The Blue Wall or Blue Code of Silence, the police version of the hood’s “no snitching rule”. It is an unwritten cop ideology that exists among law enforcement discouraging the reporting of colleague misconduct or crimes including police brutality, excessive force, extortion and more. When questioned about an incident, an officer following the code will claim to have seen nothing, heard nothing, or said nothing. They would claim ignorance of any wrongdoing on the part of the officer being investigated.

The code is considered to be an example of police corruption and misconduct. Officers who engaged in discriminatory arrests, physical or verbal harassment, and selective enforcement of the law may be considered to be corrupt. Many officers who follow the code may participate in some of these acts during their career for personal matters or in order to protect or support fellow officers. All of these are considered illegal offenses and are grounds for suspension or immediate dismissal. Officers who follow the code are unable to report fellow officers who participate in corruption due to the unwritten laws of their “police family.”

Police perjury is when an officer gives false testimony in court. Officers who do not lie in court may sometimes be threatened and ostracized by fellow police officers. In 1992, the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Police Corruption (also known as the Mollen Commission) undertook a two-year investigation on perjury in law enforcement. They discovered that some officers falsified documents such as arrest reports, warrants and evidence to provide “cover” for an illegal arrest or search. Some police officers also fabricated stories when testifying before a jury. The Commission found that the officers were not lying for greed but because they believed that they were imprisoning people who deserved it. Many prosecutors allowed police perjury to occur, as well.

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