More dirty cops

It’s getting heard to keep up with all the dirty cop stories in the papers. Here’s the latest from today’s Orange County Register: “An off-duty Westminster police officer and an off-duty state corrections officer were arrested Saturday night in connection with a carjacking, kidnapping and rape of a 25-year-old restaurant employee in Ontario, police said.”

That comes on the heels of this Bee story: “An on-call Sacramento County sheriff’s deputy has been arrested after allegedly picking up a 13-year-old girl at the end of his shift and sexually assaulting her in a Lincoln hotel last weekend.”

And then there’s this recent story: “A California correctional officer faces fraud charges after authorities allege he filed a workers’ compensation claim falsely stating he was shot by a parolee while leaving a restaurant, when he actually was shot in a dispute at a sex club.”

Obviously, every profession has its bad apples and even its criminal element. But I point to these stories as examples of why the current mentality — expressed by law-and-order conservatives as well as pro-union Democrats — that police deserve our unabiding trust, is dangerous. it’s also dangerous to give law enforcement the sorts of protections from public scrutiny they have received in recent years. Power corrupts, right? Let’s just remind ourselves that those with much power need even greater accountability and scrutiny.

–Steven Greenhut


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  1. EastBayLarry
    EastBayLarry 5 April, 2010, 14:39

    Yes, scrutiny for sure. Also, since we WANT to hold peace officers to a higher standard, there should be higher penalties for law enforcement because of the ‘breach of trust’ in addition to any criminal charges they are convicted of.

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