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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 76619 Find in a Library
Title: Victim Prevention - An Alternative Strategy for the Police
Journal: Canadian Police College Journal  Volume:4  Issue:4  Dated:(1980)  Pages:277-285
Author(s): C K Talbot; C H S Jayewardene
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 9
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: Canada
Annotation: A new police orientation which focuses on victims is presented as an alternative strategy for crime prevention.
Abstract: Investigation into the causes of crime suggests that criminal behavior could be considered the result of the convergence of a likely offender and a suitable target. Thus far, the offender-oriented approach to crime has failed to produce the control that society desires. Punishment is too inconsistent to be effectively preventive; police capacity for solving crimes is extremely low; and police enforcement activities often foster antagonisms towards the police. A focusing of police activity on victim prevention would involve potential victims in the crime control process. Persons would be required to take adequate precautionary measures to ensure that they would not be victimized. They would have to curtail their activities to ensure they would not be suitable targets for crime. Police investigations would aim primarily at determining how crimes were committed so that necessary precautionary measures could be taken. Crime control programs adopting this concept have already been developed around the idea of security, situations are manipulated to place physical obstacles in the way of an individual's becoming a victim. However, such efforts have not been made by the police but by private security agencies. city planners, and housing authorities. Adoption of the victim prevention approach would require changes in views on crime causes, the role of the police, and the nature of man. Such an approach would mean an emphasis on situations rather than on individuals. Most steps toward victim prevention result in limitations in the freedom of the individual, and the success of such an orientation is related to a careful balancing of security measures with actual threats and consequences of the security being breached. The Hartford Neighborhood Crime Prevention Project is a promising effort in the right direction. A French translation and a 25-item reference list are included.
Index Term(s): Cause removal crime prevention; Community crime prevention programs; Crime prevention measures; Police crime-prevention; Police responsibilities; Victim crime precipitation
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