An excellent long read on the Police of New York:

Before you say "Well that's New York..." remember that in Calgary Police have made it a regular practice to execute civilians for holding pen knives or driving impaired. While - on the other hand, if you're a cops son and you stab 5 innocent people to death you get a comfortable diagnosis of Schizophrenia and live out the rest of your days in relative comfort. "Alive" in this instance is relative comfort.