According to the US constitution, the power of government is not entirely placed on one body. The US government’s duties are divided into three central bodies: the legislature mandated to make laws, the executive arm for applying law function, and the judiciary responsible for enforcing the law. The roles within the justice system are grouped into law enforcement, the courts, and corrections to ensure justice is served to the people. This division helps protect the rights of the people and ensures there is no power abuse by the authorities. The independence of the US judiciary is key for just and right decisions and the roles of the three levels are important.
Human rights are paramount and should not be subjected to the whims and fancies of the politicians controlling the government. Having distinct authorities, roles, and responsibilities in the justice system ensures checks and balances are kept on each other. Division of roles guarantees no conflicting opinions, and power is not placed in the hands of the joint body undermining the legislature. Discrete authorities are critical in shunning away biases and discrimination from one role placed on citizens, which helps keep balance among the agencies of democracy.
Criminal interrogations are mainly held by police, not the judiciary or corrections because police officers are the first to encounter the suspects and the accused offenders. This first interaction with the suspect gives police a better opportunity to make observations and critical decisions that account for what might have happened (The Justice System, 2021). In addition, police officers are trained to collect and analyze evidence from confessions and events that occurred forming part of the investigation. The law enforcement officers are the first to report to the crime scene, allowing them to collect firsthand evidence that can be used in a court of law.
The constitution mandates the police to conduct criminal investigations and gather necessary facts and evidence to apprehend the people involved. The judiciary never reports at the scene after a crime has been committed, limiting its facts and data since it relies on witnessed and documented files. This places police in a better position to handle investigation and interrogation because they can identify prime suspects and witnesses from the crime scene. Police officers are good at ending innocent suspects and extracting a confession from suspects since they can obtain primary data and knowledge about the crime.
Police interrogations are vital in obtaining necessary confessions and other incriminating statements from those suspected of criminal offenses. There is much power, and authority invested in the hands of law enforcement officers, which needs to be balanced during interrogation practices. Therefore, those involved in the interrogations must be governed by the police ethics and morals as stipulated in the police service. The right and wrong conduct by police ensures control of interest and respect to the rights of victims of crime, suspects, and all the citizens involved in a crime (IACP, 2019). Police officers are held to high standards and must have the highest degree of integrity when executing their daily duties. The same work ethics and integrity level must be put in practice when performing interrogations and investigations.
Morality and ethics hold police accountable during criminal interrogations, ensuring the results are fair, ethical, and can be used to convict suspects. Police officers are guided by a code of ethics that requires just judgment and keeping them away from potentially dangerous practices. The primary responsibility of police officers is to protect, support peace and order as governed by the police ethics of work. Therefore, morality and ethics affect police interrogation in that it calls for ethical, just, and peaceful practices that respect the rights of citizens involved in the process.
Police ethics code informs police interrogation practices in that they are not allowed to intimidate suspected individuals in different crimes. Ethics are the accepted set of moral values which decide the guidelines for specific behavior in the police units. Police should protect and safeguard the lives of citizens and protect the weak from intimidation while respecting the constitutional rights of every citizen. Code of ethics informs how a law enforcement officer should conduct and behave when performing their duties such as criminal interrogations. Through ethics, the rights of people suspected of criminal offenses are not violated and are protected from unlawful practices and exploitation by the police (Etchika, 2021). The code holds each officer accountable while barring them from using lies, threats, and unethical tactics to get a confession from clients. It reminds police officers to remain ethical during interrogations and use legal methods stipulated by the working code.
Through work ethics, law enforcement teams understand the action against them when they use prohibited practices to obtain information during criminal interrogations. Any confession and statement obtained by illegal and forbidden methods are not valid in prosecuting suspects in court as informed by the code of police ethics. Police interrogation is a cornerstone in solving crime in the country because it is used to gain helpful information guided by ethical guidelines such as fairness. Therefore, illegal interrogation methods such as excessive use of physical force, mental torture, use of drugs, and insults are not fair, and no coercion may be applied to such information.
International Association of Chiefs of Police. (2019). Law enforcement code of ethics. The IACP.
Metchik, E. W. (n.d.). Police ethics. Salem Press Encyclopedia.
The Justice System. (n.d.). Bureau of Justice Statistics.