Criminal Justice Research Paper

The purpose of this research assignment is for you to gain information related to a specific topic related to law enforcement through analytical research of scientific data.

A number of points to remember when writing this paper are:

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1) The paper must involve a topic specific to law enforcement. This means any topic related to any type of policing (local, state, federal), women in law enforcement, use of force issues, police ethics, court rulings affecting police behavior, etc. General topics of criminal justice including juvenile delinquency, domestic violence, etc. are not acceptable unless they are about law enforcement’s response to these problems.

2) Use in-text citing (APA format) for your sources. In-text citing involves typing the author’s last name and copywrite date or page number (for a direct quote) for information gained from your sources, even if you paraphrase. To complete an in-text citing, observe the following:

In 2018, the city of Norfolk reported a total of 10,000 Part I Offenses including homicide, rape, robbery, assault, burglary, larceny and motor vehicle theft (Mueller, 2018).

In your bibliography, you would cite, in alphabetical order by the author’s last name, the source where this information came from: Mueller, Robert S., FBI Uniform Crime Report, U.S. Department of Justice, 2014.

If your sentence includes a direct quote, the quote should be within quotation marks followed by the author’s last name and the page number from your source on which the quote is located:

Robert Mueller stated that “the number of Crime Index offenses reported to law enforcement agencies increased 1.3% during the first 6 months of 2018” (Mueller, 26).

Long quotes (direct quotes over 4 lines long) should be indented and single spaced.

3) Use only scholarly sources to describe your crime problem. Do not cite information using Time, U.S. News and World Report,, newspaper articles, textbooks from college courses, websites whose information cannot be verified such as Amnesty International, COPwatch .org, etc. Do not use your required classroom textbook or any other material handed out in class as your sources. Your sources must be recent. Except for explaining something in an historical context, do not use sources older than 2-3 years. There is constant publication of books and journal articles related to law enforcement and your paper should reflect current thoughts.

4) The basic outline of your paper should be this:


I. Introduction
a) Introduce your topic and keep paper in 3rd person professional format

b) Explain why this topic is important to research and lay out a few questions the paper will attempt to answer. This will not only help you to write an organized paper, but also takes the guess work out of the reader trying to determine exactly what your paper is trying to accomplish.


II. Body of Paper
a) This should be the bulk of your paper: describe the dimensions of the topic using scientific, statistical data, government reports, etc.

b) What does your research tell you about the topic you are writing about?

c) Make sure you answer the questions set out in the introduction. Do not leave the reader wondering why you did not answer the issues you stated would be addressed.


III. Conclusion

Briefly summarize the research findings and future implications related to your topic. Be careful not to go back into your topic of research in such detail that the information should have been included in the body of your text. Simply summarize the findings in a broad sense and end with some future implication. This will give the paper a sense of finality and close out the project


paper should be double spaced, 8-10 pages in length (not including title pages, cover pages, or the bibliography). Grammar and spelling will count in as much that if your paper becomes difficult to read because of errors, your grade will drop dramatically.

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