chapter 3-crime victim interaction

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chap3-british crime survey (who victims are)

what was the aim of this study?

the BCS is a huge survey of crime against people living in private households in england and wales. it is cinducted every 2years. comparison with official police statistics to reveal some interesting findings

what method was used in this study?

surveys or interviews

what is the sample of this study?

sample of 19,500 people and an ethnic booster sample of 3,800 ppl. A random sample selected from the post office list of addresses

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chap3-british crime survey (who victims are)

what was the procedure of the study?
Participants are questioned in their own homes.
interviewers use a computer programme that specifies the questions and the range of permissible answers.
all info is given in confidence and no names and addresses are included with the answers
participants are assured that no information will be passed on

what were the results of this study?
1.approx 4.5 time more crime if reported via the BCS than recorded by the police
2. there was a fall in crime since the last survey with the exception of robbery and theft from the person
3. people are more pessimistic about crime
4. fear of crime is higher among those living in high crime areas

who fear crime the most?
women, blacks and asians, elderly and inner city people

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chap3-british crime survey (who victims are)

who are more likely to be victims?

16-24 year old males

what are the weaknesses of this study?
demand characteristics-answers depend on what police want
ethnocentrism-british culture
validity-might not be the right answers
protection-questions bring back bad memories(unethical)

what are the strengths of this study?

changes over time

higher validity than police statistics

random sample-representative

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chap3 Riordan-victims of and reporting sexual crim

what was the aim of this study?

to understand how female victims experience indecent exposure

what method was used?

questionnaires

what was the sample of this study?

72 women-west midlands

what were the results of this study?

43/72 had all been victims of indecent exposure

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chap3 Riordan-victims of and reporting sexual crim

what were the initial reactions of the women?
48.6% were shocked
34.3% amused (not taking it seriously)
25.7% - fear
5.7% disgust
2.9% annoyance

when asked about their perception of how dangerous the perpetrators were what did the women say?
66% of victims and 70% of non victims said dangerous
80% of victims were concerned about what would follow the exposure
29% of victims said fear of sexual crime had increased since the incident
29% said they had changed their behaviours in some way

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chap3 Riordan-victims of and reporting sexual crim

what is the conclusion of this study?
experience of indecent exposure was likely to increase fear of sexual crime
crimes like this that are apparently trivial can have long term consequences

what is a weakness of this study?

deman characteristics - questionnaires

sample-not generalisable - women from the mindlands

what is a strength of this study?

usefulness

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chap3-reading local paper increases fear of crime

what was the aim of this study?

to examine the effect of newspaper reporting on fear of crime

what was the method?

content analysis and telephone interviews

what was the sample of this study?

62 local newspapers, representing all the local press in 42 US cities for one week

335 p's were selected randomly and interviewed by phone. p's aged 16-83years

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chap3-reading local paper increases fear of crime

what was the procedure of the study?

content analysis- the researchers analysed the crime reports in the newspapers in terms of the proportion of the following:

1.local crime-did the crime occur in the geographical area served by the newspaper or not?

2.random crime- did the report contain any info that suggested that the victim took any action that made him/her more vunerable? (if not then random crime)

3.sensational crime- was the crime extremeley violent or bizarre?

telephone interviews-these covered newspaper reading habits and various aspects of fear of crime

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chap3-reading local paper increases fear of crime

what were the results of this study?
those participants that printed a high proportion of local crime reported high levels of fear if the crime was described as random or sensationalist

what are the weaknesses of this study?
reductionist-people are only scared of crime because of newspapers
not generalisable - only looked at one week(could have been a bad wek)

what are the strengths of this study?
sample-random
low demand characteristics- telephone interviews (less likely to lie)
usefulness-shows affects of paper ,can apply to real life

what suggestions can be made from this study?

strike a balance in newspaper stories- e.g police doing a good job

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Beaton -long term effects of burglary

what was the aim of this study?

to assess the psychological impact of burgulary

what was the method of this study?

a natural experiment comparing the naturally occuring variable of domestic burglary

what was the sample of this study?

2 groups of participants were included:

1. 20 victims of residential burglary aged 23-69 years (12 male, 8 female), initially approached through a victim support scheme in Swansea

2. a comparison group matched by neighbourhood, age, gender and marital status

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Beaton -long term effects of burglary

what was the procedure of the study?

data were collected using questionnaires, which were administered twice: 1st, 1-2weeks after the crime and then 1month later.
questionnaires were administered by trained victim support counsellors

what were the results of this study?

victims of court were more anxious, hostile, depressed,tired, confused and generally more distressed than the controls.
1 month on there was some improvement in these scores, but still significantly different to the comparison grp.

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Beaton -long term effects of burglary

what are the strengths if this study?

quasi experiment-natural high validity

usefulness

what are the weaknesses of this study?

demand characteristics-exaggerate for sympathy

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Chap 3-PTSD

what is PTSD?
post traumatic stress disorder

what are the symptoms of PTSD?
intrusive thoughts- flashbacks, nightmares generally thinking about the event

avoidant behaviour- avoiding situations that may trigger memories of the event, loss of any pleasurable activities, feeling numb to everything

feelings- pointless, increased anxiety, fear of event repeating, sham, guilt, bitterness

behaviour- inability to make decisions, irritability, lack of concentration, anger, violent outbursts

physical effects- physical illness, depression, hyperactivity, smoke drink drug abuse

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PTSD and culture (ethnocentrism)

what is the point?
that ethnocentrism may be an issue when understanding and diagnosing the responses that victims have to crime

where is it apparent?
all of the research literature into PTSD as a crime-victim response

why is it an issue?
has usually been diagnosed by clinicians from western industrialised nations working with similar backgrounds, we lack the effects of ethnicity and culture on post-traumatic syndromes.

what is the conclusion?
researchers need to be careful not to generalise their findings to all victims of crime, especially citizens of othercountries and even ethnic minority gropus with their own society.

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PTSD

what are theweaknesses?

protection broken-asking people who have experienced sexual assult

individual differences- people react differently

what are the strengths?

useful&practical-treatment provided,helps awareness

longitudinal study?- understand change over time

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