Policing Enforcement & Justice

Policing Enforcement & Justice

Woman presenting research on policingThe consequences of an unequal and unjust criminal legal system are pervasive and destructive to every aspect of our society. In particular, the US has and continues to maintain a legacy of an unjust criminal legal system that disproportionately implicates people based on their race, class, gender, immigration status, sexual orientation, and location. With this in mind, this initiative advances research on the mechanisms that produce and maintain inequities within the criminal legal system and its broader consequences on society. Specifically, this group facilitates a platform for scholars to develop new and ongoing studies across these domains while supporting their efforts to secure needed resources.

Currently, the Policing Enforcement and Justice Working Group is conducting research exploring racial and ethnic profiling by state and local law enforcement. The working group was awarded a grant from the Russell Sage Foundation for support of their project, "Ethnic Profiling Under the Auspices of Community Safety", for the 2023-2025 time period.  This research investigates the effect of 287(g) agreements on ethnic profiling of Hispanics in traffic stops by local law enforcement agencies in North Carolina.

Additionally, this working group is producing a manuscript titled, "DOJ Intervention and the Checkpoint Shift: Profiling Hispanic Motorists Under the §287(g) Program". In this study, the authors explore whether the DOJ investigation into civil rights violations by Alamance County Sheriff’s Office, an early adopter of the §287(g) program, influenced the policing behavior of other §287(g) participating agencies in North Carolina (NC). Using NC traffic stop data, the authors focus on the proportion of stopped Hispanic motorists and the basis of each traffic stop before and after the DOJ launched its investigation.

For questions, please contact Dr. Joaquin Rubalcaba at