The Normative Order of Reporting Police Misconduct: Examining the Roles of Offense Seriousness, Legitimacy, and Fairness

Long, Michael, Cross, Jennifer, Shelley, Tara and Kutnjak Ivkovic, Sanja (2013) The Normative Order of Reporting Police Misconduct: Examining the Roles of Offense Seriousness, Legitimacy, and Fairness. Social Psychology Quarterly, 76 (3). pp. 242-267. ISSN 0190-2725

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0190272513493094

Abstract

Using anonymous surveys of 3,235 officers in 30 police agencies, we tested hypotheses derived from prior policing research, legitimacy theory, and disciplinary fairness literature on the intentions of police officers to report acts of misconduct perpetrated by fellow officers. We examined features of the normative order involving peer reporting of police misconduct at both the individual agency and aggregate police subculture levels. Consistent with previous research, the perceived seriousness of the offense and legitimacy (endorsement) are consistently strong predictors of officers’ intentions to report misconduct. We also find that perceived fairness of discipline provides significant results, but the direction of the relationship depends on the perceived seriousness of the offense. It is clear that the majority of police officers participate in a shared normative culture of when to and when not to report misconduct. Finally, we note the importance of studying the reporting of police misconduct using a social psychological lens.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: police misconduct, legitimacy, fairness, normative order
Subjects: L300 Sociology
Department: Faculties > Arts, Design and Social Sciences > School of Arts and Social Sciences > Social Sciences
Depositing User: Becky Skoyles
Date Deposited: 19 Oct 2015 12:08
Last Modified: 19 Oct 2015 12:08
URI: http://nrl.northumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/24032

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