North Texas Daily

We should be paying more attention to domestic violence as committed by cops

We should be paying more attention to domestic violence as committed by cops

We should be paying more attention to domestic violence as committed by cops
March 01
01:00 2021

Last year’s protests on behalf of the Black Lives Matter movement challenged the general public’s views on cops as a whole. While many people might attempt to paint them as staunch defenders of the law with a few detractors thrown in that just need weeding out, the truth is far less palatable.

There is evidence to suggest that around 40 percent of cops are also domestic abusers, a statistic that becomes even more disturbing in nature when you consider the implications of the pandemic for abuse victims, who have found themselves more cut off from the rest of the world than ever before, according to a report by The National Center for Woman and Policing. It becomes all too easy for abusers to isolate their victims when social interaction, even with loved ones, gets taken out of the equation. It is all too easy for people who know where women’s shelters are located, and who are well-acquainted with the only other people domestic violence victims can turn to, to get away with abusing both their power and their families.

And just as most police officers who shoot unarmed Black people are not made to suffer any consequences for doing so, these studies also indicate that more than half of cops convicted of domestic violence do not lose their jobs. This only accounts for the ones who were convicted. In fact, the NCWP found that most of these cases are handled internally, without any official reports being filed, that most departments did not impose any disciplinary action on their officers besides counseling, and that only 45 percent had specific policies in place on how to deal with allegations of domestic violence as filed against an officer. Additionally, only 19 percent of the departments interviewed said that they would terminate an officer following a second sustained report of domestic violence.

The boys’ club nature of the profession isn’t the only thing about it designed to discourage victims from seeking help. There is also the issue of service weaponry. Former Denton police officer Robert “Bobby” Lozano shot wife Virginia “Viki” Lozano to death on their 16th wedding anniversary in 2002, but was convicted in 2009 due to the charges being dropped until a new prosecutor came along. Said prosecutor told a reporter for Oxygen that police had not followed protocol during their initial examination of the crime scene, despite many of them being privy to Lozano’s penchant for philandering.

This all comes on the heels of other studies linking police officers throughout the country to white supremacist militias and activity. The Guardian reported that Sacramento police officers conspired with known neo-Nazis to file charges against anti-racism activists in 2018, and that officers in Philadelphia did not interfere when a far-right mob attacked journalists and activists last summer. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Texas was among the states whose police departments were found to have ties to white supremacy.

It says something about the nature of American law enforcement as a whole that so many of its recruits seem to only have gone into the profession so they could filter their lust for power through the cracks in the legal system, and it isn’t something that should go ignored, especially in the current climate.

Featured Illustration by J. Robynn Aviles

About Author

Rachel Card

Rachel Card

Rachel Card is a junior majoring in public relations and minoring in sociology. She was born in Austin, Texas, and is currently quarantining there with her family and three dogs.

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