Risk Assessment and Management in Policing

Question: Discuss the possible effects of applying risk assessment and risk management in policing pertaining to curtailing departmental and officer misconduct.

Misconduct is a source of concern for any public organization, and particularly so for policing agencies. That is because police personnel are concerned with public safety and protection. Chanin (2015) is clear is noting that evidence of misconduct in policing agencies can be identified through civil litigation, incidence reports and complaints. Weitzer (2015) is more succinct when mentioning that the racially profiled police killings reported in the USA are clear indications of police misconduct. Risk Assessment and Management in Policing Donner, Fridell and Jennings (2016) make a similar observation but note explain that misconduct is typically linked to self-control whereby persons with less self-control have greater potential for engaging in misconduct. In addressing the mentioned concerns, the application of risk assessment and management is proposed. The risk assessment aspect would identify the possibility of misconduct based on the individual and situation while the risk management aspect would ensure that the risk is minimized through controlling the situation and/or officer (Chanin, 2015).


Worden, Harris and McLean (2014) similarly lauds the use of risk assessment and management tools since they make optimal predications about the performance of personnel. Still, the article mentions that the value of such tools in preventing personnel misconduct is based on accuracy that focuses on collecting the right information in the right quality and quantity while also considering feasibility. To be more concise, it mentions that using inaccurate tools would produce suboptimal predictions about personnel performance, particularly when the tool is reliant on doubtful models and values. This discussion makes it clear that applying risk assessment and management tools have the primary effect of reducing opportunities and incidence of personnel misconduct while also serving the secondary function of improving professional performance and public confidence while also reducing civil litigation, incidence reports and complaints. Risk Assessment and Management in Policing


Chanin, J. M. (2015). Examining the sustainability of pattern or practice police misconduct reform. Police Quarterly, 18(2), 163-192.

Donner, C. M., Fridell, L. A. & Jennings, W. G. (2016). The relationship between self-control and police misconduct: A multi-agency study of first-line police supervisors. Criminal Justice and Behavior, 43(7), 841-862.

Weitzer, R. (2015). American policing under fire: Misconduct and reform. Society, 52(5), 475-480.

Worden, R., Harris, C. & J. McLean, S. (2014). Risk assessment and risk management in policing. Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, 37(2), 239-258.

Risk Assessment and Management in Policing

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