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History of Police

The role of police officers is very significant to American history. Police work toward protecting citizens’ rights and helping America become the land of the free. The United States of America is built from the U.S. Constitution Bill of Rights and police play a major role in making sure American rights are met. Evolution has changed many of American history for the better; policing is part of those changes. As new issues in society arise, police must change and adapt to protect and serve the public. Early American policing strategies were based on the British model. Law enforcement was not organized until 1200 A.D. offenders were pursued by an organized posse. If offenders were caught they were usually tortured and faced public execution. Rarely did they have trials and instead of innocent until proven guilty it was the other way around, citizens were usually guilty before any evidence or testimony. “An early form of police patrol in English cities and towns” (Schmalleger, 2009, p. 153), is called a night watch. The primary purpose of a night watch was to watch out for fires and thieves. Next became the day watch their job was the same as night watch, but in the day. Followed by the Statute of Winchester which is a “law, written in 1285, that created a watch and ward system in English cities and towns and that codified early police practices” (Schmalleger, 2009, p. 153). This law had four main components, which were specified the watch in towns, mandated eligible men to serve, institutionalized the use of the hue and cry, and for answering the call of duty citizens kept weapons in their homes. A former prime minister of England Sir Robert Peel formed the world first modern police force. His model, the new police became a model for police across the world to follow. He formed the police with more of a military attitude; given them uniforms and a…...

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