Police Issues

Thought-provoking essays on crime, justice and policing

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Drug abuse and addiction

National Institute of Drug Abuse     Monitoring the Future Yearly drug abuse surveys of adolescents

NIDA easy-to-read drug facts  Plain-language website about drugs of abuse and detecting and treating addiction from the National Institute of Drug Abuse.

Federal law enforcement agencies

ATF - Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives
BLM - Bureau of Land Management - Law Enforcement Rangers
CBP - Customs and Border Protection
- Customs and Border Protection officers
- Border Patrol agents
DEA - Drug Enforcement Administration
FBI - Federal Bureau of Investigation
ICE - Immigration and Customs Enforcement
- Criminal investigators
I.R.S. - Internal Revenue Service law enforcement
NCIS - Naval Criminal Investigative Service
OSI - US Air Force Office of Special Investigations
U.S. Coast Guard Maritime Law Enforcement
U.S. Dept. of Defense Criminal Investigative Service
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (E.P.A.) Special Agents
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service - Special Agents
U.S. Forest Service - Law Enforcement Rangers
U.S. Marshals Service
U.S. Park Police
U.S. Postal Inspection Service
U.S. Secret Service
U.S. State Department - Diplomatic Security Service

Legal sites

United States Code Federal laws enacted by Congress. Search by Title and Section.

Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). Federal regulatory rules. Fully searchable.

Cornell U.S. Code search  Links to all Federal codes.

FindLaw Links to State and Federal laws and appeals court decisions.

SCOTUS blog. What’s in front of the Supreme Court?  What are the controversies?  You’ll find them here.

California State law All State codes, including Evidence and Penal. Fully searchable.

News and opinion

Council on Criminal Justice  Well-researched opinion pieces that explore law enforcement policies and recommend approaches for reducing conflict between police and communities.


Law Officer  A wealth of news articles about police encounters, with a focus on tactics. Bills itself as “a true advocate for the profession.” Commercially funded but ads are low-key. Avoids criticizing police.

PoliceOne  News clips and opinion pieces about policing around the U.S. Focus on officer safety. Commercially funded; lots of product placement. Typically supports police.


ProPublica  Multi-topic public-interest news site run by full-time investigative journalists. (Nonprofit. Typically leans somewhat left.)

The Crime Report  Thought-provoking critical articles and a “daily briefing.” From the John Jay College of Criminal Justice. Nonprofit; moderate to far left.

The Marshall Project Articles about criminal justice. Winner of a Pulitzer in 2016. Nonprofit. Far left to infinity.

Police, newspaper and city crime portals

Baltimore Police Dept. crime data
     Baltimore Sun homicide tracker
Chicago Police Dept. crime data
     City of Chicago shooting and homicide data
District of Columbia Metropolitan Police Dept. crime data
Los Angeles Police Dept. crime data
     Los Angeles Times homicide report
New York City Police Dept. crime data
     New York Times “crime and criminals” news stories
Philadelphia Police Dept. crime data

Police blogs and forums

Quality Policing Blog (formerly, “Cop in the Hood”). Ex-cop, prolific author and noted academic pulls no punches in his informative blog. Comments on selected incidents, from an experienced street cop’s perspective. (Long-standing, nonprofit.)

Improving Police Blog-style commentaries about policing by an ex-Minneapolis cop, retired small-town police chief and author. Includes reader comments. (Long-standing, nonprofit.)

National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund  Tracks line-of-duty deaths and honors the fallen. Includes news and features about officer safety safety. Maintains National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington D.C. (Respected nonprofit.)

Officer Down Memorial Page Lists line-of-duty deaths and honors the fallen. Partners with the IACP. (Respected nonprofit.)

Police oversight

Los Angeles County Civilian Oversight Commission (oversees Sheriff’s Dept.)     Motions and reports

Los Angeles Police Commission OIG office     Audit and complaint reports

US DOJ - Conduct of Law Enforcement Agencies     Litigation against police, by State

    Notable cases

Chicago Tribune portal on shooting of Laquan McDonald

Minnesota Public Radio portal on shooting of Justine Ruszczyk

New York Times update on shooting of Eric Garner     NYPD trial of officer Pantaleo

Minneapolis Star Tribune homepage on murder of George Floyd

Minnesota - 2022 State human rights probe of Minneapolis PD after murder of George Floyd

2023 DOJ report, “Investigation of the City of Minneapolis and the Minneapolis Police Department

Policing research sites

ASU Center for Problem-Oriented policing

BJA Cops Office Publications offers a wealth of reports about police and policing

Crime and Justice Research Alliance Joint project of America’s C.J. education organizations, ASC and ACJS, to inform the public and decisionmakers about CJ issues. Site can be searched for relevant publications.

NIJ Crime Solutions Programs and Practices. Detailed listings and assessments of strategies in policing and corrections. Includes extensive information about each effort and links to academic studies.

NCJRS (National Criminal Justice Reference Service) Government-wide portal for research reports on crime, corrections, policing, prosecution and other criminal justice topics.

Shootings and mass shootings

Gun Violence Archive Gun killings by individuals and police; mass shootings (note: “minimum of four victims shot, either injured or killed, not including any shooter”)

Violence Project Mass shootings (note: very limited definition)

Mother Jones Mass shootings since 1982 (note: “four or more victims killed by the attacker”)

Statistics and data

Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) Data portal for regularly-collected data and statistics on policing, corrections and other crime and justice topics.

Uniform Crime Reports Yearly FBI compendium of crime reported by local, State and Federal agencies. Includes:

U.S. Census main portal

  • U.S. Census QuickFacts Handy one-stop place for population, income, poverty and race/ethnicity info on states, counties and cities with more than 5,000 pop.

Centers for Disease Control Injury Statistics Portal

Terrorism and extremism

ADL Center on Extremism “Heat Map” Tracks extremist (White supremacist, terrorist and anti-Semitic) incidents, including plots, attacks and shootouts throughout the U.S.

Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) Well-known, highly respected organization that monitors domestic hate groups. Extensive, detailed website.

Wrongful conviction

Innocence Project Long-standing, highly respected multi-state legal effort to secure exonerations for the wrongfully convicted. Includes extensive information about selected cases.

National Registry of Exonerations Exemplary resource that tracks and provides information about exonerations of the wrongfully convicted across the U.S. Sponsored by U.C. Irvine and the University of Michigan and Michigan State University law schools.


Gaining compliance and using force

BJA - Defusing Difficult Encounters (2016)

PERF - Guiding Principles on Use of Force (2016)

Crime and punishment

BJS Capital Punishment 1977-2017 (2019)

State prisoner recidivism 2012-2017 (2021)     2008-2018 (2021)

By the blogger:

Tookie’s fate is the wrong debate (2005)


NIJ Journal - How Forensic Science Is Transforming Criminal Justice (2018)

NIST - National Commission on Forensic Science - state of forensic science (2017)

NRC - Strengthening Forensic Science in the U.S. (2009)

Guns and shootings

UC Davis - in progress - Where Crime Guns Come From

BJS - Where inmates got firearms to use in crimes (2016)

JAMA - Lethality of semiautomatic rifles used in mass shootings (2018)

President Obama’s 2013 “Now is the Time” plan to reduce gun violence

By the blogger:

Want an assault weapons ban that works? Focus on ballistics (2019)

Ex-ATF Agent: America is only pretending to regulate lethal firearms (2015)

Crime gun sources in Los Angeles (1998)

Gun control: facts and myths (1998)

Assault weapons:  lethality (1998)

Insta-check and waiting periods (2000)

Police conduct and ethics

Alabama - officer-involved shooting death of Emantic Bradford Jr. (2019)

DOJ - Ferguson, Missouri shooting of Michael Brown (2015)

LAPD Inspector General review of data-driven police strategies (2019)

LAPD Inspector General review of gang enforcement detail stops (2019)

By the blogger:

Dilemmas of control in undercover policing (1992)

The craft of policing (2005)

Production & craftsmanship in police narcotics enforcement (1985)

Police are pressured to cross the line (2000)

Policing strategies and tactics

ASU - Understanding and Responding to Hot Spots (2019)

BJA - How to reduce repeat encounters (2019)

BJA - Violent Crime Reduction Operations Guide (2018)

BJA - Strengthening Homicide Investigations (2018)

BJA - Project Safe Neighborhoods (anti-gun violence) Blueprint for Success (2021)

BJA - Project Safe Neighborhoods (anti-gun violence) progress report (2019)

DOJ COPS Officer Resource Center - Publications

DOJ - Final Report, President’s Task Force on 21st. Century Policing (2015)

NCJRS - OJP -  Evidence-Based Policing (2020)

Valor for Blue - Officer safety and wellness publications



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