Measuring Crime and the Prevalence of Crime

Phillipa Donaldson
Quiz by Phillipa Donaldson, updated more than 1 year ago
Phillipa Donaldson
Created by Phillipa Donaldson about 2 years ago
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Description

Topic 2

Resource summary

Question 1

Question
What are some limitations of police-reported crime?
Answer
  • police data only provide information on those criminal offenses that have come to the attention of police
  • Jurisdictions have the same rules for recording crime
  • not all crimes reported to police are actually recorded by police
  • data is limited to the particulars of information collected by police and the level and accuracy of detail recorded in respective systems
  • different recorded crime rates may be a reflection of policing practices and community attitudes
  • not all crimes committed are reported to the police
  • changes in recorded crime rates may be a reflection of changes in policing practices and community attitudes
  • concerns about reliving the event by retelling the storing

Question 2

Question
What is 'the dark figure of crime' ?
Answer
  • Information of criminal offences that have come to the attention of police
  • Crime that is not detected or reported

Question 3

Question
National Crime statistics (measurements of crime) are generally taken from two major sources. Which of the following consist of these?
Answer
  • The Uniform Crime Report- information formally recording crime from a whole population e.g. the International Crime Survey
  • Administrative data - including records maintained by the police, courts, corrective services and hospitals
  • National Database- ongoing statistics recorded and accumulated daily on database
  • Crime victimisation surveys - these survey the general population and seek to obtain information including which crimes are reported to police and those that are not and why

Question 4

Question
What is crime measured in?
Answer
  • number
  • sample
  • ratio
  • correlational statistics
  • rate

Question 5

Question
What is a "victimless" crime?
Answer
  • Rarely reported crime: drug offenses, copyright, white collar crime
  • When the victim is not at fault: sexual abuse (rape), domestic violence

Question 6

Question
Why do victims of crimes choose not to report?
Answer
  • the belief that the incident was too trivial or unimportant
  • fear they may be at fault
  • that the offence was a personal matter or would take care of it themselves
  • cultural barriers
  • worry for their own safety
  • concerns about reliving the event by retelling the story
  • fear of police and their reactions
  • expectations around police reaction
  • lack of understanding the criminal justice system

Question 7

Question
Current State of Crime
Answer
  • Fallen since 1900's. 18th year of falling rates. All crimes have gone down.
  • Fallen since the 1980's. 17th year of falling crime rates. Crime have gone up.

Question 8

Question
What are some advantages of crime statistics?
Answer
  • Help understand macro crime patterns
  • Give an indication of where laws should be implemented
  • For comparison of previous years to discover trends in crime
  • Basis for where criminologists to explain crime
  • Help understand micro crime patterns
  • Show where police should concentrate resources to reduce crime
  • Give statistics that are accessible to all departments and current affairs

Question 9

Question
What are the disadvantages of official crime statistics?
Answer
  • 1. Not all crime is reported or recorded 2. Police interpretations/bias/activity 3. Laws vary from state to state 4. Changing definitions of crime and the role of government/policy
  • 1. Not all crime is reported or recorded 2. Police position/relationship/bias/activity 3. Laws vary from state to state 4. Changing definitions of crime and the role of government/policy
  • 1. Not all crime is reported or recorded 2. Fear of police reinforcements 3. Laws vary from state to state 4. Changing definitions of crime and the role of government/policy
  • 1. Not all crime is reported or recorded 2. Police interpretations/bias/activity 3. Laws vary from state to state 4. Consequences of government/policy
  • 1. Not all crime is reported or recorded 2. Police interpretations/bias/activity 3. Laws vary from state to state 4. Media attention and reporting

Question 10

Question
What is a victimisation survey?
Answer
  • A national survey where offenses are recorded and documentation over a period of time.
  • A sample of the population, either locally or nationally, is asked which offenses have been committed against them over a period of time.
  • Where victims of crime record their account of offenses over a period of time.
  • Statistic from a population, either locally or nationally, where offenses are recorded by people who have have been subject to them over a period of time.

Question 11

Question
What are some advantages of victimisation surveys?
Answer
  • Uncover selected offenses
  • Overcomes the "dark figure" of crime
  • Overcomes the "hidden figure" of crime
  • Allows to measure the extent of crime in community and reasons for not reporting
  • Gives a picture of the extent and patterns of victimisation
  • Trends over time
  • Dependent upon people who are aware of being victims in crime

Question 12

Question
What are some disadvantages of victimisation surveys?
Answer
  • Recollections are biased or faulty
  • Does not reveal victim-perpetrator relationships
  • Fail to capture youth and homeless people
  • Accounts are incorrect
  • Not enough people are willing to report and therefore small sample size
  • Unwillingness to report
  • Categorise and overlook a range of crimes
  • Unreliable source

Question 13

Question
Which of the following issues impact on our ability to compare crime statistics across states and territories in Australia?
Answer
  • Offence definitions
  • Counting rules
  • Police recording practices
  • All of the above
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