Understanding police use of force: Officers, suspects, and reciprocity

Geoffrey P. Alpert, Roger G. Dunham

Research output: Book/ReportBook

218 Scopus citations


Although most police activities do not involve the use of force, those that do reflect important patterns of interaction between officer and citizen. After a brief survey of prior research, this study presents new data and findings to examine these patterns. The force factor applied and the sequential order of incidents of force is included in the analysis. The authors also examine police use of force from the suspect’s perspective, and create a new conceptual framework, the Authority Maintenance Theory, for examining and assessing police use of force.

Original languageEnglish (US)
PublisherCambridge University Press
Number of pages191
ISBN (Electronic)9780511499449
ISBN (Print)0521837731, 9780521837736
StatePublished - Jan 1 2004
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)


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