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Flashcards in The Criminal Investigation Process Deck (54)
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What is the role of police within the CIP

  • Investigate crimes
  • Make arrests if necessary
  • Interrogate suspects
  • Gather evidence against the accused


What act outlines police powers

  • Detain and question suspects
  • Search property and seize evidence (known as search and seizure)
  • Use reasonable force if necessary
  • Use particular technologies to assist an investigation e.g. Phone taps, surveillance or DNA samples
  • Arrest and interrogate suspects
  • Recommend whether bail should be granted


What makes police powers controversial

They will often directly conflict with ordinary rights of citizens


Why are police powers deemed necessary

Special powers are deemed by society and lawmakers as necessary to ensure laws are enforced and public order is maintained


What is the purpose of the code of practice (CRIME)

  • Sets out the rights of suspects in a manner which investigations should be carried out
  • Acts as a check on police powers


What does CRIME stand for

  • Custody
  • Rights
  • Investigation
  • Management and Evidence)


Which body overseeas NSW police force and deals with brecahes of code of practice

  • Law Enforcement Conduct Commission (LECC) 
  • Established under the Law Enforcement Conduct Commission (LECC) Act 2016 (NSW)


What is purpose of LECC

To ensure police accountability


How is LECC limited 

  • Lack of resources to investigate complaints
  • Guardian art, Nov 2019 ‘NSW police watchdog fully investigated just 2% of firehose of complaints’


What limits effectiveness of police code of conduct

  • Lack of police training around behaviour and the code
  • Guardian art, Oct 2019 ‘NSW police officer admits his 19 strip searches at music festival may have been illegal’


What are reasons people may be hesitant to report a crime

  • Reluctance to become involved or to appear as a witness
  • Fear of consequences if the crime is reported
  • Inability to report the crime
  • The dispute has already been settled with the offender such as a brawl.
  • Perceived time or administrative burden of reporting a crime


What's the purpose of crime stoppers

  • Allows members of public to report crimes or make ‘tip-offs’ anonymously
  • Has substantial success with over 1,179 over period between 2018/2019


What type of crimes are most undereported

  • Domestic violence or sexual assault, more frequently go unreported
  • (estimated that 85% are not reported in Australia)
  • Due to the victim’s shame/embarrassment and/or unwillingness to go through the ordeal of reliving the experience in court


What is a police's decison to investigate a crime based upon

  • Severity of the offence
  • The likelihood of success
  • The availability of resources
  • Priorities.


What are the types of evidence that may be gathered by police

  • Oral testimony of the accused
  • Police and witnesses.
  • Physical evidence such as objects or weapons.
  • Documents
  • Fingerprints/DNA samples
  • Video surveillance and electronic information on hard drives.


What is purpose of the Evidence Act 1995 (NSW)

  • Ensures that evidence is obtained in a proper and lawful manner
  • The collection of evidence must be legitimate and should not interfere with the rights of ordinary citizens


What is purpose of warrant

  • Balance rights of citizens against police powers
  • Check on police powers


What are examples of technology available when investigating crime

  • Fingerprint and DNA databases, make it easy for police to share information across states and internationally
  • Surveillance teams can record video/audio footage using digital methods, allowing easy storage and copies
  • Cybercrime units can use criminal’s internet activity
  • DNA evidence, very useful in securing convictions and solving cold cases


What is limit of DNA evidence

  • Only proves that accused was at crime scene 
  • May lead to wrongful convictions
  • SMH art ‘Wrongfully accused’ March 2014R v Jama 2006


When may police exercise search and seizure powers

Were they believe on ‘reasonable grounds’, that the person is carrying anything stolen or used in commission of an indictable offence, a prohibited plant or drug, or a dangerous article in a public place


What may police search

Police may ‘search’ anything in a person’s possession or control e.g. A person’s body, bag, clothes


What is the standard that police must meet before searching a person

Standard of reasonable suspicion


What is the issue of the standard of reasonable suspicion

  • It is broad and can be applied widely
  • Difficult to prove


Which act outlines procedures for police to follow when conducting a personal search or strip search.

Law Enforcement (Powers and Responsibilities) Act 2002  (LEPRA) (NSW)


What did Firearms and Criminal Groups Legislation Amendment Act 2013 establish

  • Amended Firearm Act 1996 to include Sn 74A Firearm prohibition orders
  • Granted police powers to search the vehicles and premises of people subject to a firearm prohibition order, without a warrant or reasonable suspicion
  • SMH art Sept 2013 ‘Police to get greater stop-search powers’
  • The Australian art Nov 2015 ‘Terror agencies in guns blitz: tough laws to target organised crime’
  • Introduced at a federal level in 2015


What is a warrant

  • A warrant is a legal document issued by a magistrate or judge and authorises a police officer to perform a particular act
  • Ensures judicial oversight


Why was the Firearms and Criminal Groups Legislation Amendment Act 2013 introduced

  • Crackdown on organised crime
  • Barry O’Farrell justified this increase in powers as ‘it sends a message to criminals who carry weapons illegally that there is no place for them to hide’.
  • It was a bid to deter bikies and other criminal gang members from possessing illegal firearms
  • Considered necessray due to links between illegal firearms and organsied crime and terrorism


What are the issues with the Firearms and Criminal Groups Legislation Amendment Act 2013

  • Removes judicial oversight, and accountability over police actions
  • Might increase police corruption and abuse of police powers and undermine the rights of citizens.
  • Relates to balnacing rights of victims, the offender and society


How do warrants provide addditional layer of proection to citizens against misuse of police power

  • Through judicial oversight which helps ensure that those special police powers are used only when appropriate


Which Act outlines the conditions under which a police can lawfully arrest and detain a suspect

Law Enforcement (Powers and Responsibilities) Act 2002 (NSW)