2019 Winter/ Spring Newsletter

From the Chair

Hickman Pic - Story 1

As I type this it is grey and raining and mid-40’s, very typical for Seattle this time of year.  It’s hard to believe that just a few weeks ago I was standing barefoot in the sand on the beaches of Hawaii (and missing most of the ‘Snowmageddon’ that was going on here), in-between the panel sessions at the annual Western Society of Criminology conference.  SU criminal justice had very good representation there, with several faculty and students presenting papers. 

A highlight for me was running into one of our Master’s program graduates, who is presently in a top Doctoral program pursuing her Ph.D. in criminal justice.  She reported that our MA program provided her with excellent preparation for her doctoral studies; in fact, her institution allowed several of our MA courses to transfer in toward her degree program, and in many cases our course content exceeded that of their own!  We’ve heard similar feedback from other former students who have gone on to advanced degree programs as well as to various sectors of employment.  This is very reaffirming for your faculty because we do believe strongly in the academic rigor of all our programs, and this kind of feedback is important to making sure that our students are adequately prepared for their next steps in life, whatever they may be.

I’m looking forward to the final quarter of the academic year, and maybe getting a little break during the summer.  Be sure to look out for Dr. Brooke Gialopsos, our newest faculty member, who will be teaching a couple classes this summer and then starting full-time this Fall. 


Matt Hickman

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Past and Upcoming Conferences

Western Society of Criminology
46th Annual Conference February 7-9 2019 Honolulu, Hawaii

SU criminal justice had good representation at the WSC conference and presented on a variety of topics including:

Contemporary Issues in Corrections, Deafness and Trauma, Financial Cost of Death Penalty, Homicide Data, Human Trafficking

Next Stop, Rome!
This coming summer students, faculty, and advisory board members are participating in the International Academy of Law and Mental Health (IALMH) Congress in Rome July 21-27.  We have had large groups of students, faculty and advisory board members at past conferences in Amsterdam in 2013, Vienna in 2015, and Prague in 2017.

This upcoming Congress is especially significant for SU criminal justice, as current students will be presenting!  

Join Us -- May 24 3-6PM, Boeing Room (Lemieux Library)

We are holding a “practice” presentation session on May 24 3-6PM in the Boeing Room in the Lemieux Library.   We have a large group of undergrad and grad students, faculty, and advisory committee members who will be presenting at the International Academy of Law and Mental Health Congress in Rome.  

Special thanks to Professor/ Judge Bonnie Glenn and Professor Allister O’Brien for their contributions!

Crime and Justice Research Center

From the Crime & Justice Research Center Director

Jackie Helfgott

As we move into Spring quarter the Crime & Justice Research Center (CJRC) is in full swing for the 2018-19 academic year. We have new and ongoing collaborative research projects that have brought in grants to support paid research assistantship positions for students and recently submitted a proposals to bring in a new major grant on firearms violence (fingers crossed!).

Ongoing research assistantships include the Seattle Police Department’s Micro-Community Policing Plans funded by the Seattle Police Department and the City of Seattle, evaluation of the IF Project’s Seattle Women’s Reentry funded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance, the Data Collaborative for Justice/Research Network on Misdemeanor Justice funded by the Laura and John Arnold Foundation and new grants just in this year include the Force Analysis project funded by the Joyce Foundation and a new research assistantship set up with the King County Medical Examiner’s Office – The King County Medical Examiner Drug Surveillance Research Assistantship funded by King County Public Health. These initiatives provide paid research assistantships for 20+ graduate and undergraduate students.

On the continuing education front, this year the CJRC sponsored two events – a public event featuring Corey Pegues, author of Once a Cop: The Streets, the Law, Two Worlds, One Man, and we have a highly anticipated upcoming event on May 10th featuring Dr. Philip Jenkins, Distinguished Professor of History at Baylor University who has authored over 25 books, many of which focus on the history of moral panic and the ways in which moral panic drives criminal justice policy and practice. If you are not familiar with Dr. Jenkins’ work on moral panic, it will be well worth your time to look up his work so you are aware of this incredible opportunity to participate in an all-day continuing education event with him.

Finally, the Seattle University Crime and Justice Research Center is now a part of a consortium of criminal justice research centers nationwide – the 
Inter-University Network of Criminal Justice Research Centers (INCJRC). 

Last but not least, there are two paid graduate research analyst positions opening up with the Seattle Police Department’s Micro-Community Policing Plans. If you are interested, see the notice that went out via email and contact me asap at jhelfgot@seattleu.edu.

Crime and Justice Research Center Receives Major Grant

(Written by Karen Bystrom -- original article here)

Seattle University’s Criminal Justice Department has received a $300,000 grant from the Joyce Foundation to conduct a research project, “Building the Data Infrastructure to Support Democratic Policing,” in Dane County, Wisconsin. The project, conducted through the department’s Crime and Justice Research Center, seeks to address a long-standing problem for law enforcement in a democracy: the police and the communities they serve struggle to engage in civil discourse about police use of force

The Joyce Foundation is a nonpartisan private foundation that invests in public policies and strategies to advance racial equity and economic mobility for the next generation in the Great Lakes region. The foundation supports policy research, development, and advocacy in five areas: Education & Economic Mobility, Environment, Gun Violence Prevention & Justice Reform, Democracy, and Culture. Joyce focuses its grant making in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin, and partners with funders to explore promising policy solutions in other states or at the federal level.

The project, to be conducted during 2019, is based in Dane County, as the Joyce Foundation serves the Great Lakes region. In addition to faculty researchers, the project will hire up to five Criminal Justice students to help with data coding, analysis, and report writing.

International Interest in SPD/MCPP Initiatives

Mexican IA MCPP RA Group Photo 2019

On March 1, 2019, we hosted a fifth cohort of Mexican Police and Internal Affairs personnel from the Boston College Global Leadership Institute for a presentation of the SPD MCPP (Seattle Police Department Micro-Community Policing Plans).  Dr. Jacqueline Helfgott has presented to each cohort and many MCPP Research Assistants have participated and been involved as well.  The groups have involved very interesting discussion and opportunity to dialogue about the differences between community policing in Seattle/US and Mexico. 

Corey Pegues

Corey Pegues w CJ Students

Helfgott Pegues Book PhotoOn February 28th, the Crime & Justice Research Center hosted an event with featured speaker and author Corey Pegues.  Corey spoke about his personal life--from selling drugs in Queens, New York; to joining the New York City Police Academy; and ultimately becoming an NYPD executive.  There were also several virtual attendees, as the Department offered a live-stream of the event.  (Apologies for technical / audio difficulties!)


Report Release: Misdemeanor Justice Network -- Seattle Site 

Group Photo Misdemeanor Justice Event Oct 2018

On October 25, 2018, Crime and Justice Research Center Director Dr. Jackie Helfgott, alongside principal authors Dr. Will Parkin and Christopher Fisher, reported the findings of their newly published report Trends in Misdemeanor Arrests, Referrals, & Charges in Seattle.  The Seattle report is part of a multi-site release of findings on misdemeanor arrests in the United States made possible through a 3-year grant from the Laura and John Arnold Foundation to John Jay College of Criminal Justice. 

Full Report

Misdemeanor Justice Report Cover 2018

Full report and presentation slides

More information on the Research Network on Misdemeanor Justice

Physical copies of the reports are available!

Email the Criminal Justice Dept. Administrative Assistant: bechtolj@seattleu.edu

Megan Slavich resizedKCMEO Research Assistantship

Megan Slavich 
(pictured at right) In addition to her studies, Megan has been working as a Drug Surveillance Research Assistant in the King County Medical Examiner’s Office.  Megan is a senior CJ student specializing in the Bachelor of Science Forensic Science major.

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Student Snapshots


CJ Club Photo

Criminal Justice Club
Last quarter, the SU Criminal Justice Club put their forensic science knowledge to the test at FLEE Escape Rooms. The club was nearly able to escape the bio-hazardous laboratory before it filled with (unconfirmed) toxic chemicals, but learned a lot about teamwork and problem solving in the process.

Criminal Justice major and first base for Seattle University Softball, Madison Cathcart earned All-WAC First Team honors and was named to the National Fastpitch Coaches Association First Team All-Pacific Region, the first player to earn this prestigious honor in program history.

Alumni Snapshots

Mack Junior past and present photo
Mack Junior, BCJ, 1999,
Mack Junior was a criminal justice student member of Seattle University Men’s Basketball team from 1995-1999.  In the twenty years since his graduation, he established a professional career in criminal justice and to this day remains playing basketball at a high-level.  He remains in the record books for Seattle University Men’s Basketball and averaged an impressive 13.3 points per game over the course of his career! 

Emily Malterud photoEmily Malterud,
 MACJ, 2017, Emily started with Everett PD as their Crime Analyst on February 11th, 2019.  Emily is assigned to the Investigations Unit focusing on Property Crimes, Financial Crimes, and Special Assault Crimes. She also serves as the North Precinct Analyst and works with their command staff to identify trends geographically based on precinct.

Kidst Messelu resized photoKidst Messelu -  Kidst left Seattle University for Washington D.C. to begin training with the State Department for a diplomatic future in the Foreign Service.  Pictured right, Kidst at graduation.

Nizama Djuderija, Criminal Justice, International Studies, 2018; Applicant for a Fulbright Study/Research Grant to Bosnia and Herzegovnia

Toshiko Grace Hasegawa, Criminal Justice and Spanish, 2010, was appointed executive director of Washington State Commission on Asian and Pacific American Affairs. She is a current MACJ student. 

Kaitlin Muench, MACJ, 2016, accepted a position as a juvenile probation officer with Williamson County Juvenile Services in Texas.

The 2018 Seattle Police Foundation award recipients include MACJ alum and SPD Officer Matthew Thomas who received the “Lifesaving Award” and MACJ alum Mary Amberg, SPD North Precinct Crime Prevention Coordinator, who received the “Excellence Award.”

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Faculty Snapshots

Recently Published!

Women Leading Justice Book CoverNo Remorse Book CoverDoing Ethnography Book Cover

Jackie Helfgott, PhD, Criminal Justice, published a new book, No Remorse: Psychopathy and Criminal Justice.

Elaine Gunnison, PhD, and Jackie Helfgott, PhD, Criminal Justice, published their new book, Women Leading Justice: Experiences and Insights.

Stephen K. Rice, PhD, Criminal Justice, co-edited “Doing Ethnography in Criminology,” a unique volume that asks ethnographers in crime and justice to reflect on their research questions, research methods, and research trajectories. Read more about the book.

Media Interviews

Matt Hickman, PhD, Criminal Justice, was interviewed for the Public Source article, In disciplining cops, Pennsylvania’s standards trail other states.


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Upcoming Continuing Education Event! 

May 10, 2019 9am - 5pm Pigott Auditorium

Moral Panic: Understanding How We Construct Crime

Featuring Dr. Philip Jenkins

Register here


At this event, Dr. Philip Jenkins provides an in-depth look at how fear, panic and group mentality impact criminal justice and our sociological understanding of the world around us.

Moral Panic - small sized flyer image 2019

Dr. Philip Jenkins is a distinguished Professor of History at Baylor University. The author of over 25 books, many of his works focus on the history of moral panic and the ways in which moral panic drives criminal justice policy and practice. His notable publications include Images of Terror, Moral Panic, and Using Murder.  

If you are not familiar with Dr. Jenkins’ work on moral panic, it will be well  worth your time to look up his work so you are aware of this incredible opportunity to participate in an all-day continuing education book with him. His book Moral Panic: Changing Conceptions of the Child Molester in Modern America is required reading for all SU-CJ Master of Arts in Criminal Justice students, and his book Using Murder: The Social Construction of Serial Homicide is one of the best books ever written on history of the moral panic over serial murder and the impact on criminal justice policy and practice.
Philip Jenkins Books Image
Some of Dr. Jenkins other works include books focusing on historical and contemporary issues that have impacted criminal justice policy and practice such as synthetic drugs (
Synthetic Panics: The Symbolic Politics of Designer Drugs), terrorism (Images of Terror: What we can and can’t know about Terrorism), Internet Pornography (Beyond Tolerance: Child Pornography Online), and sexual Abuse among clergy in (Pedophiles and Priests: Anatomy of a Contemporary Crisis).

Admission includes parking, breakfast and lunch, professional development, and a certificate of completion of continuing education hours.

Our annual continuing education event is a highlight of the academic year that brings together students, faculty, advisory committee members, criminal justice and social service professionals, and the general public in a one-day learning environment. The nominal cost covers continental breakfast, lunch, an 8-hour continuing education certificate and the opportunity to gather, learn, and network. 

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Contact Us

  • Matt Hickman, PhD


  • Jonathan Bechtol

    Administrative Assistant

  • Haily Perkins, MACJ

    Graduate Program Coordinator

Information Sessions

Support Seattle U's Crime and Justice Research Center

Choose "Criminal Justice Program Fund" in the drop down menu and enter "Crime and Justice Center" in the "Comments" field.