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Ethics and Ethical Decision Making in the Criminal Justice System is a textbook written with students in both undergraduate and graduate ethics courses in mind. Some of the latest case studies include examples of unethical conduct within the three major components of our criminal justice system (police, court, and corrections). Students are provided the tools they need to develop an understanding of the importance of ethics and why they need to be practiced on a regular basis. An ethical decision making pyramid was created to show the importance of several factors and areas that encompass ethical decision making. These begin with individuals developing personal values that support ethical behavior and decision making before entering the criminal justice field and encompass many areas that proceed up the triangle including field training, operational rules and values, law enforcement cynicism, ethics training, a code of ethics, and following the U.S. Constitution and laws. Coupled with this is an eight step ethical dilemma decision making process that was also created by the author.
After discussing the contributions and significance of the work of many of the Greek philosophers and consequentialists, moral stages, the types of ethics, and branches of ethic systems and schools are discussed. Class exercises will generate critical thought and discussion for both the online and on campus class settings. Students will learn about some of the most horrific cases of police, judicial, and corrections agency conduct and more importantly, how this can be prevented. The significance of the police culture and subculture in systemic police corruption is discussed along with actual examples of how this occurred.
The use of ethical and non-ethical discretion among the various professionals in the criminal justice system is discussed. The police use of force is critically examined and discussed along with the importance of training and strong policies and supervision. A chapter is dedicated to the recent events and police reform efforts and some of the unintended consequences of this are critically discussed with examples. The closing chapter examines proactive measure to increase ethics in policing. Some of the cutting edge police training that is occurring throughout the country that has and is making a positive difference is critically discussed. This includes training officers to become active bystanders in making positive differences which can save lives, families, and careers. “What we have learned or Not Learned from the LAPD Rodney King Case to the Minneapolis George Floyd Case is critically discussed as a separate topic. What organizational factors within the Minneapolis Police department led to George Floyd’s death and how could these have been prevented? These issues are critically examined and discussed in the textbook.
This textbook will discuss the necessary foundation to not only understand the importance of ethics, but provide both those aspiring to enter the criminal justice field, and those already within it, the foundation to understand the field of ethics and unethical conduct from not only a theoretical, but more importantly, a practical perspective. The course principles, concepts and learning objectives can be directly applied in policing and other criminal justice fields.
Chapter 1 Introduction to Ethics and Ethical Decision-Making
The Importance of Ethics
Branches or Schools of Ethics
The Need for Morals, Values, and Ethics to Coexist
Chapter 2 The Importance and Application of the Traditional Philosophers
Ancient Greek Philosophy Still Survives and Applies in Today’s Ethics
Aristotle and Virtue Ethics
The True Meaning of Virtue and Knowledge According to Socrates
Plato (The Student of Socrates)
The Platonic Cave
Interpreting the Allegory of the Cave
Chapter 3 Other Ethical Systems and Factors to Explain and Understand Moral Behavior and Decision-Making
The Ethics of Care
Deontological Ethical System
Chapter 4 Consequentialism Versus Non-Consequentialism
John Stuart Mill—A Consequentialist?
Jeremy Bentham—A Consequentialist?
John Locke—A Non-Consequentialist?
Immanuel Kant—A Non-Consequentialist?
Chapter 5 Moral Stages
Lawrence Kohlberg’s Moral Stages
Carol Gilligan’s Gender-Based Differences in Moral Reasoning
Applying Moral Stages and Moral Reasoning in Making Ethical Decisions
Chapter 6 Unethical Conduct in Policing
NYPD Officer Frank Serpico and Sgt. David Durk Expose Widespread and Systemic Police Corruption Within the New York City Police Department
The Meat Eaters
The Grass Eaters
Is It Ever Okay to Accept the Free Cup of Coffee?
Cumulative Costs of Gratuities
Gratuities and the Effects on the Distribution of Police Presence
The Slippery Slope
Noble Cause Corruption
The Magic Pencil (The Pen Is Mightier Than the Sword)
Mama Rosa’s Test
Failing to Intervene (Passive Bystandership)
The Blue Wall of Silence
The Costs of Police Misconduct
The Eight-Step Ethical Dilemma Decision-Making Process
Examples of Unethical Conduct Involving Social Media and Cell Phones
Social Media (The Devil in Disguise)
Measures That Police Leaders, Agencies, and Police Officers Can Take to Avoid Negative Consequence of the Improper Use of Social Media
Case Study Examples
The LAPD Rodney King Case
The Minneapolis Police—George Floyd Case
The NYPD Eric Garner Case
South Carolina Trooper Groubert Shooting of an Unarmed Man
Commissions Formed to Investigate Police Corruption
The Knapp Commission
The Mollen Commission
Christopher Commission (1991)
Case Studies: Police Corruption and Unethical Conduct
New Orleans Police Officer Antoinette Frank
New Orleans Police Officer Len Davis
New Orleans Police Danziger Bridge Case
NYPD Officer Michael Dowd
Losses for Officer Michael Dowd
NYPD Officer Johnny Diaz
Systemic Corruption Within the Miami, Florida, Police (From the River Rats to Other Cases)
Schenectady, New York, Former Police Chief Greg Kaczmarek
Schenectady, New York, Former Police Detective Jeffrey Curtis
Chicago Police Officer Keith Herrera
Ethical Dilemma Group Scenarios
Ethical Dilemma #1
Ethical Dilemma #2
Chapter 7 Ethical Issues in Corrections
Code of Conduct
Code of Ethics
Ex-Rikers Island Corrections Officer Sentenced to Prison in 2006
“7 Prison Guards in Pennsylvania Charged With Sexually Abusing Inmates”
“Ex-Downstate Correction Officer Sentenced to 40 Months in Prison”
Practical Group Exercise (Role-Play)
Effective Prison Leadership
Corrections Ethical Dilemma
Chapter 8 The Use of Discretion and Its Effect and Application in Law Enforcement Ethics
Discretion of Police Officers
Discretion of Police Detectives
Interviewing Suspects and Obtaining Statements
The Permitted Use of Deception by the Courts in Obtaining Confessions
Discretion of Undercover Officers
Former FBI Agent John Connolly Sentenced to Prison for Improper Informant Handling
FBI Agent Joe Pistone (aka Donny Brasco) in His Role as an Undercover Officer
Discretion of Corrections Officers
Chapter 9 Police Use of Force
Non-Fatal Threat or Use of Force by Police
The Use of Force and Deadly Physical Force
Tennessee v. Garner, 471 U.S. 115 (1985)
Graphm v. Connor (1989)
The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) Use of Force Policy (revised)
Highlights of the Policy
Use of Force (Non-Deadly)
Factors Used to Determine Objective Reasonableness
Firearms Training Simulator (FATS)
Duty to Intercede
Levels of Force and the Force Continuum
The Banning of Chokeholds
NYPD Unions Sue NYC Over Anti-Chokehold Law, Claim ‘Ordinary Police Officer’ Is Unable to Understand It
The Use of Police Body Cameras
The Rialto, California, Police Department Study on the Use of Body Cameras
Bryan v. McPherson (Court Decisions on the Use of the Taser)
Pepper Spray (Oleoresin Capsicum)
The Costs of Excessive Force
Chapter 10 Prosecutors, Courts, and Ethics
The Role, Discretion, and Expectations of Prosecutors Within the Criminal Justice System
Case Examples of Prosecutorial Misconduct
Duke Lacrosse Prosecutor Nifong Disbarred
Grand Jury Votes Not to Indict Buffalo Police Officers Accused of Shoving Protester
The Role, Discretion, and Expectations of Judges Within the Criminal Justice System
Ethical Guidelines for Judges
Case Examples of Unethical Judicial Misconduct
Former Luzerne County Judge Mark Ciavarella Jr. Sentenced to 28 Years in Federal Prison for ‘Kids for Cash’ Case
The Fall of New York’s Most Powerful Judge
Chapter 11 Recent Events and Police Reform
The Call for Police Reform on a National Level
Defunding the Police
Police Misconduct and Discipline Records Made Public
The Unintended Consequences of Police Reform
The Sudden and Drastic Rise in Violent Crime Rates Across the Country
Explanations for the Increased Violent Crime Rates
The Significant Increases in Police Officer Retirements and Resignations
The Loss of Diverse and Experienced Police Leaders
The Increased Challenges of Recruiting Quality Police Officers
The Impact of Bail Reform Legislation
Chapter 12 Proactive Measures to Increase Ethics in Policing
Police Ethics Training
The New Orleans Police Department Ethical Policing Is Courageous (Epic) Training
The New York State Division of Criminal Justice (DCJS) Ethics and Professionalism Course
Active Bystander Can Be Taught and Learned
Early Identification/Intervention/Warning Systems
How Do Early Intervention Systems (EIS) Work?
Changing the Police Culture and Subculture
What We Have Learned or Not Learned From the LAPD Rodney King Case to the Minneapolis George Floyd Case
In 1984, Dr. Minard began his full-time career as a police officer in a mid-sized City Police Department.
He has served in the Patrol Division as a patrol officer, Sergeant, and Lieutenant and commanded the patrol division as a Captain for 15 years. In addition, he served as the assistant coordinator of a County Drug Task Force. He currently serves as the second in command of the Police Department as the Administrative Captain.
He holds an Associate in Applied Science degree in Criminal Justice, Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice, a Master of Public Administration degree, both from Marist College and a PhD in Human Services/Criminal Justice degree from Walden University.
Dr. Minard has instructed several Justice classes in Criminal Justice at several universities at the graduate and undergraduate levels. They include Introduction to Criminal Justice, Correctional Policy and Practice, Law, Ethics, and Justice, Legal and Justice Research, Organized Crime, Assessing Organizational Performance, Criminology and Public Policy, and Ethical Leadership, Policing in America, Criminology, Introduction to Criminal Justice, The Juvenile Justice System, Contemporary Issues in CJ, Criminal Justice Organization and Administration, Upper level Administration in CJ, Police Organization and Management, Ethics in Criminal Justice, Drug and Alcohol Use and Abuse, and Law Enforcement Technology.
Dr. Minard has additionally served as the course author and instructor for two Public Administration courses (Strategic Management in the Public Sector and Foundations of Public Policy). He has also instructed at various police academies and has been a certified police instructor since 1988. He has instructed at police recruit schools as well as police supervisor schools in topics that include ethical awareness, report writing and reviewing, contemporary police problems, alcohol enforcement, fingerprinting, drugs and impaired driving, and other topics.
Dr. Minard served on a College Criminal Justice Advisory Committee for Marist College.
In 2018, Dr. Minard developed a new training curriculum for ethics and professionalism training with other committee members from local, state, and federal partners which was completed and adopted by the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services. This standardized training is now presented at all municipal police training academies throughout New York State as required training for police recruits. The newly devised training includes contemporary police training in ethics, ethical awareness, and professionalism. He additionally attended a train the trainer ethical policing is courageous training conducted by the New Orleans P.D. and successfully completed the Active Bystandership Law Enforcement (ABLE) train the trainer course.
Dr. Minard has instructed ethical awareness training at several police academies for over 10 years and currently instructs ethics and professionalism at police academies. In addition, he has conducted Ethics and Professionalism Workshop Training throughout New York State.
He has instructed ethical policing at the FBI National Executive Institute and presented at the New York State Sheriffs Association 86th Annual Winter Conference in January 2020 where he provided an overview of ethical policing and an overview of the New Orleans Police Department EPIC Training Program.
He attended the 216th FBI National Academy session in 2004 and the FBI LEEDS Session 77 in 2018.