Police Culture, Ethics and Entitlement Theory

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Using entitlement theory as a lens for viewing police relationships, this paper will explore the police culture and provide a theoretical foundation for understanding police behavior and their response to stress. Entitlement theory suggests that individuals may develop impairments in their ability to empathize and behave in a mutually respectful manner, given significant relationships in which they have been underentitled, and/or traumatic experiences that have not been appropriately processed. It is proposed that early attachment experiences, the ensuing view of self and others, the police training and work culture, and traumatic experiences in the line of duty all contribute to psychological and relational problems in some police officers.
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