Police Organization’s Roles and Functions
February 27, 2012
Police Department Organization
Policing is compiled of many different agencies. Each agency plays a certain role to a specific area, or organizational unit. Each organization has the function of enforcing laws in their specified level of policing, whether it is local, state or federal. Policing is a very complex world, and it is not as simple as many people in our communities believe it to be. There are many sides to policing. Each is unique to its roles and functions. There are three levels of policing; local, state and federal.
Under local policing some of the agencies are municipal police, county police, county sheriff’s departments, tribal police, and coroner/medical examiner. Municipal police officers play the most complicated role out of all law enforcement agencies. The reason being is that they are responsible for order maintenance and perform various emergency services. City police departments have the heaviest responsibility for dealing with serious crime, which is disproportionately concentrated in cities. (The American Police Chapter 3) County officers are similar to municipal police, but on a county basis. County sheriffs have a unique legal status because they are considered a constitutional office, and their responsibilities are detailed in the state constitution. The position of sheriff is that of an elected official. In addition to regular patrolling, they serve three elements in the criminal justice system which is law enforcement, courts and corrections.
State policing consists of the state police; who handle state criminal investigations, and state highway patrol officers; which take care of the state’s main highways traffic laws. At times the state highway patrol may work with local police. They are said to have shared responsibility. Almost half of all state agencies provide local agencies with crime lab services, which include...