Within the past few months, Gov. John Kasich has ordered the creation of the Ohio Collaborative Community-Policy Advisory Board to create the first statewide standards for police use of force. This project examines the history that surrounds police brutality in regards to the power and class struggles that occur between the upper and lower class, the micro factors that influence an officer’s decision-making process and how individual factors such as department culture and officer influence effect an officer's ability to determine what the legitimate and illegitimate use of force is appropriate in a given scenario. Using Social Conflict Theory, Symbolic Interactionism and Control Balance Theory, a framework is provided to examine a modern interpretation of police violence. In-depth interviews were conducted with members of the Wooster Police Department to gain an understanding as to how the new standards would affect the department and to also gain an understanding of the department’s policy towards the use of force and community policing practices. The interviews were transcribed and analyzed with codes from the literature and theory chapters of this research. The findings suggest that the standards in place at the Wooster Police Department exceed the standards set by the task force and do a better job at monitoring the use of force that their officers engage in daily.


Tierney, Thomas


Sociology and Anthropology


Community-Based Research | Social Control, Law, Crime, and Deviance

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis



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