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Factors Influencing Public Trust in the Police in South Korea: Focus on Instrumental, Expressive, and Normative Models:

Factors Influencing Public Trust in the Police in South Korea: Focus on Instrumental, Expressive,... Abundant studies examining public trust in the police have applied several theoretical models including instrumental, expressive, or normative models. However, few studies have attempted to simultaneously assess the empirical validity of these theoretical models of public trust in the police. In addition, there has been little research on public trust in police in East Asia; most of the empirical research on this topic has been explored in Western societies. To extend the knowledge of public trust in the police, the current study investigated to what extent factors drawn from three models influence public trust in the police using a sample of South Korean citizens. The results show that, consistent with prior research, police effectiveness, procedural justice, and social cohesion had significant, positive effects on public trust in the police. Police effectiveness was the most influential factor followed by procedural justice and social cohesion. Implications for practice and future research are discussed. Keywords public trust in the police, police effectiveness, procedural justice, social cohesion, South Korea turn, reduces levels of crime and disorder and improves the Introduction quality of life in the neighborhood. Although advances in science have driven social system Recent studies on public trust in the police have identified evolution, human activities still remain predominantly conceptual and empirical distinctions between instrumental focused on policing because police activities are so inter- and expressive models of public trust in the police (Bradford twined with the public. Since public trust in the police & Myhill, 2015; Jackson & Bradford, 2009; Jackson & underpins the entire system of police, a large body of Sunshine, 2007; Jang & Hwang, 2014; Sun et al., 2013). research has emphasized the importance and the value of From the instrumental perspective, citizens evaluate the public trust in the police, and many police scholars have police in terms of their ability to prevent crimes, apprehend paid attention to this topic. criminals, and maintain safety effectively. On the other hand, Prior studies have shown that building public trust in the the expressive model posits that public trust in the police is police tends to enhance public cooperation with police in determined by their expressive concerns related to neighbor- preventing crimes, arresting offenders, reducing fear of hood disorder and community cohesion. That is, higher lev- crime, and advancing neighborhood safety (Nix et al., 2015; els of incivilities and lower level of social cohesion in Tyler, 1990). More importantly, public trust in the police is a neighborhoods tend to deteriorate public trust in the police crucial factor for improving police legitimacy (Hawdon because citizens feel that the police fail to ensure the moral et al., 2003). Specifically, overall effectiveness of police may be lessened when high levels of trust between police and the public are not warranted. If police officers perform their DaeJeon University, South Korea duties in a way contrary to citizens’ expectations, police 2 Chungnam National University, DaeJeon, South Korea agencies are less likely to experience trust, support, coopera- Corresponding Author: tion, and voluntary public compliance. Conversely, if police Dae-Hoon Kwak, School of Integrated National Security, Chungnam agencies maintain a high level of public trust in the police, National University, DaeHak Ro 99, DaeJeon 34134, South Korea. citizens are more likely to comply with the police which in Email: dkwak@cnu.ac.kr Creative Commons CC BY: This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) which permits any use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access pages (https://us.sagepub.com/en-us/nam/open-access-at-sage). 2 SAGE Open structure and value of community (Jackson & Bradford, outcomes, trust suggests that those in authority are reliable 2009; Jackson et al., 2012; Jackson & Sunshine, 2007). and valuable, and that they make decisions based on the right In contrast, Tyler (2001, 2005) argued that citizens’ percep- information and motivation (Jones, 2002). Trust is also asso- tions of fair policing play a greater role than police perfor- ciated with implicit or apparent expectations that others act mance in explaining citizens’ trust in the police. More in ways that are expected. In general, public trust can be specifically, Tyler’s studies indicate that quality of treatment described as “unquestioning belief in and reliance upon a drives public perceptions of trust in police. This finding has group to which one belongs or a public institution estab- been discussed under the framework of procedural justice in lished to protect citizens” (Cao, 2015: 242). normative models where judgments about the fairness of the Trust is a particularly important concept for police agen- police is the most important factor in such processes (Bradford, cies because citizens generally have limited knowledge of 2014). Furthermore, the level of normative compliance to the police practices and lack of expertise in evaluating their per- law emanate from judgments concerning the legitimacy in the formance. The trust that a person has in police tends to be intergroup context created by the police (Stott et al., 2012). In based on limited personal experience that conveys little other words, public trust in the police is heavily influenced by information about police intentions and characteristics the normative concerns that police officers treat citizens fairly, (Jackson et al., 2012, p.1054). respect citizens’ rights, interact citizens with respect, and listen Specifically, public trust in police can be defined as the to and care about citizens’ concerns. belief that police officers have the right intentions for citi- Many studies examining public trust in the police zens and are competent to act in a particular way in certain employed one or sometimes two of the three leading models circumstances (Hardin, 2002). That is, public trust in the (i.e., instrumental, expressive, or normative models) as theo- police refers to the citizens’ belief that police officers have retical frameworks for explaining the empirical relationships appropriate motives and are competent in carrying out their (Bradford & Myhill, 2015; Chambers et al., 2020; Jackson & duties as the public expects. Thus, public trust is related to Bradford, 2009; Jackson & Sunshine, 2007; Jang & Hwang, public confidence that police officers would have the great- 2014; Park et al., 2021; Sun et al., 2013; Tyler, 2001, 2005). est interests in the community and would exercise their However, relatively few studies have attempted to simulta- authority consistent with those interests (Tyler & Huo, 2002). neously test the empirical validity of these theoretical mod- When the police fail to earn the public trust, their compe- els of public trust in the police and to examine the relative tency to maintain public order is likely to diminish, which effects of three models. may lead to disastrous consequences in neighborhoods. The Korean National Police Agency (KNPA) has experi- Since trust in the police is an important precursor to a percep- enced a decline in public trust in the police and the levels of tion of legitimacy, public trust in the police is an indispens- public trust in the KNPA remain lower than expected, irre- able factor in policing and leads people to willingly obey the spective of numerous KNPA attempts at police reform (Cao law and cooperate with the police (Bradford, 2014). While & Dai, 2006; Hwang et al., 2005). For instance, a compara- the police restrict citizens’ rights and freedom due to the tive study confirmed that Americans were roughly twice as nature of their duties such as crime prevention and criminal likely to report a higher level of trust in the police than South investigation, citizens who trust the police tend to voluntarily Koreans (Boateng et al., 2016, p. 299). Given the different accept such restrictions. Thus it is argued that public trust in context in which South Korea is placed, it may not be accu- the police is a prerequisite for successful police activities rate or helpful to simply generalize to the South Korea con- (Nix et al., 2015). text with findings from studies conducted in Western More specifically, the effects of public trust in the police countries. In this regard, it is necessary to examine the fac- are as follows. First, public trust in the police may promote tors that may influence public trust in the police in non-West- citizens’ compliance with the law (Jackson et al., 2012). It is ern societies such as South Korea. assumed that citizens voluntarily abide by the law when they Therefore, the present study aims to shed light on what trust the police. Otherwise, citizen compliance with law can extent factors drawn from instrumental, expressive, and nor- be obtained through threat or actual use of force. Police mative models influence public trust in the police in the con- should rely on extensive and voluntary law-abiding activities text of South Korea by analyzing survey data from Daejeon so that police can concentrate their resources on specific Metropolitan City. Particularly, the current study attempts to cases and certain situations where compliance has not volun- examine the relative impact of the three models and to sug- tarily been obtained (Sunshine & Tyler, 2003; Tyler & Huo, gest policy implications to promote public trust in the police. 2002). Second, public trust in the police may encourage citi- zens to cooperate with the police. When citizens proactively cooperate with the police, they are more likely to report Literature Review crimes, provide information about criminals, and participate in crime prevention activities (Nix et al., 2015; Tyler, 1990). Public Trust in Police Third, public trust in the police may imbue the police with Since trust can be defined as the belief that those who have authority. The empowerment is associated with citizens’ authority to make a critical decision pursue acceptable intentions to accept discretionary judgment by the police. Lim and Kwak 3 Police officers’ discretion can be exercised because citizens Tankebe (2008) also found the positive influence of per- have authorized the police to do so. Fourth, public trust in the ceived effectiveness on trustworthiness of the police in police may foster citizen perception of police legitimacy. Ghana. It also confirmed that the effect of perceived effec- Trustworthy police are seen by citizens to be effective, fair, tiveness of the police would be stronger with higher level of and have the shared value with, and strong commitment to perceived procedural fairness. In addition, confidence in the the community (Tyler & Huo, 2002). police is higher in countries with more government effi- To explain empirical relationships, a substantial number ciency and is lower among residents of countries with higher of studies on public trust in the police mainly applied three homicide rates (Cao et al., 2012). Using a time series analy- theoretical frameworks, including instrumental, expressive, sis of British Crime Survey data, Sindall et al. (2012) found and normative models (Bradford & Myhill, 2015; Chambers that confidence in the police was not related to aggregate et al., 2020; Jackson & Bradford, 2009; Jackson & Sunshine, worry about crime but to perceptions of crime and the prop- 2007; Jang & Hwang, 2014; Park et al., 2021; Sun et al., erty crime rate. More recently, Boateng (2017) confirmed 2013; Tyler, 2001, 2005). Those three models are briefly dis- that police effectiveness such as controlling crime and pro- cussed below. viding service had a positive effect on trust in the police. With regard to relative effects of police effectiveness, Sahapattana and Cobkit (2016) found that public attitude Instrumental Models toward crime suppression had the strongest effect on public The instrumental model posits that public trust in the police confidence in the police followed by attitude toward crime is associated with how effectively the police do their job, prevention. In another study, Chambers et al. (2020) found especially in reducing crime, and fear of crime. The model that compared with the expressive model, the instrumental suggests that the police are instrumental in playing a central model was better in predicting procedure-based trust in the role of crime prevention and making people feel safe (Sun police. That is, expressive concerns are significantly associ- et al., 2014: 127). Accordingly, if the police are perceived as ated with procedurally based trust, whereas instrumental failing to achieve citizens’ expectation, citizens perceive this concerns are not predictive of outcome-based trust. as an indication that police are ineffective at controlling A few studies have indicated that fear of crime had a sig- crime. This may result in public distrust of the police. For nificant effect on public trust in the police (Bradford & instance, several studies suggested that public willingness to Myhill, 2015; Jackson & Bradford, 2009; Jackson & support and cooperate with the police increased when the Sunshine, 2007; Kääriäinen, 2008). Specifically, Kääriäinen police are perceived as reliable institutions that deliver a (2008) observed that the relationship between insecurity and credible threat of sanctions for wrongdoing, along with a trust in the police was inverse, suggesting that a feeling of fairly distributed police service (Murphy & Cherney, 2011; insecurity in one’s neighborhood lowers one’s level of trust Sunshine & Tyler, 2003). in the police. However, other studies found that fear of crime The instrumental model has some overlap with the had no or limited effect on public trust in the police (Merry accountability model and the performance model of public et al., 2012; Park et al., 2021). Specifically, Merry et al. satisfaction with the police (Skogan, 2009; Sun et al., 2014; (2012) found that fear of crime was not significantly related Van Craen, 2012). According to the accountability model to public trust in the police. proposed by Skogan (2009), citizens expect the police to In the context of South Korea, Hwang (2013) revealed take full responsibility for crime prevention and reducing that fear of crime had significant effects. Interestingly, the fear of crime in the neighborhood. Similarly, the perfor- direction of the impact between Seoul citizens and Korean mance theory suggests that public trust in the police is closely Americans in Detroit was inconsistent. In the case of Seoul associated with their perceived police performance and citizens, the fear of crime had a positive effect on trust in the effectiveness. That is, people tend to report a higher level of police while there was a negative relationship between fear satisfaction with the police when police agencies perform of crime and public trust among Detroit Koreans (also see their duties effectively (Espinal et al., 2006). Jang, 2014). However, a recent study by Park et al. (2021) Prior studies based on the instrumental perspective have found that perceived fear of crime along with police effec- examined two main determinants of public trust in the police: tiveness had a limited effect on public confidence in the crimes (e.g., crime rates, victimization experience) and fear police in South Korea. of crime. Many studies of public trust in the police focusing Based on prior research, it can be hypothesized that police on crimes showed that police effectiveness played a critical effectiveness and fear of crime significantly influence public role in shaping public trust in the police (Boateng, 2017; Cao trust in the police when individual characteristics such as age et al., 2012; Sahapattana & Cobkit, 2016; Sampson & and gender are held constant. Bartusch, 1998; Sindall et al., 2012; Solakoglu, 2016; Tankebe, 2008). For example, Sampson and Bartusch (1998) Expressive Models reported a negative association between neighborhood homi- cide rates and the evaluation of the police after controlling The main argument of the expressive model of public trust in for other neighborhood factors and individual factors. the police is that citizens’ views on trust in the police are 4 SAGE Open shaped by expressive interests in community order and cohe- whereas perceived disorder was negatively related to public sion rather than by instrumental interests in crime and per- confidence in the police. However, a more recent study sonal safety (Jackson & Sunshine, 2007; Sun et al., 2013). In revealed that perceived social cohesion had no effect on pub- other words, citizens expect the police to be not only crime lic confidence in the police (Park et al., 2021). Rather, the fighters but guardians of local morality and values as well. study found that individuals with a higher level of trust in Theoretically, this model is linked to social disorganization formal control (i.e., criminal justice policies) retained greater theory (Reisig & Parks, 2000; Sampson & Bartusch, 1998) confidence in the police. and social capital theory (Brehm & Rahn, 1997). It is argued Building upon these existing findings, social cohesion that high levels of disorder and low levels of community and informal social control are hypothesized to positively integration tend to undermine public trust in the police, as affect public trust in the police while neighborhood disorder residents believe that the police fail to maintain the moral is expected to exhibit a negative relationship. structure of the community. The expressive model also reflects the main premise of social capital theory in which a Normative Models social network that forms around an environment is posi- tively related to trust in government agencies (Brehm & Based on a procedural justice perspective, the normative Rahn, 1997). Particularly, since the police play an important model has suggested that the perceived fairness of police role in local government, citizens’ assessment of trust in the influences citizens’ trust in the police (Gau, 2014; Reisig police can be heavily influenced by their social capital. et al., 2007; Tankebe, 2013; Tyler, 2006). When people In addition to social capital, informal social control and believe that the police fairly treat them, they are more likely social cohesion are closely associated with the formation of to trust in the police (Murphy et al., 2014). According to the moral order and social order within a neighborhood. Prior normative model, citizens decide whether to support the studies have found that expressive concerns are more impor- police based on procedural fairness rather than on instru- tant than instrumental concerns (Cao et al., 1996; Jackson & mental concerns. That is, the level of normative compliance Bradford, 2009; Sun et al., 2013). For example, Jackson and to the law emanate from judgments concerning the legiti- Bradford (2009) argued that people generally evaluate their macy in the intergroup context created by the police (Stott local police with social cohesion and moral consensus (i.e., et al., 2012). expressive concerns) rather than the risk of victimization Tyler (2005) presents two main elements of procedural (i.e., instrumental concerns). Cao et al. (1996) also indicated justice: quality of decision making and quality of interper- that contextual variables such as informal collective security sonal treatment. Most studies have indicated that procedural and community disorder showed larger effects than crime- justice is a significant predictor of public trust in the police related factors in terms of trust in the police (also see (Jackson & Bradford, 2009, 2010; Nix et al., 2015). More Chambers et al., 2020). specifically, Tankebe (2008) found that those who perceived Most prior studies examining the effects of expressive the police to behave fairly are more likely to report greater concerns on public trust in the police indicated that perceived trust in the police. More recent studies also confirmed that law and order, neighborhood disorder, and quality of life were evaluation of procedural justice had a positive effect on pub- significantly associated with public trust in the police lic trust in the police (Nix et al., 2015; Van Craen & Skogan, (Boateng, 2017; Han et al., 2017; Nix et al., 2015; Sprott & 2017). In the context of South Korea, Lim (2018) reported Doob, 2009; Sun et al., 2013). Using survey data collected that perceptions of procedural justice had a strong effect on from Chinese citizens, Sun et al. (2013) found that expressive adolescents’ trust in the police. The results of the structural interests had a significant impact on public trust in the police. equation models (SEM) analyses also showed that perceived In particular, a sense of safety increased the odds of public police fairness was the primary determinant of confidence in trust in the police and citizens’ trust in the police was pre- the police in South Korea (Park et al., 2021). Based on these dicted by trust in neighbors. Boateng (2017) also suggested findings, it is hypothesized that procedural justice is posi- that people are more negative about the police when they per- tively related to public trust in the police. ceive high levels of community disorder (also see Nix et al., While findings from this line of inquiry are somewhat 2015; Sprott & Doob, 2009). Put differently, levels of public inconclusive, we speculate that instrumental concerns are trust in the police were predicted by collective efficacy (Nix more important than expressive concerns or normative con- et al., 2015) and neighborhood cohesion (Han et al., 2017). cerns in influencing South Koreans’ trust in the police for the On the other hand, Sindall et al. (2012) found that citizens’ following reasons. First, compared to Western societies, awareness of crime, disorder, and social cohesion did not South Korea is a culturally and racially homogenous society have a significant effect on public trust in the police. (Kim & Jeon, 2017; Shin, 2006). Thus, high levels of neigh- With regard to research in South Korea, Hwang (2013) borhood cohesion and low levels of neighborhood disorder reported that neighborhood cohesion had a positive effect on in South Korea may make expressive concerns less relevant South Koreans’ trust in the police. Jang (2014) also found to the evaluations of the police. Second, South Korean cul- that neighborhood cohesion and informal social control were ture generally emphasizes the importance of moral and ethi- positively associated with public confidence in the police cal behavior of citizens. Citizens are inclined to have a Lim and Kwak 5 considerably obedient attitude toward police officers score of 0 and a standard deviation of 1. Finally, the reli- (Morash et al., 2008). Finally, as many crimes against women ability coefficient (Cronbach’s α) of public trust in the police have recently occurred, it resulted in high levels of fear of was .95, which indicates an excellent level of internal consis- crime among women in South Korea (Choi et al., 2020). tency among the items. Independent variables. The primary independent variables Methodology included police effectiveness, fear of crime, social cohesion, informal social control, neighborhood disorder, and proce- Data dural justice. Police effectiveness means the ability of the The data for the current study were collected from a com- police to fulfill their central duties not only in combating crime munity survey in the Daejeon metropolitan city, which is but also in providing a visible presence, policing public events, 13th largest city in South Korea. Daejeon Metropolitan City and responding to emergency calls (Stanko & Bradford, 2009). is geographically located in the center of South Korea with Police effectiveness was measured using three questions as the approximate population of 1.5 million and is subdivided shown in Appendix A. The conceptual definition of police into five districts (“Gu”) including 53 neighborhoods effectiveness for this study is that police effectively suppress (“Dong”). To ensure representativeness of the sample, 20 crimes and quickly respond to citizens asking for help. The survey staff members (mainly graduate students and under- items used to measure police effectiveness were adopted from graduate students) for this study were assigned 53 neighbor- Tankebe (2009) and Sunshine and Tyler (2003). The factor hoods across the five districts and randomly chose 15 analysis identified a one factor solution which captured about households from each neighborhood. The survey staff mem- 81% of variance (factor loadings > .89; Cronbach’s α = .88). bers visited each selected household and asked to fill out the Fear of crime refers to general and specific fear of crime questionnaire during June, 2018. The total of 800 survey which indicate a negative emotional assessment of fear and questionnaires was distributed and 783 were completed and anxiety about being a victim of crime (Tyler, 2005). The returned (response rate = 97.88%). Of 783 returned survey Tyler (2005) items to measure perceived fear of crime were questionnaires, 11 incomplete questionnaires were excluded, adopted to reflect fear of crime in neighborhoods (see resulting in 772 respondents for further analyses. Appendix A). The reliability of the scale was 0.95 and factor loadings ranged from 0.77 to 0.90 (explained vari- ance = 71.86%, factor loadings > .77; χ = 365.56, df = 20, Variables and Measurement p < .01; Cronbach’s α = .95). Dependent variable. Public trust in police can be defined Social cohesion has been recognized as complex concepts as citizens’ expectations that individual officers will perform that include such characteristics as social interaction, per- their assigned duties properly. The items to measure public sonal empathy, and value agreements. Similarly, Buckner trust in police have been represented and discussed in other (1988, p. 744) identified three key elements of social cohe- studies (see Cao, 2011; Jackson & Bradford, 2010; Skogan, sion. These elements are: (1) the residents’ sense of the com- 2009; Tankebe, 2009). To measure public trust in the police, munity, (2) the degree of interaction, and (3) the degree of the current study adopted Tankebe (2009)’s five survey items attraction. Thus, a community with strong social cohesion including (1) The police are reliable; (2) I am proud of the generally is the community where local residents feel a strong police; (3) I have confidence in the police; (4) The police sense of community, frequently participate in community are mainly honest; (5) The police always act according to meetings, and want to keep living in their community. the laws. The responses were coded into a 4-point Lik- Six items to measure conceived social cohesion among ert scale (1 = strongly disagree, 2 = disagree, 3 = agree, and respondents were adopted from prior studies (Nix et al., 2015; 4 = strongly agree). The factor structure might differ between Wolfe et al., 2016; also see Appendix A). The results from countries, so an exploratory factor analysis (EFA) was con- EFA confirmed that there was one factor solution which cap- ducted for South Korean data to test construct validity of tured approximately 76% of variance (factor loadings > .86; those five items. In particular, EFA based on Maximum like- χ = 60.69, df = 9, p < .01; Cronbach’s α = .94). lihood (ML) extraction with an oblique rotation method was The conceptual definition of informal social control is conducted since it produces a better simple latent structure that community members are willing to participate in crime and more interpretable results than a principal components prevention events and to maintain social order and norms in analysis with a varimax rotation which has been tradition- the community (Nix et al., 2015; Wolfe et al., 2016). Four ally used in criminal justice research (Fabrigar et al., 1999; items adopted from Nix et al. (2015) were used to represent Morash et al., 2008). The factor analysis yielded one factor levels of informal social control in the neighborhoods (see solution that roughly captured 82% of variance (factor load- Appendix A). The construct validity and reliability of the ings > .87, χ = 74.44, df = 5, p < .01). For the measures of four items were confirmed through EFA and Cronbach’s public trust in the police, Bartlett scores (factor scores) were alpha statistics (explained variance = 69.41%, factor load- developed for each scale, and thus each scale had a mean ings > .80; χ = 321.15, df = 2, p < .01; Cronbach’s α = .85). 6 SAGE Open Table 1. Descriptive Statistics (N = 772). N % Mean Std. D Min Max Dependent variable Public Trust in Police 0 1.00 −2.37 1.50 Independent variables Instrumental model Police effectiveness 0 1.00 −2.46 1.68 Fear of crime 0 1.00 −1.09 2.65 Expressive model Social cohesion 0 1.00 −1.98 1.84 Informal social control 0 1.00 −2.92 1.56 Neighborhood disorder 0 1.00 −1.84 2.41 Normative model Procedural justice 0 1.00 −2.59 1.75 Control variables Gender (1 = Male) 392 50.32 Age 3.07 1.65 1.00 6.00 Homeownership (1 = Yes) 548 70.35 Residence period 3.52 2.05 1.00 7.00 Note. Std. D = standard deviation. Bartlett factor scores. Neighborhood disorder was measured using Tyler’s Analytic Strategy (2005) scales (e.g., “the garbage was dumped randomly Ordinary least squares (OLS) regression analysis was used to around and it is messy,” “there are many cars or empty build- estimate the effects of the independent variables on public ings left unattended around,” etc). The factor analysis con- trust in the police while controlling for demographic factors. firmed a high level of construct validity among six items First, police effectiveness, fear of crime, social cohesion, (explained variance = 57.74%, factor loadings > .73; informal social control, neighborhood disorder, and proce- χ = 278.07, df = 9, p < .01). The reliability of the scale was dural justice were entered to examine their relationships with 0.85 which is relatively higher than an acceptable reliability public trust in the police. Second, four control variables were coefficient (Cronbach’s α = .70; see DeVellis, 2003). entered to control for any possible intervening effects of Lastly, procedural justice was measured by combining demographic characteristics variables (gender, age, home five items asking various questions about procedural justice ownership, residence period) of individual respondents. as shown in Appendix A. The factor and reliability analyses confirmed that the scale had a high level of construct validity and internal consistency among the five items (explained Findings variance = 79.34%, factor loadings > .84; χ = 29.75, df = 5, p < .01; Cronbach’s α = .94). Table 1 illustrates the descriptive statistics for dependent and independent variables used in this analysis. Of the total 772 Control variables. To control for the potential interven- respondents, about 50% were male and most citizens own ing effects of respondents’ demographic characteristics, their houses (70%). More than half of the respondents were four demographic variables were included in the analyses younger than 49 years old (cumulative percent = 59.4%). In as control variables. The control variables included gen- terms of residency period, 429 respondents (55.1%) have der (0 = Female, 1 = Male), Age (1 = 19 years old or 20–29, lived less than 15 years in the current neighborhood. 2 = 30–39, 3 = 40–49, 4 = 50–59, 5 = 60–69, 6 = 70 or older), Table 2 includes results from a correlation analysis among home ownership (0 = No, 1 = Yes), and residence period independent and dependent variables. As shown in the Table (1 = less than 5 years, 2 = 5–9, 3 = 10–14, 4 = 15–19, 5 = 20– 2, while there was no correlation between fear of crime and 24, 6 = 25–29, 7 = more than 30 years). public trust in the police, the other six independent variables To avoid severe multicollinearity (MC) problems among were statistically associated with the dependent variable at independent and control variables, the variance inflation fac- the .05 level. More specifically, police effectiveness, social tor (VIF) and tolerance statistics were calculated. Results cohesion, informal social control, and procedural justice confirmed that there were no severe MC problems among the were positively correlated with public trust in the police. variables (VIF < 1.80; tolerance > 0.56). Thus, the current That is, as police effectiveness, social cohesion, informal study simultaneously included all available variables in the social control, and procedural justice increased, the public regression models. trust in police increased. However, there was a negative Lim and Kwak 7 Table 2. Correlation Coefficients Between the Variables. Variables (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6) (7) (1) Public trust in police 1** (2) Police effectiveness .73** 1** (3) Fear of crime −.01* −.03* 1** (4) Social cohesion .28** .22** .07* 1** (5) Informal social control .21** .24** −.03* .42** 1** (6) Neighborhood disorder −.09* −.07** .36** .02* .04* 1** (7) Procedural justice .64** .65** .01* .25** .22** −.01* 1** Note. All variables included in this correlation analysis are Bartlett factor scores. *p ≤ .05. **p ≤ .01. Table 3. The Results from Ordinary Least Square Regression Analyses for the Effects of Instrumental, Expressive, and Normative Variables on Public Trust in Police. Public trust in police Variables b SE β b SE β Instrumental model Police effectiveness 0.53** 0.03 .53 0.54** 0.03 .53 Fear of crime 0.01** 0.03 .01 −0.01** 0.03 −.01 Expressive model Social cohesion 0.11** 0.03 .11 0.12** 0.03 .12 Informal social control −0.02** 0.03 −.02 −0.02** 0.03 −.02 Neighborhood disorder −0.05** 0.03 −.05 −0.04** 0.03 −.04 Normative model Procedural justice 0.27** 0.03 .27 0.27** 0.03 .27 Gender(1 = Male) −0.09** 0.05 −.05 Age 0.01** 0.02 .02 Homeownership(1 = Yes) −0.01** 0.06 −.00 Residence period −0.04** 0.01 −.08 Adjusted R .58 .59 F 183.74** 111.43** N 778 773 Note. b = b coefficients; SE = standard errors; β = beta weights (standardized coefficients). Bartlett factor scores. Number of observations after listwise deletion of incomplete cases. *p < .05. **p < .01. relationship between neighborhood disorder and public trust However, neighborhood disorder was no longer a significant in police (r = −0.09). The magnitudes of the correlation coef- predictor of public trust in the police. To compare the relative ficients were relatively small or weak for most of the signifi- strength of the effects, β weights (standardized regression cant variables except police effectiveness (r = 0.73) and coefficients) were also calculated. Based on these coeffi- procedural justice (r = 0.64) which is considered high. cients, the strongest predictor for public trust in the police The results from the OLS regression analyses were pre- was police effectiveness (β = .54) followed by procedural jus- sented in Table 3. In the first model presented in the right- tice (β = .27) and then social cohesion (β = .12). These find- hand column of the table, the statistically significant four ings indicated that the respondents who perceived that their predictors were police effectiveness, social cohesion, neigh- police officers effectively responded to calls for service and borhood disorder, and procedural justice. The four predictors applied the rules equally to citizens had a higher level of pub- explained approximately 59% of the variance in public trust lic trust in police. Lastly, the citizens who actively participate in the police. After adding the control variables in the second in community activities reported a higher level of public trust model, three of the same predictors remained statistically sig- in police. Regarding the control variables, residence period nificant. The additional variance explained by control vari- was negatively associated with public trust in police (β = −.08). ables was 1.0%, and the increase was statistically significant That is, respondents who lived longer in the neighborhood at the 0.05 level (R change = .01, F (4, 762) = 2.90, p < .05). had lower levels of public trust in the police. 8 SAGE Open be accompanied by higher level of public trust in the police, Discussions police should actively engage in community programs for To extend the knowledge of public trust in the police, the strengthening social cohesion and increasing informal social current study investigated to what extent factors drawn from control through mutual interactions with local residents. By instrumental, expressive, and normative models influence doing so, trust relations among neighbors can be formed and public trust in the police and examined the relative impact of community members are willing to work together to prevent the three models. The results revealed that police effective- crimes and to maintain community order, resulting in higher ness, social cohesion, and procedural justice had significant levels of public trust in the police. effects on public trust in the police. In particular, among Third, this study provides empirical evidence that public these significant predictors of public trust in the police, perceptions of procedural justice are related to public trust in police effectiveness was the strongest predictor for public the police. More specifically, consistent with prior research trust in South Korean police followed by procedural justice in Western societies (e.g., the U.S., U.K., & Australia), this and social cohesion. On the other hand, fear of crime, neigh- finding could expand the current knowledge of public trust in borhood disorder, and informal social control were not sig- the police to non-Western societies, including South Korea. nificantly associated with public trust in the police. These Specifically, the current study found that public perceptions findings indicated that instrumental models, expressive mod- of procedural justice play a central role in the normative els, and normative models are somewhat applicable to the evaluation process of public trust in the police (also see context of South Korea. Karakus, 2017; Nix et al., 2015; Tankebe, 2008; Tyler & First, this study found that police effectiveness had the Huo, 2002). In addition, the perceived legitimacy among strongest effect on public trust in the police. Consistent with people of the way they were treated had a significant impact our expectation and prior studies (Boateng, 2017; Karakus, on the internal dynamics as well as patterns of collective 2017; Tankebe, 2008; Van Craen, 2012), the relative effect of action among people (Stott et al., 2012). In other words, indi- police effectiveness on public trust in the police was found to viduals who recognize that the police are treating citizens be twice as stronger as procedural justice. That is, citizens fairly are more likely to trust police officers. with a higher perceived police effectiveness are twice as To facilitate public trust in the police, police officers likely to report favorable attitudes and trust toward the should be procedurally fair and treat citizens with a sense of police. This finding was consistent with performance theory respect. Police officers should bear in mind that the quality explaining that citizens are more likely to be satisfied with of interaction improve public trust in the police, but the the police when the police perform their duties effectively effects of negative experiences may be greater than those of (also see Espinal et al., 2006). According to the instrumental positive experiences (Skogan, 2006). In particular, to ensure theoretical framework, citizens’ judgments of police effec- that the police are seen as being procedurally fair, the police tiveness depend on the capability of the police to fight crime, should provide the residents with the opportunity to explain to reduce fear of crime, and to enhance safety and security in how decisions are made and allow citizens to file complaints, a neighborhood (Jackson & Bradford, 2009; Sun et al., along with courtesy and respect. 2013). Thus, to improve levels of public trust in the police, Based on a procedural justice perspective, the police can the police need to more effectively implement their basic create motive-based trust and shared collective membership. tasks of preventing and suppressing the crime. Police also promote collaboration with citizens to maintain Second, Sampson and Bartusch (1998) argued that macro- community values as a civil guardian. As a result, fighting level conditions affected public attitudes toward police. In against crime would be more efficient, more cost-effective, other words, residents in underdeveloped areas are more and more ethical by treating citizens fairly with dignity and likely to be cynical about the police. These findings expand respect. When the police are effective, procedurally fair, and macro-level studies and specify potential mechanisms in concerned with local interests, this would not only make the which neighborhood conditions may influence evaluation of police more responsible, but would also enhance moral rela- formal social control agencies such as police agencies (Park tionships between citizens and the police, and promote active et al., 2021). citizen engagement in community safety as well (Jackson & Consistent with previous research (Han et al., 2017; Bradford, 2010: 248). In sum, the results of this study sug- Hwang, 2013; Jang, 2014; Karakus, 2017; Nix et al., 2015; gest that the more effective and procedurally fair the police Sun et al., 2014), the results also confirmed that social cohe- are, and the stronger social cohesion in neighborhoods is, the sion had a positive impact on public trust in the police. That higher the levels of public trust in the police will be. is, citizens perceived their police as the representatives of Based on the results, we suggest the following policy and Daejeon city to maintain social cohesion and moral standard. practical implications to improve public trust in the KNPA. Accordingly, the police should help the community to volun- First, as people perceived higher level of police effectiveness, tarily participate in community activities and strengthen they reported higher level of trust in the police. Thus, police social ties among residents. Moreover, as the current study agencies should make an effort to improve police effective- found that social capital (e.g., trust in the neighborhood) may ness and public perceptions of police effectiveness (Skogan, Lim and Kwak 9 2009). This does not imply that police effectiveness itself is a agencies should strive to enhance internal procedural fair- sufficient condition for public trust in the police. Rather, ness to improve public trust in the police. police effectiveness can be considered as a necessary condi- Third, social cohesion may have an objective and subjec- tion for maintaining public trust in the police. Police perfor- tive influence on public trust in the police. Residents proac- mance is directly linked to the ability to respond to crimes, tively participating in various forms of social activities can prevent crimes, and apprehend offenders. Effectiveness of enhance social capital by improving information flow, crime control is also one of the basic factors in citizens’ evalu- mutual communication, and support. These social capital ation of police. That is, if a police agency is perceived as car- activities thus increase public trust in the police. Accordingly, rying out its duties in an effective manner, the police agency to strengthen social cohesion, police should continue to is more likely to be trusted by the public. develop and invest in community programs to ensure that Second, external procedural fairness refers to procedural residents are well acquainted with each other. When resi- fairness in the relationship between the police and local resi- dents have regular meetings to share what is happening in the dents. Procedural justice appears to play an important role in neighborhood and try to help each other, residents will gain an individual’s normative assessment of public trust in the more trust among themselves. police. Thus, KNPA needs to employ various organizational People who distrust each other are less likely to trust pub- strategies to ensure that police officers actually apply the lic institutions. Rothstein and Stolle (2008), for example, principle of procedural justice to every person they served. argued that citizens’ generalized trust (usually in others) was Supervision and discipline should be critical parts of such related to justice of law enforcement agencies. They also organizational strategies, and their effect may depend on insisted that police officers act as important signals to citi- monitoring thoroughly the delivery of procedurally fair ser- zens regarding moral standards in society. In other words, by vices. In particular, training for line officers is another tool to acting fairly, police officers stimulate citizens to act fairly provide a guideline for performing police officers’ daily and encourage citizens to expect others to act in similar duties, and such training regarding procedural justice can ways. Such actions result in generalized trust. affect police officers’ perceptions toward their counterparts in the long run. Some studies provided evidence that training Conclusion for procedural justice may positively influence police offi- cers’ view (Skogan et al., 2015; Wheller et al., 2013). For This study shows that police effectiveness, procedural jus- instance, in their quasi-experimental study of the short-term tice, and social cohesion were found to be significant predic- effects of training and the assessment of its long-term results tors influencing public trust in the police which indicates in Chicago, Skogan et al. (2015) found that training makes instrumental models, expressive models, and normative Chicago police officers more supportive of the principles of models are somewhat applicable to the context of South procedural fairness. Korea. Although the current study makes significant contri- According to the final report of President’s Task Force bution to the current knowledge of public trust in the police, on 21st Century Policing (2015), law enforcement agencies there are several limitations. First, the findings of the current should adopt procedural justice as a guiding principle for study are limited in their generalizability due to the small- internal and external policies and practices to guide their size sample collected only in Daejeon Metropolitan City, interactions with the communities they serve. However, the South Korea. In addition, using data gathered in a non- report also addressed difficulties and multi-dimensional experimental setting with a cross-sectional nature, this study issues for promoting procedural justice within police orga- was not able to control and account for temporal changes in nizations (see MacQueen & Bradford, 2017). In particular, public trust in the police. Future studies need to utilize repre- the task force examined the connection between fair super- sentative samples using longitudinal data. In addition, the vision (i.e., internal procedural justice) and fair police current study did not include the factors such as democracy activities (i.e., external procedural justice) and suggested or police corruption. Future research should incorporate the that the perception of internal procedural justice stimulates perception of democratic maturity and the perception of police officers to implement external procedural justice. police corruption as explanatory factors of public trust in the That is, internal procedural justice encourages police offi- police (see Hsieh & Boateng, 2015). Moreover, future stud- cers to develop external procedural justice (Van Craen, ies should employ multilevel analyses to examine cross-level 2016, p. 275). interaction effects of neighborhood and individual factors on Police officers’ perception of internal procedural fairness public trust in the police. Finally, while current research is may affect their trust in citizens as well as supervisory offi- only concerned with the factors affecting public trust in the cers. Specifically, fair treatment from supervisors can con- police, future researchers need to explore the potential con- tribute to the formation of belief among police officers that sequences of public trust in the police. That is, future studies most people can be trusted, which in turn facilitates imple- should investigate whether the levels of cooperation and mentation of external procedural justice through best prac- compliance with police will be further improved when citi- tices (Van Craen & Skogan, 2017, p. 6). Therefore, police zens trust the police. In addition, it is necessary to examine 10 SAGE Open not only the levels of public trust in the police, but also the minds of Korean people, KNPA should continue to reform levels of police officers’ trust in citizens because the attitude efforts in the organization and place the highest priority on of trust is mutually influential. enhancing police effectiveness, procedural justice, and social Higher levels of public trust in the police are critical not cohesion among citizens. Essentially, public cooperation only for fostering sound police-community relationships, but with police cannot be divorced from trust in the police also for enhancing community safety. To win the hearts and (Sunshine & Tyler, 2003; Tyler, 2005). Appendix A. Scales Measuring Public Trust in Police and Independent Variables. Factor Scales Survey items Range loadings Cronbach’s α Public trust in 1. The police are reliable. 1–4 0.91 .95 police 2. I am proud of the police. 0.91 3. I have confidence in the police. 0.93 4. The police are mainly honest. 0.92 5. The police always act according to laws. 0.87 Police 1. The police effectively control crimes. 1–4 0.90 .88 effectiveness 2. When citizens call the police for help, the police respond quickly. 0.89 3. The police effectively help the citizens who ask for help. 0.91 Fear of crime 1. I am afraid when I am home alone at night. 1–4 0.77 .95 2. I am afraid when I walk alone in the local street at night. 0.78 3. I am afraid that someone steals my money or belongings. 0.88 4. I am afraid that someone rob my money. 0.90 5. I am afraid that someone assault or hurt me. 0.86 6. I am afraid of being fraud or lost my property. 0.82 7. I am afraid of being sexually harassed or assaulted. 0.83 8. I am afraid that someone damage my property. 0.87 9. I am afraid that someone break into my house. 0.86 10. I am afraid of being stalked. 0.85 0.77 .85 Neighborhood 1. The garbage was dumped randomly around and it is messy. 1–4 disorder 2. There is a dark, backward place. 0.79 3. There are many cars or empty buildings left unattended around. 0.77 4. There are many people who do not keep the basic order. 0.77 5. There are many bad teenagers in groups. 0.73 6. You can often see people arguing or fighting loudly. 0.74 0.86 .94 Social cohesion 1. People in my neighborhood are familiar with each other. 1–4 2. People in my neighborhood often talk about what happens in the 0.87 neighborhood. 3. People in my neighborhood help each other well. 0.89 4. People in my neighborhood actively participate in various events and 0.86 meetings. 5. People in my neighborhood can be trusted. 0.86 6. People in my neighborhood get along well with each other. 0.89 0.85 .85 Informal social 1. Neighbors will help any way they can if their children are bullied by 1–4 control strangers. 2. Neighbors will help girls in any way when they see them being bullied by 0.85 bullies. 3. If neighbors organize a crime prevention team among themselves, they will 0.80 support it. 4. If crimes occur frequently, neighbors will try to solve problems in some way. 0.84 Procedural 1. The police understand and apply the law accurately. 1–4 0.84 .94 justice 2. The police make decisions based on facts, not on their own personal biases. 0.91 3. The police try to collect facts about the situation before deciding on an 0.89 action. 4. The police give an honest explanation for their actions. 0.91 5. The police apply the rules equally to the people they deal with. 0.90 Note. The above scales were created using an Exploratory Factor Analysis based on Maximum Likelihood Extraction with direct oblimin rotation. 1 = Strongly Disagree, 2 = Disagree, 3 = Agree, and 4 = Strongly Agree. Lim and Kwak 11 Declaration of Conflicting Interests International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, 38(2), 239–249. The author(s) declared no potential conflicts of interest with respect Cao, L., & Dai, M. (2006). Confidence in the police: Where does to the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article. Taiwan rank in the world? Asian Journal of Criminology, 1(1), 71–84. Funding Cao, L., Frank, J., & Cullen, F. T. (1996). Race, community con- The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support text and confidence in the police. American Journal of Police, for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: This 15(1), 3–22. research was supported by the Daejeon University Research Grants Cao, L., Lai, Y. L., & Zhao, R. (2012). Shades of blue: Confidence (2017). in the police in the world. Criminal Justice Journal, 40(1), 40–49. Chambers, D. L., Payne, Y. A., & Sun, I. (2020). Predicting trust ORCID iD in police: The impact of instrumental and expressive concerns Dae-Hoon Kwak https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2090-8265 in street-identified Black-American men and women. Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, Notes 43(6), 917–933. Cheong, J., & Hong, S. (2013). Multi-level analysis on the rela- 1. Dong (sub-units of district or Gu) is a geographic approxima- tionship between neighborhood structural characteristics and tion of neighborhoods in the Korean context (see Cheong & homicide. The Statistical Review, 18(1), 1–15. Hong, 2013; Cheong & Kwak, 2008). Cheong, J., & Kwak, D. (2008). A study on the effects of commu- 2. The staff visited pre-selected households to conduct the sur- nity conditions on crime rates: Longitudinal analysis using the vey. When the household was not available at that time, they growth curve model. Korean Criminological Review, 19(3), left the contact information to set up a subsequent appoint- 251–290. ment. 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Factors Influencing Public Trust in the Police in South Korea: Focus on Instrumental, Expressive, and Normative Models:

SAGE Open , Volume 12 (1): 1 – Jan 13, 2022

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Abstract

Abundant studies examining public trust in the police have applied several theoretical models including instrumental, expressive, or normative models. However, few studies have attempted to simultaneously assess the empirical validity of these theoretical models of public trust in the police. In addition, there has been little research on public trust in police in East Asia; most of the empirical research on this topic has been explored in Western societies. To extend the knowledge of public trust in the police, the current study investigated to what extent factors drawn from three models influence public trust in the police using a sample of South Korean citizens. The results show that, consistent with prior research, police effectiveness, procedural justice, and social cohesion had significant, positive effects on public trust in the police. Police effectiveness was the most influential factor followed by procedural justice and social cohesion. Implications for practice and future research are discussed. Keywords public trust in the police, police effectiveness, procedural justice, social cohesion, South Korea turn, reduces levels of crime and disorder and improves the Introduction quality of life in the neighborhood. Although advances in science have driven social system Recent studies on public trust in the police have identified evolution, human activities still remain predominantly conceptual and empirical distinctions between instrumental focused on policing because police activities are so inter- and expressive models of public trust in the police (Bradford twined with the public. Since public trust in the police & Myhill, 2015; Jackson & Bradford, 2009; Jackson & underpins the entire system of police, a large body of Sunshine, 2007; Jang & Hwang, 2014; Sun et al., 2013). research has emphasized the importance and the value of From the instrumental perspective, citizens evaluate the public trust in the police, and many police scholars have police in terms of their ability to prevent crimes, apprehend paid attention to this topic. criminals, and maintain safety effectively. On the other hand, Prior studies have shown that building public trust in the the expressive model posits that public trust in the police is police tends to enhance public cooperation with police in determined by their expressive concerns related to neighbor- preventing crimes, arresting offenders, reducing fear of hood disorder and community cohesion. That is, higher lev- crime, and advancing neighborhood safety (Nix et al., 2015; els of incivilities and lower level of social cohesion in Tyler, 1990). More importantly, public trust in the police is a neighborhoods tend to deteriorate public trust in the police crucial factor for improving police legitimacy (Hawdon because citizens feel that the police fail to ensure the moral et al., 2003). Specifically, overall effectiveness of police may be lessened when high levels of trust between police and the public are not warranted. If police officers perform their DaeJeon University, South Korea duties in a way contrary to citizens’ expectations, police 2 Chungnam National University, DaeJeon, South Korea agencies are less likely to experience trust, support, coopera- Corresponding Author: tion, and voluntary public compliance. Conversely, if police Dae-Hoon Kwak, School of Integrated National Security, Chungnam agencies maintain a high level of public trust in the police, National University, DaeHak Ro 99, DaeJeon 34134, South Korea. citizens are more likely to comply with the police which in Email: dkwak@cnu.ac.kr Creative Commons CC BY: This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) which permits any use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access pages (https://us.sagepub.com/en-us/nam/open-access-at-sage). 2 SAGE Open structure and value of community (Jackson & Bradford, outcomes, trust suggests that those in authority are reliable 2009; Jackson et al., 2012; Jackson & Sunshine, 2007). and valuable, and that they make decisions based on the right In contrast, Tyler (2001, 2005) argued that citizens’ percep- information and motivation (Jones, 2002). Trust is also asso- tions of fair policing play a greater role than police perfor- ciated with implicit or apparent expectations that others act mance in explaining citizens’ trust in the police. More in ways that are expected. In general, public trust can be specifically, Tyler’s studies indicate that quality of treatment described as “unquestioning belief in and reliance upon a drives public perceptions of trust in police. This finding has group to which one belongs or a public institution estab- been discussed under the framework of procedural justice in lished to protect citizens” (Cao, 2015: 242). normative models where judgments about the fairness of the Trust is a particularly important concept for police agen- police is the most important factor in such processes (Bradford, cies because citizens generally have limited knowledge of 2014). Furthermore, the level of normative compliance to the police practices and lack of expertise in evaluating their per- law emanate from judgments concerning the legitimacy in the formance. The trust that a person has in police tends to be intergroup context created by the police (Stott et al., 2012). In based on limited personal experience that conveys little other words, public trust in the police is heavily influenced by information about police intentions and characteristics the normative concerns that police officers treat citizens fairly, (Jackson et al., 2012, p.1054). respect citizens’ rights, interact citizens with respect, and listen Specifically, public trust in police can be defined as the to and care about citizens’ concerns. belief that police officers have the right intentions for citi- Many studies examining public trust in the police zens and are competent to act in a particular way in certain employed one or sometimes two of the three leading models circumstances (Hardin, 2002). That is, public trust in the (i.e., instrumental, expressive, or normative models) as theo- police refers to the citizens’ belief that police officers have retical frameworks for explaining the empirical relationships appropriate motives and are competent in carrying out their (Bradford & Myhill, 2015; Chambers et al., 2020; Jackson & duties as the public expects. Thus, public trust is related to Bradford, 2009; Jackson & Sunshine, 2007; Jang & Hwang, public confidence that police officers would have the great- 2014; Park et al., 2021; Sun et al., 2013; Tyler, 2001, 2005). est interests in the community and would exercise their However, relatively few studies have attempted to simulta- authority consistent with those interests (Tyler & Huo, 2002). neously test the empirical validity of these theoretical mod- When the police fail to earn the public trust, their compe- els of public trust in the police and to examine the relative tency to maintain public order is likely to diminish, which effects of three models. may lead to disastrous consequences in neighborhoods. The Korean National Police Agency (KNPA) has experi- Since trust in the police is an important precursor to a percep- enced a decline in public trust in the police and the levels of tion of legitimacy, public trust in the police is an indispens- public trust in the KNPA remain lower than expected, irre- able factor in policing and leads people to willingly obey the spective of numerous KNPA attempts at police reform (Cao law and cooperate with the police (Bradford, 2014). While & Dai, 2006; Hwang et al., 2005). For instance, a compara- the police restrict citizens’ rights and freedom due to the tive study confirmed that Americans were roughly twice as nature of their duties such as crime prevention and criminal likely to report a higher level of trust in the police than South investigation, citizens who trust the police tend to voluntarily Koreans (Boateng et al., 2016, p. 299). Given the different accept such restrictions. Thus it is argued that public trust in context in which South Korea is placed, it may not be accu- the police is a prerequisite for successful police activities rate or helpful to simply generalize to the South Korea con- (Nix et al., 2015). text with findings from studies conducted in Western More specifically, the effects of public trust in the police countries. In this regard, it is necessary to examine the fac- are as follows. First, public trust in the police may promote tors that may influence public trust in the police in non-West- citizens’ compliance with the law (Jackson et al., 2012). It is ern societies such as South Korea. assumed that citizens voluntarily abide by the law when they Therefore, the present study aims to shed light on what trust the police. Otherwise, citizen compliance with law can extent factors drawn from instrumental, expressive, and nor- be obtained through threat or actual use of force. Police mative models influence public trust in the police in the con- should rely on extensive and voluntary law-abiding activities text of South Korea by analyzing survey data from Daejeon so that police can concentrate their resources on specific Metropolitan City. Particularly, the current study attempts to cases and certain situations where compliance has not volun- examine the relative impact of the three models and to sug- tarily been obtained (Sunshine & Tyler, 2003; Tyler & Huo, gest policy implications to promote public trust in the police. 2002). Second, public trust in the police may encourage citi- zens to cooperate with the police. When citizens proactively cooperate with the police, they are more likely to report Literature Review crimes, provide information about criminals, and participate in crime prevention activities (Nix et al., 2015; Tyler, 1990). Public Trust in Police Third, public trust in the police may imbue the police with Since trust can be defined as the belief that those who have authority. The empowerment is associated with citizens’ authority to make a critical decision pursue acceptable intentions to accept discretionary judgment by the police. Lim and Kwak 3 Police officers’ discretion can be exercised because citizens Tankebe (2008) also found the positive influence of per- have authorized the police to do so. Fourth, public trust in the ceived effectiveness on trustworthiness of the police in police may foster citizen perception of police legitimacy. Ghana. It also confirmed that the effect of perceived effec- Trustworthy police are seen by citizens to be effective, fair, tiveness of the police would be stronger with higher level of and have the shared value with, and strong commitment to perceived procedural fairness. In addition, confidence in the the community (Tyler & Huo, 2002). police is higher in countries with more government effi- To explain empirical relationships, a substantial number ciency and is lower among residents of countries with higher of studies on public trust in the police mainly applied three homicide rates (Cao et al., 2012). Using a time series analy- theoretical frameworks, including instrumental, expressive, sis of British Crime Survey data, Sindall et al. (2012) found and normative models (Bradford & Myhill, 2015; Chambers that confidence in the police was not related to aggregate et al., 2020; Jackson & Bradford, 2009; Jackson & Sunshine, worry about crime but to perceptions of crime and the prop- 2007; Jang & Hwang, 2014; Park et al., 2021; Sun et al., erty crime rate. More recently, Boateng (2017) confirmed 2013; Tyler, 2001, 2005). Those three models are briefly dis- that police effectiveness such as controlling crime and pro- cussed below. viding service had a positive effect on trust in the police. With regard to relative effects of police effectiveness, Sahapattana and Cobkit (2016) found that public attitude Instrumental Models toward crime suppression had the strongest effect on public The instrumental model posits that public trust in the police confidence in the police followed by attitude toward crime is associated with how effectively the police do their job, prevention. In another study, Chambers et al. (2020) found especially in reducing crime, and fear of crime. The model that compared with the expressive model, the instrumental suggests that the police are instrumental in playing a central model was better in predicting procedure-based trust in the role of crime prevention and making people feel safe (Sun police. That is, expressive concerns are significantly associ- et al., 2014: 127). Accordingly, if the police are perceived as ated with procedurally based trust, whereas instrumental failing to achieve citizens’ expectation, citizens perceive this concerns are not predictive of outcome-based trust. as an indication that police are ineffective at controlling A few studies have indicated that fear of crime had a sig- crime. This may result in public distrust of the police. For nificant effect on public trust in the police (Bradford & instance, several studies suggested that public willingness to Myhill, 2015; Jackson & Bradford, 2009; Jackson & support and cooperate with the police increased when the Sunshine, 2007; Kääriäinen, 2008). Specifically, Kääriäinen police are perceived as reliable institutions that deliver a (2008) observed that the relationship between insecurity and credible threat of sanctions for wrongdoing, along with a trust in the police was inverse, suggesting that a feeling of fairly distributed police service (Murphy & Cherney, 2011; insecurity in one’s neighborhood lowers one’s level of trust Sunshine & Tyler, 2003). in the police. However, other studies found that fear of crime The instrumental model has some overlap with the had no or limited effect on public trust in the police (Merry accountability model and the performance model of public et al., 2012; Park et al., 2021). Specifically, Merry et al. satisfaction with the police (Skogan, 2009; Sun et al., 2014; (2012) found that fear of crime was not significantly related Van Craen, 2012). According to the accountability model to public trust in the police. proposed by Skogan (2009), citizens expect the police to In the context of South Korea, Hwang (2013) revealed take full responsibility for crime prevention and reducing that fear of crime had significant effects. Interestingly, the fear of crime in the neighborhood. Similarly, the perfor- direction of the impact between Seoul citizens and Korean mance theory suggests that public trust in the police is closely Americans in Detroit was inconsistent. In the case of Seoul associated with their perceived police performance and citizens, the fear of crime had a positive effect on trust in the effectiveness. That is, people tend to report a higher level of police while there was a negative relationship between fear satisfaction with the police when police agencies perform of crime and public trust among Detroit Koreans (also see their duties effectively (Espinal et al., 2006). Jang, 2014). However, a recent study by Park et al. (2021) Prior studies based on the instrumental perspective have found that perceived fear of crime along with police effec- examined two main determinants of public trust in the police: tiveness had a limited effect on public confidence in the crimes (e.g., crime rates, victimization experience) and fear police in South Korea. of crime. Many studies of public trust in the police focusing Based on prior research, it can be hypothesized that police on crimes showed that police effectiveness played a critical effectiveness and fear of crime significantly influence public role in shaping public trust in the police (Boateng, 2017; Cao trust in the police when individual characteristics such as age et al., 2012; Sahapattana & Cobkit, 2016; Sampson & and gender are held constant. Bartusch, 1998; Sindall et al., 2012; Solakoglu, 2016; Tankebe, 2008). For example, Sampson and Bartusch (1998) Expressive Models reported a negative association between neighborhood homi- cide rates and the evaluation of the police after controlling The main argument of the expressive model of public trust in for other neighborhood factors and individual factors. the police is that citizens’ views on trust in the police are 4 SAGE Open shaped by expressive interests in community order and cohe- whereas perceived disorder was negatively related to public sion rather than by instrumental interests in crime and per- confidence in the police. However, a more recent study sonal safety (Jackson & Sunshine, 2007; Sun et al., 2013). In revealed that perceived social cohesion had no effect on pub- other words, citizens expect the police to be not only crime lic confidence in the police (Park et al., 2021). Rather, the fighters but guardians of local morality and values as well. study found that individuals with a higher level of trust in Theoretically, this model is linked to social disorganization formal control (i.e., criminal justice policies) retained greater theory (Reisig & Parks, 2000; Sampson & Bartusch, 1998) confidence in the police. and social capital theory (Brehm & Rahn, 1997). It is argued Building upon these existing findings, social cohesion that high levels of disorder and low levels of community and informal social control are hypothesized to positively integration tend to undermine public trust in the police, as affect public trust in the police while neighborhood disorder residents believe that the police fail to maintain the moral is expected to exhibit a negative relationship. structure of the community. The expressive model also reflects the main premise of social capital theory in which a Normative Models social network that forms around an environment is posi- tively related to trust in government agencies (Brehm & Based on a procedural justice perspective, the normative Rahn, 1997). Particularly, since the police play an important model has suggested that the perceived fairness of police role in local government, citizens’ assessment of trust in the influences citizens’ trust in the police (Gau, 2014; Reisig police can be heavily influenced by their social capital. et al., 2007; Tankebe, 2013; Tyler, 2006). When people In addition to social capital, informal social control and believe that the police fairly treat them, they are more likely social cohesion are closely associated with the formation of to trust in the police (Murphy et al., 2014). According to the moral order and social order within a neighborhood. Prior normative model, citizens decide whether to support the studies have found that expressive concerns are more impor- police based on procedural fairness rather than on instru- tant than instrumental concerns (Cao et al., 1996; Jackson & mental concerns. That is, the level of normative compliance Bradford, 2009; Sun et al., 2013). For example, Jackson and to the law emanate from judgments concerning the legiti- Bradford (2009) argued that people generally evaluate their macy in the intergroup context created by the police (Stott local police with social cohesion and moral consensus (i.e., et al., 2012). expressive concerns) rather than the risk of victimization Tyler (2005) presents two main elements of procedural (i.e., instrumental concerns). Cao et al. (1996) also indicated justice: quality of decision making and quality of interper- that contextual variables such as informal collective security sonal treatment. Most studies have indicated that procedural and community disorder showed larger effects than crime- justice is a significant predictor of public trust in the police related factors in terms of trust in the police (also see (Jackson & Bradford, 2009, 2010; Nix et al., 2015). More Chambers et al., 2020). specifically, Tankebe (2008) found that those who perceived Most prior studies examining the effects of expressive the police to behave fairly are more likely to report greater concerns on public trust in the police indicated that perceived trust in the police. More recent studies also confirmed that law and order, neighborhood disorder, and quality of life were evaluation of procedural justice had a positive effect on pub- significantly associated with public trust in the police lic trust in the police (Nix et al., 2015; Van Craen & Skogan, (Boateng, 2017; Han et al., 2017; Nix et al., 2015; Sprott & 2017). In the context of South Korea, Lim (2018) reported Doob, 2009; Sun et al., 2013). Using survey data collected that perceptions of procedural justice had a strong effect on from Chinese citizens, Sun et al. (2013) found that expressive adolescents’ trust in the police. The results of the structural interests had a significant impact on public trust in the police. equation models (SEM) analyses also showed that perceived In particular, a sense of safety increased the odds of public police fairness was the primary determinant of confidence in trust in the police and citizens’ trust in the police was pre- the police in South Korea (Park et al., 2021). Based on these dicted by trust in neighbors. Boateng (2017) also suggested findings, it is hypothesized that procedural justice is posi- that people are more negative about the police when they per- tively related to public trust in the police. ceive high levels of community disorder (also see Nix et al., While findings from this line of inquiry are somewhat 2015; Sprott & Doob, 2009). Put differently, levels of public inconclusive, we speculate that instrumental concerns are trust in the police were predicted by collective efficacy (Nix more important than expressive concerns or normative con- et al., 2015) and neighborhood cohesion (Han et al., 2017). cerns in influencing South Koreans’ trust in the police for the On the other hand, Sindall et al. (2012) found that citizens’ following reasons. First, compared to Western societies, awareness of crime, disorder, and social cohesion did not South Korea is a culturally and racially homogenous society have a significant effect on public trust in the police. (Kim & Jeon, 2017; Shin, 2006). Thus, high levels of neigh- With regard to research in South Korea, Hwang (2013) borhood cohesion and low levels of neighborhood disorder reported that neighborhood cohesion had a positive effect on in South Korea may make expressive concerns less relevant South Koreans’ trust in the police. Jang (2014) also found to the evaluations of the police. Second, South Korean cul- that neighborhood cohesion and informal social control were ture generally emphasizes the importance of moral and ethi- positively associated with public confidence in the police cal behavior of citizens. Citizens are inclined to have a Lim and Kwak 5 considerably obedient attitude toward police officers score of 0 and a standard deviation of 1. Finally, the reli- (Morash et al., 2008). Finally, as many crimes against women ability coefficient (Cronbach’s α) of public trust in the police have recently occurred, it resulted in high levels of fear of was .95, which indicates an excellent level of internal consis- crime among women in South Korea (Choi et al., 2020). tency among the items. Independent variables. The primary independent variables Methodology included police effectiveness, fear of crime, social cohesion, informal social control, neighborhood disorder, and proce- Data dural justice. Police effectiveness means the ability of the The data for the current study were collected from a com- police to fulfill their central duties not only in combating crime munity survey in the Daejeon metropolitan city, which is but also in providing a visible presence, policing public events, 13th largest city in South Korea. Daejeon Metropolitan City and responding to emergency calls (Stanko & Bradford, 2009). is geographically located in the center of South Korea with Police effectiveness was measured using three questions as the approximate population of 1.5 million and is subdivided shown in Appendix A. The conceptual definition of police into five districts (“Gu”) including 53 neighborhoods effectiveness for this study is that police effectively suppress (“Dong”). To ensure representativeness of the sample, 20 crimes and quickly respond to citizens asking for help. The survey staff members (mainly graduate students and under- items used to measure police effectiveness were adopted from graduate students) for this study were assigned 53 neighbor- Tankebe (2009) and Sunshine and Tyler (2003). The factor hoods across the five districts and randomly chose 15 analysis identified a one factor solution which captured about households from each neighborhood. The survey staff mem- 81% of variance (factor loadings > .89; Cronbach’s α = .88). bers visited each selected household and asked to fill out the Fear of crime refers to general and specific fear of crime questionnaire during June, 2018. The total of 800 survey which indicate a negative emotional assessment of fear and questionnaires was distributed and 783 were completed and anxiety about being a victim of crime (Tyler, 2005). The returned (response rate = 97.88%). Of 783 returned survey Tyler (2005) items to measure perceived fear of crime were questionnaires, 11 incomplete questionnaires were excluded, adopted to reflect fear of crime in neighborhoods (see resulting in 772 respondents for further analyses. Appendix A). The reliability of the scale was 0.95 and factor loadings ranged from 0.77 to 0.90 (explained vari- ance = 71.86%, factor loadings > .77; χ = 365.56, df = 20, Variables and Measurement p < .01; Cronbach’s α = .95). Dependent variable. Public trust in police can be defined Social cohesion has been recognized as complex concepts as citizens’ expectations that individual officers will perform that include such characteristics as social interaction, per- their assigned duties properly. The items to measure public sonal empathy, and value agreements. Similarly, Buckner trust in police have been represented and discussed in other (1988, p. 744) identified three key elements of social cohe- studies (see Cao, 2011; Jackson & Bradford, 2010; Skogan, sion. These elements are: (1) the residents’ sense of the com- 2009; Tankebe, 2009). To measure public trust in the police, munity, (2) the degree of interaction, and (3) the degree of the current study adopted Tankebe (2009)’s five survey items attraction. Thus, a community with strong social cohesion including (1) The police are reliable; (2) I am proud of the generally is the community where local residents feel a strong police; (3) I have confidence in the police; (4) The police sense of community, frequently participate in community are mainly honest; (5) The police always act according to meetings, and want to keep living in their community. the laws. The responses were coded into a 4-point Lik- Six items to measure conceived social cohesion among ert scale (1 = strongly disagree, 2 = disagree, 3 = agree, and respondents were adopted from prior studies (Nix et al., 2015; 4 = strongly agree). The factor structure might differ between Wolfe et al., 2016; also see Appendix A). The results from countries, so an exploratory factor analysis (EFA) was con- EFA confirmed that there was one factor solution which cap- ducted for South Korean data to test construct validity of tured approximately 76% of variance (factor loadings > .86; those five items. In particular, EFA based on Maximum like- χ = 60.69, df = 9, p < .01; Cronbach’s α = .94). lihood (ML) extraction with an oblique rotation method was The conceptual definition of informal social control is conducted since it produces a better simple latent structure that community members are willing to participate in crime and more interpretable results than a principal components prevention events and to maintain social order and norms in analysis with a varimax rotation which has been tradition- the community (Nix et al., 2015; Wolfe et al., 2016). Four ally used in criminal justice research (Fabrigar et al., 1999; items adopted from Nix et al. (2015) were used to represent Morash et al., 2008). The factor analysis yielded one factor levels of informal social control in the neighborhoods (see solution that roughly captured 82% of variance (factor load- Appendix A). The construct validity and reliability of the ings > .87, χ = 74.44, df = 5, p < .01). For the measures of four items were confirmed through EFA and Cronbach’s public trust in the police, Bartlett scores (factor scores) were alpha statistics (explained variance = 69.41%, factor load- developed for each scale, and thus each scale had a mean ings > .80; χ = 321.15, df = 2, p < .01; Cronbach’s α = .85). 6 SAGE Open Table 1. Descriptive Statistics (N = 772). N % Mean Std. D Min Max Dependent variable Public Trust in Police 0 1.00 −2.37 1.50 Independent variables Instrumental model Police effectiveness 0 1.00 −2.46 1.68 Fear of crime 0 1.00 −1.09 2.65 Expressive model Social cohesion 0 1.00 −1.98 1.84 Informal social control 0 1.00 −2.92 1.56 Neighborhood disorder 0 1.00 −1.84 2.41 Normative model Procedural justice 0 1.00 −2.59 1.75 Control variables Gender (1 = Male) 392 50.32 Age 3.07 1.65 1.00 6.00 Homeownership (1 = Yes) 548 70.35 Residence period 3.52 2.05 1.00 7.00 Note. Std. D = standard deviation. Bartlett factor scores. Neighborhood disorder was measured using Tyler’s Analytic Strategy (2005) scales (e.g., “the garbage was dumped randomly Ordinary least squares (OLS) regression analysis was used to around and it is messy,” “there are many cars or empty build- estimate the effects of the independent variables on public ings left unattended around,” etc). The factor analysis con- trust in the police while controlling for demographic factors. firmed a high level of construct validity among six items First, police effectiveness, fear of crime, social cohesion, (explained variance = 57.74%, factor loadings > .73; informal social control, neighborhood disorder, and proce- χ = 278.07, df = 9, p < .01). The reliability of the scale was dural justice were entered to examine their relationships with 0.85 which is relatively higher than an acceptable reliability public trust in the police. Second, four control variables were coefficient (Cronbach’s α = .70; see DeVellis, 2003). entered to control for any possible intervening effects of Lastly, procedural justice was measured by combining demographic characteristics variables (gender, age, home five items asking various questions about procedural justice ownership, residence period) of individual respondents. as shown in Appendix A. The factor and reliability analyses confirmed that the scale had a high level of construct validity and internal consistency among the five items (explained Findings variance = 79.34%, factor loadings > .84; χ = 29.75, df = 5, p < .01; Cronbach’s α = .94). Table 1 illustrates the descriptive statistics for dependent and independent variables used in this analysis. Of the total 772 Control variables. To control for the potential interven- respondents, about 50% were male and most citizens own ing effects of respondents’ demographic characteristics, their houses (70%). More than half of the respondents were four demographic variables were included in the analyses younger than 49 years old (cumulative percent = 59.4%). In as control variables. The control variables included gen- terms of residency period, 429 respondents (55.1%) have der (0 = Female, 1 = Male), Age (1 = 19 years old or 20–29, lived less than 15 years in the current neighborhood. 2 = 30–39, 3 = 40–49, 4 = 50–59, 5 = 60–69, 6 = 70 or older), Table 2 includes results from a correlation analysis among home ownership (0 = No, 1 = Yes), and residence period independent and dependent variables. As shown in the Table (1 = less than 5 years, 2 = 5–9, 3 = 10–14, 4 = 15–19, 5 = 20– 2, while there was no correlation between fear of crime and 24, 6 = 25–29, 7 = more than 30 years). public trust in the police, the other six independent variables To avoid severe multicollinearity (MC) problems among were statistically associated with the dependent variable at independent and control variables, the variance inflation fac- the .05 level. More specifically, police effectiveness, social tor (VIF) and tolerance statistics were calculated. Results cohesion, informal social control, and procedural justice confirmed that there were no severe MC problems among the were positively correlated with public trust in the police. variables (VIF < 1.80; tolerance > 0.56). Thus, the current That is, as police effectiveness, social cohesion, informal study simultaneously included all available variables in the social control, and procedural justice increased, the public regression models. trust in police increased. However, there was a negative Lim and Kwak 7 Table 2. Correlation Coefficients Between the Variables. Variables (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6) (7) (1) Public trust in police 1** (2) Police effectiveness .73** 1** (3) Fear of crime −.01* −.03* 1** (4) Social cohesion .28** .22** .07* 1** (5) Informal social control .21** .24** −.03* .42** 1** (6) Neighborhood disorder −.09* −.07** .36** .02* .04* 1** (7) Procedural justice .64** .65** .01* .25** .22** −.01* 1** Note. All variables included in this correlation analysis are Bartlett factor scores. *p ≤ .05. **p ≤ .01. Table 3. The Results from Ordinary Least Square Regression Analyses for the Effects of Instrumental, Expressive, and Normative Variables on Public Trust in Police. Public trust in police Variables b SE β b SE β Instrumental model Police effectiveness 0.53** 0.03 .53 0.54** 0.03 .53 Fear of crime 0.01** 0.03 .01 −0.01** 0.03 −.01 Expressive model Social cohesion 0.11** 0.03 .11 0.12** 0.03 .12 Informal social control −0.02** 0.03 −.02 −0.02** 0.03 −.02 Neighborhood disorder −0.05** 0.03 −.05 −0.04** 0.03 −.04 Normative model Procedural justice 0.27** 0.03 .27 0.27** 0.03 .27 Gender(1 = Male) −0.09** 0.05 −.05 Age 0.01** 0.02 .02 Homeownership(1 = Yes) −0.01** 0.06 −.00 Residence period −0.04** 0.01 −.08 Adjusted R .58 .59 F 183.74** 111.43** N 778 773 Note. b = b coefficients; SE = standard errors; β = beta weights (standardized coefficients). Bartlett factor scores. Number of observations after listwise deletion of incomplete cases. *p < .05. **p < .01. relationship between neighborhood disorder and public trust However, neighborhood disorder was no longer a significant in police (r = −0.09). The magnitudes of the correlation coef- predictor of public trust in the police. To compare the relative ficients were relatively small or weak for most of the signifi- strength of the effects, β weights (standardized regression cant variables except police effectiveness (r = 0.73) and coefficients) were also calculated. Based on these coeffi- procedural justice (r = 0.64) which is considered high. cients, the strongest predictor for public trust in the police The results from the OLS regression analyses were pre- was police effectiveness (β = .54) followed by procedural jus- sented in Table 3. In the first model presented in the right- tice (β = .27) and then social cohesion (β = .12). These find- hand column of the table, the statistically significant four ings indicated that the respondents who perceived that their predictors were police effectiveness, social cohesion, neigh- police officers effectively responded to calls for service and borhood disorder, and procedural justice. The four predictors applied the rules equally to citizens had a higher level of pub- explained approximately 59% of the variance in public trust lic trust in police. Lastly, the citizens who actively participate in the police. After adding the control variables in the second in community activities reported a higher level of public trust model, three of the same predictors remained statistically sig- in police. Regarding the control variables, residence period nificant. The additional variance explained by control vari- was negatively associated with public trust in police (β = −.08). ables was 1.0%, and the increase was statistically significant That is, respondents who lived longer in the neighborhood at the 0.05 level (R change = .01, F (4, 762) = 2.90, p < .05). had lower levels of public trust in the police. 8 SAGE Open be accompanied by higher level of public trust in the police, Discussions police should actively engage in community programs for To extend the knowledge of public trust in the police, the strengthening social cohesion and increasing informal social current study investigated to what extent factors drawn from control through mutual interactions with local residents. By instrumental, expressive, and normative models influence doing so, trust relations among neighbors can be formed and public trust in the police and examined the relative impact of community members are willing to work together to prevent the three models. The results revealed that police effective- crimes and to maintain community order, resulting in higher ness, social cohesion, and procedural justice had significant levels of public trust in the police. effects on public trust in the police. In particular, among Third, this study provides empirical evidence that public these significant predictors of public trust in the police, perceptions of procedural justice are related to public trust in police effectiveness was the strongest predictor for public the police. More specifically, consistent with prior research trust in South Korean police followed by procedural justice in Western societies (e.g., the U.S., U.K., & Australia), this and social cohesion. On the other hand, fear of crime, neigh- finding could expand the current knowledge of public trust in borhood disorder, and informal social control were not sig- the police to non-Western societies, including South Korea. nificantly associated with public trust in the police. These Specifically, the current study found that public perceptions findings indicated that instrumental models, expressive mod- of procedural justice play a central role in the normative els, and normative models are somewhat applicable to the evaluation process of public trust in the police (also see context of South Korea. Karakus, 2017; Nix et al., 2015; Tankebe, 2008; Tyler & First, this study found that police effectiveness had the Huo, 2002). In addition, the perceived legitimacy among strongest effect on public trust in the police. Consistent with people of the way they were treated had a significant impact our expectation and prior studies (Boateng, 2017; Karakus, on the internal dynamics as well as patterns of collective 2017; Tankebe, 2008; Van Craen, 2012), the relative effect of action among people (Stott et al., 2012). In other words, indi- police effectiveness on public trust in the police was found to viduals who recognize that the police are treating citizens be twice as stronger as procedural justice. That is, citizens fairly are more likely to trust police officers. with a higher perceived police effectiveness are twice as To facilitate public trust in the police, police officers likely to report favorable attitudes and trust toward the should be procedurally fair and treat citizens with a sense of police. This finding was consistent with performance theory respect. Police officers should bear in mind that the quality explaining that citizens are more likely to be satisfied with of interaction improve public trust in the police, but the the police when the police perform their duties effectively effects of negative experiences may be greater than those of (also see Espinal et al., 2006). According to the instrumental positive experiences (Skogan, 2006). In particular, to ensure theoretical framework, citizens’ judgments of police effec- that the police are seen as being procedurally fair, the police tiveness depend on the capability of the police to fight crime, should provide the residents with the opportunity to explain to reduce fear of crime, and to enhance safety and security in how decisions are made and allow citizens to file complaints, a neighborhood (Jackson & Bradford, 2009; Sun et al., along with courtesy and respect. 2013). Thus, to improve levels of public trust in the police, Based on a procedural justice perspective, the police can the police need to more effectively implement their basic create motive-based trust and shared collective membership. tasks of preventing and suppressing the crime. Police also promote collaboration with citizens to maintain Second, Sampson and Bartusch (1998) argued that macro- community values as a civil guardian. As a result, fighting level conditions affected public attitudes toward police. In against crime would be more efficient, more cost-effective, other words, residents in underdeveloped areas are more and more ethical by treating citizens fairly with dignity and likely to be cynical about the police. These findings expand respect. When the police are effective, procedurally fair, and macro-level studies and specify potential mechanisms in concerned with local interests, this would not only make the which neighborhood conditions may influence evaluation of police more responsible, but would also enhance moral rela- formal social control agencies such as police agencies (Park tionships between citizens and the police, and promote active et al., 2021). citizen engagement in community safety as well (Jackson & Consistent with previous research (Han et al., 2017; Bradford, 2010: 248). In sum, the results of this study sug- Hwang, 2013; Jang, 2014; Karakus, 2017; Nix et al., 2015; gest that the more effective and procedurally fair the police Sun et al., 2014), the results also confirmed that social cohe- are, and the stronger social cohesion in neighborhoods is, the sion had a positive impact on public trust in the police. That higher the levels of public trust in the police will be. is, citizens perceived their police as the representatives of Based on the results, we suggest the following policy and Daejeon city to maintain social cohesion and moral standard. practical implications to improve public trust in the KNPA. Accordingly, the police should help the community to volun- First, as people perceived higher level of police effectiveness, tarily participate in community activities and strengthen they reported higher level of trust in the police. Thus, police social ties among residents. Moreover, as the current study agencies should make an effort to improve police effective- found that social capital (e.g., trust in the neighborhood) may ness and public perceptions of police effectiveness (Skogan, Lim and Kwak 9 2009). This does not imply that police effectiveness itself is a agencies should strive to enhance internal procedural fair- sufficient condition for public trust in the police. Rather, ness to improve public trust in the police. police effectiveness can be considered as a necessary condi- Third, social cohesion may have an objective and subjec- tion for maintaining public trust in the police. Police perfor- tive influence on public trust in the police. Residents proac- mance is directly linked to the ability to respond to crimes, tively participating in various forms of social activities can prevent crimes, and apprehend offenders. Effectiveness of enhance social capital by improving information flow, crime control is also one of the basic factors in citizens’ evalu- mutual communication, and support. These social capital ation of police. That is, if a police agency is perceived as car- activities thus increase public trust in the police. Accordingly, rying out its duties in an effective manner, the police agency to strengthen social cohesion, police should continue to is more likely to be trusted by the public. develop and invest in community programs to ensure that Second, external procedural fairness refers to procedural residents are well acquainted with each other. When resi- fairness in the relationship between the police and local resi- dents have regular meetings to share what is happening in the dents. Procedural justice appears to play an important role in neighborhood and try to help each other, residents will gain an individual’s normative assessment of public trust in the more trust among themselves. police. Thus, KNPA needs to employ various organizational People who distrust each other are less likely to trust pub- strategies to ensure that police officers actually apply the lic institutions. Rothstein and Stolle (2008), for example, principle of procedural justice to every person they served. argued that citizens’ generalized trust (usually in others) was Supervision and discipline should be critical parts of such related to justice of law enforcement agencies. They also organizational strategies, and their effect may depend on insisted that police officers act as important signals to citi- monitoring thoroughly the delivery of procedurally fair ser- zens regarding moral standards in society. In other words, by vices. In particular, training for line officers is another tool to acting fairly, police officers stimulate citizens to act fairly provide a guideline for performing police officers’ daily and encourage citizens to expect others to act in similar duties, and such training regarding procedural justice can ways. Such actions result in generalized trust. affect police officers’ perceptions toward their counterparts in the long run. Some studies provided evidence that training Conclusion for procedural justice may positively influence police offi- cers’ view (Skogan et al., 2015; Wheller et al., 2013). For This study shows that police effectiveness, procedural jus- instance, in their quasi-experimental study of the short-term tice, and social cohesion were found to be significant predic- effects of training and the assessment of its long-term results tors influencing public trust in the police which indicates in Chicago, Skogan et al. (2015) found that training makes instrumental models, expressive models, and normative Chicago police officers more supportive of the principles of models are somewhat applicable to the context of South procedural fairness. Korea. Although the current study makes significant contri- According to the final report of President’s Task Force bution to the current knowledge of public trust in the police, on 21st Century Policing (2015), law enforcement agencies there are several limitations. First, the findings of the current should adopt procedural justice as a guiding principle for study are limited in their generalizability due to the small- internal and external policies and practices to guide their size sample collected only in Daejeon Metropolitan City, interactions with the communities they serve. However, the South Korea. In addition, using data gathered in a non- report also addressed difficulties and multi-dimensional experimental setting with a cross-sectional nature, this study issues for promoting procedural justice within police orga- was not able to control and account for temporal changes in nizations (see MacQueen & Bradford, 2017). In particular, public trust in the police. Future studies need to utilize repre- the task force examined the connection between fair super- sentative samples using longitudinal data. In addition, the vision (i.e., internal procedural justice) and fair police current study did not include the factors such as democracy activities (i.e., external procedural justice) and suggested or police corruption. Future research should incorporate the that the perception of internal procedural justice stimulates perception of democratic maturity and the perception of police officers to implement external procedural justice. police corruption as explanatory factors of public trust in the That is, internal procedural justice encourages police offi- police (see Hsieh & Boateng, 2015). Moreover, future stud- cers to develop external procedural justice (Van Craen, ies should employ multilevel analyses to examine cross-level 2016, p. 275). interaction effects of neighborhood and individual factors on Police officers’ perception of internal procedural fairness public trust in the police. Finally, while current research is may affect their trust in citizens as well as supervisory offi- only concerned with the factors affecting public trust in the cers. Specifically, fair treatment from supervisors can con- police, future researchers need to explore the potential con- tribute to the formation of belief among police officers that sequences of public trust in the police. That is, future studies most people can be trusted, which in turn facilitates imple- should investigate whether the levels of cooperation and mentation of external procedural justice through best prac- compliance with police will be further improved when citi- tices (Van Craen & Skogan, 2017, p. 6). Therefore, police zens trust the police. In addition, it is necessary to examine 10 SAGE Open not only the levels of public trust in the police, but also the minds of Korean people, KNPA should continue to reform levels of police officers’ trust in citizens because the attitude efforts in the organization and place the highest priority on of trust is mutually influential. enhancing police effectiveness, procedural justice, and social Higher levels of public trust in the police are critical not cohesion among citizens. Essentially, public cooperation only for fostering sound police-community relationships, but with police cannot be divorced from trust in the police also for enhancing community safety. To win the hearts and (Sunshine & Tyler, 2003; Tyler, 2005). Appendix A. Scales Measuring Public Trust in Police and Independent Variables. Factor Scales Survey items Range loadings Cronbach’s α Public trust in 1. The police are reliable. 1–4 0.91 .95 police 2. I am proud of the police. 0.91 3. I have confidence in the police. 0.93 4. The police are mainly honest. 0.92 5. The police always act according to laws. 0.87 Police 1. The police effectively control crimes. 1–4 0.90 .88 effectiveness 2. When citizens call the police for help, the police respond quickly. 0.89 3. The police effectively help the citizens who ask for help. 0.91 Fear of crime 1. I am afraid when I am home alone at night. 1–4 0.77 .95 2. I am afraid when I walk alone in the local street at night. 0.78 3. I am afraid that someone steals my money or belongings. 0.88 4. I am afraid that someone rob my money. 0.90 5. I am afraid that someone assault or hurt me. 0.86 6. I am afraid of being fraud or lost my property. 0.82 7. I am afraid of being sexually harassed or assaulted. 0.83 8. I am afraid that someone damage my property. 0.87 9. I am afraid that someone break into my house. 0.86 10. I am afraid of being stalked. 0.85 0.77 .85 Neighborhood 1. The garbage was dumped randomly around and it is messy. 1–4 disorder 2. There is a dark, backward place. 0.79 3. There are many cars or empty buildings left unattended around. 0.77 4. There are many people who do not keep the basic order. 0.77 5. There are many bad teenagers in groups. 0.73 6. You can often see people arguing or fighting loudly. 0.74 0.86 .94 Social cohesion 1. People in my neighborhood are familiar with each other. 1–4 2. People in my neighborhood often talk about what happens in the 0.87 neighborhood. 3. People in my neighborhood help each other well. 0.89 4. People in my neighborhood actively participate in various events and 0.86 meetings. 5. People in my neighborhood can be trusted. 0.86 6. People in my neighborhood get along well with each other. 0.89 0.85 .85 Informal social 1. Neighbors will help any way they can if their children are bullied by 1–4 control strangers. 2. Neighbors will help girls in any way when they see them being bullied by 0.85 bullies. 3. If neighbors organize a crime prevention team among themselves, they will 0.80 support it. 4. If crimes occur frequently, neighbors will try to solve problems in some way. 0.84 Procedural 1. The police understand and apply the law accurately. 1–4 0.84 .94 justice 2. The police make decisions based on facts, not on their own personal biases. 0.91 3. The police try to collect facts about the situation before deciding on an 0.89 action. 4. The police give an honest explanation for their actions. 0.91 5. The police apply the rules equally to the people they deal with. 0.90 Note. The above scales were created using an Exploratory Factor Analysis based on Maximum Likelihood Extraction with direct oblimin rotation. 1 = Strongly Disagree, 2 = Disagree, 3 = Agree, and 4 = Strongly Agree. Lim and Kwak 11 Declaration of Conflicting Interests International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, 38(2), 239–249. The author(s) declared no potential conflicts of interest with respect Cao, L., & Dai, M. (2006). Confidence in the police: Where does to the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article. Taiwan rank in the world? Asian Journal of Criminology, 1(1), 71–84. Funding Cao, L., Frank, J., & Cullen, F. T. (1996). Race, community con- The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support text and confidence in the police. American Journal of Police, for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: This 15(1), 3–22. research was supported by the Daejeon University Research Grants Cao, L., Lai, Y. L., & Zhao, R. (2012). Shades of blue: Confidence (2017). in the police in the world. Criminal Justice Journal, 40(1), 40–49. Chambers, D. L., Payne, Y. A., & Sun, I. (2020). 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Journal

SAGE OpenSAGE

Published: Jan 13, 2022

Keywords: public trust in the police; police effectiveness; procedural justice; social cohesion; South Korea

References