Police Disruption and Performance: Evidence from Recurrent Redeployments within a City
53 Pages Posted: 3 Jun 2019
Date Written: March 1, 2019
Little is known about the mechanisms through which additional police resources reduce crime. Criminals may perceive the increased risk of being caught and be deterred, or they may be arrested at higher rates; preventing them from committing additional crimes while incarcerated. This study sheds light on the mechanisms using individual-level crime data. It documents that shift changes of police patrols disrupt police activity and lower the likelihood of clearing crimes and arresting perpetrators by about 30 percent. Strong evidence of repeat offending implies that arrests lead to subsequent incapacitation. The aggregate-level relationship between crime rates and clearance rates is in line with sizable incapacitation effects.
Keywords: police, crime, incapacitation, deterrence, arrests, deployment, quasi-experiment, shift changes
JEL Classification: K42, H00
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation