Robert Peel

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  • Three reasons Metropolitan Force reduced crime rate
    • Robert Peel
      • Had massive impact on both punishment and law enforcement as home secretary during 1820s. He ended bloody code and persuaded parliament to pass 1829 Metropolitan Act
    • Reforming penal code
      • After 1810 there were an unprecedented number of capital crimes.Petty theft could equivalent to murder. In practice, death penalty was rarely used for petty crime as judges thought it was unfair so prison or transportation was used.
      • Peel reduced capital crimes by 100 because he wanted: less harsh punishments for petty crimes, and to try and reform petty criminals rather than kill them
    • Prison Reform
      • Partly due to influence of reformers, such as Elizabeth Fry. Peel tried to improve prison conditions by Gaols Act
        • Chaplains should regularly visit prisoners
        • Gaolers should be paid
        • Prisoners should not be in chains.
        • No inspectors to enforce this act so impact was limited
    • Metropolitan Police Act,1829
      • 1822- Peel set up a parliamentary commitee to look into the issue of policing London, which helped him come up with concept of centralised police force across the whole city. The increasing crime wave helped him get it through parliament
    • Metropolitan police officers
      • The central aim was to prevent crime and disorder and to be totally objective
      • Recruits carefully selected and well trained. Was fully trained and well paid
      • Members had uniform to be identified
      • Usually unarmed and trained to use minimal force. Focused on patrolling areas where crime was rife. Successfully decreased street crime and disorder
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