Press Releases

In the past decade, many law enforcement agencies have adopted the use of body-worn cameras (BWCs) to improve police conduct, accountability, and transparency, especially when it comes to using force. But it is not yet known whether BWCs actually reduce officers’ use of force. A new meta-analysis examined 30 studies of law enforcement use of […]

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Although U.S. crime rates have dropped significantly since the mid-1990s, rates of incarceration peaked in 2008, and still remain high. The standard explanation for this pattern is that all people exposed to the criminal justice system today are treated more harshly than before. A new study using 45 years of incarceration data from North Carolina […]

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Concern over the safety of students, teachers, and administrators in U.S. schools continues to grow, in part as a result of school shootings. In response, partnerships between schools and law enforcement agencies have increasingly placed school resource officers (SROs) in schools to boost security. Amid controversy over this practice, a new longitudinal study sought to […]

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Over the past 30 years, mass shootings have fueled calls for changes in gun ownership and concealed carry legislation, but few studies have evaluated whether permissive gun policies deter mass shootings, and none have determined if their effects are the same on firearms homicides. A new study examined the impact of household gun ownership and […]

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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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