December 2013  Vol. 31, No. 4

The JRSA Forum is supported by the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics. JRSA is a national nonprofit organization. For membership or other information, call (202) 842-9330, e-mail, or visit our Web site:

Karen F. Maline, Editor
Nancy Michel, Managing Editor


Stephen Haas, President
Janeena J. Wing, Vice President
Lisa Shoaf, Secretary/ Treasurer
Danette Buskovick, Delegate
Mark Myrent Delegate
Roger Przybylski, Appointed Delegate
Phillip Stevenson, Past President

Joan C. Weiss, Executive Director

Shawn Flower, Research Associate
Karen F. Maline, Director of Member Services
Nancy Michel, Director of Publications
Stan Orchowsky, Research Director
Jason Trask, Program Associate

Research-Driven Evaluation of the Impact of the Drug Market Intervention Project in Charleston, West Virginia

The West Virginia SAC has been providing research and data analysis to the Charleston, WV, Police Department on a Drug Market Intervention (DMI) project (funded through the Bureau of Justice Assistance's Byrne Criminal Justice Innovation grant program). The DMI project is a community and problem-oriented policing strategy that aims to transform a targeted area into a drug-free, safe community. The WV SAC recently designed and distributed a community survey aimed at the West Side community of Charleston and analyzed the responses, with a particular focus on responses from the identified target area. The survey was designed to assess neighborhood needs and measure neighborhood conditions, community cohesion, and residents' perception of crime, safety, and police activity to assist with DMI revitalization plans.

Responses from residents in and out of the target area were compared and suggested a difference in the perception of safety. Similar themes appeared in responses from residents in and outside the target area, including their perceptions of top crime issues, biggest nuisance problems, sense of community cohesion, police activity, accessibility of neighborhood amenities, and past community involvement, and their willingness to donate time to improve their neighborhood. Overall, the results validate safety concerns within the target area and top crime issues related to drugs. The responses will also be used to guide and inform strategies for the implementation phase of the DMI project and revitalization efforts.