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Article

Brian Lockwood

Although many studies have examined the correlates of homicide clearance rates, few analyses have examined the factors related to the clearance of burglary offenses. The…

Abstract

Purpose

Although many studies have examined the correlates of homicide clearance rates, few analyses have examined the factors related to the clearance of burglary offenses. The purpose of this paper is to address several gaps in the literature to determine if burglary clearance rates are due to discretionary, non-discretionary, and/or neighborhood contextual factors.

Design/methodology/approach

Data are analyzed from more than 10,000 burglary incidents in Philadelphia from 2010 using multilevel models to simultaneously test for the influence of multiple perspectives of the factors of crime clearance.

Findings

The results indicate that variables representing broken windows enforcement, discretionary factors, and non-discretionary factors are related to the increased likelihood that burglaries are cleared, but processes associated with social disorganization within communities is not.

Research limitations/implications

The findings contribute to the literature by showing that future examinations of the factors of burglary clearance should consider community contextual factors, and specifically, that broken windows police enforcement appears to be a more important predictor of burglary clearance than do factors related to social disorganization theory. As a result, it is suggested that law enforcement also consider their tactics regarding low-level offenses if they wish to address the clearance rate of burglaries.

Originality/value

This analysis is among the first to examine multiple perspectives of the factors of crime clearance on burglary incidents.

Details

Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, vol. 37 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

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Book part

Aaron Roussell and Jason Dunbar

By making the explicit connections between the processes of urban-suburban racial transitions and Wilson and Kelling’s broken windows theory, this chapter proposes the…

Abstract

Purpose

By making the explicit connections between the processes of urban-suburban racial transitions and Wilson and Kelling’s broken windows theory, this chapter proposes the linkage between concern for crime/disorder and anti-Blackness.

Methodology/approach

The contention is supported by recounting and highlighting key historical dynamics and their congruency with the original broken windows treatise; bringing in relevant research regarding racial coding and assumptions; surveys on residential mobility; and theoretical frameworks on colorblind racism.

Findings

The enduring popularity of broken windows theory is likely more due to its colorblind explanations of the suburbanization of urban Whites than to the explanatory merit of the theory. To explain the origin of such (problematic) concepts as “urban decay” and “crime-ridden communities,” the theory deflects concerns for determinative processes such as deindustrialization, integration, overpolicing, and historical anti-Blackness and provides a parable regarding a lack of vigilance in support of community norms, which in White communities have traditionally been segregationist. The moral of the parable is that “urban decay” is the result of Whites allowing desegregation to proceed after Brown v. Board.

Originality/value

This chapter provides a macro-discursive explanation for the popularity of broken windows theory and helps explain its centrality to the ongoing discussions regarding race, territorial and disorder policing, and practices such as stop-and-frisk.

Details

The Politics of Policing: Between Force and Legitimacy
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-030-5

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Article

Eric M. Cooke and Yan Zhang

Business victimization is a serious and pervasive issue within the USA. According to recent estimates, roughly 2,058,194 businesses are victimized each year. Of those…

Abstract

Purpose

Business victimization is a serious and pervasive issue within the USA. According to recent estimates, roughly 2,058,194 businesses are victimized each year. Of those, approximately 33 percent of business victimization cases are solved. Taken together, it is important for research to examine factors that influence business victimization clearance. The purpose of this paper is to examine how broken windows enforcement, social disorganization, community and police organizational factors influence business robbery clearance using data from Houston, Texas over a two-year period from 2010 to 2012.

Design/methodology/approach

Using a hierarchical linear modeling strategy, the current study found no effect of broken windows tactics, social disorganization elements and various organizational, and community characteristics on business robbery clearance.

Findings

Significant effects were found for a number of incident and offense characteristics including gang involvement, business type, type of weapon used in the crime, the number of business entities in an area, and racial populous.

Originality/value

To date, few studies have examined factors that influence clearance rates for business robberies. Thus, the current study adds to and extends upon the literature in theoretically relevant ways by exploring how broken windows policing, social disorganization and various community/police organizational variables influence business robbery clearances in a large city.

Details

Policing: An International Journal, vol. 43 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

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Article

Matthew C. Scheider, Robert Chapman and Amy Schapiro

The purpose of this paper is to examine how various policing innovations, including problem‐oriented policing, broken windows, intelligence‐led policing, Compstat…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine how various policing innovations, including problem‐oriented policing, broken windows, intelligence‐led policing, Compstat, third‐party policing, and hot spots, could be integrated into the community policing philosophy.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper provides a definition of community policing and individually examines each policing innovation to determine how they fit within the community policing philosophy.

Findings

The findings suggest that various policing innovations are wholly compatible with the community policing philosophy and that incorporating these innovations into community policing may improve their overall utility and the likelihood of their adoption.

Research limitations/implications

The paper highlights the need for new ideas in policing to be built into existing policing innovations rather than developed in isolation.

Practical implications

The findings have implications for how law enforcement agencies fundamentally approach their work and come to understand and use policing innovations and how they are developed by scholars.

Originality/value

The paper is valuable to scholars and police practitioners because it clarifies the community policing philosophy and unifies various ideas regarding policing under one framework.

Details

Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, vol. 32 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

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Article

Alison Tupman

Recent criminological attention has tended to focus upon those areas from which direct policy proposals can be made, whether it be to improve the ways in which the…

Abstract

Recent criminological attention has tended to focus upon those areas from which direct policy proposals can be made, whether it be to improve the ways in which the criminal justice system treats victims or the specific measures that can be taken to prevent specific types of crime and criminal. Two areas in particular have proved fruitful: the ‘broken windows’ thesis of Kelling and Wilson has led to studies of crime prevention strategies, including ways in which communities can be encouraged to self‐police, and the work of Levi, Burrows, McBarnet and others has focused attention upon the attitudes of those involved in the financial services sector towards financial and business crime. It is argued that the issue of gender has been largely ignored in the consideration of financial crime; that aspects of the ‘broken windows’ thesis lend themselves to consideration in the context of financial crime, and that to investigate attitudes towards female criminality in the context of the financial services sector — to look for ‘Ms Big’ — may throw unexpected light upon the reported incidence of both male and female criminality in this area. Since the inception of criminology the issue of the involvement of women in crime has been problematic. Theories about women's criminality have frequently taken a basically biological stance; although more recently this view has been challenged by (female) criminologists, nevertheless there has been a tendency cither to ignore the question of whether there are different attitudinal factors at play, or to assume that the best explanation for the persistence of the ratio of male to female crime must lie in women's biology and psychology. Of course, originally biological and psychological explanations for criminality were not given solely for women alone. Yet whereas the general failure of criminology to provide a causal theory for criminality led to a change of emphasis in the nature of its concerns, moving on to consider specific types of criminal and criminal activity, such as delinquency, the behaviour of gangs, rational choice‐making by burglars, and the like, the exploration of gender in specific types of criminality has largely fallen by the wayside. Yet the positivist notion, that the difference in recorded criminality rates for the sexes reflects reality, can still be detected in the persistence of the question ‘Why do women commit less crime than men?’ The idea that reported and recorded crime rates can be safely taken as ‘true’ has been abandoned otherwise, and indeed the way in which crime statistics are produced has become a topic of study in its own right. One issue that has been raised in relation to females and crime is whether there is a ‘new’ female criminal. This idea sought to link together female emancipation and rates and types of crime committed. The evidence for this has been much criticised, however, it being pointed out by Smart that not only do the statistics, when compared over a 40‐year period, cast doubt upon the asserted recent percentage increase, but that in its own way this is another monocausal explanation. Moreover, it ignores the effect that the existence of the women's movement may have upon ‘significant defining agencies such as the police and the courts’. In short, utilising other theoretical developments in criminology, feminists have formed what might be called ‘critiques from within’: that is, if the premises of criminology are correct, they should be able to cope with female criminality: criminogenic factors should be able to explain the comparative level of female criminality as opposed to that of males. Thus, by adopting the so‐called ‘strain’ theories one may re‐evaluate the role of social structure, power and privilege in the economic relations of society to suggest that women are systematically deprived of access to sources of power and prestige, although this again treats women as an homogeneous group. Furthermore, these factors are not sufficient to explain the level of criminality either individually or at aggregated levels, for women should be among the most criminal and more women should be criminal. As Morris says, a theory that cannot explain this, cannot even be said to be an adequate explanation for male criminality. This is not to deny that the targets of criminology today are thought‐provoking. For a number of reasons current criminology takes on more specific targets than the production of grand theory: it looks at policing and policers, regulation and regulators, victimisation, specific venues for crime: it looks towards the creation of policy and the establishment of a body of crime‐and‐victim‐specific data. The redefinition of the subject‐matter of criminology, to include not only objective crime but perceptions of crime, has also encom‐passed the realisation that the definition of deviance relates not only to delinquency but also to those in the upper socio‐economic strata. For example, the ability of certain advantaged participants actively to define and redefine the boundaries between the legal and the illegal has been raised, notably by McBarnet. Such developments have also occurred in what was once known only as ‘white‐collar crime’. Suitable topics for attention now include the evaluation of self‐regulation versus criminal law as effective sanctions, the rating of different crimes in terms of their seriousness by those in the financial services sector, the attitude of those employed to enforce the self‐policing of the regulated sectors of the economy to the police and indeed their definition of what is, and is not, ‘criminal’ behaviour in normal busi‐ness life. Yet whilst the effect of the criminal justice system in differentially sanctioning and sentencing offenders has been looked at in terms of the gender of the offender, those working in the specific area of financial crime and the financial services sector do not appear to have linked together the type of crime with the gender of the offender. There would appear to be good reason to do so.

Details

Journal of Financial Crime, vol. 2 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1359-0790

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Article

Robert M. Lombardo, David Olson and Monte Staton

The purpose of this paper is to study the Chicago Alternative Policing Strategy (CAPS), the largest community policing program in the USA.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to study the Chicago Alternative Policing Strategy (CAPS), the largest community policing program in the USA.

Design/methodology/approach

The data for this research come from the 1993‐1994 Citizen Survey of the Longitudinal Evaluation of Chicago's Community Policing Program. Referred to as the CAPS Prototype Panel Survey, the data were obtained from the Inter‐university Consortium for Political and Social Science Research. Both ordinary least square and log linear regression were used to analyze the data.

Findings

The findings indicate that people living in the CAPS prototype districts had significantly higher levels of satisfaction with police fighting crime than people living in matched comparison areas who were not subject to the CAPS program. The findings also indicate that the residents of the CAPS prototype communities were only marginally more satisfied with police keeping order than those living in non‐CAPS communities.

Research implications/limitations

The findings of this research have important implications for police‐community relations. The fact that citizens were more satisfied with police efforts against crime after the implementation of the CAPS initiative supports community policing programs that center on building strong community ties. The fact that citizens in the prototype districts were not significantly more satisfied with police order maintenance efforts bears further scrutiny.

Practical implications

The paper's findings confirm earlier research that informal (non‐enforcement) contacts with the police are important for improving satisfaction with police performance, that resident's perception of the level of disorder in their neighborhood is a significant factor shaping their opinion of the police, and that community policing is an effective way of improving police citizen interaction.

Originality/value

This paper analyzes 4,078 previously collected interviews.

Details

Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, vol. 33 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

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Book part

Steve Herbert and Katherine Beckett

In Seattle and other cities, recent expansions of trespass law make the regulation of public space easier and more extensive. A range of new tools allow police officials…

Abstract

In Seattle and other cities, recent expansions of trespass law make the regulation of public space easier and more extensive. A range of new tools allow police officials to clear spaces of those deemed undesirable; they define zones of exclusion and increase the police's power to make arrests. The use of these tools extends contemporary practices of using criminal law to address instances of urban “disorder.” We draw on data from Seattle to catalog some of these new tools, the capabilities they create, and the implications they generate. One important such implication is that they work to push undesirables so far to the margins – spatially, socially, politically, legally – as to render them far outside the body politic. The use of these techniques thus raises important questions about the advisability of addressing social problems by increasing the power of the criminal law.

Details

Special Issue New Perspectives on Crime and Criminal Justice
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-653-9

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Article

Elizabeth R. Groff, Lallen Johnson, Jerry H. Ratcliffe and Jennifer Wood

The purpose of this paper is to describe how the Philadelphia Police Department instituted a large‐scale randomized controlled trial of foot patrol as a policing strategy…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to describe how the Philadelphia Police Department instituted a large‐scale randomized controlled trial of foot patrol as a policing strategy and experienced 23 percent fewer violent crimes during the treatment period. The authors examine whether activities patrol officers were conducting might have produced the crime reduction. The activities of foot and car patrol officers research takes a closer look at what types are examined separately and differences between car patrol activities pre‐intervention and during the intervention are explored. Activities of foot versus car patrol officers during the study period are compared across treatment and control areas.

Design/methodology/approach

Official data on police officer activity are used to compare activities conducted by foot patrol officers with those by car patrol officers in 60 treatment (foot beat) and 60 control areas consisting of violent crime hot spots. Activities of car patrol officers are described pre‐intervention and during the intervention. Foot patrol officers’ activities are described within treatment and control areas during the treatment phase of the experiment. Car patrol officers’ activities are reported separately. The statistical significance of changes in car patrol activity pre and during intervention is evaluated using a series of mixed model ANOVAs.

Findings

There were noticeable differences in the activities conducted by foot and car patrol. Foot patrol officers spent most of their time initiating pedestrian stops and addressing disorder incidents, while car patrol officers handled the vast majority of reported crime incidents. Car patrol activity declined in both treatment and control areas during the intervention but there was no statistically significant difference between the treatment and the control areas.

Research limitations/implications

The major limitation of this study is the restricted set of data describing officer activity that is captured by official records. Future studies should include a more robust ethnographic component to better understand the broad spectrum of police activity in order to more effectively gauge the ways in which foot patrol and car‐based officers’ activities interact to address community safety. This understanding can help extend the literature on “co‐production” by highlighting the safety partnerships that may develop organically across individual units within a police organization.

Practical implications

The study provides evidence that individual policing strategies undertaken by agencies impact one another. When implementing and evaluating new programs, it would be beneficial for police managers and researchers to consider the impact on activities of the dominant patrol style, as necessary, to understand how a specific intervention might have achieved its goal or why it might have failed to show an effect.

Originality/value

The research contributes to the understanding of the separate and joint effects of foot and car patrol on crime. In addition, it provides police managers with a clearer picture of the ways in which foot patrol police and car‐based officers work to co‐produce community safety in violent inner‐city areas.

Details

Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, vol. 36 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

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Article

Andrew Golub, Bruce D. Johnson, Angela Taylor and John Eterno

In the 1990s, the New York City Police Department expanded its focus on reducing behaviors that detract from the overall quality of life (QOL) in the city. Many have…

Abstract

In the 1990s, the New York City Police Department expanded its focus on reducing behaviors that detract from the overall quality of life (QOL) in the city. Many have credited this effort for the decline in the city's overall crime rate. They often cite the fixing broken windows argument, which maintains that reducing disorder sets off a chain of events leading to less crime. However, systematic research has not yet documented this chain of events. Looks at one of the first linkages, whether QOL policing sends a message to offenders not to engage in disorderly behaviors in public locales. The project interviewed 539 New York City arrestees in 1999. Almost all of them were aware that police were targeting various disorderly behaviors. Among those that engaged in disorderly behaviors, about half reported that they had stopped or cut back in the past six months. They reported a police presence was the most important factor behind their behavioral changes. These findings support the idea that QOL policing has a deterrent effect.

Details

Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, vol. 26 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

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Book part

Diana Rodriguez-Spahia and Rosemary Barberet

Cities have long been of interest to international development as well as to criminology. Historically, criminology as a social science emerged as a response to…

Abstract

Cities have long been of interest to international development as well as to criminology. Historically, criminology as a social science emerged as a response to urbanisation and the new opportunities created by cities for criminal activity and victimisation. Thus, Sustainable Development Goal 11 (SDG 11), which ‘aims to make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable’, is ripe for criminological input and analysis. SDG 11 tackles housing and basic services, transport systems, urban planning, cultural and natural heritage, disaster prevention, environmental impact, and safe, inclusive, and accessible green and public spaces. There has been ample criminological research on crime and victimisation in various types of human settlements, on transport systems, on the looting and trafficking of cultural heritage, on crimes associated with natural disasters and on the importance of public leisure areas for crime prevention. Yet many of the above goals, as well as the recommendations emerging from these bodies of research, conflict with each other, and must be problematised in their aim to be inclusive of all. Women and children, the elderly and persons with disabilities are usually the reference groups for inclusion, but globally, there are many other groups, including racial and ethnic minorities, indigenous communities, and LGBTQI individuals that are commonly excluded. The chapter will analyse SDG 11 against the evidence base of urban criminology as well as the challenges for inclusion, given diversity both within-country as well as globally.

Details

The Emerald Handbook of Crime, Justice and Sustainable Development
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78769-355-5

Keywords

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