The Drug Market Intervention (DMI) effectively eliminates overt drug markets and improves life for residents of the surrounding communities. Overt drug markets operate in public, causing chaos, violence, and enormous damage to communities. DMI was first piloted in 2004 in High Point, NC. The strategy identifies particular drug markets, identifies street-level dealers, and arrests people committing violent acts. Law enforcement develops prosecutable drug cases for nonviolent dealers but suspends these unless a person continues illegally selling drugs. This allows law enforcement to put people selling drugs on notice that any future dealing will result in certain, immediate sanctions. The DMI partnership brings together people selling drugs, their families, law enforcement, social service providers, and community leaders for a call-in meeting that makes clear that selling drugs openly must stop and the market is closed. The partnership tells people selling drugs clearly and directly that the community cares about them but rejects their behavior, that help is available, and that continued dealing will result in immediate sanctions through the activation of existing cases. Dozens of cities have implemented DMI with reductions in violent and drug-related crime, minimized use of law enforcement, strong endorsement from the community, and improved relationships between law enforcement and residents.
The National Network produced Drug Market Intervention: An Implementation Guide, published by COPS Office in 2015, to provide a practical tool for stakeholders seeking to implement DMI in their jurisdictions.
Best, M (2009) Model Police Work. UNCG Research, (7) 8-15
Corsaro, N., Hunt, E.D., Kroovand Hipple, N., McGarrell, E. (2012). The Impact of Drug Market Pulling Levers Policing on Neighborhood Violence. Criminology & Public Policy. Vol. 11, Issue 2.
Corsaro, N., Brunson, R.K., McGarrell, E.F. (2009). Problem-Oriented Policing and Open-Air Drug Markets: Examining the Rockford Pulling Levers Deterrence Strategy. Crime & Delinquency
Corsaro, N., McGarrell, E.F. (2009). An Evaluation of the Nashville Drug Market Initiative (DMI) Pulling Levers Strategy. Drug Market Intervention Working Paper. East Lansing, MA: Michigan State University
Hipple, N.K., Corsaro, N., McGarrell, E. F (2010). The High Point Drug Market Initiative: A Process and Impact Assessment. East Lansing, MA: Michigan State University
Kennedy, D. M. (2009, March). Drugs, Race and Common Ground: Reflections on the High Point Intervention.National Institute of Justice Journal, No. 262.
Kennedy, D.M. (2008). Deterrence and Crime Prevention: Reconsidering the Prospect of Sanction. NY: Routledge – Chapter 9
McGarrell, E. F., Corsaro, N., Brunson, R..K. (2010). The Drug Market Intervention Approach to Overt Drug Markets. VARSTVOSLOVJE, Journal of Criminal Justice and Security. Year 12 No. 4. pp. 397-407
Meares, T. L.(2009). The Legitimacy of Police Among Young African-American Men. Faculty Scholarship Series. Paper 528.
Practice Brief: Norms, Narrative and Community Engagement for Crime Prevention (Community Moral Voice)
The norms and narratives held by offenders and potential offenders, communities; and law enforcement have tremendous impact on crime and crime prevention, how each part views the others, and their actions; and their willingness to work together. Recent work has shown that norms and narratives can be directly addressed and even changed, with enormous practical impact. This practice brief addresses the practical aspects of addressing “norms and narratives” in crime prevention.
Since pioneering the Drug Market Intervention in 2004, the city of High Point, NC has developed a protocol to ensure that the five street drug markets it successfully shut down stay closed. This paper summarizes the key componentens of its maintenance protocol.
This paper briefly reviews the research on the crime control effectiveness of “pulling levers” focused deterrence programs. Focused deterrence strategies honor core deterrence ideas, such as increasing risks faced by offenders, while finding new and creative ways of deploying traditional and non-traditional law enforcement tools to do so, such as communicating incentives and disincentives directly to targeted offenders.
These evaluation designs permit the clearest assessment of “cause and effect” in determining whether hot spots policing programs prevent crime. These designs examine pre- and post-program measurement of crime outcomes in targeted locations relative to “control” locations. The control groups in the identified hot spots evaluations received routine levels of traditional police enforcement tactics. The deterrence message was a promise to gang members that violent behavior would evoke an immediate and intense response from law enforcement.
This report is a meta-analysis that evaluates impact on homicide and violence in a variety of cities that have implemented our Group Violence Intervention or the Drug Market Intervention.
This publication sets out the compelling story of High Point’s original Drug Market Intervention work and describes how the intervention was successfully duplicated in Providence, Rhode Island.
Working with NNSC
Contact us to start a conversation about implementing the Drug Market Intervention in your community.
In the News
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