Will You Be On The Top or Bottom?

Your entire career will be a test of your professionalism and values. Will you end it on the top or on the bottom?


The implied direction from the boss was intended to prejudice the investigator and mold the findings to meet the foregone conclusion of the supervisor.

This actually happened. How would you handle it?

Case Study #2
The detective begins the background investigation. The applicant's file contains dozens of recommendations from individuals with law enforcement credentials. The applicant has extensive life experience. The applicant has standing in multiple national law enforcement organizations. The applicant is measurably more qualified than any that the detective has possibly ever investigated.

The detective's supervisor expects the applicant to be broomed, but in all of the contacts, there is only one who offered negative comments. The investigator produces a report filled with fabrications and misleading statements. It is clear to even an unsophisticated reader that the facts have been twisted to meet a predetermined outcome. The investigator has filed a false police report which possibly rises to the level of being a criminal act.

The investigator has an extremely long career behind him. A supervisor who questions his truthfulness might be viewed as being disloyal to his troops. Yet, one of the highest ranking executives in the agency realizes the transgressions of the investigator - who is not within his direct command.

This actually happened. If you were the top man in this agency, how would you handle it?

Case Study #3
The police department has an auxiliary unit and serves a suburban community within a large metropolitan area. The community is a well-known harbor for drugs, prostitution and every other kind of wickedness that evil minds can devise. One of the principal duties for the auxiliary officers is to provide police presence in the Section 8 (subsidized) housing areas. These areas are the virtual cess pools of wrongdoing in town.

On this day, the shift lieutenant tells the two auxiliary officers on duty that they are no longer to patrol in housing. His explanation: he had asked the housing director for a personal favor. The director declined. As payback, the lieutenant will withdraw proactive police services from the area and teach the director a lesson.

The lieutenant can best be likened to the Frank Burns (remember M.A.S.H.?) of the agency. He is universally disliked, but he knows the value of sucking up to the bosses. His career is littered with prior disciplinary actions, including a termination that was reversed in arbitration. Long ago, he surrendered his ethics, morals and reputation as an honest cop. He is one of those who strive to look good to the bosses by making other cops look bad. He falls into two other categories, as well: lazy and incompetent.

The auxiliary officers must decide: Do they obey this ill-conceived directive and thereby put themselves in the same ethical pit as the boss?

This actually happened. How would you handle it?

Case Study #4
The officer is working part time in an agency that is racially divided: about 50/50 black and white officers. Everyone gets along wonderfully and have a blind eye to the issue race, internally.

A new chief arrives from a neighboring big city. He has been chased out of his prior job and would be serving time in a federal pen somewhere if it were not for high-speed paper shredders working overtime in advance of the arrival of the FBI. The chief brings with him a deputy who has an equally sullied background.

Everyone knows: they both got their jobs without the customary interviews; there was a deal made behind closed doors.

In the spring following their arrival, civilians begin appearing at the front desk asking for the deputy chief. It turns out that the new D.C. is a tax expert. He is using his office and city time to prepare tax returns in his side business. The cops quickly figure this out. The question is whether or not to say anything to the city manager about what is going on.

This actually happened. How would you handle it?

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