
  • Resident Evil:
    • In the first Resident Evil there's a rather unusual example: Albert Wesker was the team captain of Division A of the S.T.A.R.S. Precinct and presumably also their leader, and seems outwardly to be a model cop. However, he is, in fact, a double agent for the Umbrella Corporation, and more importantly is intending to lure the S.T.A.R.S. Teams to their deaths at the hands of B.O.W's both to silence them and to give the B.O.W's battle data, and later games reveal that he was in fact also planning to betray Umbrella as well.
    • Resident Evil 2 has Police Chief Brian Irons, a wife-beater and serial rapist who is on Umbrella's payroll and thus not only works to conceal their wrong-doings but is also implied to discredit potential competitors and provide human test-subjects for them. He's also a lunatic who suffers a mental breakdown during the resultant Zombie Apocalypse, actively sabotages the efforts of his police to aid the human survivors, and finally takes to hunting them down and killing them himself. On top of all of that, the game also drops heavy hints that he may be a Serial Killer as well. And by hints, we mean the human skulls in his secret taxidermy chamber. Made worse in Outbreak. One of the files in the first scenario notes that 8 blonde women, all ages 18-23, started disappearing and people were saying there were groans and screams in the sewers. The description matches his last victim in RE2, the Mayor's daughter.
  • Agent Ross from Red Dead Redemption, whose hobbies include kidnapping people's families in order to force them to track down outlaws he should be tracking and murdering said people when they outlive their usefulness to him.
  • Mass Effect:
    • C-Sec officer Harkin, although he is fired from the force by the second game. Anderson mentions that the only reason he lasted as long as he did was because humanity wanted a presence in C-Sec and it would look bad if he was busted for one of his numerous crimes. By the sequel, there are enough humans working in C-Sec that it was no longer a concern, so he was sacked.
    • Captain Bailey is a deconstruction of this trope with a sympathetic POV. He's willing to take bribes from The Mafia... but only because it helps keep the peace and keeps his men alive. He authorizes rough interrogation of prisoners... but only because the crime rate in his district is awful and he feels the need to use extra force. He's also on Shepard's side for the most part and will bend the rules for him/her when he needs to.
    • Officer Kaira Sterling from the Noveria corporate police is openly taking bribes to cover up Administrator Anoleis' corruption and is more than willing to murder anyone who gets in the way.
      Kaira: Do you know what we did to cop killers back on my world?
      Wrex: You're breaking the law for bribe money. Do you know what we do to dirty cops on my world?
  • L.A. Noire has the entire LAPD except for Cole Phelps and his partners. Except for his fourth partner, Roy Earle, on the Ad Vice desk.
  • Dead Rising has Jo Slade working as mall security raping women and beating them with her nightstick.
  • Dead Rising 2 has Raymond Sullivan, who is working for Phenotrans all along.
  • Tashmann from the first Drakensang game: the first time you see him he's trying to use his badge to hire a prostitute for free.
  • All 3 of the player characters in Call of Juarez: The Cartel are dirty to some degree.
    • LAPD Detective Ben McCall is on the lighter end of the scale; he steals petty cash from criminals to help pay for the medical expenses of the child of one of the many hookers in his jurisdiction that he's protecting, he otherwise has a very strong sense of justice (although he also has anger issues and is prone to Cowboy Cop behavior as well as the Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique). By "street cop" standards, he's practically a Boy Scout.
    • DEA Agent Eddie Guerra is on the much more extreme end of the scale; he's secretly running a network of street dealers to sell drugs for him, in order to pay off his huge gambling debts. He also sets up an informant to be murdered because he was worried Internal Affairs was getting to the guy. It also turns out he was The Mole and helped the Cartel abduct key witness Jessica Stone because they owned his gambling debts.
    • FBI Agent Kim Evans is by all appearances an idealistic Good Cop, but is (reluctantly) willing to commit crimes, obstruct the investigation, and outright murder witnesses when ordered to do so by the director of the FBI, supposedly for The Greater Good (although it turns out most of her crimes were the result of her being misled by the director, who's the cartel's mole).
  • George Sewell in Silent Hill: Downpour. Not only is he extremely corrupt and known for striking deals with inmates which rarely go their way, the ending reveals he killed Frank Coleridge (who attempted to get him tried for corruption) and framed Murphy for the deed. To make matters worse, in every ending (save for "Truth & Justice") he gets away with everything.
  • Commissioner Kinsler is shown in Halo 3: ODST's audio logs to be concerned with nothing but his own personal interest, even as the Covenant are invading New Mombasa. If you manage to collect 29 audio logs, you'll find out that the cop whom you've been fighting alongside with in the data hive is on Kinsler's payroll.
  • In Mortal Kombat, it would really be wrong to say that Stryker is any worse than the other characters who are supposed to be good guys (all of them are willing to use lethal force). Still, his Battle Cry in the 2011 game is "Police brutality comin' up!" (Also, in that game, Stryker is unique in that he is the only character who appears to kill his opponent upon winning a match even if he does not successfully perform a Fatality; he throws a grenade offscreen, which results in an explosion, followed by a scream from the loser and a lot of blood.)
  • Part of the backstory of Streets of Rage is that the police has been taken over by The Syndicate. This leads to the three protagonists, who are police officers, quitting to take on the syndicate by themselves. The one remaining uncorrupted cop provides them with occasional backup in the form of a bazooka and a machinegun-equipped helicopter. The fourth game plays with this - the police are among the enemies you have to fight, but it's because you are inarguably causing massive amounts of trouble in the city. The cop enemies will actually attack the criminal enemies, and vice-versa. Late in the game, the heroes convince the police chief to help them, and the cops stop fighting you. That said, there's at least one cop enemy who never attacks criminals, only you, and the Commissioner is implied to be on the take.
  • Shin Megami Tensei:
    • In Shin Megami Tensei I, the police quickly align with the Demons by kidnapping innocents so a demon at the town hospital can experiment on them.
    • In Devil Survivor, after a few days in Tokyo after a lockdown resulting from demon presence, a group of police officers begins abusing the power of demon-summoning objects called COMPs to rob and/or kill others. They eventually surrender their powers after being beaten twice, the second time when faced with the lord of death, Yama.
    • Persona:
      • In Persona 2: Eternal Punishment, several members of the Kounan Police Department (including its top leadership) are working for the evil government conspiracy.
      • Persona 5: The cops who apprehend the protagonist drug and beat him to try and get information on his accomplices. In fact, the head of the Special Investigation Department in Tokyo is a member of The Conspiracy and plans to kill the protagonist and their friends to protect his illicit activities.
  • Sleeping Dogs: Multiple:
    • Wei Shen, an undercover cop within the Sun On Yee Triad, is feared to be this by his superiors, who believe that he may go rogue and fully defect to the Triad. Given his belligerent attitude and his propensity for violent and illegal actions that often go beyond simply maintaining his cover (especially when It's Personal), these fears are well-founded. Subverted with the outcomes to Inspector Teng's investigations, the ending cutscene and the "Year of the Snake" DLC, which show that he really is a cop first, albeit a very reckless Cowboy Cop.
    • Played straight with Superintendent Pendrew, who built his career off of cooperating with the Sun On Yee's current Chairman and sent Wei in undercover to erase all evidence of his corruption from the inside out before his upcoming promotion to Interpol. Pendrew seems to believe in some version of I Did What I Had to Do; he has been offered a wide variety of goods and services, but never accepted anything from the Chairman other than information.
  • In Watch_Dogs, a pair of corrupt cops are seen providing protection for the Chicago South Club's slave auction, though they warn the mobsters that they won't be able to keep the "other boys" from busting the place if the event doesn't stay quiet. Later, after busting the auction yourself and hunting down its buyers one by one, the same cops provide an escort for the slave ring's leader as he tries to flee the city.
  • In Watch_Dogs 2, one of the sidequests deals with the SFPD using CtOS to organize drug deals with local street gangs.
  • Saw II: Flesh & Blood: Jigsaw goes after a ring of corrupt cops who've been illicitly selling medical supplies like drugs, along with the doctors and nurses who set them up.
  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim: just about any Hold Guard could be dirty since, with the right perks and quests completed, you can persuade or bribe them into looking the other way when you commit a crime or inform them that you're a member of a particular group (say, the Thieves' Guild), but special mention goes to the guards in Markarth (who frame you for a murder and throw you in maximum security prison as part of a quest) and Riften (whose first interaction with you is to try and shake you down).
  • Capella's Promise has the Emissaries, who are supposed to be a peacekeeping organization for Ilnacia. Despite that, they turn a blind eye to and even accept bribes from illegal slave traders. Though Mares and Vargas, two members of this organization, consider it a necessary evil because they need underground connections to hide Velk and Shena from their corrupt king.
  • Scrapland: The police of Chimera are all kinds of corrupt. Regular police have the power to extort money from other robots, and they often engage in fights. Plus, there's the chief. He's a cheater, the Mayor's partner-in-crime, and will beat up anyone who tries to blackmail him.
  • In Verdict: Guilty!, Sadu, the police trainer, is also the main source of illegal firearms to the underworld. Also, Mia is doing Mayor Sang's dirty work, though in her case her brother is being held hostage.
  • In South Park: The Fractured but Whole, the South Park cops are even more explicitly evil than the show, being a major part of a crime syndicate as well as a doomsday cult that is sacrificing black people to Shub-Niggurath.
  • In Streets of Rogue, you can bribe the police to make them ignore all crimes that you and your friends commit on that floor.
  • An Act 1 quest in Dragon Age II has Hawke helping their friend Aveline, who is a member of the Kirkwall city guard; together they expose her boss, Captain Jeven, as being one of these. As a reward for her efforts, Aveline is promoted to take his place. Later in Act 3, there's a campaign to smear Aveline's good name, and Hawke helps her discover that once again, Jeven is to blame.
  • Mirror's Edge. Standard procedure to arrest a Runner in the City of Glass seems to be "fill the fucker with lead, then Double Tap the twitching body". Even if you are doing a Pacifist Run and are clearly armed, they'll break out the heavy artillery and spray it at Faith even before actually ordering her to surrender! Subverted because you eventually find out those armed men are Private Military Contractors, not cops.

    Visual Novels 
  • Exploited by Mortelli and Saul in Daughter for Dessert to get the protagonist acquitted. Mortelli “loses” and taints all evidence against him.
  • In Kirisawa's route of Metro PD: Close to You, the 2nd Unit's investigation into a drug ring becomes much more complicated when they come across indications that the Chief of the Detective Bureau is involved in the drug ring in some way. He is indeed dirty, and has been for a long time, including acting as a mole for the mafia back when he was serving under the command of Kirisawa's father.
  • Ace Attorney:
    • Played With in the case of Detective Tyrell Badd from Ace Attorney Investigations: Miles Edgeworth. He's the third 'leg' of the thief Yatagarasu, but the Yatagarasu are a group who only "steal the truth," meaning they work to expose corruption in society through means outside of the law. Badd himself is at worst an Anti-Villain and a Knight in Sour Armour, and once his role is exposed he turns himself in.
    • And then there's Damon Gant who is a dirty police chief, and was strongly implied to be forging evidence before he killed anyone. There's something seriously broken about the Ace Attorney legal system.
    • Valerie Hawthorne from Trials and Tribulations, who helped fake a kidnapping and lied on the stand to frame her accomplice for her sister's (faked) death. Ironically, once she decides to come out with the truth, she's murdered by said sister.
    • Apollo Justice introduces us to Daryan Crescend, who is an international affairs agent who smuggles cocoons into the country (for good reasons) and kills Interpol agents (not for good reasons).
    • Dual Destinies brings us a dirty bomb squad member in Ted Tonate, who sells the bombs he dismantles in the black market and offed a detective who caught him in the act.
    • Dual Destinies also gives us Bobby Fulbright, who seems at first to be one of the nicest and most morally good cops in the series. Except he was killed and replaced by the game's Big Bad, the phantom, before the game even began.
    • In addition, Dual Destinies deals with the fallout of having so many corrupt members of law enforcement and the legal system: the public has zero faith in the legal system, and as a result, the majority of the legal profession has no qualms about being dirty, as long as it gets a victory.
    • The Great Ace Attorney has Inspector Tobias Gregson, who at first seems like a By-the-Book Cop, turns out to have a serious case of My Country, Right or Wrong mentality. First, he tried to covertly get back classified information containing national secrets from a murder culprit in exchange for giving said murderer info on the case for his cover story. Secondly, Gregson turns out to have been part of a conspiracy in London in where he took the role of a Secret Police strategist as part of the Big Bad's goal to create a crime-free British Empire.

  • In Blood And Smoke, the police commissioner is this according to this page.
  • Paradigm Shift has vampires working for the FBI.
  • In the "Phoenix Rising" Story Arc from Sluggy Freelance, Officer Tod is actually a former mob enforcer. He's found a pretty sweet gig where, as long as he covers up the local Vigilante Woman's numerous murders, he can just sit back, do nothing, and collect a fat paycheck from the government.
  • Girl Genius: While Beausoleil does do his duty to thwart various schemes against the Master he also embezzles from Voltaire's private cheese stock. He is also a key figure in a nearly successful rather murderous plot to usurp the Master himself, having given his loyalty to a new and presumably better-paying boss.
  • One Polandball strip has Poland volunteer to participate in a Good Cop/Bad Cop interrogation by Germany since he has a lot of experience with it. So when he and America are alone, he leans in and... tells him he'll get rid of the evidence for a price.
  • Sonichu has an entire faction of evil, brainwashed stormtroopers modeled after police known as The Jerkops. They're fan-favorites, so much that the author brought them back despite almost liquidating the group for good.
  • Unholy Blood: Large portions of the Korean police are secretly minions of the Big Bad God and are helping him with his illegal activities.
  • In El Goonish Shive, this is both Conversed and Discussed. Elliot is ignorant of the prevalence of this in Real Life and thinks it's mostly a fictional trope. Liz enlightens him by telling him to search for news about police misconduct.

    Web Videos 
  • Gronkh's mini-Let's Play of the game "Die Polizei" (a police simulator) was about being a racist, sadist, foul-mouthed asshole, to emphasize the bad quality of the game and spice it up.
  • Something Awful: Dungeons & Dragons: Joey, when he spends the time skip in charge of the Bonerton City Watch. The Paragon-Tier LP opens with Algernon walking in on him extorting money from Algernon's bar.
  • Pokemon Pals: All Officer Jennys are corrupt. One takes bribes, another helps run a fighting ring, and another agrees to let Ash go if he doesn't report that she sicked a Growlithe on him after macing him in the face.
  • BuzzFeed Unsolved discusses this trope frequently in the True Crime seasons since it's sometimes the reason why cases are unsolved in the first place. This was particularly notable in the Sodder Children episode, where the authorities located only a few miles away showed up hours after the house was set on fire, and in the episode about the Keddie Cabin Massacre, where it has often been theorized that the authorities were covering something up, due to the sheer negligence that was shown to the case.
    Shane: '70s and '80s police were always just like, "Oh you murdered someone?" [beat] "Got 40 bucks?"

    Western Animation 
  • Roger from American Dad! turns into a dirty cop when he joins the police force in one episode... about three hours after joining, no less.
  • Arcane:
    • Sheriff Grayson is willing to make backroom deals with Vander, but it's downplayed in that she doesn't outright break the law, just asks him to grease the wheels so she won't have to bring in more Enforcers which will enflame tensions in Zaun and lead to more violence, never asking him to give up someone who is innocent.
    • Marcus is a straight example, taking bribe money from Silco to look the other way and going after Silco's enemies regardless of actual guilt. After Grayson is killed by Silco and Marcus is promoted, Silco blackmails him with both his unintentional involvement in Grayson's death and threats to his daughter.
  • Family Guy: Paraplegic officer Joe Swanson is usually good at his job, but he has outright looked the other way many times when his closest friends – Peter, Quagmire, and Cleveland – break the law, even if not explicitly stated as such in the given episode. Instances include:
    • Numerous episodes: Quagmire's repeated preying on and raping teenaged girls and women (drugging many of them via GHB); and Peter for showing strong, if not outright blatant pedophiliac behavior.
      • However in "Quagmire's Mom" Joe finally arrests Quagmire for statutory rape.
    • Numerous episodes: Peter repeatedly abusing Lois – particularly in "The Courtship of Stewie's Father" – and Meg (countless episodes).
    • "The Road to Rupert": In addition to not only doing nothing to stop Peter, Quagmire, and Cleveland from annoying Meg during her driving test, he joins in the "fun."
    • "Jerome is the New Black": Peter causing a fire at his new friend Jerome's house, out of jealousy and hate when Peter believes that Jerome (a black man) is having an affair with Lois.
    • "Family Goy": From his upstairs window, Peter shoots a gun at his Jewish neighbor Mort Goldman while he is at his mailbox (a scene emulating an infamous scene in Schindler's List). Not only does Joe fail to arrest Peter, but he also shoots Mort with his gun (greeting him with a friendly hello to boot).
    • "Burning Down the Bayit": Peter and Quagmire conspiring with Mort Goldman to burn down Goldman's pharmacy (to allow him to collect an insurance settlement). That last one was also an It's Personal moment when he remembers that his insurance company wouldn't pay for a surgery to allow him to walk.
    • "Cool Hand Peter" involves Peter and company dealing with a corrupt Southern cop who proceeds to take them to jail on false charges that he puts on them (dropping a bag with coke in their car, smashing a rearview window, and even tossing Joe's police badge away to pretend he's pretending being a cop) after pulling them over. He gets his just desserts by the end when he accidentally wanders into Quahog territory chasing the guys and Joe has his partners harass him to teach him a lesson (and Joe shoots his leg).
  • The concept is parodied in the Codename: Kids Next Door episode "Operation: P.I.N.K.E.Y.E.", (the story being a lampoon of the old private eye genre) with Numbuh Two's old friend Joe Balooka. Technically Joe is just a grade school hall monitor, but the story depicts him like this, Numbuh Two describing him as "a bad cop and a worse friend", and as it turns out, he's taking bribes from the true villain in the episode.
  • Madigan from Coon Skin is a textbook case for this trope when he isn't a bigoted slob.
  • In an episode of Justice League, a recently recaptured Lex Luthor asks the guard leading him to his cell how his family's doing. The guard calls him "Mr. Luthor" and says that they love their new TV, to which Luthor meaningfully replies that they'll love their new car even more.
  • The King of the Hill episode, "Lupe's Revenge", has a policewoman who severely abuses her power. Naturally, in accordance with Hank's hilariously bad luck, she falls in love with him.
  • In Minoriteam the villainous Dirty Cop is a police officer made of dirt and grime who actively participates in the White Shadow's evil schemes and, like many of his cohorts, is virulently racist.
  • The Simpsons:
    • Chief Wiggum and the Springfield police in are sometimes shown to be corrupt as well as incompetent:
      • Wiggum's badge has "Cash Bribes Only" written on it. Which is odd, as "I Love Lisa" implies that he got the Krusty 20th anniversary special tickets as a result of a bribe when he (unintentionally) caught Krusty in a porno theater.
        Lisa: That story isn't suitable for children.
        Wiggum: Really? I keep my pants on in this version.
      • In an episode where prohibition is reintroduced in Springfield, Fat Tony and his mobsters openly drive trucks of illegal booze past City Hall, casually tossing a handful of cash at Lou and Eddie on the way.
        Fat Tony: You didn't see nothing.
        Eddie: [counting the money] I don't know why people are always badmouthing the Mafia.
      • In one episode, Wiggum agrees to "arrest" Bart in order to give him a bad-boy reputation if he goes to Ralph's birthday party. He later offers the same deal to Fat Tony in exchange for ignoring their drug dealing at the local high school.
      • When Bart loses a baseball game, Wiggum happily encourages the townspeople to throw beer cans at him. And then he actually encourages Bart to kill himself after the latter goes through a Sanity Slippage due to the constant torment from the townsfolk.
      • An inverted example involving Wiggum, he has also been willing to break the law for a very honorable reason: To help Homer's fugitive mother escape arrest, as her crime caused his asthma to be cured when he was younger. He has done so twice.
    • Once, when Homer visited New York City in the '70s, a police officer stole his luggage.
    • From the theme song from Cops In Springfield: "Springfield cops are on the take/What do you expect for the money we make?/Whether in a car or on a horse/We don't mind using excessive force."
  • In the French cartoon Patrol 03, the series' Big Bad was the chief of police herself.
  • In the Donald Duck short Duck Pimples, a belligerent Officer O'Hara-type threatens Donald and accuses him of stealing a pearl necklace, then turns around and steals the bracelets off the Femme Fatale's arm. He also turns out to be the one who stole the woman's pearls. Or at least that is what the author who wrote the story in Donald's imagination decided.
  • Every cop in South Park is either bigoted, completely useless, or both. They frame and arrest wealthy black men, react with admiration when they're told a preschooler is in a sexual relationship with his teacher, are completely oblivious to basic clues and forensic science, and usually end up killing/arresting a lot of innocent people when they investigate; and that's just for starters.
  • Officer Mike Brikowski from The Powerpuff Girls episode "Cop Out" is a jerk from the start, who's fired after falling asleep on the job, and blames the Girls for it, thinking he's being fired because the Chief wants to downsize because of them. After trying and failing to get rid of them (and his plan foiled by more honest cops) he claims this was a story of a "good cop gone bad", But as Blossom puts it:
    Blossom: You're not a good cop gone bad. You're a bad cop gone worse!
  • On the mean streets of the Citadel of Ricks, what Cop Morty perceives as being practical, Cop Rick sees as bigotry, murder, and graft.
  • Kaeloo: Mr. Cat, whenever he's given the job of a police officer. Examples include using Perp Sweating on a guy he hates and beating him up when he knows he wasn't the culprit, accepting bribes and arresting people for minor misdemeanors.
  • In Scary Larry, the Insomniac babies run a bar and get harassed by the mob for protection money, so they call the police. But the police threaten to punish them for ridiculous infractions unless they give them 50% of their profits.
  • Zeroman has Helga, the chief of police in Fair City. She helps Rusty with a scheme of his in one episode because she has a crush on him.
  • Zorro: The Chronicles: Technically, Dirty Soldier, but Monasterio is the one in charge of the Los Angeles garrison, which is the time-period version of the local police, and he is anything but honorable.

    Real Life 
  • The LAPD's Rampart scandal, involving widespread corruption on the part of CRASH (Community Resources Against Street Hoodlums), the unit that the LAPD put together to combat the street gang violence that was going on in Los Angeles in The '90s. Over seventy police officers were implicated in misconduct, ranging from murdering suspects and planting weapons on them, to actively joining gangs like the Bloods, bank robbery, and other crimes. Essentially, what was intended to be an anti-gang task force became the most powerful criminal gang in the city. This went even further as the scandal led to the Police Chief, District Attorney, and the Mayor of Los Angeles all eventually being not re-appointed or re-elected (after allegations arose that the chief had tried to censor the lead investigators in the Rampart case, and one of these detectives resigned as a form of protest). Over 100 criminal convictions were also overturned as a result. This scandal is what inspired The Shield, mentioned above under Live-Action TV.
  • Louis Eppolito and Stephen Caracappa were detectives with the Organized Crime Homicide Unit of the NYPD's Major Case Squad. They were also informants and assassins for The Mafia, murdering eight people on orders from the Lucchese crime family. Eppolito and Caracappa were given pay and responsibilities equivalent to "made men" in the Lucchese family, a status that they didn't officially qualify for on account of being police officers. Ironically, before he was caught, Eppolito had bit parts in a few movies including GoodFellas (where he played "Moe Black's brother, Fat Andy") and Lost Highway. He also had the audacity to publish an autobiography entitled Mafia Cop, in which he claimed to be an honest cop who fell under suspicion because several of his relatives had been mafiosi of the Gambino crime family.
  • Ron Previte was another example of a cop being on the mob's payroll. In fact, despite the ban on inducting police officers, he was made into the Philadelphia Mafia, which had developed a reputation for infighting and dysfunction by the time he was made. Prior to this, Previte already had a long rap sheet for extortion and bookmaking despite being on the force.
  • Richard "Dick" Cain, a Chicago vice cop, an investigator for the U.S Attorney's office, and head of the Cook County Sheriff Department's Special Investigation Unit. He was also an enforcer and hitman for the Chicago Outfit and a personal friend of its boss, Sam Giancana. After being drummed out of law enforcement for perjury in the mid-1960s, he operated as a full-time gangster, became an FBI informant in order to undermine his mob rivals (much like Whitey Bulger would do years later), and was eventually assassinated when the Outfit bosses learned that he was plotting to kill them and take over.
  • On the matter of Bulger, the reason he became so powerful was because of his relationship with his FBI handler, John Connolly, who had been raised in the same South Boston neighborhood as Bulger and had known him since childhood. As Bulger's handler, Connolly took whatever intelligence Bulger could provide on the Boston Mafia in exchange for aiding and abetting Bulger's violent takeover of the city's underworld. In 2008, Connolly was convicted of racketeering, obstruction of justice, and murder and is currently serving a 40 year prison sentence.
  • Benoît Roberge was a Montreal police investigator tasked with taking down the local chapter of the Hell's Angels, until he got too close to the motorcycle gang and was caught selling them information. He was sentenced to eight years in prison.
  • Australia has had several dirty cops, which included a commissioner:
    • Roger "The Dodger" Rogerson, formerly one of the most decorated officers, has become synonymous with this trope in Australia. Over the course of his career (and afterward) Rogerson was accused of police brutality, drug trafficking, fabricating confessions, at least two murders, and attempting to kill a fellow police officer who refused a bribe to bury evidence in a case against him. Despite his infamy, he enjoyed a measure of celebrity thanks to his exploits. He and fellow cop Glen McNamara were convicted of the murder of a Sydney college student that was allegedly the result of a drug deal gone wrong in 2016.
    • Terry Lewis, former commissioner of the Queensland Police, lost his knighthood after a judicial inquiry implicated him in acts of forgery, perjury, and accepting $700,000 in bribes in exchange for protecting criminal rackets. He was sentenced to a total of ten-and-a-half years in prison.
    • Ray "Gunner" Kelly and Fred Krahe were known associates of Rogerson and both were known for their extensive dealings with organized crime figures, protecting local rackets, and coercing confessions.
  • Antoinette Frank, a New Orleans patrol officer, encountered a local drug dealer named Rogers Lacaze and found herself madly in love with him. The two became partners in crime, pulling people over and robbing them in Frank's squad car. They eventually committed a violent robbery of a Vietnamese restaurant where Frank worked off-duty as a security guard, in which Lacaze shot and killed Richard William, another NOPD officer moonlighting as a security guard for the restaurant, while Frank shot two of the owners' family, and tried to kill a third before other police arrived. Frank was convicted for her role in the triple-murder and was sentenced to death. After she was sentenced, it came to light that she'd killed her father about a year before the robbery and buried his body under her house, but the authorities chose not to prosecute her since she was already on death row.
  • Andre Stander, a South African police officer, became notorious for living a double life as a prolific bank robber. He robbed up to thirty banks before his arrest, some of which he committed while on his lunch break and later revisited as the investigating officer. His escape from prison and subsequent exploits led him to become the focus of an international manhunt, ending when he was killed by police in Fort Lauderdale, Florida in 1984.
  • One possible inspiration for the Sheriff of Nottingham in the Robin Hood legend is Philip Marc, High Sheriff of Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire and the Royal Forests in the time of King John. There is a specific clause in the Magna Carta demanding his removal, along with other officials and their relatives accused of corruption.
  • The argument of "dirty cop" and police relations with minorities was a highlight of the coverage of the Michael Slager case in which Slager shot and killed Walter Scott. According to Slager, he attempted to write up Scott for a traffic charge, only for Scott to run. Somehow, Slager chased him down and hit him with his Taser, but felt "threatened" and was apparently forced to shoot and kill Scott in self-defense... at least according to his police report. However, a video captured by an eyewitness showed Slager shooting a fleeing, unarmed man in the back from nearly 20 ft away. Furthermore, one of the details uncertain in the video is a black object dropped near Scott and later picked up by Slager once other officers arrived, which some interpreted as an attempt to plant evidence. He was charged with murder after the video went viral, and the police department was apparently investigated for ignoring complaints against Slager going back to 2013. Slager's trial ended in a hung jury, after which he was charged with federal civil rights violations and pled guilty in return for state charges being dropped. He was sentenced to twenty years in prison for it.
  • Baltimore officers have been accused of this a few times since the death of Freddie Gray, who broke his back while in the back of a police van in 2015.
    • First was the Justice Department investigation into the Baltimore Police in the immediate aftermath, which concluded that a number of department policies were disproportionately targeting minorities, with one citation from the 164-page report standing out.
      In some cases, unconstitutional stops resulted from supervisory officers’ explicit instructions. During a ride-along with Justice Department officials, a BPD sergeant instructed a patrol officer to stop a group of young African-American males on a street corner, question them, and order them to disperse. When the officer protested that he had no valid reason to stop the group, the sergeant replied, “Then make something up.”
    • In the summer of 2017, a number of arrests were thrown out due to body-cam footage capturing officers planting drugs in people's cars and homes in order to "find" them during a search.
    • And now we have an entire task force brought down thanks to corruption.
  • Atlanta P.D. Officer James Burns was charged with the murder of Devaris Caine Rogers as well as assault with a deadly weapon and violation of the officer's oath. Burns responded to an off-duty police officer's call regarding suspicious activity around an apartment complex. He shot unarmed Rogers in the head. Chief Turner terminated Burns after an investigation declared excessive force.
  • Charles Joseph "Joe" Gliniewicz of the Fox Lake, Illinois police force. When he initially turned up dead on September 1, 2015, he was thought to have been killed with his own .40-caliber service weapon by three unknown assailants. But two months of intense investigation led authorities to conclude that Gliniewicz had actually committed suicide because he found out that his long-term criminal activity faced imminent exposure from an internal financial audit that had been under his direct control. He had been embezzling and laundering money for about seven years from a youth program for prospective cops. He had even gone as far as to ask a prominent gang member to kill the town administrator who was conducting the audit, but the murder never took place. Further investigation discovered a litany of issues during Gliniewicz's career, including threatening an emergency dispatcher with a gun, allegations of sexual harassment, and numerous suspensions.
  • The notorious 1960s scandal surrounding the Metropolitan Police's Obscene Publications Squad, nicknamed the "Dirty Squad", who became notorious for persecuting hippies for making art depicting nudity, while taking money from gangsters to allow illegal hard-core commercial porn to be openly sold all over Soho. The open hypocrisy was eventually too much for politicians, leading to a series of corruption inquiries and trials (warning: NSFW artwork reproduced on linked page) that exposed widespread corruption within many of the Met's specialist squads.
  • This was by no means the first such scandal involving the Metropolitan Police: one of the biggest happened in the Victorian era, the so-called Turf Fraud Scandal, in which at least three of the force's highest-ranking detectives were convicted of taking money from confidence tricksters to protect them from arrest and prosecution.
  • Oklahoma City police officer Daniel Holtzclaw was sentenced to 263 years in prison for raping 13 black women in 2016.
  • 1984 saw the entire Key West police department declared a criminal enterprise under RICO laws and a number of its officers were arrested on charges of running a protection racket for drug smugglers. At least 12 were convicted.
  • Jonathan Wild, a thief in London who posed as a public-spirited crimefighter entitled the "Thief-Taker General" in the early 1700s.
    • While appearing on the side of the law, Wild ran a gang of thieves who robbed from wealthy households, kept the stolen goods, and waited for the crime and theft to be announced in the newspapers. At this point, he would claim that his "thief takers" (bounty hunters) had "found" the stolen merchandise, and he would return it to its rightful owners for a reward (to cover the expenses of running his agents). If the stolen items or circumstances allowed for blackmail, he did not wait for the theft to be announced. As well as "recovering" these stolen goods, he would offer the police aid in finding the thieves. The thieves that Wild would help to "discover" were actually rivals or members of his own gang who had refused to cooperate with his taking the largest cut. Thieves ran a great risk in fencing their goods, which Wild exploited by having his gang steal and then "recovering" their loot. He never sold the goods back, explicitly, nor ever pretended that they were not stolen. He claimed at all times that he found the goods by policing and avowed hatred of thieves. The harsh penalties for selling stolen goods allowed Wild to control his gang very effectively, for he could turn in any of his thieves to the authorities at any time. By giving the goods to him for a cut of the profits, Wild's thieves were selling stolen goods. If they did not give their take to him, Wild would simply apprehend them as thieves. However, what Wild chiefly did was use his thieves to "apprehend" rival gangs.
    • While that went on, Wild presented a heroic face in public. He was the man who returned stolen goods. He was the man who caught criminals. In 1718, Wild called himself "Thief-Taker General of Great Britain and Ireland". By his testimony, over sixty thieves were sent to the gallows. His "finding" of lost merchandise was private, but his efforts at finding thieves were public. Wild's office in the Old Bailey was a busy spot. Victims of crime would come by, even before announcing their losses, and discover that Wild's agents had "found" the missing items, and Wild would offer to help find the criminals for an extra fee. However, while fictional treatments made use of the device, it is not known whether or not Wild ever actually turned in one of his own gang for a private fee.
    • Thanks to his position of power, Wild held a virtual monopoly on crime in London. Legends arose surrounding the management of his "empire." Some said that he kept records of all thieves in his employ, and when they had outlived their usefulness, Wild sold them to the gallows for the £40 reward. This supposed system inspired a fake or folk etymology of the phrase "double cross." It is alleged that, when a thief vexed Wild in some way, he put a cross by the thief's name; a second cross condemned the man to be sold to the Crown for hanging (this fabulous story is contradicted by the fact that the noun "double cross" did not enter English usage until 1834).
    • Things fell apart for Wild in 1724, when London political life faced a crisis of public confidence. A wary public began to view authority figures with suspicion of corruption. After spending the year trying to eliminate a notorious housebreaker and regular jailbreaker (who was finally hanged in November), Wild was arrested in early 1725 trying to jailbreak one of his men. When it became clear to Wild's gang that their leader would not escape, they began to turn on him. Slowly, gang members began to turn on him, until all of his activities, including his grand scheme of running and then hanging thieves, became known. Additionally, evidence was offered as to Wild's frequent bribery of public officers. He was tried at the Old Bailey on May 15, 1725, on two indictments of privately stealing 50 yards of lace from Catherine Statham (a lace-seller who had visited him in prison on March 10) at Holborn on January 22. He was acquitted of the first charge, but with Statham's evidence presented against him on the second charge, he was convicted and sentenced to death, and was hanged a week later on May 24th.
    • Wild had been preceded by Charles Hitchens, Undermarshal of London (what passed for top law enforcement official, a bought position) and leader of a gang called the Mathematicians. Wild got a leg up when Hitchens recruited him to temporarily run his organisation after Hitchens got caught in a corruption scandal and got told by city officials to take a break for a few years, at which point Wild pretty much took over entirely by being more competent — at both the corruption (Hitchens was a bit too blatant at blackmailing, often appearing in person or sending signed letters, and a bit too greedy, driving away allies) and the actual thief-taking (Hitchens didn't even really do much of it against rival gangs).
  • Similar to the above, the Macdaniel affair had some thief takers led by Stephen Macdaniel fabricating false evidence against innocent men to collect the rewards for their convictions. This was to the point that they got these innocents wrongly hanged. Following the Wild scandal, this was in fact the main impetus for the British government to abolish thief-taking and set up a public police force.
  • Fellow officers at the LAPD didn't think much of traffic cop William Earnest Leasure, so much so that he was nicknamed "Mild Bill". The soft-spoken "Mild Bill" spent his off-hours running a criminal underworld that stole rich peoples' yachts and conducted contract killings. He got caught as a result of a sting that the Oakland Police Department were doing on one of his acquaintances, a paroled bank robber, and initially his boss and others thought it was all a cover for him to do undercover work in jail until the truth came out.
  • Obviously, there are too many examples to count, but Al Capone's way of amassing control over the Chicago underworld and his bootlegging empire was to buy copious amounts of protection from the law, including paying off numerous cops on the beat, Prohibition agents, and even Chicago's mayor William Hale Thompson.
  • One of the reasons that Prohibition failed was because the Republican-controlled Congress didn't believe in big government spending and wanted municipal police to enforce the Volstead Act. Most municipal police, and many county sheriffs, tended to turn a blind eye to bootlegging operations in their jurisdiction, either because they didn't think it was their responsibility to enforce federal laws, or because the bootleggers paid them protection money.
  • Henry Hubbard Jr. was a San Diego police officer with an exemplary record, whom no one suspected also was a serial rapist whom his department had been desperately trying to hunt down for months with no success. Naturally, he found it easy to evade capture by his colleagues initially, as he sat in on the briefings regarding the hunt. He was uncovered only when he'd failed in attacking Charisma Carpenter and two of her friends. Carpenter got away while he left crucial evidence behind, such as his police-issue flashlight. Hubbard was hunted down, identified and convicted of the rapes, getting 56 years in prison. Carpenter was largely responsible for this, as she held onto the flashlight and turned it over to the police, something not many have known about the actress.
  • In 1997, a group of NYPD officers brutalized and sexually assaulted Haitian immigrant Abner Louima. At least five cops ended up being convicted of involvement in the assault and/or attempting to cover it up.
  • Michel Neyret of Lyon, France, started by paying informers with the drugs he seized before embezzling them for himself, selling them to earn money for both him and his wife. He also oftentimes gave confidential informations to some of his friends in the mob. He was sentenced to four years of prison on 2016.
  • Pierre Bonny was a French policeman known for his less-than-reglementary methods (such as negociating with criminals to get evidence in the Stavisky case) until his dismissal on 1936 after his conviction for blackmail, came back on 1942 as a leader of the French branch of The Gestapo and was shot for treason on 1945.
  • Len Davis of the New Orleans Police Department was known for his unconventional policing style, causing both complaints against him and a Medal of Merit in 1993. He ended up being sentenced to death on 1996 after conspiring with a drug dealer to kill a witness of him beating suspects.
  • Derek Chauvin of the Minneapolis Police Department will go down as the cop whose killing of George Floyd, an unarmed black man, culminated in national backlash towards aggressive policing. During Memorial Day weekend, Chauvin arrested Floyd on suspicions of using a fake $20 bill and killed Floyd by kneeling on his neck for nearly 9 minutes. Subsequent investigations revealed that Chauvin had a long history of misconduct like pepper spraying crowds at night clubs, avoiding taxes, and attending the "Killology" seminars that encouraged police to kill suspects; the "Killology" courses are noteworthy as Chauvin attended them with the aid of police unions even though they are banned by both the Minneapolis Police Chief and Mayor. Chauvin would be found guilty of murder in the second and third degrees, as well as manslaughter in the second degree, and received 22.5 years of prison time.
  • Derek Ridgewell, a British transport police officer jailed for seven years for conspiring with criminals to steal from the Royal Mail, was later found to have falsified evidence against numerous black suspects which led to their convictions, including the Oval Four and the Stockwell Six. Basically, he would approach young black men in railway stations, accuse them of theft, arrest them and then lie on the stand to get them convicted. He would also have them charged with assaulting a police officer if they resisted.
  • Chicago police detective Jon Burge was plagued throughout his career with accusations of obtaining confessions through Cold-Blooded Torture, to the point that he was sacked from the force in 1993, although a trial for allegedly torturing two suspected Cop Killers failed to reach a verdict. A review following his termination found that Burge had used torture to obtain numerous convictions, some in death penalty cases, but he could not be charged because of the Statute of Limitations. He was instead convicted of perjury and obstruction of justice for lying on the stand about whether or not he had tortured suspects.
  • Gerard Schaefer is possibly the worst case here, a Serial Killer police officer who was imprisoned in 1973 for two murders committed while he was a sheriff's deputy. However, it's suspected he killed more than thirty people.

"Your lampshades, Monsieur."

"Oh... thank you very much."


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Alternative Title(s): Corrupt Cop, Corrupt Cops, Dirty Cops, Filthy Feds


Cops on Fisk's Payroll

There are some NYPD cops secretly working for the Kingpin.

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