Police Journal: Theory, Practice and Principles

Sage Publications, Inc.
Publication date:

Latest documents

  • How satisfied are siblings of homicide victims with police?

    Police personnel and services may have a tremendous impact on the psychological well-being of siblings who become victims of the murder of a brother or sister. Despite this, only one study has examined satisfaction with police from the perspective of siblings. The current study helps correct this paucity of research by studying a sample of 67 siblings aged 6–40 (M = 20.4) years when a sibling was murdered. Satisfaction with police contact and service were quantitatively and qualitatively explored. Overall, almost 60% of the participants indicated satisfaction. Participants were satisfied when police were beacons of humanity and committed to justice.

  • A historical examination of police firearms

    This study provides a historical examination of firearms in policing to understand how weapons have evolved within the American field. A search was conducted of historical newspaper databases and a small number of books and journal articles for information on the different firearms used in policing since their inception. The evidence demonstrates that US police officers have been using revolvers since the Civil War, but there were no agency standards until the late 19th century. The notion of ‘risk’ has been a consistent justification for arming police officers, including their possession of semiautomatic pistols, shotguns, and rifles.

  • Community police academies: Assessing the effect of education on public perceptions of police

    Citizens often have misconceptions about law enforcement. This misinformation may contribute to distrust and heightened concerns about force and misconduct. Agencies attempt to address this by promoting procedural justice and providing community education on police practices. Thus far, past research has not been clear on the actual utility of community education on changing public perceptions. Recent funding has allowed one department to host 14 one-day community police academies (CPAs) to educate residents about policing topics to enhance trust and improve public perceptions of the department. The current project analyzes data collected CPA events to determine the effects on citizen knowledge of police procedures and the effect of this knowledge on attitudes toward the police. Results indicate that while CPAs were effective at educating citizens about practices and improving trust in law enforcement, the increased knowledge was not associated with improvements to public trust. The knowledge obtained at the CPA was, however, predictive of lower concerns about use of force. Implications and directions for future research are discussed.

  • Why policing the risk society became a footnote in American police studies: A missed opportunity to move police theorizing forward

    Written in 1997, Ericson and Haggerty’s book Policing the Risk Society (PRS) should have had profound effects on police theorizing and research in the United States. In this article, we attempt to explain why this book failed to gain traction within the American policing literature. We argue that PRS was ignored for three reasons: (1) incommensurable theoretical frameworks, (2) timing and aim of the book’s publication, and (3) the intrusiveness of deductive surveillance technologies in the policing of identities. We conclude by discussing how Ericson and Haggerty’s theorizing should be revisited in the light of recent developments in policing.

  • Injuries and deaths proximate to oleoresin capsicum spray deployment: A literature review

    This literature review assessed research related to injuries and deaths proximate to oleoresin capsicum (OC) spray deployment. Our review of 22 relevant documents suggests that OC spray is often effective and is typically associated with decreased odds of both subject and “deployer” injury. When OC-associated injuries do occur, they consistently appear to be relatively minor. When OC spray is used proximate to a subject’s death, common themes are present. Given the limitations of the research in this area, one must be cautious when speaking to the nature of the relationship between OC spray and injuries or deaths.

  • Using problem-oriented policing to address police problems through the study of body-worn camera footage

    Herman Goldstein’s concept of ‘problem-oriented policing’ (POP) emphasized data gathering, analytics, and pattern identification to allow police to more effectively address problems faced by citizens in their communities. One of the most pressing problems in modern policing, however, is how departments should respond to accusations that police are not fair and consistent in their dealings with the public. In this article, the research team examined 1 year of officer body-worn camera footage, to create a roadmap of how the scanning, analysis, response, and assessment method of POP can be utilized to address public concerns by assessing and addressing how police interact with the public.

  • Are campus police ‘real’ police? Students’ perceptions of campus versus municipal police

    Campus police (CP) actively enforce across US universities. Yet the public questions whether they are ‘real’ police, like municipal police (MP). Research finds students perceive CP and MP differently, generally holding the former in lower regard. However, little is known about exactly how students view CP as different from and similar to MP. This article addresses that gap by analyzing qualitative data from 73 university students. Participants perceive CP and MP as varying in training, powers, resources, sanction severity, and danger. The article concludes by discussing broader implications, including how comparing CP to MP can improve research, theory, and policing.

  • Exploring the role of the British Transport Police in responding to ‘County Lines’ drug markets: Enforcement and safeguarding perspectives

    This article considers ‘County Lines’ drug markets, specifically in the context of the interventions available to the British Transport Police to deal with this damaging criminal modality. Further, this article identifies the active role the organisation is playing in protecting the interests of vulnerable people. Through a review of contemporary literature and a qualitative empirical study involving influential practitioners in the field, this article identifies that encouraging steps are being taken to deal with this complex problem and that the sharing of information between agencies remains one of the key challenges to overcome.

  • Identifying well-being challenges and solutions in the police service: A World Café approach

    Police work presents risks to mental and physical health for officers and civilian staff. We report a project using an innovative method that involved police employees in identifying well-being challenges and potential solutions. We facilitated ‘World Café’ events in which approximately 180 officers and civilian staff participated. Qualitative data were collected and thematically analysed drawing upon the Job Demands-Resources model. We developed themes relating to workload, management practices, occupational health processes, and continuing mental health stigma. Our analyses suggest an environment in which resources are insufficient to meet demands and the resulting pressures may contribute to management behaviours that can impair subordinate well-being.

  • Police officers’ definitions and understandings of intimate partner violence in New Brunswick, Canada

    Police agencies have an important role to play in responding to intimate partner violence (IPV) situations. The objective of our study was to examine how police officers define IPV and to circumscribe police officers’ attitudes about the issue. This study examined results from a survey conducted with police officers (N = 169) in the province of New Brunswick. A major implication of our study points toward education and training as a necessary passage to more efficient intervention as perceptions are not enough to make an informed decision about IPV situations.

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