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Title: Understanding theft from the person and robbery of personal property victimisation trends in England and Wales, 1994-2010/11
Author: Thompson, R.
ISNI:       0000 0004 5348 3499
Awarding Body: Nottingham Trent University
Current Institution: Nottingham Trent University
Date of Award: 2014
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This thesis explores the changing nature of theft from the person and robbery of personal property over a 17-year period (1994-2010/11) in England and Wales. Between 1995 and 2010/11, all crime recorded by the British Crime Survey (BCS) fell 50 per cent, with a 27 and 17 per cent fall in robbery and theft from the person respectively (Chaplin et al., 2011). Despite widespread attention, consensus regarding why we have witnessed these falls in crime has not been reached. Three specific areas are explored in relation to theft and robbery: 1. the goods stolen; 2. the characteristics of the individuals from whom goods are stolen; and 3. the circumstances in which they are taken. Fourteen sweeps of the BCS are employed to discern if any changes in their nature and composition coincide with the falls in crime. Various statistical methods are utilised including binomial logistic, negative binomial and zero-inflated negative binomial regression. There are a number of proposed contributions to knowledge from this research. Firstly, contrary to other crime types, the fall in theft and robbery since 1996 is largely comprised of a reduction in single victims. Secondly, this overarching trend is composed of two underlying trends: one which mirrors the more general decreases in crime, and one which reflects increased theft due to the greater availability of new, valuable and portable goods that are attractive to thieves, particularly mobile phones. Thirdly, age, sex, marital status, general health, frequency of activity outside the home, area of residence and car ownership/use consistently influence the incidence of theft and robbery over time. Finally, there are clear and significant differences in the characteristics of victims suffering completed and attempted victimisations. In sum, the thesis generates knowledge of the demographic characteristics, lifestyles, consumer goods, environments and circumstances which appear to foster greater exposure to victimisation. Offenders have a clear “repository of crime targets” (Jacobs, 2010: 523) both in terms of the victim and item(s) stolen. With regard to the crime drop, a multi-factor model is proposed with repeat victimisation and target suitability identified as key components.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available