Privatizing the Police: A Brief Look at the Potential Benefits of Market Forces in the Operation of Law Enforcement

12 Pages Posted: 8 Aug 2017

Date Written: July 24, 2016

Abstract

It has long been the conclusion of common wisdom that policing is a public good. According to Forst (2000), as of 1965, there were more sworn police officers than private security personnel, and sworn officers outnumbered the civilian employees of police departments by a count of 8.3 to 1. However, private security personnel, whatever their value to their client, are, with rare exception, not sworn officers with enforcement capability. With the recent proliferation of instances of police brutality and wrongful shootings, corruption and other such market failures within the effective monopoly of public policing, perhaps it is proper to ask whether competition can provide better alternatives.

Keywords: Law Enforcement, Public Safety, and Public Policy

Suggested Citation

Brown, Tarnell, Privatizing the Police: A Brief Look at the Potential Benefits of Market Forces in the Operation of Law Enforcement (July 24, 2016). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3014200 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3014200

Tarnell Brown (Contact Author)

Liberty University ( email )

1971 University Blvd
Lynchburg, VA Lynchburg 24515
United States

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