Things are bound to change in the world of policing. It is hard to predict how. Will it be for good or not? Time will tell. Effective policing may begin to be more difficult. 99% of police do the job right. Will that continue or will they back off?
Time will tell. Let’s hope they continue to do it right and get better with some lessons learned.
On a related note, racial tensions surrounding the use of force by police in minority communities will pit the issue of crime against the issue of civil liberties in novel and unpredictable ways. Increased pressure for police accountability and transparency by these communities comes in the wake of the emerging surveillance state. Cameras are now pretty much ubiquitous, including the growing practice of outfitting law enforcement officers with body cameras. High profile cases of officers being indicted for excessive force against civilians is unprecedented in America, and is likely to have important implications for how law enforcement is conducted in the future. It would seem that the legal framework governing the justifiable and appropriate use of force is rapidly evolving. One wonders how actual policing – training, tactics, and operational procedures – will change in light of the fact that a police officers’ version of events will become an increasingly less important factor in evaluating use of force than in the past.