Why Police Officers Abuse Their Power
The abuse of power by police officers is an intense debate that dates back throughout the history of our society. Incidents where police officers abuse the power they are trusted with are continually recurring.
Police Criminal Mischief in West Palm Beach
Two police officers were arrested in Jupiter and charged with vandalizing two cars in a Jupiter parking garage. The two officers, Christopher Clark and Timothy Pike, were arrested after a drunken night on the town.
Police were called around 2:30 a.m. from witnesses who were under the suspicion that cars were being burglarized in the parking garage on Edna Hibel Drive, according to police spokesman Sgt. Scott Pascarella.
Police arrived to find Pike and Clark standing between a 2007 Mitsubishi Galant and a 2010 Toyota Tundra that had scratches and mirrors ripped off. One of the vehicles even had a gas door torn off, police say.
The owner of the Toyota, Michael Stuve was leaving work and found the two officers vandalizing the vehicle. After confronting the officers, Stuve called the owner of the Galant, Stephen Murphy.
The damage totaled more than $1,000, according to the police report. The two were released Thursday morning on their own recognizance, and ordered by Judge Ted S. Booras that they have no possession of or contact with alcohol.
It was only after the two were arrested that police learned that both Clark, 26, and Pike, 30, are West Palm Beach police officers, Pascarella said. The two officers have announced they will be hiring private criminal defense lawyers.
Police Criminal Mischief in Daytona Beach
A similar situation occurred in Daytona Beach, where two officers were arrested for allegedly damaging a woman’s home. Officers Donald Aldridge and Justin C. Ranum were charged with felony criminal mischief on warrants.
The two officers visited the home of Sandra Haley, in search of her boyfriend for fleeing and eluding an investigation of his vehicle. Haley consented to a search of her home, and when the boyfriend was not found, she left to spend the night at her son’s home. When she returned home the next day, she found damage to the front door, holes in the walls, and dents in the back of the house.
Neighbors say they witnessed two police officers banging on the doors and windows, and beating holes in the front wall.
Citizens Against Police Abuse
These incidents are crimes upon the community. Police officers are supposed to be the guardians of our society, not genuine threats. Departments often have vague “use of force” policies that allow officers to interpret them the way they want.
There is no accountability when an officer violates the department’s own policies. Officers are rarely found guilty of criminal activity by the police department’s internal investigations.
It is clear that some police cannot police themselves.