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NCJ Number: 160094 Find in a Library
Title: Edge of the Knife: Police Violence in the Americas
Author(s): P Chevigny
Date Published: 1995
Page Count: 333
Sponsoring Agency: W. W. Norton & Company, Inc.
New York, NY 10010
Publication Number: ISBN 1-56584-183-2
Sale Source: W. W. Norton & Company, Inc.
500 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10010
United States of America
Type: Issue Overview
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This investigation of police violence and accountability in the United States, Latin America, and the Caribbean examines the police use of torture, deadly force, and less severe forms of violence in six major urban centers in the Americas: New York City, Los Angeles, Kingston, Sao Paulo, Buenos Aires, and Mexico City.
Abstract: The author identifies the sources of official violence and ways of controlling it. He compares military and community models of policing and their impacts on violent police behavior, as well as the connection between police violence and official corruption. The book analyzes the effectiveness of criminal and civil courts, civic administrations, civilian review boards, internal controls, external auditors, and pressure from international human rights organizations in deterring police violence. The author argues that the way in which criminal matters are patrolled and investigated is reproduced in the city's social order. When citizens have little confidence in their government and do not participate in it or look to it for protection, they turn to violent self-help. When their sense of powerlessness combines with an increased fear of crime, they are more willing to lend their public support to extra-legal violence by the police. Conversely, persistent government action against crime, including accountability for police violence, discourages vigilantism as well as official violence. 338 notes and a subject index
Main Term(s): Police Brutality
Index Term(s): Abuse of authority; Accountability; Corruption of public officials; Foreign police; Latin America; Police corruption; Police misconduct; United States of America; West Indies
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