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Smart policing in Frisco, Texas: geographic and temporal displacement in a micro place

John L. Worrall (Criminology Program, University of Texas at Dallas, Richardson, Texas, USA)

Policing: An International Journal

ISSN: 1363-951X

Article publication date: 21 March 2016




The purpose of this paper is to evaluate a foot patrol and citizen contact-based policing intervention in a suburb outside Dallas. Funded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance “Smart Policing” initiative, the intervention consisted of assigning a single bilingual officer to an economically disadvantaged apartment complex in the heart of the city.


An examination of calls for service across several offense types was performed for the target complex, the adjacent neighborhood, and a nearby apartment complex. The aims of the study were to determine whether the intervention affected specific calls for service and geographic and/or temporal displacement/diffusion occurred.


Two key findings emerged. First, the intervention produced several hypothesized reductions and increases in specific call types, but temporal displacement rendered those effects short-lived. Second, diffusion to surrounding areas was observed and persisted through various treatment dosages.

Practical implications

The study provides useful information to practitioners who might seek to implement foot-patrol-based tactics in hot spots and micro-places. However, foot patrol and/or citizen contact patrol alone may not yield sustainable crime reductions in their target areas.


Few recent studies have examined the efficacy of foot patrol in crime hot spots. No recent studies have evaluated citizen contact patrol within micro-places. This study sought to address both limitations.



This research was supported by grant number 2011-DB-BX-0002 from the Bureau of Justice Assistance.


Worrall, J.L. (2016), "Smart policing in Frisco, Texas: geographic and temporal displacement in a micro place", Policing: An International Journal, Vol. 39 No. 1, pp. 36-51.



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