Descriptive and analytical, the text is designed to offer undergraduate students a balanced and up-to-date overview of who the police are and what they do, the problems related to policing, and the many reforms and innovations that have been attempted. Divided into four parts, The Police in America begins with a compelling analysis of the foundation of law enforcement, including the underlying purpose of police in society, the history of American police, as well as the contemporary law enforcement industry. It goes on to cover everything from the critical role of the beat cop and the fundamental problems in policing to the career path of police officers and a level-by-level overview of police organizations. Using timely articles and excerpts, the author takes readers beyond the headlines and statistics, to present a comprehensive and contemporary overview of what it means to be a police officer. The book is designed primarily for undergraduate students enrolled in their first course on the police or law enforcement. It is not a police management text, or a book on criminal procedure.
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Samuel Walker is a professor of Criminal Justice at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. He teaches an undergraduate course, Police and Society, for which this book is designed, a graduate course on the administration of public justice, and other courses. He is the author of nine books on the police, the history of criminal justice, criminal justice policy, and civil liberties. His primary research interests involve citizen complaints against the police and citizen complaint review procedures. In 1998 he was awarded the Bruce Smith Award by the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS).
Charles M. Katz is an assistant professor in the Administration of Justice Department at Arizona State University West. He currently serves as the director of the department’s graduate program. Katz earned his Ph.D. in Criminal Justice from the University of Nebraska at Omaha in 1997. He is currently involved in two studies examining responses to community gang problems. He is the project director for a National Institute of Justice study of the police response to gangs in four sites: Phoenix, Albuquerque, Las Vegas, and Inglewood (California). In addition, he is working with the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention and the City of Mesa (Arizona) to evaluate the effectiveness of the Mesa Gang Intervention Project. His publications include numerous articles on community policing, policing gangs, and drugs and crime.
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