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Crime and police resources: the street crime initiative

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In this paper we look at the connection between police resources and crime by focussing on a large-scale policy intervention-the Street Crime Initiative-that was introduced in England and Wales in 2002. This allocated additional resources to some police force areas to specifically target street crime, whereas other forces did not receive any additional funding. Estimates derived from several empirical strategies show that robberies fell significantly in SCI police forces relative to non-SCI forces after the initiative was introduced. Moreover, the policy seems to have been a cost effective one, even after extensively testing for possible displacement or diffusion effects onto other crimes and into adjacent areas. Overall, we reach the conclusion that increased police resources can be used to generate falls in crime, at least in the context of the SCI program we study

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