Do Stop, Question, and Frisk Practices Deter Crime? Evidence at Microunits of Space and Time Weisburd et al. Stop, Question, and Frisk Practices

David Weisburd, Alese Wooditch, Sarit Weisburd, Sue Ming Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Existing studies examining the crime impacts of stop, question, and frisks (SQFs) have focused on large geographic areas. Weisburd, Telep, and Lawton (2014) suggested that SQFs in New York City (NYC) were highly concentrated at crime hot spots, implying that a microlevel unit of analysis may be more appropriate. The current study aims to address the limitations of prior studies by exploring the impact of SQFs on daily and weekly crime incidents in NYC at a microgeographic level. The findings suggest that SQFs produce a significant yet modest deterrent effect on crime. Policy Implications: These findings support those who argue that SQFs deter crime. Nonetheless, it is not clear whether other policing strategies may have similar or even stronger crime-control outcomes. In turn, the level of SQFs needed to produce meaningful crime reductions are costly in terms of police time and are potentially harmful to police legitimacy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)31-56
Number of pages26
JournalCriminology and Public Policy
Volume15
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Feb 2016

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