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Could Innovations in Policing Have Contributed to the New York City Crime Drop Even in a Period of Declining Police Strength?: The Case of Stop, Question and Frisk as a Hot Spots Policing Strategy

NCJ Number
244779
Journal
Justice Quarterly Volume: 31 Issue: 1 Dated: February 2014 Pages: 129-153
Author(s)
David Weisburd; Cody W. Telep; Brian A. Lawton
Date Published
February 2014
Length
25 pages
Annotation
This study examined whether innovations implemented in New York fit with what is known about effective policing strategies.
Abstract
Available data make it impossible to reach strong conclusions about the role of policing in the New York crime decline. Instead, the authors examine whether innovations implemented in New York fit with what is known about effective policing strategies. The main analysis focuses on how the New York City Police Department (NYPD) could have continued to contribute to the crime drop over the last decade when the number of police declined significantly. The authors examine geographic data on crime and stop, question and frisks (SQFs) to show that SQFs are concentrated at crime hot spots. The authors also show that the NYPD increased these specific hot spots policing strategies despite declining numbers. In this discussion, the authors speculate on whether this "doing more with less" could be an explanation for the continued crime drop in New York, noting the limitations of drawing conclusions from existing data. The authors also raise concerns about possible backfire effects of SQF hot spots approaches. Abstract published by arrangement with Taylor and Francis.