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Topic IX
Control, Punishment & Victims…read more

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Situational Crime Prevention: Clarke
Describes it as `a pre-emptive approach that relies, not on improving society or its
institutions, but simply on reducing opportunities for crime'
Identifies three features of measures aimed at SCP;
Directed at specific crimes
Involve managing or altering immediate environment of the crime
Aim at increasing the effort and risks of committing crime and reducing the
E.g. locking doors and windows or increasing CCTV
Underlying SCP is an `opportunity' or rational choice theory of crime
This is the view that criminals act rationally, weighing up the costs an benefits of
crime before deciding if they are going to commit it…read more

Slide 3

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Situational Crime Prevention: Clarke
The most obvious solution in regards to crime, is to focus on the immediate crime
situation, since this is where scope for prevention is greatest
Marcus Felson:
Gives the example of the Port Authority Bus Terminal in NYC
The terminal was poorly designed and provide opportunist for deviant conduct e.g.
luggage theft
Re-shaping the environment to `design crime out' greatly reduced such activity
E.g. Large sinks in which homeless people were bathing, were replaced by small
hand basins…read more

Slide 4

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Displacement: A Criticism
They do not reduce crime, they simply displace it
Chaiken at al: A crackdown on subway robberies in NY merely displaced them to
the streets above
Displacement can take several forms;
Spatial ­ moving elsewhere to commit the crime
Temporal ­ committing it at a different time
Target ­ choosing a different victim
Tactical ­ Using a different method
Functional ­ committing a different type of crime
The most successful example comes from suicide. In the early 1960s, half of British
suicides were from gassing. At the time, the gas supply came from a highly toxic
coal gas. From 1980's, coal gas was replaced with natural gas and the rate suicide
dropped to near zero. The overall suicide rate also declined.…read more

Slide 5

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Works to some extent in reducing certain types of crime
Tends to focus on opportunistic petty street crime
Ignores white collar, state and corporate crime
Assumes criminals make rational calculations
It ignores the root causes of crime which makes it difficult to develop long-term
Norris & Armstrong: Camera operators focus disproportionately on young males
Feminists: CCTV is an extension of the `male gaze' and is part of the problem not
the solution…read more

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Environmental Crime Prevention: Wilson &
Use the phrase `broken window' to stand for all the various signs of disorder and
lack of concern for others
This includes; noise, graffiti, begging etc.
They argue that leaving broken windows unrepaired and tolerating aggressive
behaviour sends out the signal that nobody cares
In such neighbourhoods, there is an absence of both formal social control and
informal control
The police are concerned with serious crime and turn a blind eye to petty nonsense
As a result, respectable people feel powerless and move out of the neighbourhood…read more

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