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The Nature of Crime and Victimization Chapter 2. Primary sources for measuring crime are: Official Data (Uniform Crime Reports) Victim Surveys (National.

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Presentation on theme: "The Nature of Crime and Victimization Chapter 2. Primary sources for measuring crime are: Official Data (Uniform Crime Reports) Victim Surveys (National."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Nature of Crime and Victimization Chapter 2

2 Primary sources for measuring crime are: Official Data (Uniform Crime Reports) Victim Surveys (National Crime Victim Survey) Self-Report Surveys Measuring Crime

3 They only measure crime reported to the police All crime is not counted the same Indexed crimes are measured when reported Non-indexed crimes are counted when an arrest is made Reporting practices Weaknesses of the Uniform Crime Reports

4 Definitions of crimes will be revised. Counting method will be by the number of incidents. More crimes will be included in each category. Other changes to make the data more accurate. Revising the Uniform Crime Reporting System

5 Data is gathered by the Bureau of Census and compiled by the Bureau of Justice Statistics. Sample includes 100,000 people in 50,000 households. Respondents are over the age of 12. Respondents queried every six months about household and personal victimizations. National Crime Victim Survey

6 Asks respondents to tell about their criminal activities. Measures the “dark figure of crime.” Reveals that crime is a very common activity. Demonstrates youth crime is spread throughout the social classes. Is probably a reliable measure of trends over a period of time. Self-Reported Crime Data

7 Prominent crime experts have concluded that the data sources are more compatible than was first believed. Tallies of crimes are not in synch, but trends reported are often quite similar. Compatibility of Crime Statistic Sources

8 Factors that influence crime rate trends include: Social factors Economic factors Personal factors Demographic factors Explaining Crime Trends

9 Crime is not equally spread across society. Some factors that account for different crime patterns are: Day, season and climate Population density Firearms and crime The Graduate Institute of International Studies in Geneva, Switzerland is the principle international source of public information on all aspects of small arms. The Ecology of Crime

10 Most victimization occurs in large urban areas. Most incidents occur in the evening hours. The most likely sites are open public areas. An overwhelming number involve only one victim. Most serious crimes take place after 6 p.m. The Ecology of Victimization

11 A still-unresolved issue in criminology is the relationship between social class and crime. Traditional crime has been thought of as a lower-class phenomenon (instrumental and expressive crime). Methodologies used to measure the phenomenon vary widely. Social Class and Crime

12 Three data-gathering statistics tools support the theory that male crime rates are much higher than those of females. Explanations include: Masculinity hypothesis Chivalry hypothesis Socialization Development Liberal feminist theory Gender and Crime

13 Official crime data indicate that minority groups’ members are involved in a disproportionate share of criminal activity. Critics of these data argue police bias in the arrest process creates the differences. Some critics believe institutional racism creates economic deprivation which leads to more crime. Other researchers focus on family dissolution as an explanatory factor. Race and Crime

14 Most offenders commit a single criminal act and upon arrest discontinue their antisocial activity. Some commit a few less serious crimes. Career criminals or chronic offenders account for a majority of all criminal offenses. Careers and Crime


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