Police Agencies Roles and Functions
University of Phoenix
Police agencies have various functions that they perform. These functions include arresting criminals, interrogating individuals, patrolling neighborhoods, enforcing multiple laws set forth by the government, ministry of presence, and serving and protecting the community. Law enforcement in the United States is a complex establishment that is comprised of three levels; local, state, and federal agencies. Each level has their own jurisdiction and laws to uphold which means that the tasks performed at each level are different. If the responsibilities were limited in the community it would result in more chaos and more crime, and people would no longer seek police assistance.
Agencies at the local level represent the largest number of police officers and include municipal police, county sheriff’s department, county police, coroner and a medical examiner, special district police (Walker & Katz, 2011). City police departments are the most complex division of law enforcement because the functions that officers perform vary. The primary responsibility of city police officers is protecting and serving the people. City police officers are responsible for maintaining order, responding to emergency calls, and dealing with violence, and serious crime. Grant and Terry (2008), suggest that local agencies also take part in processing fingerprints, preventing and deterring crime, investigating violent crimes and property crimes and enforcing traffic laws. County Sheriffs have unique roles because they serve law enforcement (patrolling and investigating crimes), courts (Serving subpoenas and providing security for the courts), and corrections in that they maintain the county jails. The coroner or medical examiner’s roles vary as well because they investigate crime scenes; they conduct autopsies, and determine the cause of deaths. The best example of special district police would be campus security. Security...