(TargetLiberty.org) – Experts in criminal justice are raising alarms about the impact of progressive policies on law enforcement recruitment and retention. They argue that these policies deter qualified individuals from joining police forces and contribute to the departure of experienced officers from major cities. This situation, they warn, could lead to a rise in less desirable candidates filling these crucial roles.
Meagan McCarthy, a former deputy in San Bernardino County, shares her harrowing experience of surviving a shooting, only to witness the acquittal of the assailant. McCarthy responded to a call involving Ari Young, a schizophrenic man. Upon her arrival, Young attacked her, seized her gun, and attempted to shoot her, but the gun jammed. Despite her injuries and PTSD, the legal system appeared to favor Young, reflecting what she terms the “Minneapolis Effect” – a backlash against law enforcement following George Floyd’s death.
This sentiment is echoed by Betsy Brantner Smith of the National Police Association, who notes a significant decline in morale among police officers since the events of 2020, compounded by the pandemic and subsequent violent protests.
The pressure on law enforcement is not just psychological. In Los Angeles and Chicago, there have been alarming instances of police suicides, reflecting the growing strain on officers.
A concerning trend highlighted by McCarthy and others is the lowering of recruitment standards for police officers. This includes allowing individuals with past drug use or criminal records to join the force. Joe Giacalone, a former New York City police sergeant, emphasizes the potential dangers of this approach, noting that research indicates officers with college degrees are less likely to use force.
The impact of these policies is not limited to police departments. The justice system itself is experiencing similar strains, with declining morale among prosecutors facing new laws that restrict their ability to pursue repeat offenders.
This situation is creating a challenging environment for law enforcement and the justice system, potentially leading to increased crime rates and decreased public safety. These experts call for a reassessment of current policies to ensure the recruitment and retention of qualified law enforcement officers, crucial for maintaining law and order in society.
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