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What are the limitations of situational crime prevention - Essay Example

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The underlying theme of environmental criminology is that crimes require convergence in time and space of a motivated offender, a suitable target, in the absence of a capable guardian. Situational crime prevention. as the applications of environmental criminology are called,…
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Download file to see previous pages es to reduce the opportunities for crime by increasing the effort that the offender must invest, increasing the risks he must take, and reducing the rewards. Moreover, a key finding in studies of situational crime prevention is that the calculus of risks and rewards does not have to be decisively altered to be effective. An instructive example is prevention of library and bookstore thefts by electronic detection systems. To a determined shoplifter (or library lifter), the system hardly poses an insuperable obstacle. And yet such systems are effective even when only a small portion (or even none) of a librarys books have actually been coded with the magnetic strip (Petersilia et al., 1995, 244). However, although the measures suggested in accordance with the principles of situational crime prevention can be very helpful towards the prevention of crime in specific places, in practice several factors can influence the completion of the relevant procedure in a way that the desired target – limitation of crime in specific places – is often missed.
Back in the mid-nineteenth century, Edwin Chadwick had a very clear vision of crime prevention equivalent to the modern notion of opportunity reduction. As Reith says, quoting Chadwick, "the function of preventive police was placing difficulties in the way of objects of temptation."(1956:200). Chadwick, however, did not believe that the police alone were responsible for reducing criminal opportunities. In the Report of Constabulary Force Commissioners, he argued the need for "the honest portion of the community" to be "convinced of the necessity of taking effective measures for the abatement of the evil [property crime)" (Lefebre et al.,1839:55).
Returning to more recent times, one begins to see the emergence of a specific crime prevention policy in Britain from 1950 when, according to the Greater London Council (GLC) (1986) the Home Office approached the insurance industry and in concert with them produced the first ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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