news releases

2005.01.19 > For Immediate Release
contact: Tim Kaldahl - University Affairs
phone: 402.554.3502 - email: tkaldahl@mail.unomaha.edu

UNO Professor Authors New Book on Police Accountability

OMAHA - A new book written by a professor at the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) charts the future course for improved police accountability. The New World of Police Accountability by Samuel Walker, a professor of criminal justice, outlines the strategies and tools that represent the "best practices" for reducing police officer misconduct.  The book was released today, Jan. 12.

Best practices include a comprehensive use of force reporting system, an open and accessible citizen complaint procedure, an early intervention system for identifying officers with performance problems and a permanent police auditor procedure.

Walker, in addition to his research and teaching roles at UNO, is also the coordinator of the Police Professionalism Initiative, which is funded by a special appropriation from the U.S. Congress in an effort to enhance police professionalism and accountability. It maintains a Web site at http://www.policeaccountability.org.  The New World of Police Accountability is Walker's 13th book.

The book is based on several new sources of information, including the consent decrees settling "pattern or practice" lawsuits against Los Angeles, Cincinnati and other police departments; the reports of court-appointed monitors who oversee these settlements; and the reports of police auditors in 10 different cities.

Walker argues that the four "best practices" comprise an "integrated  package" of reforms that are closely interrelated.  An effective early intervention system, for example, requires valid data from the use for force reporting system and the citizen complaint procedure. A police auditor system is necessary to ensure that police departments continue to maintain the different "best practices," he said.

The book is published by Sage, and can be ordered through the Sage Web site, www.sagepup.com or through Amazon, www.amazon.com.

For more information, contact Walker at (402) 554-3590 or at samwalker@mail.unomaha.edu.

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