Press Releases

Washington State legalized cannabis sales to adults in 2012, the first U.S. state to do so. Yet little is known about how police, who are on the front lines of implementing the law, experience legalization. A new study evaluated the effects of legalizing cannabis on police officers’ law enforcement efforts in Washington. The study found […]

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The Ferguson Effect is the idea that increased public criticism and distrust of police following the 2014 shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, lowered police moral, which caused officers to withdraw from proactive policing and boosted the crime rate in major U.S. cities. A new longitudinal study examined whether this effect was real. The […]

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In the last decade, thousands have been killed or injured as a result of mass violence in the United States. Such acts take many forms, including family massacres, terrorist attacks, shootings, and gang violence. Yet it is indiscriminate mass public shootings, often directed at strangers, that has generated the most public alarm. Now, 41 scholars […]

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Prison gangs exploded onto the scene across the United States in the 1980s. While there is much speculation about these gangs, little research has been done to learn how they are organized and governed, who joins them, if people can leave them, and how gang membership affects people who are recently released from prison. A […]

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In 2014, Colorado began selling recreational cannabis to people older than 21, becoming the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. A new study evaluated the effect of recreational and medical marijuana dispensaries on crime in Denver. The study found that street segments with recreational dispensaries saw no changes in violent, disorder, and drug crime, but […]

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Research suggests that certain attributes of cities that are tourist destinations, especially cities near heavily trafficked attractions, may increase the risk of property crime and violence. By examining crime patterns near Universal Studios Florida, a new study found that the location of the theme park was associated with an uneven distribution of crime in Orlando, […]

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Eleven states and the District of Columbia have legalized marijuana. A new study funded by a grant from the National Institute of Justice sought to determine the effect of this legal change on crimes rates. The study, which looked at legalization and sales of recreational cannabis in Colorado and Washington, found minimal to no effect […]

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Prior research has shown that immigrants have lower rates of offending, arrest, and incarceration than nonimmigrants. However, that work hasn’t examined whether this holds true for recidivism. A new study compared recidivism rates of foreign-born and native-born individuals formerly incarcerated for felonies and released from prisons in Florida. It found that immigrants are significantly less […]

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Police are increasingly called on to combat crimes related to sex and labor trafficking. A new study sought to determine how the victims of these crimes are served by police. Based on researchers’ review of human trafficking investigations and interviews with police and service providers in three communities in Northeast, West, and South United States, […]

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About 3.5 million students are suspended each year, and school punishment has been tied to a variety of negative outcomes. A new study took a longitudinal look at how school suspensions are related to offending behaviors that include assault, stealing, and selling drugs. It found that rather than decreasing subsequent offending, school suspensions increase this […]

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