Former NYPD detective calls for police recruiting reform (Listen)
Sometimes it's hard to make sense of statistics, especially when it comes law enforcement. So, in light of recent police convictions like the two Jersey cops found guilty of lying about a gun grab, former NYPD detective Joe Giacalone called in to discuss whether the war on police is a real thing.
When asked why our culture labels law enforcement according to its mistakes, Giacalone said there are a "few bad apples," amid the 900,000 officers across the nation.
“I'm always a pro-cop kinda guy," Giacalone said. "But you know what? We really do need to look at our recruitment selection and training of officers. We have to look at how much we drop standards to get police officers- to be inclusive and include everybody. But we have to be careful because people are slipping through the cracks that should never get this job in the first place.”
According to Giacalone, policies that lower the threshold for entry have benefited people like himself.
"If I was trying to be a cop 30 years ago, I would’ve never made it because I was too short," Giacalone said, referring to the police department's regulations on height.
However, he said, there is a serious need for reform so that the officers who end up in the field are qualified and mentally sound enough to be there.
Giacalone also acknowledged that a fear of becoming the next viral video while on duty is something police have to take into consideration, especially when enacting policies like stop-and-frisk.
"The cops go where the crimes are, wherever those crimes may be," said Giacalone. Unfortunately, he continued, much of the violence happens in poorer neighborhoods populated by people of color. When there are white cops on duty this may be perceived as racial profiling.