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NYPD vs Saudi Arabia in Regards to Armed Policing

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Introduction

The essay is a critical examination of NYPD and Saudi Arabia in regards to Armed Policing. The paper focuses mainly in differences and similarities of these two important bodies in the field of security well being of the citizens of their respective countries as well as the entire human race within their reach. The main things used herein to this are the kind of weapons used, make-up of the police force accountability, transparency as regards to shootings, factoring in the important occasions or controversies, recruitment procedures, community relations, benefits among other issues deemed important to distinguish and compare these two bodies.

It is worth mentioning that the recent acts of terrorism did promote the police to be more vigilant and more suspicious in their line of duty. Additionally, although it is the role of the government to see to it that its entire citizens are safe from security threats, it is indeed the local police deployed that will make this to be realized. In various jurisdictions, police officers do carry firearms while performing there duties, this is what has been termed as armed policing (New York Police Department, 2008).

In each and every nation that is independent and sovereign, a good government usually tries its best to ensure that its local population security is checked. The major roles of any police force are to maintain law and order. New York City Police Department was founded back in 1845 and is now the largest police force in a municipality within US. The major responsibilities of NYPD are to carry out investigations as well as enforcing law in five of the borough in the city of New York. It is headquartered in Lower Manhattan (Dempsey & Forst, 2009)

Saudi Arabia police force is bestowed with the responsibility to maintain peace as well as order. This body was formed under king Abulaziz. It is worth noting that by then, the department was not as organized as at present. The police had the power to punish civil law offenders. Improvements such as provison of radio communication among others were realized in 1960s (Hakeem, 2008). There are three main branches of police in Saudi Arabia, Police Security Force, Religious Police and Investigative Police Force. The religious police are responsible in ensuring that strict Islamic laws are adhered to.

Similarities between NYPD and Saudi Arabia

In terms of responsibilities, roles, tasks and duty, both are aimed at fostering peace and maintaining orders within their jurisdictions. They are both bestowed with some set of powers to arrest, investigate and such related issues. Additionally, both NYPD and Saudi Arabia armed policing play a major role in making sure that government laws are implemented on the ground. It is worth noting that both kind of police force usually under go very tough training session, there are even instances that some of those under training contemplate to sneak and leave the training camp (Cristen, 2010). On the same note, after graduation from police training college, most of these officers do under go some short training to enhance there capabilities. For instance, NYPD officers usually undergo training concerning terrorism; recently, Saudi Arabia religious police were trained on behavioral skill which was an initiative to repair the tainted image. Back in 2004, Saudi police were trained in airport operations and later on issues relating to drug trafficking. Additionally, there are evidence that both almost train individual similarly, as two main trainings are offered, brain and body training. Slight differences do occur as NYPD do have more sophisticated mind training than Saudi Arabia police. Similarly, the duration of training do differ (Hakeem, 2008).

On the same note, during recruitment there are some very closely related hiring qualifications and include passing a written exam, physical fitness test, a higher education, age limit of 21 years, drug and alcohol test as well as a clean background history. Similarly the two do carry their duties with the help of almost similar kind s of equipment aside from firearms; it is evident that they have such equipment as vehicle’s, cars, trucks, horses, helicopters among others.

It is also worth to note that in both NYPD and Saudi Arabia police, who carry out armed policing, although there are those officers who are always in uniform, there are those especially investigative ones for NYPD and the Religious Police in the case of Saudi do have individuals who are plain cloths. This is to conceal their identity.

Concerning the issue of accountability both the bodies have been seriously accused of harassing and killing people.  For instance, in 2008, Morale Iman was killed; this was seriously condemned by Peoples’ Justice for Community Control and Police Accountability. This killing amounted to people claiming that NYPD had no respect for the disabled individuals. Records show that since 2001 to 2008, about 300 people did lose their lives after being or shot by police. On the same note a number of cases taken to the court have not been handled satisfactorily leaving the culprits got Scot free.

Nonetheless, efforts have been made by both the government, the NYPD it self as well as other relevant stakeholders in trying to foster accountability of the police. One main step was documenting and publicizing police misconduct and ensuring that the law takes it due course has yielded some fruits.

According to Dempsey & Forst, 2009 concerning accountability of Saudi Arabia police, the powers they have make them mistreat people. On the same note there is one incident that left Saudi Arabian as well as the entire world perplexed is when Saudi police ‘stopped’ a fire rescue in one of the Saudi schools. It was alleged that Religious police blocked girls from the school that experience fire outbreak from leaving their dormitories just because they were not dressed appropriately. Fifteen of the girls died. Additionally, police in Saudi Arabia when they have shot a citizen always strive to cover themselves up and obstruct the course of justice, hence no accountability and transparency.

Differences between NYPD and Saudi Arabia

Despite the similarities mention previously, there are instances of very sharp and contrasting characteristic between these two police bodies. One notable difference is the public relation these two set of police exhibit (Hakeem, 2008). On one hand, the NYPD is deemed to be having in place very good mechanisms that helps it connect with the local population hence helping it create a good rapport with the citizen from where they can easily get information. On the other hand, especially the religious police, they have a very poor relationship with the local. An incident that attests to this is the shooting of one of the police by a woman back in 2009. The locals see these police as operating without factoring in the rights of the local as they take action on their own hand without following due procedure.

A clear difference also is evident in organization as well as the structure of these important arm that over see maintenance of order and peace. For NYPD, the department has ten bureaus. It is worth noting that each of the six out of ten bureaus is for enforcement. This is later subdivided into sections, divisions, units, patrol boroughs, precincts and detective squads. A bureau chief is in charge of each bureau; all other individuals report to the chief of the bureau (New York Police Department, 2008).

In terms of responsibility, it is evident that Saudi Arabia police do act fairly in line with the strict Islamic law unlike their NYPD counterparts who are seen as operating against the public for the establishment. It has been shown time and again that police in Saudi Arabia has escorted offender and witnessed their execution in the midst of the populace.

Despite the fact that both use firearms while in line of duty, the kinds of weapons used differ significantly. Similarly the equipment such as vehicles at their disposal is indeed different from each other. It is worth noting that those officers that are new in NYPD are allowed to chose from one of the three 9mm service pistol and include SIG P226 DAO, Glock 19 and Smith & Wesson model 5946 (Cristen, 2010). On the other hand, Saudi Arabia police usually use less sophisticated firearms as compared to their NYPD counter parts. Additionally, their organization and structure is slightly different from that of the NYPD.

Conclusion

From the review of NYPD and Saudi Arabia in regards to Armed Policing, it is evident that the two share some similarities and at the same time exhibit very distinct differences. Among the similarities they share include use of firearms in line of their duties, some having plain cloths while in duty, having such equipment such as vehicles, helicopters, both offer similar kind of training which focuses on body and mind, they share most of the hiring requirements, both lack solid accountability and transparency. On the other hand, clear differences occur in organization and structure, the types of weapons used, technological adoption among others. In my view, both need to do a lot to foster first its public relation, then accountability and transparency.

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