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Supporting Police Integrity in the Philadelphia [Pennsylvania] Police Department, 1991-1998 and 2000 (ICPSR 3977) RSS

Principal Investigator(s):

Summary:

This study investigated police integrity in the Philadelphia Police Department (PPD). Its primary goal was to identify risk factors for negative police behaviors and outcomes using information readily available to the department. Part 1, Academy and Background Data, contains background information and academy records data for 1,949 PPD officers from 17 academy classes for the years 1991 to 1998. Part 2, Survey Data, contains data collected in 2000 on the attitudes of a sample of 499 PPD officers. Variables in Part 1 cover background information, including history of misconduct and disciplinary actions. Variables in Part 2 include measurements of officer cynicism and attitudes toward ethical issues.

Access Notes

  • One or more files in this study are not available for download due to special restrictions ; consult the restrictions note to learn more. You can apply online for access to the data. A login is required to apply for access.

    A downloadable version of data for this study is available however, certain identifying information in the downloadable version may have been masked or edited to protect respondent privacy. Additional data not included in the downloadable version are available in a restricted version of this data collection. For more information about the differences between the downloadable data and the restricted data for this study, please refer to the codebook notes section of the PDF codebook. Users interested in obtaining restricted data must complete and sign a Restricted Data Use Agreement, describe the research project and data protection plan, and obtain IRB approval or notice of exemption for their research.

Dataset(s)

DS0:  Study-Level Files
DS1:  Academy and Background Data
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No downloadable data files available.
DS2:  Survey Data - Download All Files (4,243 KB)

Study Description

Citation

Greene, Jack R. and Alex R. Piquero. SUPPORTING POLICE INTEGRITY IN PHILADELPHIA [PENNSYLVANIA] POLICE DEPARTMENT, 1991-1998 and 2000. ICPSR version. Boston, MA: Northeastern University [producer], 2002. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2004. doi:10.3886/ICPSR03977.v1

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Funding

This study was funded by:

  • United States Department of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. National Institute of Justice (98-IJ-CX-0066)

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:   police departments, police misconduct, police officers, police recruits, police training

Smallest Geographic Unit:   None.

Geographic Coverage:   Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, United States

Unit of Observation:   Individuals.

Universe:   Part 1: Philadelphia Police Department (PPD) officers who were in the PPD academy between 1991 and 1998. Part 2: PPD patrol officers in January 2000.

Data Types:   administrative records data, and survey data

Data Collection Notes:

The user guide, codebook, and data collection instrument are provided by ICPSR as Portable Document Format (PDF) files. The PDF file format was developed by Adobe Systems Incorporated and can be accessed using PDF reader software, such as the Adobe Acrobat Reader. Information on how to obtain a copy of the Acrobat Reader is provided on the ICPSR Web site.

Methodology

Study Purpose:   This study investigated police integrity in the Philadelphia Police Department (PPD). Its primary goal was to identify risk factors for negative police behaviors and outcomes using information readily available to the department. The PPD, like most large police agencies, collects a lot of information on officers, both before their appointment and in their work assignments. It was anticipated that this information could be used to inform the recruiting, screening, selection, and monitoring processes without creating a large data collection burden. This study involved a detailed consideration of individual officer characteristics, such as background history and academy performance. The study also aimed to collect information not readily available to the department (via surveys and interviews) that could help explain negative officer behavior.

Study Design:   Part 1, Academy and Background Data, contains background information and academy records data for 1,949 Philadelphia Police Department (PPD) officers from 17 academy classes for the years 1991 to 1998. Background data were obtained through the Personal Data Questionnaire (PDQ), which the PPD administers to academy applicants who pass the entrance examination. Data are also provided for other stages of the application/training process. Applicants had to pass a polygraph, which they had two chances to do. Applicants were also subjected to medical and psychological exams. In the academy, recruits went through several training and evaluation phases for which numerous exams were taken. Recruits were also subject to a disciplinary code specific to the academy. Data on police officer misconduct after graduation were obtained from databases maintained by the PPD Internal Affairs Division (IAD) and the Police Board of Inquiry (PBI) and departmental personnel files. The IAD granted access to their files concerning Complaints Against Police (CAPS), internal investigations (other than those for CAPS), and Use of Force Complaints. The PBI database contained information regarding charges and subsequent disciplinary actions for violations of the Department's Disciplinary Code. Part 2, Survey Data, contains data collected in 2000 on the attitudes of a sample of 499 PPD officers. The instrument included two scaled measures. Twenty items on the survey comprised Regoli's (1976) modification of Niederhoffer's (1967) cynicism scale, a measure of police officer cynicism and distance from police supervisors, the police department, and the public at large. Another 15 items comprised a modified version of Krejei et al.'s (1996) attitudes toward ethics scale. This scale measured agreement with statements related to behaviors generally considered inappropriate for the police.

Sample:   Part 1: inap. Part 2: A simple random sample was selected from the January 2000 population of 3,810 patrol officers.

Data Source:

Part 1 data were obtained from Philadelphia Police Department (PPD) administrative records. Data for Part 2 were obtained through a survey of PPD officers.

Description of Variables:   Variables in Part 1 include identifying information, family background, residence history, education history, employment history, credit history, military record, driving history, criminal history, and drug use history. Variables are also provided for polygraph results, scores on medical and psychological exams and academy exams, disciplinary actions in the academy, types of misconduct as an officer, and whether the officer was ever disciplined by the department. Variables in Part 2 include answers to the survey items. These include variables that measure officer cynicism, distance from supervisors, the department, and the public, and attitudes toward ethics.

Response Rates:   Part 2: Of the 504 officers chosen for the sample, five refused to participate.

Presence of Common Scales:   Scales include Regoli's (1976) modification of Niederhoffer's (1967) cynicism scale, a modified version of Krejei et al.'s (1996) attitudes toward ethics scale, and several Likert-type scales.

Version(s)

Original ICPSR Release:  

Version History:

  • 2006-03-30 File UG3977.ALL.PDF was removed from any previous datasets and flagged as a study-level file, so that it will accompany all downloads.
  • 2006-03-30 File CQ3977.ALL.PDF was removed from any previous datasets and flagged as a study-level file, so that it will accompany all downloads.
  • 2005-11-04 On 2005-03-14 new files were added to one or more datasets. These files included additional setup files as well as one or more of the following: SAS program, SAS transport, SPSS portable, and Stata system files. The metadata record was revised 2005-11-04 to reflect these additions.

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