Policymakers

Law enforcement veered away from community policing after 9/11 attacks

Twenty years ago, the country saw images of police officers heroically running into buildings that would soon come crashing down.

But over the past few years, people have seen uglier images of police officers abusing their power.

The terrorist attacks of 9/11 changed policing in America, according to William Terrill, professor in the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Arizona State University.

And now, he said, policing seems to be pivoting again.

ASU team analyzes data as part of state effort on missing, murdered Indigenous women

The website shows rows of faces, many smiling, of Native American women and girls in Arizona who are gone — missing or murdered. No one has seen Jamie for over a year. Priscilla was kidnapped from her home and murdered in 1984. Mary worked at the Bright Angel Lodge at the Grand Canyon when she went missing in 1957.

ASU professor studies how police officers manage heightened situations

The ongoing protests over racism in the United States have fueled conversations about the role of policing, including demands for officers to focus on “de-escalating” situations before they become violent.

William Terrill, a professor of criminology at Arizona State University, has studied police behavior and culture for more than 20 years, starting in the 1990s.

Department culture can escalate to police brutality, ASU expert says

The premature death of George Floyd at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer caught on video May 25 raises questions as to how a call to investigate a person suspected of forgery can end up in tragedy.

In the graphic footage recorded by a bystander, a handcuffed Floyd is on the ground, face-down, and struggles to breathe as one of three officers holding him down forces his knee on Floyd’s neck for several minutes while ignoring pleas from the 46-year-old man and onlookers to stop.

Transforming Policing and Criminal Justice: An Open Letter from Faculty Members of ASU’s School of Criminology & Criminal Justice

In the United States, managing the tensions between the privileged, politically dominant classes of society and its politically, socially and economically disadvantaged classes, to which communities of color have disproportionately belonged, has always been a central concern of police and the criminal justice system. Some U.S. police agencies were explicitly established in the Civil War era to help preserve slavery and white supremacy.

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