Patterns of Crime

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  • Patterns of Crime
    • Police-recorded statics as constructions
      • Reporting Crime
        • According to the British Crime Survey, we know that individuals are less likely to report a crime to the police if they regard it as:
          • Too private to bother the police
          • A private matter between friends and family and get revenge themselves
          • Too embarrassed, such as male **** victims
          • The victim may not be in position to give information  such as a child suffering abuse
          • The British Crime Survey was introduced in 198, it samples all households in England and Wales and anyone who is 16 or older
      • As we connote take them at face value as it is just the tip of the iceberg and there is a "dark figure"
      • Recording Crimes
        • In one year, approximately 57% of all crimes reported to the police fail to appear in the official statstics
          • The proportion of crimes committed are not reported
      • The role of the police
        • Seriousness - they might not regard the offense important enough to be a criminal matter
        • Social Status - the persons status might affect the results as they might not seem important to report a crime
        • Classifying - the opinion of an officer determines what category it goes into so the results will differ
        • Promotion - Arrests reflect a balance between conradship and a desire for promtion
    • Victim Surveys
      • Strengths of victim surveys
        • BCS presents a good picture of victimisation
        • Yet, many crimes are not recorded
      • Weakness of victim surveys
        • The problem of statistics depends on the victims memories, which are biased and uncomplete
        • Doesn't cover immoral activity, that are not officially crimes
          • Some many not know a crime has been committed onto them
        • Categories of the crimes have been left for people to fill out, this could lead to inaccuracies
      • the media and sensitization
        • Victim surveys are dependent upon people being aware that they are victims, the media provide localisations of crimes, heightening sensitivity towards certain forms of behaviour
          • This is known as sensitizing the public towards certain types of activity, such as domestic violence
    • Self-report studies
      • Weaknesses
        • Validity, respondents may lie or exaggerate the crimes
        • Representativeness is also a probably as mostly students and young people are asked
      • Maguire: The data explosion and risk soceity
        • Crime reporting has increased due to the BCS especially anti-social behaviour
        • Reoprting on hidden crimes have increased
    • Patterns of Offending
      • Types of offences
        • Stats suggest that targets the poorer and less powerful groups in societies more than the affluent
      • Types of victims
        • 62% of crime in 2000 was theft of property


Joseph Timoney-Smith


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