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NCJ Number: 91098 Find in a Library
Title: Violence in the City - Empirical Bases for a Collective Working Image
Journal: Journal of Criminal Justice  Volume:11  Issue:4  Dated:(1983)  Pages:301-315
Author(s): J S Slovak
Date Published: 1983
Page Count: 15
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Many police patrol officers in Newark, New Jersey, articulate a working image of violence in the city that is similar to Louis Wirth's classical model of the effects of urban social disorganization on deviant behavior.
Abstract: In Newark, however, the working theory posits the 1967 civil disorders as a cataclysmic disorganizing event that generated ominously unique patterns of violence in the post-disorder years, compared to earlier times. Using data on violent crimes reported to the Newark police between 1940 and 1980, this article attempts to test the adequacy of that working theory as an explanation of reality. Regression techniques similar to those used by Friesma (1979) to assess natural disaster impacts are applied to three transformations of these crime data. The analysis demonstrates that the police working version of the disorganization model is more accurate as an inference from the pattern of violence that characterizes their workload than it is one from the patterns of absolute incidence of violent crime or the risk of violent victimization incurred by residents of Newark. The article closes with a discussion of the implications of these findings for the larger problem of police-citizen distance. (Author abstract)
Index Term(s): Civil disorders; New Jersey; Urban policing; Violence
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