Prof. Steve Zeidman on Problems with Broken Windows Policing

In the wake of the Eric Garner decision, Professor Steve Zeidman has spoken out on the problems with broken windows policing and the need for a 21st-century approach to policing.

“If the problem is a broken window they should fix the window,” said City University of New York law school professor Steve Zeidman. “But somehow we don’t fix the window, we just arrest people who start hanging out by the broken window.”

Read the full Reuters article

In a letter to the editor of the New York Times, Zeidman wrote:

Just as stop-and-frisk outlived its usefulness, the “broken windows” policy — based on the theory that forcefully prosecuting minor quality-of-life crimes prevents more serious crimes — is well past the point of diminishing returns.

Read the full New York Times article

Steve Zeidman is a professor and director of the Criminal Defense Clinic at CUNY Law. He advocates on behalf of indigent defendants in many venues, including as a member of the Indigent Defense Organization Oversight Committee. He presently serves on the Board of Directors of Prisoners’ Legal Services and has also served on several statewide commissions, including the Commission on the Future of Indigent Defense Services and the Jury Project.