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NCJ Number: 69031 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: CRIME IN CONTEMPORARY AMERICA (FROM VIOLENCE IN AMERICA - HISTORICAL AND COMPARATIVE PERSPECTIVES, P 375-391, 1979, BY HUGH D GRAHAM AND TED R GURR - SEE NCJ-69028)
Author(s): W G SKOGAN
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 17
Sponsoring Agency: Sage Publications, Inc
Thousand Oaks, CA 91320
US Dept of Justice

US Dept of Justice NIJ Pub
Washington, DC 20531
Grant Number: 78-NI-AX-0057
Sale Source: Sage Publications, Inc
2455 Teller Road
Thousand Oaks, CA 91320
United States of America
Dataset: DATASET 1
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THIS CHAPTER REVIEWS SOME OF THE EVIDENCE ON POSTWAR CRIME TRENDS AND DESCRIBES SEVERAL OF THE LARGE DEMOGRAPHIC AND ECONOMIC FORCES SURROUNDING THESE TRENDS AS WELL AS FACTORS LEADING TO A DECLINE.
Abstract: POSTWAR TRENDS IN VIOLENT AND SERIOUS PROPERTY CRIMES SKETCH A CLEAR PATTERN; LOW RATES RELATIVE TO THE SIZE OF THE POPULATION FROM 1946 TO 1964, THEN A DRAMATIC UPTURN BETWEEN 1964 AND 1975. HOWEVER, OFFICIAL STATISTICS ON CRIME ALSO REVEAL A SLIGHT DECLINE IN SEVERAL OF THE MORE SERIOUS CATEGORIES. IN ADDITION, VICTIMIZATION RATES DECLINED BETWEEN 1975 AND 1976 WITH SOME EXCEPTIONS, NOT FOR BLACKS. MOREOVER, ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT DEMOGRAPHIC FEATURES OF THE 1970'S HAS BEEN THE INCREASINGLY RAPID DEPOPULATION OF GREAT CITIES AND A DROPPING CRIME COUNT, OFTEN AT A FASTER RATE THAN EXPECTED. FURTHER, A PROJECTED DECLINE IN THE SIZE OF THE YOUTHFUL POPULATION SHOULD PRODUCE A DECLINE IN PROPERTY AND, TO A LESSER EXTENT, VIOLENT CRIME RATES. DATA ALSO SUGGEST THAT WHILE THE CURRENT OVERREPRESENTATION OF BLACKS AMONG ARRESTEES FOR PROPERTY AND VIOLENT CRIMES IS A CONTINUATION OF PAST TRENDS, THESE TRENDS ARE CHANGING. FOR EXAMPLE, INCREASING BLACK PARTICIPATION IN ROBBERY AND HOMICIDE PLAYED AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN THE TREMENDOUS INCREASE IN VIOLENT CRIME DURING THE 1960'S; DATA NOW SHOW A PATTERN OF DECLINING ARRESTS TOTALS FOR BLACKS AS COMPARED TO WHITES DURING THE RECENT PERIOD IN WHICH RATES FOR THESE VIOLENT CRIMES ARE NOW DROPPING. DATA ALSO SHOW A DECREASING PROPORTION OF WOMEN ARRESTED FOR VIOLENT CRIME SINCE THE 1950'S, BUT INCREASED PROPERTY OFFENSE RATES FOR WOMEN WHO NOW ACCOUNT FOR NEARLY ONE-THIRD OF ALL THOSE ARRESTED FOR THESE CRIMES. THIS SUPPORTS THE OPPORTUNITIES-ROLE DIFFERENTIATION HYPOTHESIS WHICH SEES THE EXPANDED ROLE OF WOMEN IN THE WORK FORCE AS SUBJECTING WOMEN TO POWERFUL ECONOMIC PRESSURES WHICH HAVE TRADITIONALLY DRIVEN SOME MALES INTO CRIME. FINALLY, MANY OF THE DEMOGRAPHIC FORCES WHICH DROVE THE CRIME RATE TO EVER HIGHER LEVELS BETWEEN THE EARLY 1960'S AND THE MID-1970'S ARE NOW FOLLOWING TRENDS WHICH LEAD TO STABLE CRIME RATE PREDICTIONS. THESE INCLUDE THE SHIFTING AGE DISTRIBUTION, THE SHIFT IN POPULATION OUT OF LARGE CENTRAL CITIES, FEWER JOB-SEEKERS, LESS CROWDED SCHOOLS, AND A LOWER UNEMPLOYMENT RATE. SUCH GAINS MAY ACCRUE MORE SLOWLY TO BLACKS THAN TO WHITES, HOWEVER. IN CONSIDERING THE TREATMENT OF CRIME, THEREFORE, SUCH POLICIES AS PRISON INVESTMENT IN THE FACE OF AN EXPECTED STABILIZATION OF THE CRIME RATE NEED TO BE CAREFULLY CONSIDERED. TABLES AND NOTES ARE GIVEN.
Index Term(s): Crime Causes; Crime prediction; Crime Statistics; Criminology; Cultural influences; Economic influences; Social classes; Social conditions; United States of America; Victimology
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=69031

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