The Impact of Community Policing Practices and Policies on Citizen's Attitudes and Perceptions

Kristen Scully, Florida State University
Ted Chiricos, Florida State University

Among the putative goals of community policing is the creation of a more positive relationship between police and community residents as well as an improvement in the sense of public safety experienced by those residents. The present study examines which Community Policing practices and policies impact attitudes toward law enforcement, quality of life, risk of victimization and perceived safety the most. We use interviews with agency heads (chiefs and sheriffs) from 325 law enforcement departments in Florida to assess the extent to which 44 specific community policing practices and policies have been implemented and are considered important to the agency. We use interviews with 4,000 Florida citizens to determine which law enforcement agency they most closely identify with. This link of individual citizen with a particular agency is the basis of a HLM analyses which examines which practices and policies are most influential in individual's attitudes and perceptions. We do the estimates separately for agencies of different size and in places wiht different levels of crime.

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Updated 05/20/2006