Seattle Drug Market Initiative

David Kennedy’s low-arrest drug market crackdown comes to Seattle.

David Kennedy has been taking his High Point low-arrest drug crackdown model on the road. Basic model: identify all the dealers in a market, make cases against them, call them in all at once and tell them that whoever doesn’t stop dealing right now is going to prison. If it works, which it mostly has, the lack of sellers causes the market to collapse because the buyers stop coming in. Result: reduced crime, improved quality of neighborhood life.

Latest stop: Seattle. Extra bonus good news: one of the Seattle officials who decided to bring the program in was then-police-chief-now-drug-czar Gil Kerlikowske.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: