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Perhaps one of the greatest aids to beleaguered municipal and county police forces in the fight against crime is the use of special policemen by department stores and factories. As is often the case with any good preventative, however, there is great potential for abuse. While special police beneficially free more regularly employed municipal and county police officers for other duties, their increasing use is beginning to raise a number of legal issues which are not easily resolved.

Many of the issues involve constitutional questions of great importance, particularly in the areas of the fourth and fifth amendments, and rights secured by Miranda v. Arizona. Questions also exist concerning the powers and jurisdiction exercisable by the special police, as well as with the numerous statutory grants which authorize the creation of special police forces.

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