Read the following case study and answer the questions below.
Sergeant Tom Gresham is newly promoted and assigned to patrol on the graveyard
shift. He knows each officer on his shift, and several of them are his close
friends. You are his patrol lieutenant. Gresham is an excellent patrol officer
and prides himself on his reputation and ability to get along with his peers.
He believes that doing so will result in greater productivity from his
officers, and he makes efforts to socialize with them after work. Gresham
also believes that a supervisor should not “get in the way of good police work”
and his officer’s say he is a “cop’s cop.” In his view, his duty shift
officers perform very well, generating the highest number of arrests and citations
in the entire department. Unfortunately, his shift is also generating the
highest number of citizen complaints for abusive language and improper use of
force. Gresham believes that such complaints are “the price of doing business.”
One Monday morning, Gresham is surprised at being summoned to your office. You
show Gresham a substantial number of use-of-force complaints lodged against his
officers during the past two weeks. Despite your best effort to explain
the gravity of the situation and the fact that Internal Affairs may become
involved, Gresham fails to grasp the seriousness of the complaints and how his
supervisory style may have contributed to them.
Answer these questions pertaining to how you would handle this situation:
What do you believe are some of Sergeant Gresham’s
problems as a new supervisor? Could anything have been done before he
assumed his new position to help him understand his role better? If so,
As Gresham’s superior officer, what advice would you
give him? Are there any other supervisory or command officers who you
should ask to be involved in dealing with this situation? Who and why?
What corrective action must Sergeant Gresham take
immediately with his team of officers? Why?
(2012). Policing America: Challenges and best practices
(7th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education
Education. (n.d.). Ethics and
module]. Retrieved from