Can Probing Broken Police Departments Have Deadly Consequences?

Can Probing Broken Police Departments Have Deadly Consequences?

As activists across the United States have united behind the slogan “defund the police,” with some using that to mean shifting a share of funding to social services while others call for the elimination of policing altogether, a new study points to the danger of an abrupt or haphazard withdrawal of policing.

In a working paper released this month by Harvard economist Roland Freyer and researcher Tanaya Devi, the pair found that in five major cities where deaths of African-Americans in police-involved incidents went viral and state and federal authorities subsequently placed police departments under investigation, homicides and other forms of crime surged—with almost 900 more people murdered and 34,000 felonies committed over two years in those cities “than would have been expected.”

In an e-mail interview, Freyer stressed that he “would not call this a ‘Ferguson Effect,” a term used by then St. Louis Police Chief Sam Dotson as arrest rates plummeted and crime rates shot up in his city and across the region following the killing of Michael Brown and subsequent protests and which was later amplified by then FBI Director James Comey, who suggested that the era of social media videos of police abuse is breaking down community trust and leading to a surge of violent crime. 

Source link

Leave a comment

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!