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Over the last three decades American policing has gone through a period of significant change and innovation. In what is a relatively short historical time frame the police began to reconsider their fundamental mission, the nature of the core strategies of policing, and the character of their relationships with the communities that they serve. This volume brings together leading police scholars to examine eight major innovations which emerged during this period: community policing, broken windows policing, problem oriented policing, pulling levers policing, third party policing, hot spots policing, Compstat and evidence-based policing. Including advocates and critics of each of the eight police innovations, this comprehensive book assesses the evidence on impacts of police innovation on crime and public safety, the extent of the implementation of these new approaches in police departments, and the dilemmas these approaches have created for police management. This book will appeal to students, scholars and researchers.
In recent years, crime scholars and practitioners have pointed to the potential benefits of focusing crime prevention efforts on crime places. A number of studies suggest that crime is not spread evenly across city landscapes. Rather, there is significant clustering of crime in small places, or "hot spots," that generate a vastly disproportionate number of criminal events. Even within the most crime-ridden neighborhoods, crime clusters at a few discrete locations and other areas are relatively crime free. A number of researchers have argued that many crime problems can be addressed more efficiently if police officers focus their attention on these deviant places. The appeal of focusing limited resources on a small number of high-activity crime places is straightforward. If crime can be prevented at these problem places, then police will be well positioned to lower citywide crime rates. In Policing Problem Places, Anthony A. Braga and David L. Weisburd make the case that hotspots policing is an effective approach to crime prevention that should be engaged by police departments in the United States and other countries. There is a strong and growing body of rigorous scientific evidence that the police can control crime hot spots without simply displacing crime problems to other places. Indeed, putting police officers in high crime locations is an old and well-established idea. However, the age and popularity of this idea does not necessarily mean that it is being done properly. Police officers should strive to use problem-oriented policing and situational crime prevention techniques to address the place dynamics, situations, and characteristics that cause a "spot" to be "hot." Braga and Weisburd further suggest that the strategies used to police problem places can have more or less desirable effects on police-community relations. Particularly in minority neighborhoods where residents have long suffered from elevated crime problems and historically poorpolice service, police officers should make an effort to develop positive and collaborative relationships with residents and not engage strategies that will undermine the legitimacy of police agencies, such as indiscriminant enforcement tactics. This book argues that it is time for police departments to shift away from a focus on catching criminal offenders and move towards dealing with crime at problem places as a central crime prevention strategy.
Case studies highlight new approaches to urban police work that can offer hope for better crime control and an improved quality of life
An insider view of an urban subculture! While much of the literature on police analyzes critically what they do, few works address issues of how police officers feel about their chosen profession, their worldview, or their visions. This refreshingly original and unique ethnographic contribution by anthropologist Joan Barker exposes the human elementone rarely seen by non-policeof officers working for the often-controversial L.A.P.D. During her twenty years of fieldwork, Barker gathered valuable information through formal, in-depth interviews and firsthand experiences, distilling her findings into an illuminating, coherent account. She discovers that five phases of occupational socialization normatively mold officers experiences and perceptions. Fleshing out her discussion is the compelling narrative of Fred, a traditional officer whose authentic voice reveals feelings and attitudes that manifest the essence of the human who does the job of policing. An insider view of an urban subculture usually known only from its public presentation.
"That relatively few criminal cases in this country are resolved by full Perry Mason-style strials is fairly common knowledge. Most cases are settled by a guilty plea after some form of negotiation over the charge or sentence. But why? The standard explanation is case pressure: the enormous volume of criminal cases, to be processed with limited staff, time and resources. . . . But a large body of new empirical research now demands that we re-examine plea negotiation. Milton Heumann's book, Plea Bargaining, strongly and explicitly attacks the case-pressure argument and suggests an alternative explanation for plea bargaining based on the adaptation of attorneys and judges to the local criminal court. The book is a significant and welcome addition to the literature. Heumann's investigation of case pressure and plea negotiation demonstrates solid research and careful analysis."—Michigan Law Review
Whatever happened to community and problem-oriented policing? How the current crisis in policing can be traced to failures of reform. The police shooting of an unarmed young black man in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson, Missouri, in August 2014 sparked riots and the beginning of a national conversation on race and policing. Much of the ensuing discussion has focused on the persistence of racial disparities and the extraordinarily high rate at which American police kill civilians (an average of roughly three per day). Malcolm Sparrow, who teaches at Harvard’s Kennedy School and is a former British police detective, argues that other factors in the development of police theory and practice over the last twenty-five years have also played a major role in contributing to these tragedies and to a great many other cases involving excessive police force and community alienation. Sparrow shows how the core ideas of community and problem-solving policing have failed to thrive. In many police departments these foundational ideas have been reduced to mere rhetoric. The result is heavy reliance on narrow quantitative metrics, where police define how well they are doing by tallying up traffic tickets issued (Ferguson), or arrests made for petty crimes (in New York). Sparrow’s analysis shows what it will take for police departments to escape their narrow focus and perverse metrics and turn back to making public safety and public cooperation their primary goals. Police, according to Sparrow, are in the risk-control business and need to grasp the fundamental nature of that challenge and develop a much more sophisticated understanding of its implications for mission, methods, measurement, partnerships, and analysis.

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