A Community Policing Story

The nine principles of policing established by Sir Robert Peel of the London Metropolitan Police District in 1829.

 PRINCIPLE 1 “The basic mission for which the police exist is to prevent crime and disorder.”
PRINCIPLE 2 “The ability of the police to perform their duties is dependent upon public approval of police actions.”
PRINCIPLE 3 “Police must secure the willing cooperation of the public in voluntary observance of the law to be able to secure and maintain the respect of the public.”
PRINCIPLE 4 “The degree of cooperation of the public that can be secured diminishes proportionately to the necessity of the use of physical force.”
PRINCIPLE 5 “Police seek and preserve public favor not by catering to the public opinion but by constantly demonstrating absolute impartial service to the law.”
PRINCIPLE 6 “Police use physical force to the extent necessary to secure observance of the law or to restore order only when the exercise of persuasion, advice and warning is found to be insufficient.”
PRINCIPLE 7 “Police, at all times, should maintain a relationship with the public that gives reality to the historic tradition that the police are the public and the public are the police; the police being only members of the public who are paid to give full-time attention to duties which are incumbent on every citizen in the interests of community welfare and existence.”
PRINCIPLE 8 “Police should always direct their action strictly towards their functions and never appear to usurp the powers of the judiciary.”
PRINCIPLE 9 “The test of police efficiency is the absence of crime and disorder, not the visible evidence of police action in dealing with it.”

A version of this article appears in print on April 15, 2014, on Page A20 of the New York edition with the headline: Sir Robert Peel’s Nine Principles of Policing

Traditional crime prevention models, particularly those designed by deterrence theorists,
advocates enforcement-based policing, in which public compliance is achieved by emphasizing  the consequences of incompliance. This usually means punishment for non-compliance (fines, jail time, restitution, etc.).

Legitimacy-based policing emphasizes that public compliance relies upon whether individuals believe the law is just and whether they believe the authorities enforcing the law are entitled to do so.

Trust in local police enforcement is not built during a crisis; building trust is a slow process, and no matter how much trust you build, it can erode over time. Building public trust requires constant devotion, a focus on relationships, and a demonstrated commitment to achieve community goals through personal and organizational actions. Trust is built by the culture of the organization which starts with the vision and leadership of the command staff.  The strategic plan of Law Enforcement Agencies should include investing not only in community-based policies, practices, and programs but also in an agency-wide infrastructure that supports and sustains building community trust as a priority.

According to the National Initiative for Building Community Trust and Justice, procedural
Justice or Legitimacy-based policing “focuses the way police and other legal authorities interact with the public, and how those interactions shape the public’s view of the policing and their willingness to obey the law with the end result of lowering crime rates. Studies have demonstrated that exposure to procedural injustice among juveniles is positively correlated with participation in risky lifestyles, which is a well-established predictor of victimization or criminal activity.  Therefore, “making both the style and substance of police practices more ‘legitimate’ in the eyes of the public . . . may be one of the most effective long-term police strategies for crime prevention.

Community leaders, researchers, and police officials know that rank and file police cannot substantially impact crime by themselves. Community involvement and collaboration is an integral part of any long-term, problem-solving strategy. At the most basic level, the community provides law enforcement agencies with invaluable information on both the problems that concern them and the nature of those problems. These toolkit helps law enforcement initiate partnerships within their communities to collaborate on solving crime problems at the neighborhood level.

A Community Policing Story


Arlington, TX: A Community Policing Story shows how Arlington, TX Police Chief Will Johnson and his department worked with community leaders and youth after a series of crises rocked the community. The killing of an unarmed black youth by a white police officer, the death of a high school football player in gang related violence, and the ambush killings of police officers in Dallas all presented the agency with formidable tests of trust within the community.

Doing it Right: Proactive Community Engagement in Redlands, California


This article, originally published in the March 2014
Community Policing Dispatch from the COPS Office, highlights the Redlands Police Department and its mission to build and maintain strong ties with the community.

Engaging the Community in the Absence of a Crisis


This article, originally published in the July 2013
Community Policing Dispatch from the COPS Office, highlights the experiences of retired Long Beach (California) Police Commander Josef Levy, who served in the city’s diverse, sometimes challenging, West Division.

Preventing and Addressing Bullying and Intolerance


This guide is a primary resource for law enforcement officers who play a large role in helping to educate children and adults about (1) problems resulting from bullying, (2) ways to prevent and intervene in bullying incidents, and (3) ways to transform student behavior. It includes key definitions of bullying and intolerance; strategies for law enforcement to partner with school leaders; and ideas for law enforcement officers, school and community leaders, and students to collaborate and take action together

The Collaboration Toolkit for Law Enforcement: Effective Strategies
to Partner with the Community



This entry was posted in Commentary, Crime Prevention, News. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to A Community Policing Story

  1. Wow, this was usefull. Keep writing this kind of texts, you will get a lot of people to this text if you continue working on this. I will be coming back this domain more often. thanks

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s