Community‐oriented Policing in a Retail Shopping Center

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Community policing, Shopping centres, Retailing

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Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to report findings from the assessment of the Police/Business Empowerment Partnership (P/BEP), a community‐oriented policing program, implemented at a retail shopping center in the city of Westminster, California.

Design/methodology/approach: A quasi‐experimental design of pre‐ and post‐test was employed to evaluate the effectiveness of P/BEP. Participants' perceptions regarding various safety measures were gathered before and after the implementation of the program.

Findings: Pre‐post comparison revealed significant reduction in perceptions of gang activity, auto theft activity and fear of crime at the shopping center after program implementation. Though non‐significant, changes observed in other targeted constructs were also found to be in the desired direction. Overall, analysis indicated that the program helps promote a conducive business environment for the merchants and their customers.

Practical implications: Findings from this evaluation provided evidence that collaborative efforts between businesses and the police do have a positive effect in fighting and preventing crime.

Originality/value: P/BEP is one demonstration of a community's effort in utilizing police resources to target specific problems.

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Citation / Publisher Attribution

Policing: An International Journal, v. 29, issue 1, p. 146-157