“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing”…..Edmund Burke
Author: Mike Quinn, Minneapolis Police Department, Retired
Title: Walking With The Devil (The Police Code of Silence)
Publisher: Quinn and Associates, Minneapolis, MN.
Studying Police Ethics
Studying police ethics seems like a simple concept on paper. There are many well-known ethical theories and applying these theories to real world policing seems black and white when writing a college paper. In reality, policing is a career that is constantly swirling in the ethical gray areas with authority, discretion, and the use of force.
The author, Mike Quinn has over 25 years of law enforcement experience and the majority of Mike’s law enforcement career was spent with the Minneapolis Police Department.
Mike wrote the book to honestly communicate about a major problem that has handicapped the profession for far too long. Mike is a cop, it is who he is and in his family DNA. Honor and integrity is how he approached the responsibility of policing. The courage to speak the truth and expose corruption takes courage, especially when you know speaking the truth to outsiders about the blue wall of silence is the ultimate sin in police culture, regardless if you are retired.
Mike openly discuss the reality of The Police Code of Silence and What Bad Cops Don’t Want You To Know, And Good Cops Won’t Tell You. After all that, you would think that the book is about judging police officers, that was my first impression when I saw the title and book cover, and I was wrong.
The book is about police ethics and exposing the truth about how good officers get caught-up as an actor in the blue code of silence, and how dishonest cops, escape serious consequences for their illegal behavior. As Mike states, the few bad apples truly do put good cops at risk and cause unnecessary stress and morale issues. The code of silence breaks the faith with the community.
Some of the Highlights in the Book
- Defining and understanding how the code of silence developed
- The reality of the code (Ratting)
- A day in the life of a cop (it is not that simple)
- Even the best training doesn’t prepare an officer
- Ten myths of policing
- Creative police report writing. (Mixing the truth with lies that fit and work)
- Street justice
- Real stories of the code of silence and lessons learned
- The future of criminal justice ethics training
Reflecting on Change
With recent national events placing police tactics and law enforcement policies in the media spotlight, this book just might be what is needed to generate meaningful self-reflection within the profession, and help good officers break their silence from the Chief to the newest rookie.
The reality of policing today is extremely stressful. Society has changed, and has changed towards police officers and government authority.
Individual police behavior matters. It matters to you and reflects good or bad on your department and the profession. If police departments are going to regain the trust and respect of the citizens they serve, then the profession must change for the better.
Policing is not going to get easier in the 21st century, but this book just might inspire dialog that will reset the way officer think about their ethical responsibilities to the oath, the law, their partners, their departments, and the criminal justice system.