FEAR OF CRIME IN RESIDENTIAL COMMUNITIES

R. LANCE SHOTLAND, SCOTT C. HAYWARD, CARLOTTA YOUNG, MARGARET L. SIGNORELLA, KENNETH MINDINGALL, JOHN K. KENNEDY, MICHAEL J. ROVINE, ED WARD F. DANOWITZ

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations

Abstract

Three variables were hypothesized to cause a fear of crime and a potential change in behavior. These were: (1) crimes against a person rather than crimes against property; (2) a crime committed in an area frequented rather than a crime occurring in an area one never entered; (3) a recurring crime rather than a crime that occurred once. Two different samples of female subjects (n = 249) were approached at their residences and were asked to read one of a number of fictitious crime stories that the news media supposedly had not reported and to complete two scales measuring: (1) an emotional response to crime and (2) a potential behavioral response to crime. The results indicate that a physical assault produces both more fear and more potential behavioral change than a burglary. A crime that occurs eight times causes people to consider taking precautions in comparison to a crime that occurs once. There is some evidence that a crime in an area one frequents causes more fear than a crime occurring in an area one never enters.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)34-45
Number of pages12
JournalCriminology
Volume17
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1979

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Law

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