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The Broken Windows Theory and Law Enforcement Today

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George Kelling and James Q. Wilson analyzed and tested their hypothesis of crime one certain areas, which lead them to develop the Broken Windows Theory. I will break down their “Broken Windows Theory” and how this has changed law enforcement today. The Broken Windows set the standards for law enforcement. In the early stages of the Broken Windows Theory during the seventies in New Jersey a program was created that could change life in society, known as the Broken Windows policing model. This program occurred only in twenty-eight cities. Government and public officials were excited about this concept. Police officials were not so much. Foot patrol made officers walk in sleet and snow. Assigned foot patrol was a way of punishment for officers. State funding of foot patrol shut the mouths of some people. Silence stopped after the “Police Foundation” put foot patrol to the actual test. To contrary belief this rattled some arguments in the community and government.

Minor offenses were frowned upon, but how can this be addressed. Police officers may perform unlawful aggravated actions while people were looking. People that knew the officer would say that needed how to handle reckless violators. People that may not know him would contest and say “big city crimes are always and these police officers have lack of control.” A crack in the windows, does that create a smaller hole or bigger problem for crime. Police had to maintain their assertion. “Rights” were misconceived only for the rich people. Their money was thought to give them poser to avoid punishment. Detectives came about to professionally execute a proper arrest. Police violence had to be halted, however crimes evolved like bad habit. Riots and organized surfaced like a nightmare for law enforcement. Gangs were more of an issue in New York. One arrest of a gang can put the community in fear. Community policing of neighborhoods started in neighborhoods they surveyed the streets without performing law action. Citizens were comforted with the calm and strict society. The second concept that rose was the vigilante. Back then there were “three hundred fifty vigilante groups. Fortunately, vigilante groups have detained and are a scarce subject today. They just wanted to ensure that crime does not happen like suspects say will not happen.

Zero tolerance theory is the answer that I asked early. Zero tolerance is where petty crimes and violent crimes occur. Police officers reenact the same and address the same amount of urgency. Reckless music from a party in some police departments might go overlooked and police may not come. Mayor Giuliani was huge believe in the broken windows theory. He believed in the idea so much he made it lawful in New York to undergo the” zero tolerance policy”. Foot patrol never really gave a chance for back –up or public awareness. Crime in essence is like addressing a young child. If you do not correct the issue right away, the child is open to believe that it’s ok. If you put the child in time out and release them they are likely to forget the consequences. If you assertively address situation the likely and are consistent the child will discontinue that habit. I often have to remember this when dealing with younger children and pets. Consistency is the main concept that Wilson and Kelling stated in the Atlantic.

All crimes shall be handled the same consistent fashion. Lack of assertiveness can result in higher crime and constant fear for a community. If a person that committed a crime that was small and did not have any consequences what so ever creates ample opportunity for violent crimes. Criminal should have the same fear of committing a minor offense as they should a major offense. To popular belief police are becoming softer on crimes. In contrast, most people want their cities to handle all from of crime like New York did. Police job is never-ending and risky. During the foot patrols the enthusiasm of this career has maintained mediocre and pose a challenge. Population increase in prisons and jails can posses’ a major question. Who is going to supervise and prevent crime? The only city that effectively listened to Wilson and Kelling was New York. Police efforts to crack down on crime with the zero tolerance booming. When this occurred this prevented over “ten decades of crime reduction.”

According to Wilson he believe in crime prevention and thought that repeated offenders shall be given longer sentences. He disapproved the common idea today to rehabilitate an inmate.They wanted to continue that the courts as well followed the rules and maintained innocence. Guilty and innocence has been modified depending on the State. The lack of wrongs in every speck of an investigation and trail must be handled in timely and professional manner. The fate of an offender lied in the hands of an officer in early times. Today, the fate remains in the jury. Judges today are also to blame on the crisis of how trail stands. I want to see how the legacy of the broken windows will play in the future. The popular ethical and order is often varied in essence of location and person. I have read to article that praise the broken windows theory. I have also read articles that beg to differ. The community of having the zero tolerance policy has created the downfall of crime. Most Americans and Europeans have grasped this concept and want to spread the influence. Negatively, many inquire that this may be the cause of overcrowding in prisons and “dirty cops”. Communities regardless of size will have crime. Communities just need a little faith and trust back into law enforcement.

I specifically agree Wilson’s words that he state in the Atlantic, “One unrepaired broken window is a signal that no one cares, and so breaking more windows costs nothing.” I agree that this is warning for law enforcement officers, governments, and communities a like to stand up and take action. Sitting behind the lines leaves open doors for more corruption and disrespect. I would like to see the broken windows theory to come to other cities.

The broken window theory has created is to protect the communities as a whole. Victimized reports and surveys the targeted victims. I finally realized the reason of crimes and how to address them. Finally, the broken window theory goal is to prevent any infractions in windows without in dents. A consist pattern in the criminal justice can possibly maintain proper justice.

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