Policing County Lines: Responses To Evolving Provincial Drug Markets

The County Lines phenomenon has become one of the most significant drug market developments in the UK over recent years. This book analyses how it is being responded to by the police in affected provincial areas. Drawing on unique ethnographic fieldwork, it takes readers into police stations and out onto the streets with officers, providing timely insight into the policing of this high profile and challenging drug market context. The book considers the use of new police tactics that have been proposed and familiar methods that officers regularly embarked on. Through a sophisticated theoretical framework it argues that the policing of County Lines can often be considered ‘symbolic’, with concerns regularly placed on sending out strong messages that appear superficial when closely examined. Alongside this, however, there appears to be a progressive shift towards a more pragmatic drugs policing approach that embraces harm reduction principles.This cutting-edge research speaks to academics in Criminology and Policing, and to practitioners and policy makers.

Book contents:

  1. Introduction

  2. County Lines

  3. Policing Drug Markets

  4. Navigating a ‘Newsy’ Field

  5. Policing a Crisis?

  6. New Tactics

  7. More of the Same?

  8. Drug Market Priorities

  9. Conclusion