Welcome! This guide will serve as a starting point for Shippensburg University students wishing to conduct research on various aspects of the national debate over police and police tactics. You will find sources that introduce you to your topic and keep you up-to-date with links to news articles, research websites, journal articles, and research reports concerning police and police tactics.
Main Term(s): police, law enforcement Related Terms: collective behavior, criminal justice personnel Broader Terms: criminal procedure, criminology Narrower Terms: arrest (police methods), community policing, police reform, police shootings, police brutality, racial profiling
The Oxford Handbook of Ethnicity, Crime, and Immigration by Ed. by Sandra M. Bucerius and Michael Tonry
Publication Date: New York: Oxford University Press, 2013
This handbook provides a comprehensive analyses of current knowledge about race, ethnicity, crime and immigration. It is organized in two main sections, the first on race, ethnicity and crime and the second section on ethnicity, immigration, and crime. Each section has two parts, with the first covering the U.S. and the second a variety of different countries. In the U.S. part of the first section, essays cover many key topics such as policing, disparate sentencing, and drugs. The U.S. section on immigration includes essays on politics, crime by immigrants, and children, among others. Both international parts have relevanat overview articles on a variety of countries. A group of case studies are also included in each of the four parts.
Profiling and Criminal Justice in America: A Reference Handbook (2nd ed.) by Jeffrey B. Bumgarner
Publication Date: 2014
This reference work provides a comprehensive overview to profiling in the criminal justice system with extensive bibliographic citations throughout.
Books and Ebooks
Investigative Ethics: Ethics for Police Detectives and Criminal Investigators by Seumas Miller and Ian A. Gordon
Publication Date: West Sussex, UK: Wiley, 2014
Investigative Ethics: Ethics for Police Detectives and Criminal Investigators presents applied philosophical analyses of the ethical issues that arise for police detectives and other investigators in contemporary society. Explores ethical issues relating to investigative independence, rights of victims and suspects, use of informants, entrapment, privacy and surveillance, undercover operations, deception, and suspect interviewing Represents the first monograph providing a detailed consideration of ethical issues in police investigations Features authorship by an applied philosopher specializing in police ethics, and a former UK senior police officer Combined authorship ensures the text is anchored in actual police practice as well as providing high quality ethical analysis
Twentieth-Century Influences on Twenty-First-Century Policing by Jonathon A. Cooper
Events in the United States during the 1950s, '60s, and '70s created tectonic shifts in how the police operated. This was especially true in terms of their relationship with society. These events included, among others: the due process revolution, which guided how police were to do their job; social science research that called into question that efficacy of the professional policing model; and race riots against police activity, which were the result of poor police-minority community relations. This book outlines these (and other) changes, explores their implications for the relationship between society and the police, and suggests that a knowledge of these changes is imperative to understanding trends in contemporary policing as well as the direction policing needs to take. As policing becomes more technologically savvy and scientific in its approach to fighting crime (for example, the SMART Policing Initiative, COMPSTAT, and problem oriented approaches such as Project Safe Neighborhoods) in a time when governments are faced with austerity, it is important to reconsider how policing got to the point it is so that, as police and governments move forward, constitutional guarantees are protected, communication with citizens remain viable and salient, and crime prevention becomes an empirical reality rather than a pipe-dream.
Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption by Bryan Stevenson
Call Number: Essential Read
Publication Date: New York: Spiegel & Grau, 2014
A powerful true story about the potential for mercy to redeem us, and a clarion call to fix our broken system of justice. Bryan Stevenson was a young lawyer when he founded the Equal Justice Initiative, a legal practice dedicated to defending those most desperate and in need: the poor, the wrongly condemned, and women and children trapped in the farthest reaches of our criminal justice system. One of his first cases was that of Walter McMillian, a young man who was sentenced to die for a notorious murder he insisted he didn't commit. The case drew Bryan into a tangle of conspiracy, political machination, and legal brinksmanship--and transformed his understanding of mercy and justice forever. Just Mercy is at once an unforgettable account of an idealistic, gifted young lawyer's coming of age, a moving window into the lives of those he has defended, and an inspiring argument for compassion in the pursuit of true justice.
Convicting the Innocent: Where Criminal Prosecutions Go Wrong by Brandon L. Garrett
Publication Date: Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2011
In this unsettling in-depth analysis, Brandon Garrett examines what went wrong in the cases of the first 250 wrongfully convicted people to be exonerated by DNA testing. Based on trial transcripts, Garrett's investigation into the causes of wrongful convictions reveals larger patterns of incompetence, abuse, and error. Evidence corrupted by suggestive eyewitness procedures, coercive interrogations, unsound and unreliable forensics, shoddy investigative practices, cognitive bias, and poor lawyering illustrates the weaknesses built into our current criminal justice system. Garrett proposes practical reforms that rely more on documented, recorded, and audited evidence, and less on fallible human memory.
Racism and Specific Police Departments
Occupied Territory: Policing Black Chicago from Red Summer to Black Power by Simon Balto
Publication Date: Chapel Hill : The University of North Carolina Press, 2019
In this history of Chicago from the 1919 Red Summer riot to the rise and fall of Black Power in the 1960s and 1970s, Simon Balto narrates the evolution of racially repressive policing in black neighborhoods as well as how black citizen-activists challenged that repression. Balto demonstrates that punitive practices by and inadequate protection from the police were central to black Chicagoans' lives long before the late-century "wars" on crime and drugs. By exploring the deeper origins of this toxic system, Balto reveals how modern mass incarceration, built upon racialized police practices, emerged as a fully formed machine of profoundly antiblack subjugation.
Policing Los Angeles: Race, Resistance, and the Rise of the LAPD by Max Felker-Kantor
Publication Date: Chapel Hill : The University of North Carolina Press, 2018
In Policing Los Angeles, Max Felker-Kantor narrates the dynamic history of policing, anti-police abuse movements, race, and politics in Los Angeles from the 1965 Watts uprising to the 1992 Los Angeles rebellion. Using the explosions of two large-scale uprisings in Los Angeles as bookends, Felker-Kantor highlights the racism at the heart of the city's expansive police power through a range of previously unused and rare archival sources. His book is a gripping and timely account of the transformation in police power, the convergence of interests in support of law and order policies, and African American and Mexican American resistance to police violence after the Watts uprising.
Race, Police, and the Making of a Political Identity: Mexican Americans and the Los Angeles Police Department, 1900-1945 by Edward J. Escobar
Publication Date: Berkeley : University of California Press, 1999
In this study, Edward J. Escobar examines the history of the relationship between the Los Angeles Police Department and the Mexican American community from the turn of the century to the era of the Zoot Suit Riots. Escobar shows the changes in the way police viewed Mexican Americans, increasingly characterizing them as a criminal element, and the corresponding assumption on the part of Mexican Americans that the police were a threat to their community. The broader implications of this relationship are, as Escobar demonstrates, the significance of the role of the police in suppressing labor unrest, the growing connection between ideas about race and criminality, changing public perceptions about Mexican Americans, and the rise of Mexican American political activism.
Police, Power, and the Production of Racial Boundaries by Ana Muñiz
Publication Date: New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 2015
Based on five years of ethnography, archival research, census data analysis, and interviews, Police, Power, and the Production of Racial Boundaries reveals how the Los Angeles Police Department, city prosecutors, and business owners struggled to control who should be considered "dangerous" and how they should be policed. Sociologist Ana Muniz shows how these influential groups used policies and everyday procedures to criminalize behaviors commonly associated with blacks and Latinos and to promote an exceedingly aggressive form of policing. Muniz describes the fight over two very different methods of policing: community policing (in which the police and the community work together) and the "broken windows" or "zero tolerance" approach (which aggressively polices minor infractions--such as loitering--to deter more serious crime).
Founded in 1976 as a nonprofit organization, the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) is a police research and policy organization and a provider of management services, technical assistance, and executive-level education to support law enforcement agencies. Consult the online library for free publications on many policing issues.
A major non-profit group advocating the end of police violence. They have a comprehensive 10 point plan featuring a very dedicated to advancing the policing profession through advocacy, research, outreach, and education in order to provide for safer communities worldwide, which includes a helpful resource list of links to article and about each of the 10 policy recommendations.
This organization's mission "is to serve as a leader, alongside diverse coalitions, in identifying and reforming flaws and inequities in the criminal justice system, and redressing systemic racism, and ensuring that its members and others in the criminal defense bar are fully equipped to serve all accused persons at the highest level." -- website. Some of its relevant priority areas include: overcrimiinalization, racial disparity, and recording interrogations.
This library database serves as a search engine to search most library databases at the same time, including magazine and journal databases, e-book collections, and the library catalog. News databases are not included in a comprehensive way. Supplement this with direct searching of ProQuest Newstand and Lexis Nexis Academic. Search results default to items that the library owns, either in online or print format. Remove the "Available in Library Collection" limiter to retrieve items available through interlibrary loan.
Academic Search Complete is our most important general database. covering all subject areas. It is useful for research in all classes, as it includes 26+ million newspaper, magazine, and journal articles, with 50% of these immediately available in full-text.
Access from on campus or off campus with Ship ID.
Contents indexed in Ship Library Discovery Search.
One of the most comprehensive news databases in the world, ProQuest Global Newstream includes access to over 3000 news sources, including 2,200 newspapers, as well as blogs, podcasts, websites and news wire feeds worldwide.
Development note - alt link use stats: (91 total hits, 33 since 7/2012 -- 10 /2012)
This library database is one of the world's largest full-text databases, including very extensive news, legal, and business information. Along with ProQuest Newstand, it is our primary source of news information.
Covers scholarly publications in sociology, social work, criminal justice, and related fields. Contains >2.5 million articles and other materials (70% in full text) with deep coverage from 1960 and some back to 1882.
Library database that covers the most important and controversial issues of the day. Contains the full text of CQ Researcher, a weekly publication. Each issue provides a comprehensive overview and background essay, data tables and graphs, chronology, pro-con starter, and list of major research and advocacy groups. Includes extensive lists of sources and hot-linked footnotes throughout.
Access from on campus or off campus with Ship ID.
Quality Web Sources
High Quality Web Source Finder
Use this search tool to find high quality web sources for your research. You can limit by In-Depth Journalism, Newpaper Topic Guides, Science News, CRS (Congressional Research Service) Reports, and Web Directories. Please Note: Several ads will appear first in the results list.
ProPublica is a freely available website produced by a major online non-profit news organization dedicated to in-depth investigative reporting about current issues in the public interest. ProPublica features two kinds of reporting: Investigations, which include a series of in-depth articles about a topic (often between 15 and 30 articles - major topics range from dozens to 100+ articles). MuckReads are shorter reports featuring investigative journalism from other news agencies. Major areas of interest include, among others: healthcare and the health industry, fracking, censorship, money and politics, and financial and economic issues.
Reveal is a freely available website and the online media platform for the Center for Investigative Journalism, a major online non-profit news organization, founded in 1977, and dedicated to in-depth investigative reporting about current issues in the public interest. They publish series of investigative reports on a topic (typically between 10 and 20). Major areas of coverage include: criminal justice, the environment, guns, health care, labor and employment, national security, religion, surveillance and privacy, and veterans.
The Center for Public Integrity is a freely available website produced by a major online non-profit news organization dedicated to in-depth investigative reporting about current issues in the public interest, with a special focus on accountability and fairness, especially in terms of the role and influence of money. Topics featured include politics and elections, national security business, the environment, juvenile justice and health.
NPR is one of the most important freely-available sources of investigative journalism. It includes excellent topical pages but these are not easily browseable on the website. Use the High Quality Web Source Finder search box to locate the topical pages for your issue.
This very high quality web site, located at Harvard's Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy and sponsored by leading academic journalism programs, guides journalists and other researchers to find scholarly sources related to many of the most important topics in the news. Whenever the source is not available in full-text, use the discovery layer or library A-Z journal list to get library access to the article or to order it on interlibrary loan.
Newspaper Topic Guides
A number of important national newspapers have topic or issue sections of their website that bring together all the paper's articles on particular topics. The leading example of this is "Times Topics" from the New York Times. Each topic guide/section has a search tool that lets you refine your search.
Unfortunately, these sections are often not easy to browse or locate on the newspaper websites. Use the "High Quality Web Source Finder" search box above to search for your topic. Then choose the Newspaper Topic Guides tab to look for these in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and Chicago Tribune. If you should hit a pay wall when browsing these newspapers, simply search for articles from any of these three papers using the ProQuest Newstand library database.
Congressional Research Service Reports (CRS Reports)
The Congressional Research Service (CRS) is the public policy research division of Congress. It issues detailed research reports on a very wide range of issues. CRS doesn't maintain its own website, but its reports are available through several organizations and libraries.
The University of North Texas maintains a freely available digital library collection of Congressional Research Service reports, with the goal "to provide integrated, searchable access to many of the full-text CRS reports that have been available at a variety of different web sites since 1990" -- website. Best search tool for finding CRS reports. Update holdings of specific reports through the Federation of American Scientists or through a web search on the name of a report.
This freely available website produced by the Vanderbilt University Libraries provides an alphabetical topical directory to important websites on some 50 current issues. These guide pages typically include sections for these kinds of web resources: Basic Sites, Government, International, News, Statistics, Interest Groups and Research Centers and Other Educational Sites.