skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 97357 Find in a Library
Title: Wilson's Theory of Police Behavior - A Replication of the Constraint Theory
Journal: Justice Quarterly  Volume:2  Issue:1  Dated:(March 1985)  Pages:89-98
Author(s): R H Langworthy
Date Published: 1985
Page Count: 10
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This paper reexamines James Q. Wilson's theory that police behavior is constrained by political culture.
Abstract: Using 1975 FBI arrest data and data published in the International City Management Association's Municipal Yearbook, Wilson's test of his theory is replicated. In addition to comparing mean arrest rates, attention is paid to intercity arrest rate variability. Although the comparison of mean arrest rates confirms Wilson's empirical findings, examination of variability indicates that Wilson's theory is a theory of central tendency, not a theory of constraints. Two references are listed. (Author abstract modified)
Index Term(s): Accountability; Police discretion; Political influences
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.