skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 78042 Find in a Library
Title: Probability of Arrest and Rates of Commercial Victimization by Crime in 25 Cities
Journal: Western Sociological Review  Volume:8  Issue:2  Dated:(1977)  Pages:123-130
Author(s): L Carroll
Date Published: 1977
Page Count: 8
Sponsoring Agency: University of Rhode Island
Kingston, RI 02881
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Using LEAA crime rate estimates and controlling for demographic and socioeconomic correlates of crime, this research paper examines the effect of deterrents -- probability of arrest and the number of police per capita -- on crime rates.
Abstract: The analysis is restricted to commercial victimizations (robberies and burglaries) in 25 major American cities. The demographic variables (percent of the population which is black, percent age 16-24, city size, and region) and socioeconomic variables (percent below one-half median income, percent unemployed, median income, and one-half quartile range of income) explain 32 percent and 23 percent, respectively, of the variance. They are stronger predictors of commercial victimization than are deterrence variables, such as probability of arrest, which explain only 9 percent. Of the four demographic and socioeconomic factors, the percent of the population aged 16-24 has the strongest direct effect on rates of criminal victimization, followed by percent unemployed. While the percent black has the strongest zero-order correlation with commercial victimization, followed by percent umemployed. There is no relationship between the rate of commercial crime and another deterrent indicator, the number of police per capita. Any deterrent impact of law enforcement activity from organizational effectiveness and not from the mere physical presence and visibility of police. Thus, a policy to reduce crime through increasing the certainty of arrest will have little effect if not accompanied by programs to reduce unemployment and poverty and promote racial equality. Further research in juvenile crime and punishment, white-collar crime deterrents, and on the relationships between objective properties of punishment and crime indexes is needed. Tabular data, footnotes, and 20 references are provided.
Index Term(s): Burglary; Crime rate studies; Deterrence; Estimated crime incidence; Robbery; Victimization
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.