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?
Peak, K. (2012). Policing
America: Challenges and best practices (7th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ:
you believe are some of Sergeant Gresham’s problems as a new police
supervisor Could anything have been
done before he assumed his new position to help him understand his role better?
If so, what?
Sergeant Gresham will have to face the fact he isn’t one of
the guys anymore, he is now a supervisor.
When law enforcement officers are newly appointed to a supervisory role
for the first time, there isn’t enough
training to help them get ready for their new role. “A promoted
officer, usually a sergeant, leaves behind being “one of the guys” and that
change alone is a difficult change for many” (Sutton, 2009). A newly appointed Sergeant can seek counsel
and advice from the guys who are more experienced then them. If Sergeant Gresham received comprehensive training
then that could have helped him prepare for his new position.
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?m
As a superior officer I would give Sergeant Gresham this
advice. First thing is you need to remember you are a role model. “ The minute you sew
on those stripes people are going to be watching you” (Smith, 2013, par.2).
Leaders are not just leaders, so act accordingly. Communication is essential ,
as you need to communicate to everyone,
and watch your body language.
As a superior officer I would
advise Sergeant Gresham Officers need to follow department rules, regional
laws, professional ethical standards and establish protocols” (Ethics
and corruption, [Learning module], p.2) Also know the extent to
which they socialize with his juniors. Your peers may end up not respecting you
as their senior officer, as well as not taking what he say . I would also
recommend the various officers in different shifts to be involved in dealing
with this situation since they will be in a position to supervise the other
officers in their shifts. This will help in the reduction of citizen complaints
for abusive language.
corrective action must Sergeant Gresham take immediately with his team of
Sergeant Gresham needs to employ a number of methods. As for the abusive
language. One would be to interview a
district attorney. Interview police executives.
This would be to “ determine what they are
doing in terms of training and policies to minimize the chances of successful
lawsuits against their officers” (Peak. 2012, p.385). He can also determine how
police protect themselves.
There is nothing like the feeling
of having a police uniform. It comes with a awesome responsibility. Every
police officer out there needs to be vigilant when it comes to ethical
behavior. “Modern law enforcement, in its zeal to protect the people of our
country in the wake of the reality of terrorism, must be on guard against
“noble cause corruption” — doing the wrong thing for “good” reasons” (Sutton,
2009, Conclusion). Law Enforcement
faces many challenges in today’s world,
and needs to face these challenges in a
manner that is ethical. If we do this we will truly be “policing with honor.”
(Sutton, 2009, Conclusion, par. 4).
Peak, K. (2012). Policing America: Challenges and best practices
(7th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ:
Pearson Education. (n.d.). Ethics
and corruption [Learning module]. Retrieved from http://media.pearsoncmg.com/ph/chet/chet_criminal_justice_1/assets/review/Challenges/index.html
Smith, B. B. (2013,
March 22). A Little Advice for a New Sergeant | Officer.com. Retrieved from
www.officer.com/article/.../a-little-advice-for-a-new-sergeant - Similar
Sutton, R. (2009, December
28). Policing with honor: The three levels of accountability - ... Retrieved
from www.policeone.com/.../1983356-Policing-with-honor-The-th... - Similar