Through critical eyes of the public: Factors influencing professionalism in the detective service in the Gauteng Province




Attributes, detective service, public, professionalism


This study aimed to determine what general detective attributes are considered professional in the South African Police Service (SAPS) based on public assessments. This study followed a quantitative research approach and utilized a non-probability, purposive, or judgmental sampling technique. The findings confirmed that good attributes such as acting with integrity, in line with the values and ethical standards of the SAPS, expand on earlier studies that suggested informal contact raises public opinion of the police. It could be that those predisposed to be more favorable are likelier to initiate informal contact with officers. In any event, it seems likely that promoting informal social contact may favorably influence public opinion. The SAPS may want to evaluate how they encourage or discourage informal contact with residents. It would seem then, from the findings of this study, that if more general detectives would portray greater attributes when interacting with the public, there would be more legitimacy, less victimization, less fear of crime, lower perceived levels of violent crime, a lower perceived disorder in one’s neighborhood, and higher neighborhood cohesion and control.


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Author Biographies

Jacob T. Mofokeng, Tshwane University of Technology

Professor and African Research Chair for the Campus and School Public Safety, Department of Safety and Security Management, Tshwane University of Technology, 2 Aubrey Matlala Street, Soshanguve South Campus, 0512, Pretoria, South Africa

Pogiso Tshakane, Tshwane University of Technology

Pogiso Tshakane is a recepient of a Master of Policing. She is a tutor for the undergraduate students in the Department of Safety and Security Management. 


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How to Cite

Mofokeng, J. T., & Tshakane, P. (2023). Through critical eyes of the public: Factors influencing professionalism in the detective service in the Gauteng Province. International Journal of Research in Business and Social Science (2147- 4478), 12(7), 604–616.



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