Evaluating the Use of force against children (Essay)

The amount of force that should be used on a child by the law enforcement officers has raised heated debates in recent times (Harmening, 2014). Although there are profound premises why force such as the utilization of taser guns against children should not be used, depending on the case it is compulsory to use force. The central focus of this paper is to evaluate the use of force against children from different perspectives.

Limits on the type of weapons used against children

There should be restrictions on the kind of weapon that might be used may be utilized by the police against children. Numerous weapons employed by the police have long-term effects on the individuals they are used against (Harmening, 2014). For example, the use of tear gas to dispatch violent children engaging in criminal activities is established to have long-term effects on them such as worsening asthma and reducing tolerance in physical exercises. There are numerous other reasons why there should be restrictions on the weapons used by the police against children such as children bodies are still fragile and some these weapons could cause permanent damages.

Civil liability related to police physically subduing a child and parents permission

There should be a civil liability when the police use force to subdue a child. The liability comes in when police cannot justify that other means of restraining a child such luring with gifts had failed (Harmening, 2014). Further, the police would record a video of the child’s violent nature before using violence to avoid civil liability. It is important to note that permission from the parent is not enough reason to use force on a child. A parent may or may not give permission to the police to use force. The police solely depending on the situation should decide the necessity of using force, but collect evidence to show that the child was violent.

Regulation of use of force against children by courts and legislative bodies

The use of against children should not be entirely on the individual police officer. The legislative bodies should come up with laws to protect children from the use of force (Harmening, 2014). Nonetheless, the law should bare apparent loopholes where the police can use force on children and the manner in which they shall use it.

In outline, the police should be held accountable while they employ excessively force unnecessarily. The police should be able to demonstrate in court when required that the application of force was due to lack of other means of controlling the child.


Harmening, W. M. (2014). Crisis intervention: the criminal justice response to chaos, mayhem, and disorder. Upper Saddle River, N.J: Pearson.


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