Resource: Ch. 12 in Effective Communication for Criminal Justice Professionals
Grubb, R. E. Jr., & Hemby, K. V.. (2003). Effective communication for criminal justice
professionals. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Group.
Imagine you were an officer confronted with one of the following hostage situations:
In the process of an armed robbery at a convenient store the clerk activates a silent
alarm you and other officers arrive at the scene while the perpetrator is still inside. The
perpetrator panics when he sees the police and immediately grabs a hostage. He is
demanding you leave so he can escape. When responding to a domestic dispute call, you arrive on the scene of two young men arguing vehemently. The arguing appears as though it is about to turn physical, adding to the tension of the situation the two girlfriends of the men arguing are beginning to yell at each other.
Respond: explain how you would use the twelve stages of conflict resolution, and what effective strategies you would use to bring about a positive resolution. Before you address each situation briefly describe the situation, you want to have a clear idea of the steps you might need to take, as well as the alternatives you might need to employ. Develop a plan or a decision tree towards resolving the chosen conflict.
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I decided to create two sections of the solution for you. Part 1 is small discussion on hostage taking & options for the law enforcement officer dealing with it & part 2 is the 'suggested answer' for the problem you provided. This is based on the steps discussed by Grubb & Hemby. Understand also that mediators rarely take on 'armed robbery of convenience store' cases, so most times, negotiating such situations become a police matter. Good Luck!
Resolving Conflict: Armed Robbery
Law enforcement officers have specialists among their colleagues who are trained at handling hostage taking & domestic dispute situations. While they are always on call, situations arise in moments where they need to deal with the situation right away to prevent further escalation of the situation, diffuse the tension & eliminate the threat. For instance, armed robberies can be dealt with by procedure when an officer responds; at times it is usually better when the responders arrive at the scene & the robbery is still in progress. Following protocol officers usually apprehend the suspect caught in the act as perpetrators are mostly 'small-time criminals'. Since the 70's robbers would net between $300-$500 from a 'quick-beer-run' convenience store robbery which usually happens at late in the night or at early morning. The type of criminals on profile committing such acts are lodged between the 'inexperienced & criminals wanting a quick buck & an easy target', usually aged from late teens to late adulthood with people committing the act for reasons that range from notoriety, poverty & blatant criminality. Most of the perpetrators who are 'new' to such form of armed robberies are prone to panic. While it may not be an armed bank robbery, the blatant rashness of those new to criminality ...
The solution discusses tactics & strategies to employ in law enforcement conflict resolution. It does this by providing an analysis of one of the presented situation, a case of armed robbery which is analyzed as a case study. The solution is written in APA format and a word version is provided for easy printing.