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Sun Sep 8, 2019, 06:51 PM

UMSL Researchers Seek To Better Understand Police Behavior In The Wake Of Ferguson Unrest

Former St. Louis Police Chief Sam Dotson first introduced the idea of the “Ferguson effect” in a 2014 column for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, when he wrote that the unrest in Ferguson following the death of Michael Brown had left officers afraid to enforce the law.

“The criminal element is feeling empowered,” he wrote.

National pundits soon picked up on the idea. They claimed that police feeling demoralized had led to a spike in crime.

University of Missouri-St. Louis researchers recently authored a study taking a look at whether attitudes after the unrest in Ferguson were indeed associated with a reduction in arrests for felonies and low-level offenses in the nearby city of St. Louis.


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