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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 149854 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Burglary: The Burglar's Perspective (From Critical Issues in Crime and Justice, P 35-50, 1994, Albert R Roberts, ed. -- See NCJ-149851)
Author(s): P Cromwell
Date Published: 1994
Page Count: 16
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice (NIJ)
Washington, DC 20531
Sage Publications, Inc
Thousand Oaks, CA 91320
US Dept of Justice NIJ Pub
Washington, DC 20531
Grant Number: 88-IJ-CX-0042
Sale Source: Sage Publications, Inc
2455 Teller Road
Thousand Oaks, CA 91320
United States of America
Type: Survey
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Thirty active burglars in an urban area of 250,000 population in a southwestern State were recruited as research subjects to study burglary from the perspective of burglars themselves.
Abstract: Subjects were promised complete anonymity and were paid $50.00 to participate in the study. The final sample included 27 men and three women who ranged in age from 16 to 43 years; 10 were white, nine were Hispanic, and 11 were black. Study procedures consisted of extensive interviews and "ride- alongs" during which subjects were asked to reconstruct burglaries they had previously committed. Burglars stressed the need for money to meet expressive needs or to maintain expensive lifestyles as the primary motivation for their criminal behavior. Burglars worked during periods when residences were not guarded, primarily between 9:00 and 11:00 a.m. and in mid-afternoon. Burglars often worked with "inside men" who had access to potential targets and advised about what to steal. Almost all burglars avoided occupied houses, generally agreed that alarms and dogs deterred their activities, but indicated that locks did not stop them. In addition, findings revealed an interdependence between drug abuse and residential burglary. Although "professional" burglars tended to select targets in a planned way, many burglars were opportunistic and selected targets that appeared particularly vulnerable at the time. Implications of the research findings for crime prevention are briefly discussed. 16 references, 1 note, and 1 figure
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Alarm systems; Burglary; Burglary causes; Drug Related Crime; Locks; Physical crime prevention; Residential security; Urban area studies; Urban criminality; Watch dogs
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