Self-Selection Policing

Theory, Research and Practice

  • Jason Roach
  • Ken Pease

Part of the Crime Prevention and Security Management book series (CPSM)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xv
  2. Jason Roach, Ken Pease
    Pages 1-10
  3. Jason Roach, Ken Pease
    Pages 11-26
  4. Jason Roach, Ken Pease
    Pages 27-58
  5. Jason Roach, Ken Pease
    Pages 59-71
  6. Jason Roach, Ken Pease
    Pages 95-116
  7. Back Matter
    Pages 141-142

About this book


Self-Selection Policing introduces and explores an approach for crime control which seeks to identify active, serious offenders by attending to the minor offences they commit. A foundation of theory and evidence is first supplied for the assertion that ‘those who do big bad things also do little bad things’. Original research presented in the book includes a study of offending by visitors to a prison, and the concurrent criminality of those committing common driving offences and failure to produce driving documents as required. It illustrates how self-selection can complement other police methods of identifying active, serious criminals by focusing on what offenders do rather than who they are and what they have done in the past. Concentrating on the ‘usual suspects’ in the conventional way is often criticised as harassment and self-selection policing largely bypasses the issue of fairness this raises. 

The book concludes with a call for the consideration, development and wider adoption of the self-selection approach, and particularly the identification of other common minor offences which flag concurrent active criminality. The authors make important suggestions for the progression of SSP research and practice, including the identification of barriers to the implementation of the approach in wider police thinking, practice and policy. Practical guidance is also provided for those thinking of developing, testing and implementing the approach. In doing so, the book will be of particular interest for policing practitioners, as well as students and scholars of policing and crime control.


Criminology Crime control Policing Security criminal versatility SSP serious crime practical psychology forensic psychology police decision making criminological theory offenders offending prisons murder driving offences driving bans

Authors and affiliations

  • Jason Roach
    • 1
  • Ken Pease
    • 2
  1. 1.University of HuddersfieldHuddersfieldUnited Kingdom
  2. 2.University College LondonLondonUnited Kingdom

Bibliographic information