The authors report on an impact evaluation that examined the effects of a strategic, pulling levers intervention, implemented by law enforcement officials in Rockford, Illinois, in order to address drug markets in a high-crime neighborhood.
Problem-oriented policing strategies have been regarded as promising approaches for disrupting open-air drug markets in vulnerable communities. Pulling levers deterrence interventions, which are consistent with the problem-oriented framework, have shown potential as an effective mechanism for reducing and preventing youth, gun, and gang violence. This study examines the effects of a strategic, pulling levers intervention that was implemented by law enforcement officials in Rockford, Illinois, to address drug markets in a high-crime neighborhood. The initiative builds on a similar effort developed in High Point, North Carolina, and represents an extension of pulling levers that was originally developed in Boston. The impact evaluation uses a mixed method of quantitative hierarchical growth curve models and qualitative interviews with residents. Study findings suggest that the Rockford strategy was associated with a statistically significant and substantive reduction in crime, drug, and nuisance offenses in the target neighborhood. Results from this examination have implications for both research and public policy. Publisher Abstract Provided