Department of Criminal Justice
245 Rivers Building
Greenville, NC 27858-4353
(252) 328-4192 office
(252) 737-1769 fax
Official Newsletter of the Department of Criminal Justice
Another eventful year has passed and there is much news to share with alumni and
friends of the Department of Criminal Justice at East Carolina University. This edition of the
Pirate’s Plank newsletter recaps happenings during the academic year 2011-2012. You are also
invited to keep up with departmental developments and activities by visiting our new look
website at http://www.ecu.edu/che/just/ or Facebook . If you’re not a “fan,” please sign up
today! Of course, always feel free to send us an email at JUST@ecu.edu or telephone (252)
328-4192 if there is a question or need for more information.
By the way, you can help us stay connected with alumni, friends, and the Pirate nation
by sending information on contact updates, newsworthy events, or new subscribers to Vicki
Taylor Rowe at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In This Edition
A Message from the Chair……………………………… 2 Student News………………………………………….……. 8
2011-2012 Highlights……………………………………. 2 2012 Criminal Justice Career Fair………………….. 9
Faculty News………………………………………………… 3 Criminal Justice Advisory Board……………..…….. 10
Our Global Engagement………………………………… 4 Friends of Criminal Justice…………………….………. 10
Korean Visiting Scholar…………………………………. 4 Alumni Beat………………………………………………….. 11
A Message from the Chair
Dr. William P. Bloss
This has been another exciting year full of achievements and challenges.
Faculty and students have received deserved recognitions while interest in
criminal justice studies continues to grow. The Department’s reach is
expanding as we forge new partnerships, offer innovative courses, and share
knowledge at home and abroad. Of course, this is all part of its mission to
educate the next generation of criminal justice leaders. New initiatives were launched this year
such as the distance education (online) option for the Master of Science in Criminal Justice and
Friends of Criminal Justice donor program. At the same time, the mainstay forensic science and
study abroad programs, just to name a few, were again available to interested students. As you
will read in this edition of the Pirate’s Plank, global engagement is also enhancing research and
teaching opportunities for faculty and students. Together, these provide a comprehensive high
quality educational experience for students across Eastern North Carolina and beyond. As a
complement to the Department’s longstanding tradition of exemplary research and teaching,
new technologies and educational innovations are being actively explored to better serve our
students and communities. Criminal justice study at ECU is distinctive for several reasons. First,
the Department has a proven record of academic excellence. Second, it’s set in an established
institution of higher education known for outstanding leadership in meeting the educational
needs of North Carolinians. At ECU, it’s true that Tomorrow Starts Here.
We value the partnerships with alumni, students, and supporters so you are encouraged
to stay connected and keep us apprised of requests and news. After all, it’s the best way to
remain informed about the department’s exciting events. I hope that you enjoy this edition of
the Pirate’s Plank!
Below are highlights from 2011-2012…but keep reading because there is more!
New online Master of Science in Criminal Justice “distance
education admission” option for justice professionals
completes its inaugural year. For more information visit
Korean Visiting Scholar joins the department for 2012
Professor awarded Academic Fellowship in terrorism studies
Instructor trains police in Africa
Professor recognized as Caribbean crime expert
Research and development services available to criminal justice agencies
Study abroad program to UK and France conducted
MSCJ graduate students present research at national conference
Research team completes the Greenville Crime Study
Three new faculty to join the department
2012 Career Fair held on campus
CJ student selected for prestigious FBI internship
New criminal justice programs being explored
Three new faculty members will join the department in the fall 2012 semester―Dr.
Jonathan Sorensen, Dr. Abdullah Cihan, and Ms. Heidi Bonner. Dr. Sorensen is a nationally
recognized expert on capital punishment and corrections who has authored a number of highly
acclaimed books and articles. Dr. Cihan, who also holds a law degree, specializes in
criminological theory and quantitative research methods while Ms. Bonner’s teaching and
research focus on law enforcement issues.
Faculty made a number of important scholarly contributions in 2011-2012.
Department professors published three books, two book chapters, and nine journal articles.
Additionally, they presented 18 conference papers relating to their research. Presentations
were given at meetings held by the European Society of Criminology, American Society of
Criminology, Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences, Southern Criminal Justice Association, and
North Carolina Criminal Justice Association. These intellectual contributions not only benefit
the academic and criminal justice communities but help to reduce crime effects by informing
educators, practitioners, and policy makers.
Faculty Expertise Available to Agencies
Department faculty is available to assist criminal justice agencies with their research
and development needs. Professors can provide expertise to law enforcement and correction
agencies in areas such as survey research, program evaluation, training, need assessment, and
employment screening. Each is an experienced researcher able to bridge cutting-edge
applications with best practices. Recent projects include helping agencies with grant writing,
grant-affiliated program evaluation, accreditation-mandated survey research, and officer
specialized training. For more information, contact Dr. William Bloss, email@example.com;
252.328.1447 or visit the Department website at www.ecu.edu/che/just.
Korean Visiting Scholar Conducts Research
Korean Visiting Scholar Ms. Sun-OK Shim will spend 2012 conducting research and
collaborating with faculty in the Department of Criminal Justice. Ms. Shim is employed by the
South Korean Ministry of Justice and is Director of the Daejeon Electronic Monitoring Center.
She obtained a law degree from Ewha Woman’s University and has over twenty years
experience in probation, parole, and electronic monitoring of offenders. Ms. Shim is studying
the electronic monitoring technologies and applications used with U.S. defendants and
offenders supervised in the community. Dr. Mark Jones and others are collaborating with Ms.
Shim on community correction research.
Ms. Shim's presentation to faculty
Professor Awarded 2012 Academic Fellowship
Professor William Bloss has been awarded a 2012 Academic Fellowship in Terrorism
Studies by the Foundation for Defense of Democracies in Washington, DC. The fellowship
program entails study in Israel at Tel Aviv and Ariel Universities, seminars conducted by the
Israel National Police, Israel Defense Forces, and Israeli intelligence services coupled with
research on regional terrorism in the Middle East. Bloss joined a group of academic Fellows
from the U.S. and Canada to study counterterrorism strategies in Israel firsthand. As pictured
below, lectures and demonstrations were also held at Israeli police and military bases.
Dr. Bloss specializes in comparative and international crime and terrorism. His latest
article “Terrorism and Organized Crime: A Protean Connection” (2012) analyzes the relationship
between terrorism and organized criminal activity.
West Bank security wall IDF military post Israeli Border Police Unit Police Bomb Unit Police K-9 Unit
Instructor Trains South Sudan Police
In collaboration with the United Nations, forensic science instructor Dennis Honeycutt
conducted crime scene investigation training for the new South Sudan Police Service in October
2011. The Republic of South Sudan gained independence from Sudan in July 2011 to become
the latest nation state to join the United Nations. A number of governments and international
organizations are helping South Sudan develop infrastructure and provide services in areas such
as criminal justice. Mr. Honeycutt trained South Sudanese police officers in crime scene
investigation and evidence collection in Juba, the national capital.
Honeycutt, who coordinates the Forensic Science program, is a nationally certified crime
scene expert and former agent with the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation. He joined
the adjunct faculty in 2005 and is the principal instructor and advisor for the Minor in Forensic
Instructor Honeycutt at crime scene South Sudan police trainee
Professor’s Expertise Sought on Caribbean Crime
Assistant professor Dr. Patrice Morris has established an international reputation as an
expert on crime and gangs in the Caribbean. Her recent article on urban homicide in Jamaica,
published in the prestigious British Journal of Criminology, contributed to her standing as an
authority. Dr. Morris’ expertise was sought for a January 2012 newspaper article when the
Virgin Island Daily News interviewed her about homicides in the Virgin Islands. The article can
be found at http://virginislandsdailynews.com/news/48-virgin-islanders-were-victims-of-
homicides-in-2011-1.1252998#axzz1ibGJh9g5. In February 2012, Professor Morris was invited
to be a guest speaker at the “Gangs and Gang Violence in the Caribbean Symposium” hosted by
the American University in Washington, DC. She joined other Caribbean crime academic
specialists to discuss trends in criminal violence and victimization in the West Indies.
New Global Affiliations Explored Linnaeus University
Professor Joachim Martinsson of The School of Social Sciences at Linnaeus University in
Kalmar and Växjö, Sweden met with Dr. William Bloss to discuss faculty and student exchanges.
Linnaeus is one of two Swedish universities that have an international study agreement with
ECU. Linnaeus plans to expand the Criminology program in conjunction with a new Swedish
National Police education facility (see http://lnu.se/?l=en). For more information on ECU
international study programs, visit the Office of International Affairs at
A proposed academic certificate in International Law, Security, and Terrorism with the
University of Reading School of Law in Great Britain is also being considered as another
international study opportunity for criminal justice students. The certificate would be available
to both undergraduate and graduate students who would complete approved courses at ECU
then attend summer classes at the University of Reading. These would join other exchange and
study abroad programs already available for criminal justice students at ECU.
Greenville Crime Research Partnership
In 2011, the Department of Criminal Justice was asked by the Greenville Special Task
Force on Public Safety to conduct research on citizen fear of crime and police satisfaction in the
city. The funded project began in August 2011 and was completed in January 2012. A faculty
research team comprised of Dr. William Bloss (principal investigator), Dr. Patrice Morris (co-
principal investigator), and Mr. Daniel Lytle (co-principal investigator) guided the project.
Participants also included undergraduate and graduate criminal justice student volunteers,
graduate research assistants, and the ECU Center for Survey Research. Over several months
interviewers collected questionnaire data by telephone from Greenville residents.
A report on the research findings was published in January 2012 and Dr. William Bloss
presented the summary to the Greenville City Council in March. Essentially, the study found
that Greenville residents reported a low fear of crime with the greatest safety concern being in
area parks. Many citizens ranked speeding and burglary as the foremost crime and disorder
worries in their neighborhood. A high percentage (82-93 percent) of city-wide respondents
expressed satisfaction with Greenville police professionalism, competence, and performance.
The research partnership with the Greenville Police Department (GPD) plays an
important role in the Department of Criminal Justice’s effort to contribute to a safer Greenville.
Recently, department researchers joined with the GPD on a federal grant proposal dealing with
gang and gun violence suppression.
Dr. Bloss at Greenville City Council
Professor Mark Jones Honored
Dr. Mark Jones was honored in April as the recipient of the 2012 Chair’s Faculty
Excellence Award. The award is given each year to the faculty member who “demonstrates a
commitment to excellence in teaching, research, and service; promotes teamwork; and
contributes to department success.” In addition to being a teacher-scholar, Professor Jones
coordinates the department’s internship programs and serves the academic profession and
community in several capacities. He holds committee posts in the Academy of Criminal Justice
Sciences and is a Pitt County Crime Stoppers Board member.
Dr. Jones (left) receives award
Graduate Students Present Research at National Conference
Master’s students Brittany Ausley and Rachel Frazier presented their research findings
at the annual meeting of the American Society of Criminology held November, 2011 in
Washington. Their research, supervised by Dr. Patrice Morris, examined comparative homicide
trends around the globe. Pictured below are Ms. Ausley and Ms. Frazier with renowned
criminologists (left) Professor Al Blumstein (Carnegie-Mellon University) and (right) Professor
Richard Felson (Penn State University).
Ausley/Frazier with Prof. Blumstein Ausley/Frazier with Prof. Felson
MSCJ Graduate Student Featured
Graduate student Bradley Williams was featured in the March 2012 edition of the
College of Human Ecology’s CHE Chatter publication. Williams, ECU class of 2011 and current
MSCJ graduate student, commented on the benefits derived from an undergraduate internship
with the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation (SBI). In addition to excelling in
academics, Bradley has distinguished himself as President of the ECU chapter of Alpha Phi
Sigma, National Criminal Justice Honor Society, 2011-2012 departmental Graduate Assistant,
and co-author (with Dr. William Bloss) of a paper titled “Justice Reinvestment Act: Examining
North Carolina’s Legislative Construction of Criminal Justice” presented at the North Carolina
Criminal Justice Association 2012 annual meeting held in Raleigh. He plans to complete his
Master’s degree in 2013 and pursue a career in law enforcement with a North Carolina agency.
To read the full article visit
Career Fair 2012
The annual Criminal Justice Career Fair was held on February 22 in the Mendenhall
Student Center. This year’s event was a tremendous success attracting representatives from a
broad spectrum of justice agencies, armed forces, and law schools. Students from ECU and
area community colleges were invited to discuss career options and employment opportunities
with federal, state, and local recruiters. Agency additions at the 2012 Fair included the Federal
Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS), U.S. Army Military
Police (K-9) from Ft. Bragg, NC, and Raleigh, NC Police Department, among others.
Student Selected for FBI Internship
Criminal justice student Katie Thalhamer has been selected for the FBI’s prestigious
internship program in the 2012 fall semester. She is an Air Force ROTC student and double
major in Criminal Justice and French who competed with students from around the nation for a
position with the storied federal law enforcement agency. All undergraduate criminal justice
majors are required to complete an internship for the BSCJ degree. Congratulations to Katie for
this outstanding achievement!
Forensic Science Honors Seminar Offered
Forensic science instructor Dennis Honeycutt is teaming up with Dr. Anthony Kennedy
in the Department of Chemistry to teach an ECU Honors College seminar titled the “Science of
Forensics” in 2013. Together, the two instructors designed a multi-disciplinary course which
explores forensic science from crime scene to laboratory as students learn about crime scene
preservation, evidence collection, and analytical chemistry applications. Honeycutt, who is the
principal instructor in the Minor in Forensic Science program, will teach the criminal
investigation portion while Dr. Kennedy guides students through the fundamentals of forensic
Advisory Board Recognized
In its fall meeting the Criminal Justice Advisory Board discussed curricula, scholarships,
and program development strategies. Dr. William Bloss presented members with a certificate
of appreciation for their dedicated service. The Board consists of distinguished criminal justice,
educational, and community leaders who provide the Department input on programmatic
Sheriff Neil Elks awarded certificate
Friends of Criminal Justice Membership Available
The Friends of Criminal Justice completed its inaugural year. This program gives
supporters a way to designate gifts specifically for Department of Criminal Justice programs.
While criminal justice students have been benefiting from the generosity of supporters for
years, donor contributions through a Friends membership help sustain criminal justice
education at ECU. If you have not already joined, please consider adding your name to the list
of donors at one of the giving levels. For more information, visit the department website
http://www.ecu.edu/che/just/ or contact Kathy Brown at the ECU Foundation
(firstname.lastname@example.org; 252-328-9552) or Dr. William Bloss.
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Department’s Organizational Status Decided
ECU’s Program Prioritization Committee Final Report
In May 2011, Chancellor Steve Ballard established the “Program Prioritization
Committee” (PPC) to conduct a self-study of academic programs at East Carolina University.
The impetus for the study was the economic troubles caused by a series of drastic reductions in
state appropriations to the University. The Committee’s task was to analyze academic
department performance in order to identify ways to reduce cost and improve efficiency.
Among the possible changes was to reduce or eliminate academic
programs/departments/colleges or reorganize the University by consolidating one or more
units. Like other academic programs, the Department of Criminal Justice collected, analyzed,
and reported data (2009-2011) on student enrollment, faculty productivity, and operational
costs. The information was used to assess departmental productivity, efficiency, and University
organizational placement. All Colleges and academic Departments in the University were
subject to the analyses.
Since the PPC recommendation options included eliminating the Department,
consolidating it with the Department of Political Science, or moving it to the Thomas Harriot
College of Arts and Sciences, there was tremendous uncertainty about its organizational status
next year. However, after completing the year-long study the PPC recommended no
substantial changes for the Department. Hence, the Department of Criminal Justice will remain
in the College of Human Ecology with no modification of leadership or operations at the
departmental or college levels.
Congratulations to Joe Bartlett upon being named the interim Chief of Police for the
Greenville, NC Police Department. Joe obtained a BS and MPA from ECU and has been
with the Greenville Police Department since 1984.
Congratulations to Erin and Lee Meeks on the birth of their son Bradley Griffin May 18,
2012. Lee is an officer with US Probation and a CJ Advisory Board member.
Condolences are extended to the family of Johnnie Umphlett. Johnnie passed away
unexpectedly while working in Dubai, UAE. He served as a law enforcement officer
formerly with Greenville PD, ECU-PD, and the NC State Bureau of Investigation.
Ms. Jennifer Hoefling (MSCJ class of 2012) will join the department as an adjunct
instructor this fall to teach juvenile justice courses.
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Put it on your calendar!
All alumni are cordially invited to the Criminal Justice Alumni Reception on Friday
October 12, 2012 from 4:00-6:00 pm. in the Rivers Building on campus. This event is being
held in conjunction with ECU Homecoming weekend festivities. A reminder will be sent out in
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