Following a drug raid on the Colombian drug cartels, the team needed to engage efficiently to ensure that the collection of the evidence met the required standards and outline. Touroo & Fitch (2018) explain that the collection of the drug evidence should have engaged in similar ways as the collection of other evidence from crime scenes. According to Touroo & Fitch (2018), the process of evidence includes the collection of the evidence, the photography of the evidence, packaging and documentation and disbursement for analysis. For the drugs, the efficient collection procedure entails them being packed efficiently in plastic papers for the transportation and delivery to the necessary authorities.
The money, which could have formed a crucial part of the evidence, should have been collected and packaged in the evidence bags. The team should have brought enough evidence and seal them adequately before submitting to the respective authorities. The team should have brought enough evidence bags to avoid storing the evidence in personal bags such as the athletic bags. Collection of the evidence should have been open. It should have involved transparency in attempt to prevent interference with the evidence. The team should have ensured that the entire team was equally involved in the process. Equal involvement of the members would ensure that the members do not interfere with the evidence by either taking some of it or leading to its contamination.
The actions committed by the two police sergeants lead to the spoliation of evidence. According to Parness & Theodoratos (2019), the act involves the spoliation of evidence which comprises of the intentional negligence, reckless, altering, fabricating, withholding, destroying or hiding of evidence that is relevant and essential for legal proceedings. Through their actions, the two sergeants engaged in the act of intentionally holding evidence, which eventually resulted in the alteration of the evidence collected from the scene of the crime. Three possible consequences could have resulted from the destruction of evidence. Parness & Theodoratos (2019) explain that in the case of jurisdiction involving the intentional act is criminal by statute, the likely outcome of the destruction of evidence entail fines and incarceration of the perpetrators. The results mainly occur if the perpetrators are convicted in a separate criminal proceeding. Following the case that the relevant case law proceedings have been established, the proceedings that the spoliation of evidence interfere with and possibly affect the evidence could be interpreted under a spoliation inference. It could also be interpreted under other corrective measures with regard of the specific jurisdiction. In jurisdictions, the spoliation act in itself can be judged as an offence. Following the spoliation offence committed by the sergeants, the possible results, in the case that it is discovered could be the interference with the case. Also, it could affect the integrity of the case.
Given that it interferes with the evidence of the specific case, there could be the presumption that it also interferes with evidence of previous cases. Additionally, the team could also lose its credibility. The unit and the police department could face the advance effects of losing its assignments and being relieved from handling high-profile cases. The idea presented would be that it could not be trusted in dealing with such high-profile cases that require high levels of integrity.
In organizational settings, leaders have the responsibility of shaping the functioning of the entire organizations. Leaders affect the operation of organizations not only through the orders that they issue but also through the practices in which they are engaged, following the responsibilities helped by the leaders, the organizational members and the subordinates shape their actions and activities buy the emulation of what the leaders do (Cianci et al. 2014). The impacts of the leaders after taking the money include that the ethical leadership and functioning of the police unit is affected. The leaders, through their actions, portray a lack of ethics in their work. Additionally, following the act of taking the money, the leaders lose the moral authority of influencing the engagement of the subordinates and requiring them to behave in ways that uphold the ethical standards of the organizations. By realizing that the subordinates are aware of the actions of the leaders; subordinates are likely to behave in ways that defy ethical standards of their roles within the team.
Since the activities of the leaders majorly influence their behaviors, the working environment could adversely be affected since the subordinates will most likely operate through emulating the actions of the leaders. Following the behavior of the supervisors of taking the money, subordinates within the team are more likely to behave in ways that do not follow the code of conduct within the organizations (Cianci et al. 2014). The motivation of the supervisors to act in unstipulated ways will be drawn from the fact the supervisors in themselves behaved in a way that defies the code of conduct of the police department. The supervisors would face a hard time in attempting to make the subordinates behave as required since they are the first people to violate the code of conduct of the profession.
Following the witnessing of the two sergeants taking some of the money, one of the actions that I would engage is to inform higher authorities of what I witnessed. This first action would be good as it seeks to uphold the moral standards of the work in which the team is involved in. It would seek to ensure that the ethical standards of the organization are maintained. It would also seek to ensure that the rest of the team perform their roles in a dignified way. The action would, however, be a wrong choice in the case that the corruption practices extend to other sections of the government. If the top leaders are also corrupt, there is the fact that by reposting the case, there would be more adverse impacts that would be channelled towards me for reposting.
The next choice of decision would be to keep quiet on the issue and not reporting or speaking about it. The moral aspects behind the decision of being silent and not reporting the matter is that it would facilitate the building of a healthy working relationship with the rest of the team. Following the behaviour projected by the team after the raid, it is evident that it has established a working relationship that they do not report the wrongdoings and misconduct. The negative effect, however, is that it leads to increased compromise of the ethical standards of the team and the police department. The continued destruction of the evidence would result in the team being viewed as unethical and not able to carry about its roles with the expected standards. The high quality and standards of the team would be compromised.