A Spokane County undersheriff received a four-week unpaid suspension in January after he joked to a member of the Spokane Valley Precinct staff that “ex-wives should be killed.”
Policy violations by leadership in law enforcement can often create the precedent that the behavior is acceptable unless swift action is taken by the chief or sheriff, said Richard Bennett, professor of justice at American University who earned his doctoral degree in sociology/criminal justice at Washington State University.
“Leadership sets the tone,” Bennett said.
Bennett researches police organization and procedures along with comparative criminology, and comparative criminal justice. “If the leader shows no regard for abusive language or racial slurs … the consequences are there,” Bennett said.