This article focuses on the policing of adult persistent offenders and its implications for desistance. It integrates the findings from two qualitative studies undertaken in Scotland on the experiences of those considered ‘persistent offenders’ and the police. The paper’s contribution lies in its close analysis of how adult persistent offenders and the police interact, examining factors before, during and after their encounter. We show that the police’s enforcement focus is a significant obstacle to desistance, especially as inherent in intelligence-led policing and the use of discretion towards ‘well-kent faces’. However we also note that frustration with this approach is emerging within Scottish policing and argue for a relatively modest re-orientation of police practice towards a recognition of signals of desistance.
|Number of pages||19|
|Journal||The British Journal of Criminology; An International Review of Crime and Society|
|Early online date||30 Oct 2018|
|Publication status||Published - 31 May 2019|
- persistent offenders
- construction of crime