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NCJ Number: NCJ 218583     Find in a Library
Title: Police Accountability: Current Issues and Research Needs
  Document URL: PDF 
Author(s): Samuel Walker
Date Published: 11/2006
Page Count: 36
  Annotation: This paper examines the social science literature on police accountability procedures related to the conduct of individual officers and whether there is reliable evidence that accountability procedures are effective.
Abstract: Accountability is a vital element of American policing. Both individual officers and law enforcement agencies should be held to account for their actions. Effective accountability procedures are essential if the police are to achieve their goals of lawfulness and legitimacy. Holding individual police officers accountable for their conduct is an essential element of policing. It is both directly and indirectly related to achieving the basic goals of policing: reducing crime and disorder, enhancing the quality of neighborhood life, and providing fair, respectful, and equal treatment for all people. The state of our knowledge about both traditional and new accountability mechanisms is very limited. In many instances, basic descriptive data on current practices are not found. With respect to effectiveness, in only a few instances does the existing literature meet the standards of evidence-based policymaking. The research needs identified, which are enormous, have direct implications for police policy. This paper conducts a literature review on police accountability and examines a select set of accountability procedures. References
Main Term(s): Accountability
Index Term(s): Police responsibilities ; Police discretion ; Police legal limitations ; Negligence ; Literature reviews ; Police policies and procedures ; Police-citizen interactions ; NIJ grant-related documents
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice (NIJ)
US Department of Justice
Office of Justice Programs
United States of America
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/NCJRS
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America
Type: Literature Review
Country: United States of America
Language: English
Note: This paper was presented at the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) Policing Research Workshop: Planning for the Future, Washington, DC, November 28-29, 2006.
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