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NCJ Number: 94084 Find in a Library
Title: Policies Toward Violent Crime - Alberta as a Case Study
Journal: Canadian Journal of Criminology  Volume:23  Issue:3  Dated:(July 1981)  Pages:313-329
Author(s): J Hackler; L Gauld
Date Published: 1981
Page Count: 17
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: Canada
Annotation: Crime data from Canada, particularly Alberta, suggest that violent crime often results from domestic conflicts and is more prevalent in small towns than large cities. Thus, actions aimed at minor violent crimes rather than major ones might reduce the overall climate of violence.
Abstract: Some of our actions regarding violent crime are futile and frequently done for political purposes. In addition, public attention tends to focus on the exotic and loses sight of the larger situation. Crime statistics for 1977 show that western Canada had more violent crime than eastern Canada. The image of the vicious killer stalking unsuspecting strangers may provoke strong societal response, but does not typify the majority of killings and rapes. On the Prairies particularly, homicides arise out of family, social, or business relationships. When people argue for a severe response from the criminal justice system, however, they usually have in mind the murderer who kills during a robbery rather than deaths from family feuds, which are not deterred easily by judicial procedures. Violent crime in Canadian cities varies considerably. Toronto, Winnipeg, and Montreal have moderate rates, whereas Saskatoon and Victoria have high rates. Across Canada, towns under 2,500 appear to be slightly more violent than large communities. In Alberta, communities with populations between 750 and 2,500 had the highest crime rates. Alberta has other crime statistics that are difficult to explain. Calgary has lower crime rates than Edmonton, even though the two cities are very similar. In conclusion, more attention paid to violence producing situations and violent families could have a secondary impact on more serious offenses. Charts and 20 references are supplied.
Index Term(s): Alberta; Canada; Crime patterns; Domestic assault; Violent crimes
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