Law Enforcement News

Vol. XXX, No. 620 A publication of John Jay College of Criminal Justice/CUNY Summer 2004

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In this issue:

Administration, Management & Supervision.

Community & Problem-Oriented Policing.

Corporate & White-Collar Crime.

Crime (General).




Forensic Science & Investigation.

Gangs, Juvenile Crime & Delinquency.




Organized Crime.

Police Use of Force.

Police Culture.


Sex Crimes.

Strategies & Tactics.

Technology, Weapons & Equipment.



Directory of Publishers Cited.


     Buzawa, Eve S. and Buzawa, Carl G. (2003). DOMESTIC VIOLENCE: THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE RESPONSE. 3rd edition. Thousand Oaks, Calif.: Sage Publications, ISBN: 0761924485.

     A thoroughly documented overview by a leading domestic violence researcher. Perceptions of domestic violence have evolved over time, from being considered a private matter to a major public health problem. Correspondingly, the law enforcement response has also changed. The authors discuss and explain the evolution and current status of legislative, police and judicial activity regarding domestic violence. Introductory chapters summarize causal theories, definitional and measurement problems, and risk factors. Well organized, clearly written and very readable. A very useful reference for any organization concerned with domestic violence perpetrators or victims.


     It has been suggested that the dramatic decline in homicide rates in big cities in the U.S. during the 1990s was due in part to improvements in patient emergency health care. Speculation that differences in homicide rates may be due to differences in medical care is not new, as the author of this work points out in his review of previous studies. In this study, the author compares homicide data with various measures of medical resources, both for the U.S and, using data from the World Health Organization, the United Nations and Interpol, in the wider world. He concludes that there is some evidence to support the “medical model” of homicide.

     Furio, Jennifer. (2001). TEAM KILLERS: A COMPARATIVE STUDY OF COLLABORATIVE CRIMINALS. New York: Algora Publishing, ISBN: 1892941635.

     Sensational accounts of infamous murderers who killed in groups or as couples. Included are the Hillside Stranglers, Charles Ng, the Moors murders and the Zebra killers.

     Goldstein, Arnold P. (2002). THE PSYCHOLOGY OF GROUP AGGRESSION. New York: John Wiley, ISBN: 0470845163 (paper).

     People in groups behave differently than they do as individuals. Regardless of any real differences, individuals in groups show biases in favor of their fellow group members, and against outsiders. Competition between groups can turn to hostility. This book provides an overview of current psychological thinking about aggressive behavior by groups. The author first reviews group dynamics, then discusses low-level aggression (such as teasing and cursing), bullying and harassment, delinquent gangs, mobs and finally, intervention options. This is a well organized and comprehensive review of an important and very relevant aspect of psychology.

     King, Joyce. (2002). HATE CRIME: THE STORY OF A DRAGGING IN JASPER, TEXAS. New York: Pantheon, ISBN: 0375421327.

     A powerful and personal part-fictionalized account of the lynching of James Byrd, and the subsequent investigations and court trials, by a veteran Texas journalist.

     Zimring, Franklin E. (2003). THE CONTRADICTIONS OF AMERICAN CAPITAL PUNISHMENT. New York: Oxford University Press, ISBN 0195152360.

     Europe and the United States both see themselves as comprising a civilized, and thus by implication civilized, Western world, yet find themselves strongly in disagreement about certain ideological issues, including the death penalty. Europe has abolished capital punishment, regardless of the heinousness of the crime committed. Zimring discusses why abolition occurred in Europe, and shows that the pressures that encouraged abolition in Europe actually led to support for the death penalty in the U.S. He sees a strong connection between community-driven vigilante justice in the U.S. and current support for the death penalty, despite the carrying out of that penalty by a government with power of over life and death — a power that exists despite the U.S. tradition of distrust of governmental power.