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NCJ Number: 62945 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: VIOLENT CRIME AS A COMMUNICABLE DISEASE - THE EPIDEMIOLOGY OF VIOLENT CRIME - THIRD EDITION
Author(s): F M GRAVES
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 14
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America
Type: Statistics
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THE DIFFUSION PROCESS BY WHICH VIOLENT CRIME SPREADS IS EXPLORED THROUGH ANALOGY TO DISEASE, APPROXIMATED USING EPIDEMIOLOGICAL RELATIONSHIPS; A DEMOGRAPHIC EXPLANATION OF VIOLENCE IS EMPHASIZED.
Abstract: ANALOGOUS EPIDEMIOLOGICAL RELATIONSHIPS ASSUME A DISEASE HOST OR RESERVOIR, A VECTOR BY WHICH THE DISEASE IS CARRIED TO A SUSCEPTIBLE POPULATION WHICH IS AT RISK. EPIDEMIOLOGICAL MODELS ARE NOT SENSITIVE TO THE QUALITY OF THE INCIDENCE DATA, A FACT WHICH MAKES THEM APPROPRIATE FOR STUDYING CRIME SINCE DATA ARE OFTEN MISCLASSIFIED AND ARE SUBJECT TO VARYING DEFINITIONS FROM ONE JURISDICTION TO ANOTHER. DATA MAY BE USED TO CALCULATE SOCIAL INDICATOR TYPES OF VIOLENT CRIME INDEXES DESCRIPTIVE OF THE UNDERLYING EPIDEMIC PROCESS. VIOLENT CRIME INCLUDES MURDER, FORCIBLE RAPE, ARMED ROBBERY, AND AGGRAVATED ASSAULT. THE POPULATION MOST AT RISK, ACCORDING TO FBI STATISTICS, IS MALES AGED 15 THROUGH 29 YEARS. THIS GROUP CONSTITUTED 67.4 PERCENT OF ALL VIOLENT OFFENSE ARRESTEES IN 1977. IT IS SURMISED THAT THE LIKELIHOOD OF A MALE IN THIS AGE GROUP COMMITTING A VIOLENT CRIME DEPENDS ON HIS DEGREE OF SOCIALIZATION OR ACCEPTANCE OF SOCIAL NORMS. BECAUSE THE BABY BOOM GROUP WAS DISPROPORTIONATELY LARGER THAN THE ADULT POPULATION, MEMBERS OF THIS GROUP WERE LESS SOCIALIZED TO THE CONSERVATIVE ADULT MODEL, AND THUS THEY HAVE TENDED TO FOLLOW PEER INFLUENCES AND MODELS. THE DEMOGRAPHIC EXPLANATION IS APPARENT. THE LARGER THE GROUP AT RISK, THE MORE VIOLENT CRIMES WILL BE COMMITTED. IN ADDITION TO INADEQUATE SOCIALIZATION THIS POPULATION SUFFERS THE NUMEROUS FRUSTRATIONS OF COMPETING WITH PEERS AND ENJOYING LITTLE PERSONAL RECOGNITION. VIOLENT OFFENSES SHOULD, THEREFORE, DECLINE, IN ABSOLUTE NUMBERS IN THE 1980'S AS THE PERCENTAGE OF 15-THROUGH 29-YEAR-OLD MALES IN THE POPULATION DROPS OFF. IT IS CONCLUDED THAT VIOLENT CRIME IS SELF-LIMITING BY DEMOGRAPHIC CHANGES AND THAT POLICE ACTIVITY IS NOT COST EFFECTIVE IN CRIME REDUCTION AFTER A CERTAIN POINT. THE COMMUNICABLE DISEASE MODEL PRESENTED HEREIN SUPPORTS THIS INTERPRETATION. FOOTNOTES, REFERENCES, TABULAR DATA, AND GRAPHS ARE INCLUDED IN THE PAPER. (LWM)
Index Term(s): Demography; Models; Studies; Violence; Violent crime statistics; Violent crimes; Violent offenders
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=62945

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