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NCJ Number: 222310 Find in a Library
Title: Impact of Situational Factors, Officer Characteristics, and Neighborhood Context on Police Behavior: A Multilevel Analysis
Journal: Journal of Criminal Justice  Volume:36  Issue:1  Dated:March/April 2008  Pages:22-32
Author(s): Ivan Y. Sun; Brian K. Payne; Yuning Wu
Date Published: March 2008
Page Count: 11
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study examined the impact of situational factors, officer characteristics, and neighborhood context on police behavior.
Abstract: Findings suggest that officers did vary statistically significantly in their coercive and noncoercive behavior even after controlling for all citizen-level situational factors. Situational characteristics played a strong role in determining officers' coercive behaviors, but not so much in explaining noncoercive activity; males, minorities, and poor citizens were more likely to be subjected to coercive activities than were females, non-minorities, and affluent citizens. Officer characteristics accounted more for officers' coercive behavior and noncoercive behavior. Overall, young, male, and the evening and night shift officers were more likely to engage in coercive activities than older, female, and a-shift officers. Community policing officers were less likely to engage in noncoercive activities then were other officers. Socially disadvantaged neighborhoods were more prone to receive coercive activities than were other neighborhoods. Police were also more inclined to perform a higher level of coercive actions against hostile citizens in neighborhoods with fewer seniors. The findings suggest three implications for crime policy: disadvantaged neighborhoods need to receive more noncoercive activities from law enforcement officers; community policing needs to be seen in an appealing way by those who are to become future community policing officers; seniors should not be stereotyped as possible noncoercive action recipients, and should be seen as in need of the same kinds of police activities as other groups. Observational and survey data from the Project on Policing Neighborhoods and from the 1990 consensus data were used for analysis. Tables, references
Main Term(s): Police community relations; Police misconduct; Public Opinion of the Police
Index Term(s): Behavior under stress; Community policing; Neighborhood; Police attitudes; Police-minority relations; Problem behavior
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