“Broken window” policing doesn’t work…

An internal New York Police Dept. report released this week suggests that “broken window” policing – the theory that cracking down on petty crimes like vandalism and public urination will generate an atmosphere of lawfulness that then prevents more serious crime – does not work:

“The new report, released Wednesday by NYPD’s watchdog inspector general, finds no evidence that huge crack-downs on low-level “quality-of-life” incidents decrease felony crimes.

That study directly contradicts a report by Bratton’s NYPD last year that claims the exact opposite — that quality-of-life policing was responsible for fewer felony crimes in New York.

Wednesday’s report — by DOI Commissioner Mark Peters and NYPD Inspector General Philip Eure — takes direct aim at the “broken windows” policy that Bratton famously began pushing in the 1990s. Their report notes the cost of that policy “in police time, in an increase of the number of people brought into the criminal justice system and, at times, in a fraying of the relationship between the police and the communities they serve.”


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