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With community policing’s emphasis on problem solving and the creation of active police and community relationships, coupled with increased independence and latitude given to officers, community policing naturally generates increased concerns in the area of ethics. It has long been acknowledged that increased officer discretion is an area rife with ethical considerations. The decentralization of police departments and increased interaction with the public in attempting to implement solutions to crime and disorder problems further heighten concerns about police ethics.

Given the responsibility of law enforcement in U.S. society to “serve and protect,” it is not surprising that proper ethical conduct is a paramount concern in policing. As American society has become increasingly diverse in terms of race, ethnicity, culture, socioeconomics, and philosophies, the task of enforcing ...

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