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Publication Date


Date of Final Oral Examination (Defense)


Type of Culminating Activity

Thesis - Boise State University Access Only

Degree Title

Master of Arts in Criminal Justice


Criminal Justice

Major Advisor

Andrew Giacomazzi, Ph.D.


Robert L. Marsh, Ph.D.


Danielle J. Murdoch, Ph.D.


The eruption of social media use in recent history has caused law enforcement to begin utilizing this relatively new communication platform in a plethora of ways. However, research analyzing law enforcement’s use of social media has remained relatively undeveloped and only several studies have examined this topic. In this study, the research furthers the already existing information on law enforcement’s use of the social media platform known as Facebook. Previous research has analyzed how and what information law enforcement agencies are disseminating at a national level. This study instead examined message dissemination on Facebook, at a state level over a three-month period. In the state of Idaho, posts disseminated by law enforcement often focused on public relations and crime-related topics. Information regarding posting characteristics by agency size and characteristics of sheriff’s offices versus police departments were also examined. Discussions regarding previous research, the similarities, and differences in findings are also included in this study.