Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Criminology and Criminal Justice

First Advisor

Dr. Obie Clayton

Second Advisor

Dr. Jim Johnson


This thesis examines civilian oversight of the police in the 50 largest U.S. cities. Data on the nature and organization of civilian oversight was collected via phone surveys. Local mandates on civilian oversight were obtained through mailed-in responses (i.e., statutes, ordinances, and annual reports). The present research was utilized to determine the prevalence, trends, and variety of civilian review of the police. A classification schemata was developed which categorized civilian oversight agencies into one of three classes. Pursuant to this research, it was discovered that the majority (60%) of the 50 largest cities have some form of civilian review. Based on the findings, results were combined to show generalities among civilian oversight agencies, while simultaneously detailing other differences specific to these agencies.


A Thesis Presented to the Department of Criminal Justice and the Faculty of the Graduate College University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree Master of Arts University of Nebraska at Omaha. Copyright Victor W. Bumphus December, 1991