Criminal Justice System

Topics: Police, Criminal law, Crime Pages: 3 (1162 words) Published: February 22, 2013

The law defines what a crime is and whether a particular act constitutes an offence. But laws alone would be ineffective without any means enforce them. The responsibility for enforcing criminal laws and ensuring they are adhered to lies with the police, thus it is the actions and findings of the police that are evaluated in terms of achieving justice in the criminal investigation process. Police may a crucial role in the criminal investigation process as they investigate crimes, make arrests, interrogate suspects and gather evidence against the accused. The extents to which police powers are exercised affect the process greatly. The Law Enforcement (Powers and responsibilities) Act 2002 (NSW) contains majority of the powers police are entitled to. Police are expected to treat all members of society in a fair and ethical manner. In circumstances in which police have the power to access information concern has been expressed about privacy of ordinary citizens being invaded by such a system. Police have also been accused of making up false confessions or of using threats of violence in order to force people to make false confessions. Police in some cases misuse their powers to an extent of coerciveness and excessiveness. In the case of Derek Copp, he was blinded by a flashlight as police came in through his backdoor with a dug warrant and a police officer shot him in the chest as Derek tried to shield the light form his eyes. In this case police have too much discretion and controversy is created. Reporting a crime is the initial step of a criminal investigation process. A crime may be reported by private citizens who may be witnesses to cases; many crimes may go unreported every year due to the reasons such as fear of consequences, inability to report, humiliation or reluctance to become involved. Not all reported crimes are fully investigated and prosecuted as...
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