Phil Stinson and Steve Brewer recently presented the research project’s current findings at the American Society of Criminology conference in Atlanta, Georgia. Their presentation was recorded and is available as an mp3 audio file on iTunes.
A research study on crime by policewomen forthcoming in the journal Police Practice and Research has been prepublished and is available online. The article, An Exploration of Crime by Policewomen, is co-authored by Phil Stinson of Bowling Green State University, Natalie Todak of Arizona State University, and Mary Dodge of the University of Colorado Denver. Findings of the study indicate differences exist between crimes committed by policemen and policewomen, as well as by policewomen and women in general. Crime by policewomen is most often profit-motivated. Policewomen had fewer years of service and lower ranks, committed less violent crimes, and were more likely to receive suspensions for off-duty crimes compared to their male peers.
An article entitled A Study of Drug Corruption Arrests was published in the September 2013 issue of Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies and Management. In this study, Phil Stinson and John Liederbach collaborated with Steve Brewer, Hans Schmalzried, Brooke Mathna, and Krista Long. The purpose of the study is to provide empirical data on cases of drug-related police corruption. It identifies and describes incidents in which police officers were arrested for criminal offenses associated with drug-related corruption. Data were analyzed on 221 drug-related arrest cases of officers employed by police agencies throughout the USA. Findings show that drug-related corruption involves a wide range of criminal offenses, and that cocaine is the most prevalent drug. Older officers and those employed by large agencies are less likely than others to lose their jobs after a drug-related arrest.
The purpose of the research project is to promote police integrity by gaining a better understanding of police crime and agency responses to officer arrests. The study provides a wealth of data on a phenomena that relates directly to police integrity—data that police executives have not previously had access to because this information did not exist in any useable format.
In the previous reporting period we substantially completed tasks 1-6 100% complete, task 7 was 15% complete, and task 11 was ongoing. We have since revised the project timeline on July 3, 2013, in conjunction with filing a request for a one-time six-month no-cost extension. Under the revised project timeline, tasks 1-4 are 100% complete, task 5 is 95% complete, task 6 is 75% complete, task 7 is 86.5% complete, task 10 is 82% complete, task 11 is ongoing, and task 12 is 15% complete. Tasks 8, 9, 13, 14, 15, and 16 have not yet been undertaken
As of the close of business on June 30, 2013, a total of 8,154 police crime arrest cases involving 6,853 individual officers have been logged in our integrated relational and digital imaging database. The arrested officers were employed by 2,903 nonfederal law enforcement agencies, in 1,339 counties and independent cities in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Of these, 6,658 cases involve 5,552 individual officers arrested for one or more crimes during the time period of January 1, 2005, through December 31, 2011 (1,073 arrest cases logged in were for officers arrested during the year 2012, and 423 arrest cases logged in were for officers arrested during 2013). Prior to January 1, 2013, there were 7,383 police crime arrest cases (involving 6,317 individual sworn law enforcement officers) that had previously been logged in our database. Thus, during this reporting period we added 771 new police crime arrest cases and 536 more sworn officers to our database (including 221 new cases involving 72 individual officers who were arrested during the years 2005-2011). In sum, during this reporting period, we expanded our database of known police crime arrest cases by 9.4% overall (an increase of 3.3% for the study years 2005-2011 arrest cases).
We continue to make enhancements to our project database, which utilizes an enterprise-level content management system, OnBase. Our project database now includes fully integrated digital imaging database with full-text OCR search capabilities, relational database, and video file database libraries. The integrated relational and digital imaging database includes electronic case log-in procedures and allows us to structure and search data in different ways for content analyses. During this reporting period we continued software integration with the project database. We deployed a PC-based on-screen coding instrument using customized IBM/SPSS Data Collection/Data Entry Author/Interviewer modules. The new coding instrument system pulls information from the relational database into the coding instrument for each case to be coded, thus reducing coder duplication of effort and potential for coding errors. Beta testing and training on the IBM/SPSS coding instrument modules was completed in February 2013, and the product was fully deployed in March 2013. We also added a news media video file library database, and deployed a customized video document import processor (DIP) to electronically import and index video mp4 files that are cross-referenced with our enhanced relational database. The addition of the video files database allows us to triangulate data obtained from television news sources as a supplement to our other database libraries. We occasionally encounter programming and other technology-related problems. In the previous reporting period we successfully implemented a customized DIP to electronically import and index federal court PACER records into our OnBase project database. The PACER DIP ceased to operate several months ago and we are awaiting a fix for a computer programming issue from our university’s ITS department.
The digital imaging database includes 169,315 scanned pages of digital images, consisting of 16,863 TIFF case document files, 15,509 TIFF coding sheet document files, and 5,135 PDF PACER document files. Of these, 17,309 pages were added since January 1, 2013, consisting of 3,681 case document files and 4,127 coding sheet document files, and 3 PACER document files. The PACER files consist of 69,855 pages of federal court docket sheets, pleadings, court orders, and other docket entries. Additional PACER files are currently in queue to be electronically imported into and indexed in our OnBase project database using our customized automated PACER DIP when it is repaired. The new video database currently includes 868 news media mp4 video files.
In sum, our enhanced content management system database currently includes more than 170,000 pages of news articles, court records, news videos, and coding sheets that document the criminal arrests of more than 6,850 police officers since the beginning of 2005. The arrested officers were employed by nonfederal state, local, special, and tribal law enforcement agencies in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
We continued to learn that training (and routine periodic retraining) of graduate research assistants and the process of coding the content of case file records is more time-consuming and slower than we anticipated when we developed the project timeline. Crucial to completion of the remaining project tasks is the recent implementation of our PC-based coding instrument that replaced our paper-based coding sheets in March 2013. Currently the project timeline tasks are three to six months behind our original project schedule. We recently filed a request with NIJ for a one-time six-month no cost extension and revised the project timeline for numerous project tasks.
There are three major goals of the project. The first goal of this research is to determine the nature and extent of police crime in the United States. The second goal is to determine what factors influence how a police organization responds to arrests of officers. The third and final goal of the research is to foster police integrity by exploring whether police crime and officer arrests correlate with other forms of police misconduct.
DISSEMINATION OF PROJECT RESULTS TO COMMUNITIES OF INTEREST:
Results have been disseminated to communities of interest through the writing and publication of refereed journal articles, magazine articles, and research briefs. We also maintain a project website and blog, and produce a monthly audio podcast that is available on iTunes.
We have proactively worked to disseminate our research results to communities of interest. To that end, we have engaged in outreach activities to reach members of communities who are not usually aware of these research activities, for the purpose of enhancing public understanding and increasing interest in learning and careers in criminological research. We have published two short research-brief articles reporting our research findings in Police Chief, a practitioner-oriented magazine published by the International Association of Chiefs of Police. A third research-brief article in Police Chief is forthcoming. We also make PDF copies of one-sheet research briefs explaining our research studies and findings on our web-site and post timely project-related entries on our blog. Additionally, we distribute audio podcasts on iTunes where we discuss the research project, studies, and related findings.
The web analytic reports for the Police Integrity Lost Project Blog indicate that for the time period January 1, 2013, through June 30, 2013, there were 564 unique visitors to the blog. Traffic to the blog was primarily from the United States (89.9%) where visitors to the blog were located in 128 cities in 37 states and the District of Columbia. There were also visitors to the blog from 22 foreign countries: Philippines, Canada, United Kingdom, Jordan, Australia, Brazil, Germany, France, Japan, Netherlands, Chile, Ethiopia, Germany, Croatia, Hungary, Indonesia, India, Maldives, Nepal, and South Africa. Traffic to the blog included direct traffic (58.7%), search traffic (31.9%), and referral traffic (9.4%).
The Police Integrity Lost Podcast is available on iTunes domestically as well as internationally, and interested persons can stream, download, and/or subscribe to the podcast audio files directly from the iTunes client application. Web analytics for the iTunes podcast episodes indicates that for this reporting period there were 619 mp3 file hits, indicating that there were 619 instances when someone either streamed (listened to) all or part of one of our podcast episodes and/or downloaded mp3 audio files. Of those hits, the largest number of requests directed to our pod server to stream and/or download the mp3 audio files during this reporting period was 132 hits for the “Drunk Driving Cops” podcast episode (Police Integrity Lost Podcast Episode 9) and 95 hits for the “Using a Content Management System” podcast episode (Police Integrity Lost Podcast Episode 10). The web analytic reports for the iTunes podcast episodes are incomplete and/or missing for January and February 2013.
PLANS FOR NEXT REPORTING PERIOD TO ACCOMPLISH PROJECT GOALS:
Under the revised project timeline, tasks 1-4 are 100% complete, task 5 is 95% complete, task 6 is 75% complete, task 7 is 86.5% complete, task 10 is 82% complete, task 11 is ongoing, and task 12 is 15% complete. Tasks 8, 9, 13, 14, 15, and 16 have not yet been undertaken. During the next reporting period we will complete tasks 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 13, 14, and will also continue making progress on tasks 11 and 12.
Currently, two research papers are under review for publication consideration at refereed journals. One of those is a study on the nature of crime by school resource officers, and the second paper currently under review is a study exploring crime by policewomen. We are now working on three research papers studying police sexual misconduct arrests.
We present our research findings at two national conferences during the next reporting period. On July 30, 2013, Dr. Stinson was an invited speaker at a mini-conference on police misconduct that was part of the annual conference of the American Psychological Association in Honolulu, Hawaii. Dr. Stinson will also present findings of the project in November 2013 at the annual conference of the American Society of Criminology in Atlanta, Georgia.
We will continue to product our monthly podcast episodes for iTunes and disseminate research briefs on the various studies as completed. The project website and blog will also be updated with new postings periodically.
PRODUCTS PRODUCED BY THE PROJECT:
The project has produced three peer-reviewed journal articles, two research brief magazine articles, six one-sheet research briefs, 12 mp3 audio podcast episodes, and eight research presentations.
CHANGES/PROBLEMS WITH THE PROJECT:
On July 13, 2013, we filed a request with NIJ for a six-month no-cost extension to complete the project. The extension is necessary to complete the project because it has taken longer than anticipated to complete the content analysis component of the research. As noted above, earlier this year we deployed a customized computer-based coding instrument to replace the paper-based coding sheets we previously used in this project. The new coding instrument software module has allowed us to proceed with coding more efficiently and with greater speed and reliability moving forward. We anticipate that we will have substantially completed the coding of content and entry of data into our master SPSS data set before the end of August 2013 or soon thereafter. During September through December 2013, we will be conducting final PACER searches, finding supplemental information to reduce missing data in the master data set, performing interrater coder reliability assessments, and conducting statistical analyses of the data. During January through March 2014 we will continue statistical analyses and draft the final technical report for submission to NIJ on or before March 31, 2014. A revised project timeline was submitted with the request.
Stinson, Liederbach, Brewer & Todak’s article Drink, Drive, Go to Jail? A Study of Police Officers Arrested for Drunk Driving has recently been prepublished online by the Journal of Crime and Justice. The purpose of the study is to provide empirical data on cases of police driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol and/or drugs. It identifies events that may have influenced the decision to arrest, including associated traffic accidents, fatalities, officer resistance, the refusal of field sobriety tests, and the refusal of blood alcohol content (BAC) tests. The study is a quantitative content analysis of news articles identified through the Google News search engine using 48 automated Google Alerts queries. Data are analyzed on 782 DUI arrest cases of officers employed by 511 nonfederal law enforcement agencies throughout the United States. The study is the only study known to describe police officer DUI arrests at many police agencies across the United States.
Police sexual misconduct remains an understudied area and little is known about the sexual crimes of police officers. In the June 2013 episode of the Police Integrity Lost podcast, Bowling Green State University professors Phil Stinson and John Liederbach discuss the findings of their recent study on sex-related police crime. The study analyzes a subset of data collected as part of Stinson’s larger study on police crime.
The research project includes an integrated relational database of digital images of news articles and court records, websites, and other material from the Internet, such as audio and video files of television news reports related to the cases of interest. The media and communication products are important raw data for criminological and communication research. The data are archived for current and future research projects of the principal investigator, Philip Matthew Stinson, Sr., J.D., Ph.D., including but not limited to an ongoing study of police integrity funded by the National Institute of Justice at the U.S. Department of Justice.
We employ a range of scholarly methods, including quantitative and qualitative textual and content analyses, experiments, case studies, and historical analysis that may involve comparison of media processes and productions. All of the research may well employ copyrighted material. Pursuant to copyright law it is fair use to (1) create topically based collections as described herein for scholarly use, and (2) store copyrighted materials in collections and archives for an indefinite period of time. From time to time (at the sole discretion of the principal investigator) access to the database archives is made available to scholars and students who wish to access these collections for related research projects.
Fair use applies to personal archiving of copyrights material for scholarly purposes, either immediately or within a set of ongoing research interests, with the expectation of allowing scholarly consultation of it by others, both within the disciplines of criminology and communication, and on an interdisciplinary basis. This research project adheres to the standards promulgated by the Center for Social Media’s Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Scholarly Research in Communication. Fair use of any copyrighted materials in the collection, database and archives is subject to the following limitations:
(1) Materials included in the collection are related to the research interests of the project’s principal investigator, Philip Matthew Stinson, Sr., J.D., Ph.D.
(2) Material archived in reliance on fair use is intended only for scholarly use, including functions as explaining scholarship results to others and distribution of scholarly results.
(3) The collection, database, and archives will be maintained only until the principal investigator no longer holds the research interests that motivate the collection, or until the collection no longer is required to support published research based on items in it. At that point, the collection will either be destroyed or donated to either an institutional archive or to other scholars pursuing similar research interests. Maintenance of the collection may involve, as appropriate, format migration and back-up copying.
(4) A policy will be developed to open the collection of archived material to others at a later date aimed at limiting access to scholars doing research in the relevant area and establishing appropriate limitations on the purposes to which the materials will be put.
(5) All archived material will be clearly marked as to its source, and whenever possible metadata associated with that material will be preserved.