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Law Enforcement Agencies

Law Enforcement Agencies

Law Enforcement Agencies

Law enforcement agencies are categorized into three levels. The levels are federal level, state level, and local level; each of these levels has police agencies that enforce the law in those levels.

Federal law enforcement agencies

The first level is the Federal law enforcement agencies. Law enforcement under federal agencies is under government departments, such as the Department of Defense and the Department of Homeland Security, and nongovernmental bodies. Federal Agencies employ law enforcement officers with the following duties: bear firearms, conduct criminal investigations, arrest individuals, and execute search warrants. An example of a Federal law enforcement agency is The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). According to Schmalleger (2017), its mission is “To protect and defend the United States against terrorist and foreign intelligence threats, to uphold and enforce the criminal laws of the United States, and to provide leadership and criminal justice services to federal, state, municipal, and international agencies and partners.”

State Law Enforcement Agencies

The second law enforcement agency is State Law Enforcement Agencies. State law enforcement agencies were created with a need for them and are divided into two: a centralized model and a decentralized model. These models have different functions, and subsequently, centralized model officers are tasked with monitoring highways, assisting local police officers in investigations, conducting investigations and training officers of municipalities and counties, while the decentralized model officers are tasked with monitoring Midwest, South United States and western states operations. An example of a state law enforcement agency is the Highway Patrol.

Local Law Enforcement Agencies

The third law enforcement agency is the Local Law Enforcement agencies. The local law enforcement agencies include agencies in cities and counties, such as sheriff’s departments, municipal departments, and specialized groups overlooking crimes. These departments normally have a small manpower of as little as 20 officers. Another type of law enforcement agency is the private protective service. To conclude, law enforcement agencies are grouped into three levels: federal, state and local enforcement agencies.


Schmalleger, F., (2017). Criminal Justice Today: An Introductory Text for the 21st Century. 14th ed. Pearson.


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Levels of Police Enforcement Agencies

List and define the three levels of law enforcement and give an example of each level.

Law Enforcement Agencies

Law Enforcement Agencies


Criminal Justice Today: An Introductory Text for the 21st Century
Frank Schmalleger, 2017

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