Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Police brutality is a term used to describe the excessive use of physical force, assault, and verbal attacks and threats by police officers. Widespread, systematic police brutality persists in some countries with authoritarian governments, corruption, or ineffective judicial systems. Individual incidents of police brutality occur in most or all countries, even those which actively prosecute and successfully punish such activity. Brutality is one of several forms of police misconduct , which include false arrest, intimidation, political repression, surveillance abuse , and police corruption.
Police brutality with respect to certain social groups can in some cases be disproportionate or be perceived to be disproportionate. Differences in race, religion, politics, and economic status between police and the citizenry can contribute to the creation of an antagognistic relationship in which a significant portion of the population view the police as oppressors and a significant number of the police view the population as deserving punishment.
Some instances where perceived or actual brutality has become a political issue include:
- African-Americans in the United States
- Arab and African immigrants in France
- Catholics in Northern Ireland
- Various pro-democratic activities in China, Cuba and other countries.
- Various strike actions, protests, and acts of civil disobedience, including recent anti-globalization protests.
- Political repression
- Oscar Elías Biscet
- Amadou Diallo
- Falun Gong
- Abner Louima
- Rodney King
- Mark Fuhrman
- Starlight tours
- Community Resources against Street Hoodlums
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