Police and Law Enforcement

There are various roles in which the agencies of the local law enforcement take part daily. The functions, duties and responsibilities of local agencies of local law enforcement exist to provide routine patrol to the communities within their jurisdiction, maintain records, provide emergency services and conduct criminal investigations among others (Cohen, 2006p.56). The state law enforcement agencies have different responsibilities. The state police have a duty to keep the highways of the state, rural areas and other areas under their state safe. They also have a duty to keep the motor vehicle inspected as per the countries regulations. Maguire (2003p.89) pointed out that the state law enforcement agencies conduct community initiatives and public relations, criminal investigations

The municipal agency police are found in densely populated areas compared to the county agencies. The rural policing operates in the rural areas and they can run from large to very tiny. Because of this, the equipment, benefits and pay differ largely from one agency to the other. Cohen, R. (2006p.60) observed that the sheriff’s department performs the same things like the municipal police department. However, the sheriff department has a larger jurisdiction

The primary purpose of the patrol police is to protect and to preserve property and life in the community. Additionally, the patrol police protect the citizens, deteriorate crime because of their visibility hence prevent potential crime. Moreover, they enable the departments to find out law breaking cases and respond to help calls. According to Maguire (2003p.102), patrol police build contact list in the streets that are useful during the investigations.

The patrol officers are the first responders in an emergency, and assist in accidents or even emergencies cases. They may also be called to give direction to traffics when train or traffic signals for crossing fail.

In the contemporary society, the roles of the police are to arrest any individual they believe have broken the laws or have caused harm to people. Moreover, Cohen (2006 p.86) pointed out that the police officers control and prevent conducts that are recognized widely as property or life threatening. The police officers in the contemporary society also aid individuals who are in physical harm danger, such as the violent attack victims.

According to Maguire (2003p.47), the police officers facilitate movement f vehicles and people and assist people who cannot care for themselves, the addicted, the intoxicated, the old, physically disabled, the mentally ill and the young to solve their conflicts. Furthermore, the police officers identify potential problems of becoming more critical problems. They also create and maintain security feeling in the communities, in addition to keeping law and order.

According to Cohen (2006p.112), one of the issues affecting the police departments today are the perception of the public of law enforcement to try and support the families and the communities at a low pay. Operating expenses are high and there needed to train constantly to meet the court decisions guidelines.

Maguire (2003) pointed out that the police departments are also hugely understaffed. However, despite the understaffing, the government fails to meet the departments’ recruitment quota. Moreover, another main issue faced by the police departments is money. Scarcity of money in certain departments and regions limits delivery of services to the citizens.



Cohen, R. (2006). Working with police agencies. New York: Human Sciences Press.

Maguire, E. R. (2003). Organizational structure in American police agencies: Context, complexity, and control. Albany: State University of New York Press.




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