Masters Thesis

The militarization of police across the United States as a result of the events occurring during the 1990s in Los Angeles

This thesis explores how the relationship between the violence occurring during the 1990s in Los Angeles, California; historical and modern police training; the California penal code; and legal decisions and precedent resulted in the militarization of the Los Angeles Police Department, which led to the subsequent militarization of police throughout the United States. Through the review and synthesis of nonfiction printed works spanning various academic disciplines, reports from government commissions, historical and more current news media, and rulings from courts both within and outside California, historians can better understand the transition of civilian law enforcement in America from Officer Barney Fife to the paramilitary combatants with rifles, fatigues, and armored vehicles of today.

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