A police force we can admire PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 20 February 2017 13:01

By: Remedios F. Marmoleno

A cop was at his beat when he heard about a fire  in an apartment house nearby. He rushed to the fire scene and when he got there a fireman was carrying out  a little girl. On seeing the cop in uniform he passed on the unconscious girl so he could rush back to rescue more people.

The child had passed out and as the cop was considering applying CPR another cop signaled to a patrol car and the two quickly brought the child to a hospital where medical personnel took over. The child survived.

In her teens she wanted to meet the cop who saved her and through google she was able to connect with him. An affectionate bond developed between her and the cop and when she graduated from college the cop got a special invitation for him to attend the graduation.

Did this make you feel good?   I came across this true story in the Internet but I wish I could say it happened in the Philippines. It did not; it happened in the US.

Sadly, whether deserved or not, most of the stories we get about cops/policemen in the Philippines are the unsavory kind. Mulcting cop on the street; cops who plant evidence so they can make an arrest; cops who are on the “gift list” of criminal types; cops who kill in cold blood and claim they used their pistols in self- defense.  And so on and so on.

Or you have cops who are not guilty of anything mentioned above. What they are guilty of is that they are just there – sitting in the shade and not even directing a badly snarled traffic jam.

And then we have high ranking police officials justifying the dishonest ways of the police force by saying the wives are to blame, wives who live beyond the means of their cop-husbands and forcing them to be dishonest.

When there is hue and cry from the public, as happened in the case of the South Korean businessman who was kidnapped and then strangled to death right inside the PNP camp, the powers that be decided that punishment for erring cops will be reassignment to places in Mindanao. Like Basilan. Or Jolo. Can you believe how their minds work?

What would be working justice for me is that a good case without loopholes is prepared against the erring cops, push these cases fast through the labyrinth of the Philippine justice system  and then the guilty cops are given the just punishment , without fail.

A good alternative to punishment for erring cops is strict selection and training. This will not guarantee anything but it is a positive place to start for reform.