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NCJ Number: 164458 Find in a Library
Title: Measuring Shoplifting by Systematic Observation: A Replication Study
Journal: Psychology, Crime & Law  Volume:1  Issue:2  Dated:(1994)  Pages:133-141
Author(s): A Buckle; D P Farrington
Date Published: 1994
Page Count: 9
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: A random sample of customers entering a small department store in Bedford, England, was systematically observed from when they entered the store until the time they left the store, and results were compared with those obtained in a similar study in Peterborough.
Abstract: The Bedford sample included 502 people, while the Peterborough sample included 486 people. Of the sample, six of the 502 customers in Bedford shoplifted (1.2 percent) and nine of the 486 customers in Peterborough shoplifted (1.9 percent). Males were more likely to shoplift than females, and most shoplifters purchased goods, possibly to allay suspicion. Shoplifters generally stole small, low-cost items and looked around carefully to check that nobody was watching them before placing the items in pockets or bags. Shoplifting in Bedford was most prevalent among individuals between 17 and 25 years of age, but shoplifting in Peterborough was most prevalent among those over 55 years of age. The average amount of time spent in the store was 10.4 minutes in Bedford and 7 minutes in Peterborough. Since both stores were open for 52 hours a week, it was estimated that over 500 items were stolen from each store on a weekly basis. The authors conclude that a great deal can be learned about offending through direct, systematic observation. Case examples are presented to illustrate typical shoplifting behavior. 15 references and 1 table
Main Term(s): World criminology
Index Term(s): Crime in foreign countries; England; Foreign crime statistics; Retail business crimes; Shoplifting; Theft offenses
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