Dr. Chris Copeland – Research Assistant Professor | Director



  • Dakota State University, Madison, SD (2016)
    • D.Sc. Information Systems: Information Assurance Track
    • Dissertation: “An Integrated Framework for the Collection of Criminal Evidence from Encrypted Hard Disk Drives”
  • University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, TX (2005)
    • M.A. Criminology and Criminal Justice
    • Thesis: “Law Enforcement and Private Security Cooperation”
  • University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, TX (2000)
    • B.A. Criminology and Criminal Justice
    • Minor: Geology

Professional Experience

Tarleton State University:

  • 2018-Present: Assistant Research Professor: Institute of Homeland Security and Cybercrime
  • 2015-Present: Assistant Professor: School of Criminology, Criminal Justice, & Strategic Studies, Director of the Institute of Homeland Security, Cybercrime, and International Studies.

University of Texas at Arlington:

  • 2014-2015: Senior Lecturer: Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice
  • 2012-2014: Visiting Assistant Professor: Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice
  • 2011-2012: Adjunct Instructor: Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice


Research in Progress:

  • 2021: Darkweb data collection techniques and crawlers
  • 2021: Police Perceptions During COVID-19
  • 2021: DPD Calls for Service during COVID-19
  • 2021: Police Chief Perceptions of the Ferguson Effect (revisions)
  • 2019: DOJ/NIJ Grant Award 2018-75-CX-0005 (on-going)
  • 2018: Chancellor’s Research Initiative: Darkweb Archive (ongoing)

Peer Reviewed Publications:

  • Savage, R., Copeland, C., del Carmen, A. (2020). Who Are Law Enforcement Chief Executives? An Examination of Current Police Chiefs in Texas. Security Theory and Practice, 21(4).
  • Nagy, D., Gomez, H., Copeland, C. (2019). Securing Terminology: Lessons from Interdisciplinary Research. ISSA Journal, 17(11), 28-31.
  • Copeland, C., Wallin, M., Holt, T., (2018): Assessing the Practices and Products of Darkweb Firearm Vendors. Deviant Behavior, 41(8), 949-968.
  • Rider, R.R., Copeland, C., Dobbs, R. (2018). Officer Perception of New Technology on Crash Reconstructions in Texas. Law Enforcement Executive Forum, 18(3), 55–68.

Software Development:

  • CRI: Automated web scraping tools for illicit weapons trafficking on Darkweb
  • CRI: Automated web scraping tools for multiple illicit drug markets on Darkweb
  • CRI: Archival web system for tracking and storing offline sites for forensic analysis and prosecution (ongoing) on Darkweb.

Non-peer Reviewed Publications:

  • Copeland, C. (2021). Darkweb: Overview, Operation, and Response. In T. J. Holt (Ed.), Crime Online: Correlates, Causes, and Context (4th ed., pp. 263–279). Durham, NC: Carolina Academic Press.

Technical Reports:

  • Olga Semukhina, Christopher Copeland, Tara O’Connor Shelley, and Courtney Walker. (2020). Quarterly Report 3: Cluster Analysis of CNET Cases, Descriptive Analysis of USPIS Parcel Data, and Dark Web Market Trends Report for the National Institute of Justice, U.S. Department of Justice, pp. 1-315.
  • Olga Semukhina, Christopher Copeland, Tara O’Connor Shelley, and Richard Savage. (2020). Quarterly Report 2: Cluster Analysis of CNET Cases, Descriptive Analysis of USPIS Parcel Data, and Dark Web Market Trends Report for the National Institute of Justice, U.S. Department of Justice, pp. 1-76.
  • Olga Semukhina, Christopher Copeland, Tara O’Connor Shelley, and Monica Murphy. (2020). Quarterly Report 1: Descriptive Analysis of CNET Case Files and Overview of Dark Web Narcotics Markets and TOR Operation. Report for the National Institute of Justice, U.S. Department of Justice, pp. 1-60.

Thesis Committees (Defended):

  • 2019 (Chair) Amber Fort: Perceptions of Probation Officers On The Legalization Of Marijuana in Texas.
  • 2018 (Reader) Mary Giordano: Revenge made simple: the relationship of neutralization, symbolic interactionism, and revenge porn.
  • 2017 (Reader) Roger Rider: The impact of new technology on crash reconstruction.
  • 2017 (Reader) Joseph Ellzey: Examining officers with a higher level of education perception on police transparency and legitimacy.
  • 2017 (Reader) Amanda Moss: Perceived impact of the Texas racial profiling law on Texas law enforcement agencies.
  • 2017 (Reader) Patricia Hollingsworth: Officer Involved Domestic Violence.


  • 2019: Copeland, C., Semukhina, O., Holt, T., Roundtable: Data Collection on the Darknet, Darkweb, and Deepweb. American Society of Criminology, San Francisco, California.
  • 2019: Copeland, C., del Carmen, A., Exploration of Themes in Hurricane Harvey on Twitter. European Society of Criminology, Ghent, Belgium.
  • 2017: Copeland, C “Proliferation of Illegal Weapons on the Dark Web: An Exploratory Study”. American Center, United States Embassy, Prague, CZ.
  • 2017: Copeland, C., del Carmen, A. “Analysis of Wcrypt Ransomware Attack” 17th Annual Conference of the European Society of Criminology, Cardiff Wales 2017.
  • 2017: Texas Intelligence, Cyber, & Counterterrorism Conference: Dark Web Narcotics, Midlothian TX.
  • 2016: Copeland, C., Butler, R., Jones, S., Sherwin, L. “Proliferation of Illegal Weapons on the Dark Web: An Exploratory Study” 16th Annual Conference of the European Society of Criminology, Munster Germany 2016.
  • 2015: Copeland, C, Butler, R (2015). “Cybercrime Field Response Certificate Program” 15th Annual Conference of the European Society of Criminology, Porto Portugal 2015.
  • 2014: Del Carmen, A., Rodriguez, J., Copeland C. (2014). “Proliferation of Gang Sentiment in Social Media: A Grounded Theory Approach” The Rule of Law in an Era of Change Security, Social Justice, and Inclusive Governance International Conference, Athens Greece 2014
  • 2007: Copeland, C., Dobbs, R. R., & del Carmen, A. (2007). Re-Examining the Perceived Relations Between Police Officers and Security Personnel. Law Enforcement Executive Forum, 7(4), 151–162.

Grants and Awards

Tarleton State University:

  • NIJ-2018-13682: Illegal Marijuana and Drug Related Violent Crime in North Texas (awarded: $341,883)
  • TAMU CRI 2015 Earmark: Tarleton State Digital Forensics Laboratory (applied)
  • TAMU CRI 2016 Request: Anti-radicalization efforts in the United States (applied)
  • TAMU CRI 2017 Request: Senior Faculty Request Cybercrime and Research (awarded)


Tarleton State University:

  • Undergraduate: Research Methods, Organized Crime, Senior Seminar, Crime on the Darkweb
  • Graduate: Ethics, Cybercrime, Digital Forensics, Transnational Organized Crime, Critical Infrastructure, Global Cybersecurity
  • Curriculum Development:
    • Graduate: Cybercrime, Introduction to Digital Forensics, Cellular Forensics, Digital Forensics Analysis, Research Software for Social Science, Critical Infrastructure

University of Texas at Arlington:

  • Undergraduate: Introduction to Criminal Justice, Theoretical Criminology, Cybercrime, Introduction to Research Methods, Victimology, Criminal Careers and Behavior Systems, Institutional Corrections, Organized Crime, Comparative Criminal Justice Systems
  • Graduate: Correctional Theory, Critical Infrastructure
  • Curriculum Development:
    • Undergraduate: Cybercrime, Institutional Corrections, Organized Crime, Digital Forensics (proposed), Digital Forensic Analysis (proposed), Cellular Forensics (proposed)
    • Graduate: National Infrastructure Security (proposed)


Tarleton State University:

  • Service to Field:
    • Manuscript Review: Journal of Criminal Justice Education (2020)
  • Service to University:
    • Consent Decree Committee 2016-2019
    • Cyber-Security Summit: George Bush Institute 2016
    • Radio Interviews: 160+ Nationwide
    • TV interviews: Fox 4, CBS 11
  • Service to College of Liberal and Fine Arts:
    • Student Research Symposium 2018
    • Constitution Day Committee 2018-2019
  • Service to Department:
    • Faculty Search Committee 2019
    • CRI Search Committee 2015-2016
    • Comprehensive Exams Committee 2015-present
    • Faculty Evaluation Committee 2015-2016
    • Appeals Committee 2015-2017
    • Online Course Content Evaluation: 2017
    • Graduate Curriculum Committee 2015-present
    • Mendeley Student Instruction: Multiple Sessions 2015-present

University of Texas at Arlington:

  • Service to University:
    • Hack 2.0 Trends in Student Identity Theft: November 24, 2014.
    • Protecting Yourself from Cybercrime Victimization: October 22, 2014.
    • Bibliographic Management with Mendeley: September 23, 2014.
  • Service to Department:
    • Scholarship Committee, Grade Appeals Committee, Strategic Planning Committee, Course Scheduling Committee, Comprehensive Exams Committee, Grant Committee, Faculty Advisor Lambda Alpha Epsilon. CRCJ Cohort: Researching Academic Articles: September 15, 2014.
  • Service to Community:
    • Northstar Academy: Protecting Yourself from Predators on Social Media: October 2014.

Extracurricular and Volunteer Experience


  • Affiliations: Association of Computing Machinery, Alpha Phi Sigma, CompTIA, IEEE, ISC2, Lambda Alpha Epsilon, Society of Police Futurists International
  • FBI Citizens Academy Class 2015
  • DEA Citizens Academy Class 2016
  • 2012-2018: Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP)
  • 2006: CompTIA Security+ Certified
  • FEMA/National Civil Air Patrol (BCP, DRP, Operations)
    • Incident Command System IS-00100.a
    • ICS Initial Incidents IS-00200.a
    • National Incident Management System (NIMS) IS-00700.a
    • National Response Framework IS-00800.b
    • CAP: General Emergency Services: 116 05/19/2009
    • CAP: General Emergency Services: 117pt 1, 2, 3 03/18/2009
  • United States Air Force Auxiliary:
    • Radio Operation
    • Information Security Officer
    • Search and Rescue
    • Youth Moral Leadership
  • HAM Radio Operator KF5BND

Personal Interests:

  • Amateur Radio and Radio Communications
  • Jazz Bass – Upright and Electric Bass Performance