This introductory chapter provides the reader with an overview of public events that could range from religious gatherings to political rallies to civil protests. Defining such events as indicators of the character of society and polity, the chapter briefly discusses the police response to such events. It explains how the police response to a public event may vary depending on the nature of the public event and that such a response involves various stages of decision-making. From introducing the reader to the main theme of the book, this chapter moves on to provide a synopsis of the aspects covered by each chapter.
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