The Thames Police

Creating the “Criminal Class”

In the late eighteenth century, Glasgow magistrate Patrick Colquhoun argued that immoral living had created a distinct class of people with weak characters.
The Body Shop and ECPAT campaign at The Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand on March 29, 2012 in Bangkok, Thailand.

Creating a Safety Net: CST in International Law

Robust international partnership models that build capacity and trust can help fight child sex tourism and commercial sexual exploitation of children.
Harper's Weekly, October 17, 1874 issue. Illustration by John A. Randolph of the scene of "A Colorado Tragedy."

The Colorado Cannibal

Prospector Alferd Packer, stranded in the San Juan Mountains, was forced to eat his companions to survive the brutal winter conditions. Or was he?

Our Obsession with Art Heists

A deeply ingrained interest in stolen objects and their recovery reflects our collective uncertainty over how we value art.
The Gang Busters sound effects team, 1937

The Rise and Fall of “True Crime” Radio Dramas

Depictions of poor, non-white victims and informants led working-class and rural listeners to turn against the genre.
Illustration of a guard looking in on a distraught prisoner

The Other Crime Victims

Can perpetrators of crime also be victims of crime?
Jim Allen (L), a self-described member of the Vice Lords street gang, gets a hug from former Gangster Disciple and current community activist Q. L. Anthony following a press conference September 2, 2010 in Chicago, Illinois.

What Do Chicago Gangs Provide to Their Members?

Confronted with discrimination and violence, gangs evolve and serve members differently, even when patterned after existing groups.
Police officers gather as the body of NYPD officer Wilbert Mora is transferred in an ambulance from NYU Langone Hospital to a Medical Examiner's office at the same location on January 25, 2022 in New York City.

Crime Waves and Moral Panics

From train robberies to organized retail theft to murder, are we really gripped by a crime wave?
An illustration of a hand holding a set of hand cuffs

Let’s Talk About (Your) Crimes

Asking yourself about what you've "gotten away with" may change how you think about "criminals."
The Illustrated Police News, November 17, 1888

How Crime Stories Foiled Reform in Victorian Britain

Harsh punishments were declining in the nineteenth century. Then came sensationalist news coverage of a reputed crime wave.