Armed Police: The Police Use of Firearms Since 1945


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The Police Act established New Zealand's first national, civil, police force. The force was generally unarmed. Sergeant John Nash was New Zealand's first non-commissioned police officer. In a new Police Act was passed in which the word 'force' was removed. The name now used is New Zealand Police or Police.

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Sergeant John Nash was registered as the first non-commissioned member of the newly formed New Zealand Police Force on 1 September He had the number '1' displayed prominently on his headgear. Nash was born in Killarney, Ireland, in about He was promoted to Sergeant in In John Nash was stationed at Westport during the goldrush. Local businessmen regarded him as an "excellent officer" and a "very steady man", but diggers were disgusted that he actually tried to enforce 10 o'clock closing. Press comment made his rigid disciplinary approach to policing notorious.

He was awarded a gold watch for his work in the hunt for those responsible for the murders of five gold prospectors at Maungatapu. In Nash complained of his policeman's lot to the Superintendent of Nelson, saying that his pounds a year was inadequate because "At the present time I am on duty from 7PM to 7AM and in addition to this I have to Summon Jurors for Coroners Inquests, attend the same and also the Criminal sittings of the Supreme Court without any remuneration".

His application was denied. Elsewhere, and increasingly, a civil police style continued to develop. In troubled areas new forces which combined military and police functions were established. The runanga police chiefs worked in conjunction with resident magistrates and other officials. The goldfields police under Otago Police Commissioner St John Branigan faced a difficult task trying to pacify unruly prospectors. He was later imprisoned for false pretences. From huge gold rushes took place in New Zealand. Thousands of rootless young men poured into remote areas of the South Island, immediately overwhelming small civil-style provincial police forces.

The authorities quickly responded by reintroducing forceful, Irish-style policing methods that had been adapted for use in the Australian goldfields. Senior Australian goldfields police were imported to head these new forces, most notably St John Branigan, commissioner of police in Otago. Irish-Australian policing methods spread throughout the South Island, because goldfields-based economies created social unrest in nearby areas.

As the gold ran out and prospectors and miners moved on, civil-style policing re-emerged. In , after war and land seizures in Waikato, Taranaki and elsewhere, the government believed the colony was finally at peace. Most imperial troops had been withdrawn, but a permanent colonial army was seen as unnecessary and too expensive. Instead the Armed Constabulary AC was established to occupy and police the conquered regions. Based on Irish Constabulary principles, its practice was modified by lessons learnt from the experience of the APF and other paramilitary units.

The constabulary was greatly reduced and demilitarised by its new commissioner, St John Branigan. Once this merger was complete, in , it was renamed the New Zealand Constabulary Force. New Zealand was now such a peaceful colony that its military and police functions, already operating separately within the constabulary, could be formally separated. The policing emphasis was rapidly moving from imposing order to maintaining it. Until the First World War it maintained links with the new military organisation formed out of the Field Force, but in normal circumstances it was essentially an unarmed force.

It became steadily more modern and professional in its methods, especially after highly critical reports from a series of police commissions between and In a number of police constables and non-commissioned officers formed a police union to tackle longstanding grievances about pay and conditions. Police Commissioner John Cullen and his officers suppressed the attempt by targeting the union leaders. One of them, Constable Charles Smyth, was driven out of the force. Police were permitted to join the Public Service Association, but most found it ineffective.

The Police Association was finally formed in , after the first Labour government was elected. Consequently the NZPF was one of the least coercive police forces in the world. Other ethnicities were not systematically recruited until considerably later.

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On the other hand, the average Maori appointee would be inclined to suffer from an inferiority complex when dealing with Europeans. The bottom line of policing is the ability to compel obedience. This compulsion was used whenever needed —- such as when arresting burglars or controlling alcohol-fuelled incidents in city streets.

Additional force was also wielded vigorously whenever it was seen to be needed, such as during:. The transfer of security intelligence duties to a specialist agency outside the police reinforced a benign image of policing that was symbolised when the New Zealand Police Force became simply the New Zealand Police in New Zealand police had always used new technologies as they became available, for both uniformed patrol and later detective duties. These included moving from horse to motor-vehicle transport, and from whistle to radio for communications.

Dogs were trained to assist with policing from In police dogs were working with patrol teams, and eight detector teams used them for drug and explosive detection. Forensic science was applied to detection techniques from the 19th century and the establishment of fingerprint identification from greatly improved detection rates. In the 19th century the wives of constables at sole-charge country stations assisted their husbands by minding the station in their absence, and cooked meals for prisoners in the lockup.

From the s full-time police matrons were appointed at city stations to deal with female prisoners. Catherine Ledger, who had three brothers in the police force, became assistant matron at Wellington central station in and remained there for 21 years.

Police use of firearms in the United Kingdom - Wikipedia

Arguments about how to properly interpret the vaguely-worded amendment remain at the heart of the gun control debate two centuries later. One finds both readings anticipated in individual state constitutions adopted prior to the ratification of the Second Amendment. Historically, the U.

It was understood across the political spectrum that the right helped to secure the ideal of a citizen militia, which might be necessary to oppose an oppressive military force if the constitutional order broke down. The prefatory clause does not suggest that preserving the militia was the only reason Americans valued the ancient right; most undoubtedly thought it even more important for self-defense and hunting. For example, a full-page newspaper ad for the group in read:. Free to rise up against tyranny.

In practical terms, gun control boils down to addressing issues such as how to keep lethal weapons out of the hands of criminals and the mentally deranged, how to regulate their manufacture and sale, and what types of firearms and ammunition are appropriate for private citizens to own and use. Consider, too, that, in several of the cited instances the gun control laws in effect when the genocides took place were enacted years or even decades earlier.

The time period cited, to , roughly coincides with dictatorship of Joseph Stalin, whose regime was responsible for the deaths of many millions of people, though historians disagree on the total. For a long time, 20 million was the generally accepted number, but since the fall of the Soviet Union more documentation has become available. Gun control regulations, including a requirement to register all weapons with the government, were in force during that period.


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Private citizens and institutions could own hunting weapons if they had police permission and registered their guns at the local station house. The militia could confiscate weapons and ammunition from people who showed signs of dangerously irresponsible behavior.

Large-scale gun confiscations were aimed at subpopulations deemed to be subversive or dissident.

Police Weapons: United Kingdom

In a great effort had been made to prevent the peasantry possessing arms. By this time, however, few arms were left.

Home Office review of police firearms use

This entry refers to the Armenian genocide , in which as many as 1. After suffering military losses early on in that war, the government blamed the Armenians, whom they accused of treachery and subversion, and on that pretext embarked on a program of disarming and eradicating the Armenian population as a whole.

New York Times foreign correspondent John Kifner wrote :. A later law allowed the confiscation of abandoned Armenian property. Armenians were ordered to turn in any weapons that they owned to the authorities.

Those in the army were disarmed and transferred into labor battalions where they were either killed or worked to death. There were executions into mass graves, and death marches of men, women and children across the Syrian desert to concentration camps with many dying along the way of exhaustion, exposure and starvation. The Armenians had been officially prohibited from owning firearms for hundreds of years in the Ottoman Empire; what weapons they did have were confiscated in the interests of eradicating that part of the population.

This is misleading. Jews were prohibited from owning guns and disarmed. Gun ownership was banned outright for all German citizens in A revision of the law lifted the ban, while still requiring individuals to obtain permits to own, sell, carry, or manufacture firearms. The first gun law actually enacted under Nazi rule, the German Weapons Act of , eased some of the permit requirements those on rifles and ammunition, though not on handguns , and lowered the legal age for the possession of firearms, but also forbade Jews, specifically, from manufacturing or selling arms.

Armed Police: The Police Use of Firearms Since 1945 Armed Police: The Police Use of Firearms Since 1945
Armed Police: The Police Use of Firearms Since 1945 Armed Police: The Police Use of Firearms Since 1945
Armed Police: The Police Use of Firearms Since 1945 Armed Police: The Police Use of Firearms Since 1945
Armed Police: The Police Use of Firearms Since 1945 Armed Police: The Police Use of Firearms Since 1945
Armed Police: The Police Use of Firearms Since 1945 Armed Police: The Police Use of Firearms Since 1945
Armed Police: The Police Use of Firearms Since 1945 Armed Police: The Police Use of Firearms Since 1945
Armed Police: The Police Use of Firearms Since 1945 Armed Police: The Police Use of Firearms Since 1945

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