Essay On Broken Window Theory

1092 Words5 Pages
Within the profession of policing, there are many ideas that have been brought forth with the goal of reducing crime. Crime is a blight on society that impacts many in different ways. Whether it is violent crime or a property crime, many usually feel the impact. The victim of each crime is obvious; they feel the loss involved directly. If you are the victim of a violent crime, you feel your loss by pain felt, doctor bills accrued, time needed to recover, and the trouble of putting your life back together, etc. Additional to the victim, others feel these crimes as well. Family and friends of the victim feel sorrow and tax payers take on the financial burden if the victim does not have self paid medical insurance, to name but two issues.…show more content…
In that publication, George L. Kelling and James Q. Wilson had their essay “Broken Windows: The Police and Neighborhood Safety” published. The essay was meant to address crime within neighborhoods, and based on the ideas in the essay the broken windows theory emerged. The basis for the idea was that if a neighborhood allowed one broken window to stay broken, then the neighborhood would soon suffer more broken windows. The idea of the theory is that serious crimes such as murder and rape are enabled by misdemeanor level crimes like public intoxication, vandalism, prostitution, loitering, and vagrancy type crimes. Within the belief of the theory, people are not naturally bad individuals. It is the environment in which they are raised and they live in that is responsible for their criminal behavior. To respond to these lower level crimes, the essay says that patrol officers should be encouraged, or managed to get out of their police cars and walk the beat. This way, they are mingling amongst the citizens and building good relationships with the people that live in those neighborhoods. They are also expected to address people committing those minor crimes already listed by either arrests or citations depending on their…show more content…
Does this approach have an impact on violent crime numbers? I think that depends on how it is implemented. No level of research has definitively proven the attack all the smaller crimes with an arrest to be an effective way of policing. Their have been some research that claims the theory has dropped crime, but those very same results have also been attributed to other things occurring during the same time that could have contributed to the crime rate drop as well. I do not think you can arrest your way out of a violent crime problem. With the implementation of community orientated policing (COP) in many departments, I think you can implement of combination of things a be effective. COP ideas have come in and stated building a relationship between the community and the police have an impact. Also, if a neighborhood looks bad, then people will fear being there, and that will breed crime. I agree with the theory on that aspect. Simply put if I may, if a window is broke, fix the window, literally. Everyone has a negative stigma of public housing, and if you drive through most big city public housing, you can see why. It looks really bad. If you make the those lower income neighborhoods look better, than pride in their surroundings should breed. Fresh well kept landscaping, nicely painted buildings, and an inviting environment is what can work. I’ve seen it work in many parts of my city, and in neighboring cities. I’ve also
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