forensics ; defining and measuring crime

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what is the legalistic definition of crime?
any act that breaks the law and warrans some form of punishmnet
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this is complicated by what fact?
laws are often subject to change and ot all acts that break law are punished
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researchers have pointed out that what couonts as crime varies which two ways?
culturally / temporally
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- cultural issues in defining crime
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what is one big example of what may be considered criome in one culture but not other?
laws on marriage
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in uk what is having two wives?
crime of bigamy
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however not a crime in what cultures?
those where polygamy is practiced
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what about uk forced marriage?
illegal in '14
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still practised in some cultures
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- historical issues in defining crime
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homosexuality considered crime until?
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but this is an example of a criminal act that may be specific in which tow ways?
culture and history
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what are the three measures?
official statistics / victim surveys / offender surveys
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- official statistics
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gov records fo waht?
total number of crimes reprted to police and recorded in official figures
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published by who?
home office
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on what basis?
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and useful snapshot of what?
number crimes occurring cross coutnry / specific regions
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this allows governemtn to do what?
develop crime prevention strategies and policing initiatives / direct resources to where most needed
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- victim surveys
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people's experiences of crim over specific period
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crime servey for england and wales asks people to do what?
document crimes they've been victim of in past year
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to compile figures how many households randomly selected to take part in this survey?
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and this has enabled who to produce crime figures base don this since '82?
Office for National Statistics
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in 2009 separate survey introduced to record whose experiences?
younger people 1-15
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and complete results from both published how often?
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- offender surveys
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involve individuals doing what?
volunteering details of number / types of crimes they committed
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tese tend to target who?
groups of likely offenders based on 'risk' factors like previous convictions / age / socila background etc
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what was the first national self-report survey of this kind in england and waleS?
offender crime and justice survey 2003-2006
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awa measuring self-reported offending this OCJS looked also at indicators of?
repeat offending
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as well as trneds in?
prevalence of offending
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use of?
drugs / alcohol
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the role of who?
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and finally what relationship?
perp-victim relationship
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- official statistics
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criticised as unreliable why?
significantly underestimate true extent of crime
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some commentators sugg only what % offences included in official figures bc so much unreported?
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other 75% make up what criminologists refer to as?
'dark figure' of crime
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crimes may not appear for many reasons but one of these is?
police recording rules
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one study found what about police in nottinghamshire?
more likely thanothers to record thefts of under £10
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and this explained what?
apparent 'spike' of thefts in th area
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this suggests that what may distort official figures?
policing priorities
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- victim surveys
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more likely to include details fo waht crimes?
those not reported to police
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so thought to have greater degree of accuracy than?
official statistics
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bc less likely to conceal?
dark figure of crime
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as evidence 2006/7 official stats sugg what % decrease crime from prev year?
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while british crime survey showed what?
3% increase
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that said victim surveys rely on respondents doi nwhat?
having accurate recall of crimes they've been victom of
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'telescoping' may occur where?
victim may misremember event as happening in past year when didn't
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which may do what?
distort figures
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- offender surveys
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main strength of this over others is that they provide insight into?
how many people responsible for certain offences
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what is assured?
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responses may be unreliable as offenders may want to do what?
conceal some of more serious crimes committed
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or even exaggerate why?
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finally targeted nature of survey means what?
certain types crime overrepresented
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whereas what types of offences unlikely to eb included?
middle class offences like fraud and corporate crime
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- politics of measuring crime
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political parties have vested interest in doign what?
useing some measures over others when discussing rates of crime across country
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political party in opposition will typically focus on which measures?
those that make the gov look bad and suggest crime is increasing
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while party in power will do what?
emphasise measures showing its falling
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crime stats in uk are compiled by who?
independent body free from political interference
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but questions frequently raised as to their?
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usually by those?
with political motives
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- multidisciplinary approach
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each method has particular issues with what?
reliability and validity
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this means what for all crime figures?
should be carefully scritunised and interpreted with cauting
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researchers advocate multidisciplinary approach when measuring crime which means?
cimbination of best insight into true extent of offending
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Other cards in this set

Card 2


what is the legalistic definition of crime?


any act that breaks the law and warrans some form of punishmnet

Card 3


this is complicated by what fact?


Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4


researchers have pointed out that what couonts as crime varies which two ways?


Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5


- cultural issues in defining crime


Preview of the front of card 5
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