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Lecture 2

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University of Toronto St. George
Woodsworth College Courses

Week 2 January-14-13 5:29 PM The Structure and Role of the Police in Canadian Society  There is a lot of reported crime in society and there is a relatively low sentence rate  Less then half of the arrest go through conviction  Very few are sentence to prison  Odds being a successful criminal is high  Many people think that deterrence may not work because of this reason Percent of Reported Crimes Cleared by Arrest  Attempt murder and Aggravated Assault- majority of survivors know the criminal who did it  Homicide and Sexual Assault - some people do not want to go to police when they see a homicide ex. shooting  Robbery, Theft over, Theft under and Vehicle Theft: stranger commits the crime, no one knows who did it What is Policing?  Policing is the act of maintaining and reproducing social order  Maintaining law and order  We are all involved in policing, every member of society involves the policing of behaviours of others (ex. body language, comments, reactions and observing)  Policing happens everywhere  There are sanctions- all kinds of potential punishments  What is the difference between day- day acts of policing and the police? What are the Police?  The police are institutions and individuals, given the right by the state, to use coercive force to maintain and reproduce social order Duty is to protect and detain your freedom   The use of force- main focus- society listens to police because they can use force against us The Role of the Police: The Functionalist Perspective  There is a consensus within a society regarding norms, values and laws. There is widespread agreement over how to deal with issues of crime and punishment s  The criminal law is a reflection of this consensus  The police are the authority within the criminal justice system. they enforce the law professionally and impartially  Every criminal event, every victim and every offender are treated equally The Conflict Perspective  The relationship between the State and Society is characterized by conflict between different social classes and interest groups  The system, including the law and justice institutions, operates as a system of control of the powerless in favour of the powerful  The police are a key institution that operates within the context of social conflict. Their unofficial mandate is to enforce class based laws and maintain the current social order  The practice of the police involves a great deal of discretion and bias The Historical Roots of Canadian Policing  Roots in English common law traditions;  Early policing controlled by local citizens (Frankpledge system)  Constables and shire reeves  Statue of Westminster (1285) formalized the night watch system in larger English towns and cities (the advent of hue and cry policing)  Night watch activity: fire prevention and if a bandit came to the village, let everyone know The Birth of Modern Policing  By the mid 1700s England still had no formal police force. The military was often used to quell unrest and criminal uprising  Henry Fielding established the Bow Street Runners( also known as thief takers) in 1748 - sort of like bounty hunters  Robert Peel and the London Metropolitan Police Art (1829) - modern that we know now o Dealt with disorder issues o Responsible for paramilitary nature of the police- military model (uniform, rules, march) and distinct change of command Contemporary Policing in Canada  Three different jurisdictional levels: 1) Federal (RCMP) 2) Provincial (the OPP, Surete du Qubec and Royal Newfoundland Constabulary) and 3) Munic
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