Get 20M+ Full-Text Papers For Less Than $1.50/day. Start a 14-Day Trial for You or Your Team.

Learn More →

Burglary Crime Scene Rationality of a Select Group of Non-Apprehend Burglars:

Burglary Crime Scene Rationality of a Select Group of Non-Apprehend Burglars: Burglary continues to yield low detection rates, and although the characteristics of how burglaries are committed has been investigated in some detail, less is known about how burglars avoid detection generally and in particular the activities of non-apprehended burglars. To investigate this issue, one can at least in principle investigate the special case of burglars who claim to have avoided apprehension in spite of the fact that they have committed a large number of burglaries over time. The approach taken here was to thematically analyze the interview data from a previous study comparing the crime scene movements of a small group of non-apprehended burglars with experienced but apprehended burglars. The results here from a thematic analysis of that previous study revealed marked differences in the rationales between the experienced, apprehended burglars and the experienced non-apprehended burglars when implementing different crime scene behaviors. A series of techniques and strategies emerges, which appear to aid in avoiding detection around the burglary scene and are summarized with implications discussed. Keywords burglary scripts, residential burglary, non-apprehended offenders, crime scene behaviors, anti-detection methods Burglary is one of those offenses that repeatedly results in a and “wipes the slate clean” (Maguire & Bennett, 1982). The relatively low detection rate (e.g., reported burglars during difficulty for the TIC scheme is that it relies on apprehending 2009/2010, resulted in a sanction for 12.7%; 2010/2011 = offenders in the first place and then persuading them to admit 13.3%, Taylor & Chaplin, 2011; and 13% for 2011/2012, to as many burglaries as they can remember committing, Taylor & Bond, 2012). That said, it has been noted that bur- although admissions often depend on the perceived strength glary rates have declined since the peak period of reported of the evidence against the suspect (see Moston & Engelberg, crime around 1994-1996 (Nee, 2004). However, rates have 2011). Nevertheless, improving initial apprehension rates is stabilized at approximately 550,000 per year, although no critical not only in its own right but also to increase the effec- significant increase in detections for crimes overall has been tiveness of the TIC scheme. observed (see Smith, Taylor, & Elkin, 2013). There are a In Hockey and Honey (2013), the analysis was concerned number of potential reasons why burglary detection rates are with plotting the movements around the burglary crime scene lower than for other offense types: Maguire and Bennett for each participant. The data were generated from semi- (1982) summarized these as follows: There is no prior structured interviews. In Hockey and Honey (2013), it was offense relationship between the burglar and the victim on only the data that related to a participant’s whereabouts at the many occasions (hence, fewer leads for the police to pursue); crime scene, which was analyzed. The results showed that offenses are typically reported many hours after being com- the non-apprehended burglars engaged in a pattern that was mitted, by which time the trail has gone cold and they are quite different from the apprehended burglars. Although the usually committed in the absence of witnesses—the single apprehended burglars operated in a linear approach, by greatest source of evidence that the police rely on for record- attacking the property in as short a number of stages as pos- ing and investigating reported crime (Carrabine, Iganski, sible and retreating in a similar way, the non-apprehended Lee, Plummer, & South, 2004). Moreover, existing detection offenders moved forward and backward on a number of rates would be almost halved but for the number of addi- occasions before attacking the property. Each new advance tional burglaries that apprehended offenders admit to while forward took the non-apprehended burglars closer to the in custody (see Taylor & Chaplin, 2011). Many of these bur- glaries are unlikely to have ever been solved without the Cardiff University, UK admissions by apprehended offenders under the “taking into Corresponding Author: consideration” (TIC) scheme. Briefly, the TIC scheme is David Hockey, School of Psychology, Cardiff University, Cardiff, UK. affected through police interviews of offenders in custody, Email: davidhockey121@hotmail.com Creative Commons CC-BY: This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License (http://www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/) which permits any use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access pages (https://us.sagepub.com/en-us/nam/open-access-at-sage). 2 SAGE Open Figure 1. Individual lag sequence plots for participants in the non-apprehended group (n = 3; upper row) and the offender group (n = 4; lower row) for the actions surrounding a burglary. Note. The five action categories are shown on the Y axis and the first 12 lag positions on the X axis. Each square indicated the action category for an individual at each lag position; the arrows indicate the lag at which participants first indicated that they were inside the property; and squares above the dotted lines indicate the lag positions where the participants were in the immediate vicinity of the property. point of entering the building. That study focused on the sta- apprehended population, whilst high levels of undetected tistical movement of the participants through the use of lag- crime remain a feature of annual figures. Indeed, Mawby sequence analysis. In this article, the remaining interview (2001) suggests that known burglars may be very different data from Hockey and Honey (2013), is thematically analy- from successful ones. At the very least, habitual offenders sied. A comparison of the rationale and decision making must be non-apprehended for a period of time to be able to between the two groups is explored and located within the become “habitual.” An issue then is whether some habitual script theory framework. One aim of this study was to seek offenders behave in a way, both at the crime scene and per- an explanation for the marked differences in the patterns of haps during the post investigation phase that enables greater movement between the apprehended and non-apprehended capacity in evading detection until they desist from offend- burglar groups. To re-cap, a small group of non-apprehended ing or switch to “lower” risk activities (Halliday, 2001). offenders had self-declared a long history of burglary, had To explore this in the context of burglary, Hockey and retired from burglary without adult convictions, and came by Honey (2013) compared the hypothetical movements gener- recommendation from known offenders within the Criminal ated by the non-apprehended group and the experienced but Justice System. The small group of apprehended offenders apprehended group during a burglary scenario. They used a were experienced repeat burglars with multiple convictions. lag-sequential analysis, which revealed that the non- The thematic analysis conducted here was intended to shed apprehended offenders took more steps to progress through further light on the differences between the two groups by the different stages (i.e., prior to entry; during the acquisitive understanding more about the patterns of movement initially phase and withdrawing from the scene). Also, having revealed through the lag-sequential analysis. advanced to a given stage in the burglary sequence, the non- apprehended offenders repeatedly retraced their steps back to previous locations where they paused before returning once General Issues Regarding Detected and again to the more advanced stage in the sequence (see top row Undetected Offenders of Figure 1 below). In contrast, the apprehended group moved Letkermann (1973) views apprehension as inevitable for forward through the various stages without retracing previous habitual offenders; therefore, “uncaught” offenders do not steps, thus creating a linear sequence of movements (see bot- exist. Similarly, West and Farrington (1973), and Fox and tom row of Figure 1 below). Although the differences between Farrington (2012) concluded from self-report studies that these two groups were marked and consistent, their origin detected offenders are similar to undetected offenders in remains a matter of considerable interest. One way in which many respects. However, Muller (2000), Blackburn to pursue this important issue is to conduct a further and more (2001),Maguire and Bennett (1982), Poyner and Webb detailed analysis of the responses made by the participants (1991), and Alison and Eyre (2009) have cautioned against who generated the patterns found in the lag-sequential analy- drawing inferences about the characteristics of the offend- sis. Such an analysis may bring additional clarity to earlier ing population as a whole from the characteristics of the findings regarding hard to catch burglars. Hockey 3 similarity to previous targets (Townsley, Homel, & Chaseling, Summarizing Burglar Performance 2003). This makes sense of the different views above because Characteristics well-rehearsed script style processing not only means effi- Drawing from different methods and aims, a number of ciency (Nee & Meenaghan, 2006; Wright, Logie, & Decker, influential studies have researched the phenomenon of bur- 1995) but also directs attention to behaviors consistent with glars, resulting in a range of views (Maguire & Bennett, it (Ceci, Fitneva, Aydin, & Chernyak, 2011), or in this con- 1982) around issues relating to the competencies of experi- text, burglary cues (Cornish & Clarke, 1986). This is particu- enced burglars. For example, Merry and Harsent (2000) larly poignant when considering the evidence regarding describe what they call “high skilled” burglars, or target selection (e.g., Baker, 2000; Clarke & Cornish, 1985; “Breaksmen.” These are skilled artists, knowledgeable and Nee & Taylor, 1988, 2000; Wright & Decker, 1994). secretive, who plan ahead and attack the most vulnerable entry point. Their search is neat and tidy, and they are self- Sources of Detection disciplined. However, other research has found that it is not uncommon for less experienced burglars to attack the most For Maguire and Bennett (1982), the best two sources of detec- vulnerable entry points, and many failed burglars use search tion come from identification of the burglar and from subse- methods that do not make a mess of the contents of the prop- quent questioning of suspects, leading to either admissions or erty (see Wright & Decker, 1994). Canter and Alison (2000) the discovery of evidence during the investigative stage. argue that it is the degree of planning in contrast to the casual However, they noted that these sources tended to be only really opportunist burglar or those that impulsively attack a prop- effective against certain types of burglars, namely, those local erty that produces the salient variation between crimes and to a specific area and persistent burglars within a town. offenders. As with many other offenders, burglars can be classified However, Cromwell, Olson, and Avary (1991) suggest into two basic categories “high”- and “low”-volume offend- that being an opportunist does not of-its-self differentiate the ers (Halliday, 2001). As the label suggests, high-volume skilled from the novice or amateur, although the skilled do offenders can commit a lot of offenses before being appre- not typically commit opportunistic burglaries, they plan and hended, which is then usually for a portion of their offence execute their crimes with deliberation and have excellent total . Given that many apprehended burglars admit to addi- contacts. They describe the “Professional” as the “elite” of tional burglaries, suggests that apprehension for high- the burglary world, with a high degree of technical skill and volume offenders appears to be almost inevitable sooner or organizational ability. Baker (2000) also described how later for at least some of these (for example, see Hearnden & “Professionals” committed burglary in such a way as to min- Magill, 2004). Low-volume offenders are perhaps more dif- imize the risk of being apprehended and select targets on the ficult to apprehend for a number of reasons. One of these basis of the value of the contents, but stop short of defining may be that the fewer times a burglar goes out to commit criteria for how detection is avoided. These different conclu- offenses, the fewer occasions they are exposed to the risk of sions may be explained theoretically within the tradition of being apprehended at the scene or from the post-offence script theory (Schank & Abelson, 1977). The main character- investigation. Over an extended period of time, they may istics of the theory are that there is a routine that develops commit as many offenscs as the high-volume offender from rehearsal. The routine is designed to achieve a concrete squeezes into a shorter period, but without the inevitability goal such as eating a meal in a restaurant. As the script holder of apprehension. becomes more familiar with the routine, less cognitive pro- cessing is required to perform it, and the route to obtaining Method of Detection Avoidance the goal becomes more automated. A number of studies have utilized script theory (Cornish, 1994b; Cornish & Clarke, For Walsh (1986), if a burglar is winning, he will continue 1987; Hammond & Brown, 2005; Hockey & Honey, 2013; until something stops him, and on this basis, a prison popula- Huesmann, 1994; Huesmann & Eron, 1989; Michael, Hull, tion should contain some past successes that are likely to be & Zahm, 2001; Nee & Taylor, 2000; Tunnell, 1992; Ward & typical of offenders who are at large at any given time. Hudson, 2000; Wright & Decker, 1994), which have shown However, some offenders switch to lower risk activities offender behavior to resemble the characteristics of scripts. (Halliday, 2001) which reduces the ongoing and higher risk Idiosyncratic routines (i.e., the modus operandi; Alison & of apprehension. Maguire and Bennett (1982) suggest that Eyre, 2009; Homant & Kennedy, 2006) can develop from the getting away with a high volume of burglaries before being basic offense script (Cornish, 1994a). caught for the odd one is success. Furthermore, experienced burglars may typically make There have also been a number of contributions about decisions to commit an offence away from a burglary site what methods work best for avoiding detection over an (Wright & Decker, 1994) but could still take advantage when extended period of time. Merry and Harsent (2000) regard ‘happening’ upon an immediate opportunity (Davies, “high craft” burglars as those who perform “proactive” skilled Wittebrood, & Jackson, 1997), which may be assessed by entry with a carried tool, while for Walsh (1986), burglars 4 SAGE Open tend to use forcing tools found at the scene, as equipment car- to have spent (subsequent to convictions as teenagers) many ried is as incriminating as the burglary itself (Canter, 1994). years of their adult lives offending in high-risk activities (e.g., Nee and Meenaghan (2006) observed that speed in assessing burglary) without detection before moving on to other lower suitable targets and search methods is associated with “exper- risk criminal activities. They described their burglary experi- tise” because of the efficiency in which experienced burglars ence as “a lot,” “many,” and “countless.” Their recruitment conduct these tasks. This speed approach is likely to be came by a snow-balling technique in terms of recommenda- advantageous for high-volume offending and would support tion from participants in a previous study (Hockey, 2008, Maguire and Bennett’s (1982) view that success means get- unpublished thesis). The offender group consisted of four ting caught for the occasional burglary only. Walsh (1986) male participants, also from the previous study (Hockey, 2008 reported that his burglars described how they would affect an unpublished thesis), who self-reported multiple convictions entrance into a building and then retreat for a period of time for a wide variety of offenses (including burglary) over an to wait and see whether that action had activated a silent extended period of time. They were aged 29, 29, 32, and 43 alarm before progressing with the next stage of the burglary. years old, respectively (M age = 33.25, SD = 6.65). The groups Hockey and Honey (2013) also found that when plotted on a did not differ significantly in age (T = 0.90, p > .05). graph, the pattern of movements for the non-apprehended group reflected a similar behavior to that found by Walsh. Procedure These various approaches to burglary appear to derive from a general emphasis on the methods used to select and Participants were met individually, and the purpose of the commit burglaries, and the volume of burglaries committed study, together with the general procedure, was outlined to in a given period of time. Committing the offence has a dif- them. Their ethical rights were also made clear . The vignette ferent focus to an offender’s ability to avoid detection. This questions were read aloud, slowly and purposefully. The use study sought to focus on the rationales for the most effective of questions as prompts for participants to provide a descrip- approach to avoiding detection according to these non- tion of a sequence of actions was based on the reluctance of apprehended offenders. some participants (in a pilot study), to provide a list of actions when requested to do so (cf. Bower, Black, & Turner, 1979). Participants took as much time as they wanted, to think about Method their responses and to write it down in their own words. The The method used here was designed to facilitate a direct next question was only revealed once a participant had indi- comparison of the methods used in a burglary scenario cated that they were ready to move on. On some occasions, between a small group of experienced non-apprehended bur- questions became redundant, either because the participant glars who had desisted and a comparable group (in terms of had already answered them in the course of a previous mean age and burglary activity) of experienced but appre- answer, or because the option chosen by the participant in the hended burglars. previous question rendered them redundant. As will become A vignette was developed to include distinct stages to a clear from the results, the procedure was sufficiently flexible burglary scenario (see the appendix). These stages derived to allow different patterns of actions to be described. from the body of research alluded to above in conjunction with Results were subjected to the Hayes (2000) model of law enforcement agents, other researchers’ comments, and theory-led thematic analysis, which was utilized due to its flex- participants from an earlier burglary study (see Hockey, 2008, ibility to theory (Braun & Clarke, 2006) and semi-structured unpublished thesis). A semi-structured interview (appendix) interview (Hockey, 2014). The process first involves identify- was constructed around the key features of the vignette, which ing the themes that may derive from a review of the literature. consisted of a combination of prompts (open questions) and These themes are a little more general and underpin the princi- probes (closed questions) for specific areas of interest (Drever, pal questions that will be asked in the study. The second stage 2003). The flexibility of this approach supports sufficient is to prepare the gathered data (i.e., the interview extracts) in a structure to the interview to facilitate some direction through way that allows it to be searched through repeatedly. Third, the key features, while also allowing adequate opportunity for each theme is taken separately, and a search of the data is con- participants to expand on any area of their account, which they ducted to identify all items relating to that theme. Themes are perceived as important to their own experiences. then titled, described, and include relevant data extracts. Participants Results The United Kingdom based participants in this study were Theme 1. The Most Important Goals When those who featured in the previous study (see Hockey & Committing a Burglary Honey, 2013) for full recruitment details. In brief, the non- apprehended participants were all male, self-declared offend- The goals are those that the burglar subjectively defines as ers and former burglars, who gave their ages as 33, 37, and 42 being the most important objectives when carrying out a years old (M age = 37.33, SD = 4.5). Each participant claimed burglary. Hockey 5 Burglars are rarely asked whether there are goals of be less fixated on the need to commit a burglary; in this sense, importance other than for profit. If differences exist between Walsh’s (1986) notion of not being under pressure to make high apprehended and non-apprehended offenders, these differ- gains on any given occasion is plausible here. ences may exist in areas that have not been fully explored. For example, Walsh (1986) suggested that burglary is an Theme 2. When to Commit a Burglary unpredictable form of income generation, in that without work, there is no pay. Only unknown gains lie ahead as the When to commit a burglary is based on whether an offender outcome of burglary opportunities. From this standpoint, commits offences in the day or at night, and this will depend Walsh suggests that most burglars would most likely be on the individual offender’s preference. employed in legitimate work so as to avoid being dependent British Crime Survey (BCS; 2002/2003) figures indicate on an unreliable source of income. This is perhaps more that almost as many burglaries are committed in the day as at suited to the low-volume offender. It follows that a legitimate night. However, Maguire and Bennett’s (1982) high-level source of income alongside the illegal income would reduce burglars preferred day to night burglaries in the particular the pressure to always obtain high gains on any given occa- circumstances that they operated, while Coupe and Griffiths sion, which would facilitate the selection and identification (1996) found that fewer burglars were caught at night. What of unsuitable and inappropriate targets to avoid attacking. is less clear is how many of each type are solved and whether All participants from both groups answered this question. day or night burglars (to assume a dichotomous group for However, there was a difference in that the apprehended group now) are more or less successful in long-term avoidance of responded with two different goals: Two participants said that detection than the opposite group. avoiding being caught was the most important goal (“not get- In this study, participants were asked to state when they ting caught” P1), while the other two participants said that would prefer to commit a burglary in terms of day or night. making a profit was (“get top quality goods for money” P2). Three members of the apprehended group responded by All four participants from this group then alternated when replying with “day” and one with “night.” In a follow-up asked whether there were any additional goals (“not to leave question, the rationale given for day time burglaries related any evidence” P3 & “locate contents of safe and steel” P4). to the notion that the activity was more accessible (“not The non-apprehended group all said that avoiding detec- expected during the day” P1 & “so they are not at home” P2). tion was the most important goal (“avoiding capture” P6 & The non-apprehended group all responded with “night” “getting away with it” P7). The participants from this group (“fewer witnesses, less chance of being disturbed” P5 & “can agreed that profit was the second most important goal (“mak- be more concealed” P7). ing it worthwhile financially” P5 & “earning money” P6). The apprehended group’s responses show an emphasis Although it may not be surprising to expect these two toward physically committing the burglary through a con- responses (i.e., profit and non-apprehension) to be top priori- cern with occupancy of the property. Apprehended burglars ties, the difference in the ordering is an early indication of the have previously been associated with using a range of tech- differences between the two groups. The non-apprehended niques to determine whether a property is unoccupied group exclusively saw avoiding detection as the most impor- (Cromwell et al., 1991; Wright & Decker, 1994). However, tant goal, while the apprehended group was evenly split the risk of burgling a property that is actually occupied between avoiding detection and making financial gains. remains a strong possibility (for example, see BCS, Bennett and Wright (1984) noted that many of the offenders in 2002/2003). In addition, neighbours or passers-by can also their study were not worried about getting caught because they play a part in alerting the police to the burglary in progress chose not to think about it and focused on the offence gains. (e.g., 8% of burglars are apprehended through being seen Given that the apprehended group are failed burglars, a princi- acting suspiciously; Farrington & Lambert, 2000) and also in pal goal of avoiding detection does not of its self ensure success identification of the burglar retrospectively (i.e., 7% of bur- at doing so. The mixed responses from the apprehended group glars are apprehended through witness identification). The are consistent with previous findings, where there is a chaotic non-apprehended groups’ responses suggest that there is lifestyle generally and an orientation toward the here and now greater consideration for reducing the chances of being (Ross & Ross, 1995), particularly where there is a need for exposed to either direct interruption or to later identification. immediate access to money for those with a drug abuse and/or Perhaps the cover of darkness provides greater possibilities a dependency problem (Cromwell et al., 1991). In this context, for this, although Maguire and Bennett’s (1982) “profes- the mixed responses of the apprehended group can be explained sional” but ultimately failed burglars preferred to commit in that not all apprehended burglars have the same motivation their burglaries during the day. for immediate access to money. For example, they may not all have a dependency or an illicit drug abuse issue, and although Theme 3. Traveling to the Burglary two members of this group said that avoiding detection was the most important goal, that is not of its self, evidence of high Traveling to a burglary site is about whether an offender uses levels of “know how.” The non-apprehended group appeared to a vehicle or walks and the reasons given for those decisions. 6 SAGE Open Many offenders are thought to commit their offences of the burglary (see Maguire & Bennett, 1982; Nee & Taylor, within a relatively short distance from their typical place of 2000; Tunnell, 1992; Wright & Decker, 1994). Consistent residence (i.e., an approximate 2– to 3-mile radius; Alison & with that, the apprehended offenders focused on the most Eyre, 2009; Baker, 2000; Brantingham & Brantingham, suitable property to attack and the most vulnerable points of 1981; Canter & Youngs, 2010; Wiles & Costello, 2000). This entry. Their responses amounted to a general description is in part due to their routine activities (Cohen & Felson, rather than techniques designed to specifically account for 1979) in that their general environment is a relatively small avoiding apprehension (“cautiously, make sure next door area of familiarity from which they do not tend to leave very hasn’t seen me” P3 & “with caution” P4). frequently, although Hearnden and Magill (2004) found that The non-apprehended group responded with more detail most of their burglars still used a car. (“use an approach which can’t be seen by anyone but try to be Participants were asked to explain how far they would low profile if you do have to pass by anyone or where you can travel to the burglary and how they would get there. be seen” P6 & “sneak up so you can see the place but you Consistent with previous research, the apprehended group can’t be seen. I would make sure it is a way that means a good responses were that they would use a vehicle: (“car” P1 & getaway without anyone seeing which way it is” P7). The “drive” P4), although one participant added walking as a responses from the non-apprehended group are more detailed possibility (“car or walk” P2). In the initial follow-up ques- and incorporate more consideration toward avoiding being tion, two of the participants qualified this in terms of distance apprehended as well as the desire to avoid interruption. and time (“3-5 miles” P2 & “minimum 15 mins” P3). When In the series of follow-up questions relating to what the asked how far away from the burglary would they park the participant would do once outside of the building, the appre- vehicle, the responses were similar in terms of strategy (“5 hended group responded in the following way: (“find the minutes walk out of sight” P1 & “3-4 hundred yards” P4). easiest route to getting in” P3 and “check the security The non-apprehended group also stated that a vehicle arrangements, dogs, cameras, guards” P4). These responses would be used (“drive” P5 & “drive to the plot” P6). None on are entirely consistent with the notion of the burglar being the participants in the non-apprehended group commented fixated on the target selection and the execution of the bur- on how far they would travel to commit a burglary. However, glary. That said, one participant from this group offered a when asked how far away from the burglary they would park different response (“escape route, scan local area” P1). This the vehicle, the responses showed some difference to the suggests that at least one participant from the apprehended apprehended group (“depends on the layout but about half a group took the broader view that there are other consider- mile away” P5 & “a good walk away from where the bur- ations beyond “how to commit the burglary.” This notion glary is” P7). Here again, there is more consideration about was exemplified by the non-apprehended group who pro- where to position the vehicle in relation to the burglary. The duced more in-depth responses such as the potential for apprehended group was prepared to park the vehicle in rela- police activity (“find a nearby spot that isn’t part of the tive close proximity to where they were about to commit a grounds. Wait in the dark and observe for a while” P5 & burglary, which indicates two points: the consistency with “locate a place away from the building that isn’t seen so you earlier findings resulting in Cornish and Clarke’s (1987) can escape if the law did go to the burglary” P7). “principal of least effort” (though normally associated with The non-apprehended group sought to establish personal break-in techniques) in that the apprehended group showed a safety in the form of effective hideout spots and escape routes propensity toward minimal investment in both time and before considering progressing with a direct attempt to com- energy at an earlier stage than the break-in phase; and sec- mit the burglary. Further follow-up questions regarding what ondly, it also shows less consideration toward the connection else would be done produced the following from the appre- that might be made between the burglary and the vehicle hended group: (“scan the property vacant, was in and out” P1 used to transport the offender. The non-apprehended group & “look for weaknesses in security” P2). These responses showed a greater willingness to put in more time and effort appear to be concerned with decisions regarding the next stage to decrease the chances of such a connection being made and in the actual commission of the burglary in that the focus is on thereby reducing one potential source of police enquiry, both searching for any occupants and the most vulnerable access at the time of the burglary and in any subsequent point. The non-apprehended group responded with (“go to the investigation. building, go around it and go back to the hiding place” P6 & “check out the grounds around the plot and any other places where someone could be hiding from you” P6). Again, the Theme 4. Approaching the Burglary Site non-apprehended group remains consistent in that there is a This theme is concerned with the decisions and strategies clear distinction between decisions about how to commit the that burglars use around the crime scene in preparation to the burglary and whether to do so by continuing to check its safety burglary. as thoroughly as possible before making an actual attempt to A great deal of work has gone into developing knowledge break-in. The final question in this section asked the partici- on burglary target selection and decision making at the scene pants whether there was anything else to add. The apprehended Hockey 7 group responded with (“no” P1 & “check kit and inhabitation, use the time to exploit the opportunity as much as possible to alarms off” P4), which amounted to a repeat of the burglary acquire goods. It is not to suggest that once inside and ready orientated responses to the previous questions. The other two to steal, the non-apprehended group would not also use participants in the apprehended group did not reply, suggest- speed, but rather that the apprehended group missed out a ing that they had no other ideas at that point. The non- complete stage in the process, which, according to the non- apprehended group replied with, (“keep a look out for some apprehended group, is vital to protect one’s self from increas- time, then go and bring the equipment outside” P6 and “keep ing the chances of being caught inside the building. watching for any movement around the place last check out- side go wait a bit longer” P7). By this point in the process, the Theme 6. Pressurized Decision Making at the non-apprehended group has made very little attempt to con- Scene of the Burglary sider the most vulnerable point to break in but has spent much more time checking out the grounds of the building, checking The purpose of this line of questioning was to explore deci- escape routes and hidden look out spots than the apprehended sion making while under immediate pressure from the group, who by contrast, race ahead with the stages of progress- approaching police. ing through the burglary. Farrington and Lambert (2000) showed that 14% of appre- hended burglars were caught in the act and 12% were caught near or leaving the scene of the burglary. Decision making in Theme 5. Initial Decisions Once Inside the this context is perhaps about having a plan of action in place Property and ready to utilize it, if and when required. Previous research This theme is defined by what the burglars decided to do at has emphasized decision making in “experienced” or “expert” this point in the burglary and their rationale for doing so. burglars (Nee & Meenaghan, 2006) in terms of target selec- Previous findings have indicated that experienced bur- tion for the purposes of: avoiding being seen while commit- glars go into search mode by systematically following an ting the burglary; vulnerable access points into the property idiosyncratic routine (Nee & Meenaghan, 2006; Wright & and perceived relative wealth (Clarke, 1997). Decker, 1994). This was borne-out by the responses from the Here, the apprehended group makes the basic but obvious apprehended group in this study (“go to bedroom get quilt statement in that it is simply going to try and get away (“drive cover for goods to go in” P2 & “check all rooms” P3). off normal” P2 & “leave everything make hast and try to However, the non-apprehended group did not follow this pat- look unsuspicious” P3). References to “normal” and “unsus- tern (“go everywhere that I would intend to go and then get picious” suggest that they are expecting to be seen as they do out quick and go back outside” P5 & “go in, get out quick so, which can be related to the earlier responses explored in make sure you have a good search” P7). The responses from Theme 3, where the getaway vehicle is parked in close prox- the non-apprehended group are characterized by the strategy imity to the burglary. However, is it reasonable to expect the of getting in and out so quickly that there is no time or inten- police to allow someone to move off from near a property tion to steal any property at that first point of entrance. The that is reportedly a burglary in progress? follow-up questions to this section regarding any additional The non-apprehended group’s responses suggested a sub- information illustrates this point and increases the contrast- tle difference in that they do not expect to be seen leaving the ing differences between the two groups. The apprehended area (“leave the goods and head in the direction of my vehi- group responded with, (“get more stuff in” P2 and “make cle” P5 & “just leave things if the law are near and either run sure nobodys home,”) while the non-apprehended group pro- or get in the motor and go” P7). This difference is interpreted vided a rationale (“this is the best way to check for any hid- within the context that the non-apprehended offendershad den security alarms. If nothing happens for quite a while positioned their vehicles in more strategic locations further chances are you have not activated an alarm and so you will away from the burglary (see Theme 3 above) and that they be able to go back inside safely” P5, and had previously identified discrete escape routes (see Theme 4 above). These strategies were identified by Poyner and Webb once inside you must go round and see if you set off any alarms, (1991). Although they described the footpaths to places where then get out and wait to see, you don’t want to be inside the cars can be left without causing suspicion, as being “short,” in building when the police turn up because of a silent alarm or a the case of these non-apprehended offenders, the correspond- witness who has called them secretly. (P6)) ing parking location appears to be further away. This retreat method replicates the earlier findings of Walsh’s (1986) burglars. Here, the non-apprehended group Theme 7. Getaway Strategies and Decisions appears to take each stage seriously and continues to mini- This theme is defined by the burglars’ pre-offence decisions mize the prospect of being interrupted, while providing the about what they would do and be able to do should the police maximum prospect of being able to get away should any arrive while they are still at the burglary site. problems occur. The focus of the apprehended group was to 8 SAGE Open Of all apprehended burglars, 43% are caught within an the risks outlined by Farrington and Lambert (2000) in hour of the offence (Canter & Alison, 2000), suggesting that Theme 2 (above). they have not developed suitable escape strategies or that The participants from the non-apprehended group here all their capacity to dispose of stolen property is also similarly committed their offenses at night. Furthermore, although under-developed (see Jacobson, Maitland, & Hough, 2003, occupancy is an issue for many burglars of all levels of expe- for an example). Not only are burglary detection rates low rience and competence, the reduction of potential targets generally, but that once the first 24 hours have passed, detec- imposed by the restriction of offences to night time only does tion rates fall off still further and much of the clear-up rate not necessarily impose major difficulties for non- then comes from TICs. apprehended offenders, who by design commit a lower vol- The apprehended offender group replied with simplified ume of burglaries than failed burglars in the same time frame, statements about what they would do (“go off somewhere” which of its self is another risk reducing strategy. Reasons P3 & “look as calm as possible and walk on” P4). The non- for a lower volume of offending may be due to a more con- apprehended group provided more detail about what they trolled approach, where the offender does not rely solely on would do and why (“you should already be far enough away burglaries for an income (see Walsh, 1986) and/or that per- from the burglary so as not to be found during an immediate ceived opportunities may be fewer to a burglar who is risk- search around it” P5 & “I always make sure that I don’t stay aversive in that his or her target choice is highly selective to near the place cus they always search nearby so no point in meet those criteria, as opposed to high-profit reasons. staying there” P7). It appears that members of both groups Some offenders use the strategy of speed to commit bur- have experienced burglary events where the police have glary offences; this, in turn, facilitates a high volume of closed in during its execution. The responses from the appre- offences (Halliday, 2001). Nee and Meenaghan (2006) hended group do not provide much information about a strat- rightly suggest that there is a great deal of efficiency in this egy, which appears to be limited to reactive decisions as approach, particularly during the target selection and search opposed to options planned in advance. The responses from phase. However, in the context of avoiding detection, the the non-apprehended group suggest that they are clear about burglars’ strategy here is ultimately flawed as it exposes the the need to put as much distance as they can between them- offender to the repeated risks of committing burglaries many selves and the burglary. Given the time and effort that would more times over than a lower volume offender (Halliday, have gone into planning both effective escape routes and the 2001) within a short period. positioning of the getaway vehicle, these responses are The offenders in the apprehended group of this study, like entirely consistent with the general approach to committing a many others, utilized a simplified technique for accessing the burglary, which has a strongly developed emphasis on avoid- items inside the building. Once they had decided that it was ing detection. not occupied, they would force an entry and immediately proceed inside to begin stealing items. The non-apprehended offenders utilized a similar technique to some of the offend- Discussion ers in Walsh’s (1986) study in that a more measured approach Fox and Farrington (2012) took the view that because many was used, whereby an entry is effected and followed by a convicted offenders committed most of the offences on a period of waiting in a safe place to test whether any silent self-report study, it is unlikely that if non-apprehended alarms had been activated or whether any other problems offenders exist, they will be any different to apprehended might occur. This is because there are fewer potential wit- offenders. This inductive argument makes a great deal of nesses around during the night, there is greater opportunity sense to a point, in that as Maguire and Bennett (1982) noted, to see or hear anyone approaching and that well-devised some offenders commit a lot of offences before getting escape routes are established prior to the burglary. Moreover, caught for the odd one. However, non-apprehended offend- the non-apprehended offenders in this study took much more ers are an unknown quantity both in terms of their numbers time and caution during the approach and break-in phase. and their characteristics. Subtle differences in their approach Although this means that they were at the scene for much to offending may result from important differences in those longer, the strategy intelligently applied, actually reduces the characteristics and there is a sufficient number of unsolved risk of apprehension at the scene, which is the principal burglaries to allow room for both the unsolved portion of source of detection (Canter & Alison, 2000; Farrington & offences from apprehended offenders and those of non- Lambert, 2000). It is interesting to note that Hearnden and apprehended offenders. Magill (2004) found that their experienced but apprehended Many of offenders who have participated in the various burglars perceived being inside the building as virtually risk studies on burglary have had some success in avoiding detec- free. tion for a period of time. Although some of that success is The advanced planning of the non-apprehended offenders due to random chance, the techniques and strategies used does not necessarily mean that a high-volume of burglaries are have also contributed. One of these failed strategies may be not committed, but maybe spread over a much longer period committing burglaries during the day, which exposes them to of time compared with the high-volume failed burglars. As Hockey 9 predicted from previous research, the experienced appre- prison population generally suggest that it is embedded in the hended offenders in this study searched and stole from the offender. The non-apprehended offender group also appears premises at the first opportunity once inside. The non- to have a routine, but decisions are based on more abstract apprehended offenders took more time and operated more planning in that there is a great deal of consideration given to cautiously by getting in and out as quickly as possible on the what might occur rather than what is or has occurred. The first occasion of entering the building, which did not, of its script offence has more stages in the pattern of movement self, occur until a series of precautionary actions were under- around the crime scene, which are underpinned by a risk- taken. They only returned and removed property once they aversive rationale. There also appears to be more control were sure that no one, such as the police, was approaching the over any impulse to rush in at the first opportunity; this building. allows for a more calculated approach, which, although is Distance between burglary and place of residence is also more time-consuming and restricts available opportunities, a contributing feature in the apprehension of burglars. It is is less adverse to risk exposure. generally observed that most failed burglars commit their offences within approximately 2 miles of their base. Those Limitations who travel further usually last longer before being appre- hended (see Maguire & Bennett, 1982; Walsh, 1986), and Some studies into burglary have utilized large numbers of although distance may create logistical problems of their participants, which is helpful for gaining insights into a wide own, apprehension for traveling offenders is likely to be due range of burglary activities. Others have focused on very to reasons unconnected to that additional distance, such as small sample sizes (for example, see Hockey & Honey, 2013; being placed under surveillance (see Maguire & Bennett, Maguire & Bennett, 1982) for the finite detail associated 1982). Interestingly, the non-apprehended offenders in this with the more successful offenders. These non-apprehended study did not provide information about the distances that offenders may be genuinely rare, difficult to identify, and they traveled to commit burglary, but they did indicate less willing to take part in a study. Therefore, it is important greater distances between where they would position their to recognize that the few opportunities to study their methods vehicle and the burglary. Given what is known in the wider are valuable for greater understanding in its own right (e.g., context of apprehension rates between those who travel and do non-apprehended burglars use similar or different those who do not, distance, whether it is to the burglary or decision-making strategies to experienced burglars; see between the burglary and the vehicle, can be an effective Garcia-Retamero & Dhami, 2009). This may also enable technique in reducing the prospect of apprehension. understanding of any links between their methods and those The exit strategy for the apprehended group favored leaving of less unsuccessful burglars (e.g., knowledge transfer the scene in a way that they perceived made them look incon- between groups). spicuous in the event of being seen by the police. The non- apprehended group did not view that as the most risk-aversive Policy and Research Implications method and had pre-planned their escape routes in such a way as to minimize the risk of actually being seen. Getting away Previous research (Taylor & Nee, 1988) suggests that there is from the scene of a burglary is of paramount importance in learning in the development of burglary skills, and what is terms of avoiding detection. Putting in place exist strategies clear is that there has been a number of burglary prevention before the burglary takes place will make an important contribu- exercises conducted with mixed success (Bowles & tion to this aim compared with attempting a reactive approach to Pradiptyo, 2004; Hirschfield, 2004; Hope et al., 2004; Millie prevailing circumstances. The non-apprehended group took & Hough, 2004). Over time, offenders adapt to efforts to time to work on this before attempting the burglary. This put thwart these measures (Tilley, 2007). Moreover, although them in a position whereby in the event of being disturbed, they Canter (1994) takes the view that learning in the apprehended could exit the building and immediately use these escape routes. offender occurs by previous mistakes and convictions, which Within the script theory framework, the apprehended is a worthwhile starting point, there is currently no overall offenders appear to follow linear patterns of movement. agreed explanation for this learning process (Bekerian & These are simplified routines or offence scripts (Cornish, Jackson, 1997). That said, it is certainly a worthwhile area of 1994a) that have been developed through rehearsal and study given the paucity of research into the extent of and appear as an heuristic device (Snook, Dhami, & Kavanagh, capabilities of non-apprehended burglars particularly. 2011) for obtaining concrete goal aims as it requires little Understanding more about the methods of non- time, minimal information, and less cognitive capacity apprehended offenders will not only increase the prospect of Gigerenzer & Goldstein, 1996). Whether this style of think- law-enforcement success but could actually undermine the ing and the pursuit of concrete goals are characteristically confidence of some apprehended burglars who may then be indicative of this genre of apprehended offender or whether deterred if they believed that getting caught is inevitable. For it is adopted due to its perceived success is a matter of further example, the non-apprehended burglars in this study came research, although the dysfunctional characteristics of the by recommendation from other offenders, meaning that those 10 SAGE Open doing the recommending were aware of others who avoided 8. Is it stolen, borrowed, or your own? detection. Furthermore, given the cognitive errors typically 9. How far away would you park it? associated with offenders (for example, see Morgan, 2002, 10. What if you got stopped or chased on the way to the for a breakdown of the dysfunctional characteristics in the burglary? general prison population; also Wilson, Allen-Bouffard, & 11. Why that choice? Mackenzie, 2005), the existence of non-apprehended offend- 12. List the equipment you would take on a burglary? ers may lead apprehended offenders to wrongly believe that 13. Why? they can avoid detection next time and inspire them to carry 14. Where did you get it from? on trying (see Wilson, 1983, for a discussion on increasing 15. How will you approach the building once you get the certainty of sanctions). These questions need to be further there? explored of course. 16. What is the first thing you would do when you get Moreover, Harris, Pedneault, and Knight (2013) see bur- outside? glary as representative of a general pattern of versatility. 17. Then what would you do? From versatility, specialization (Farrington, Snyder, & 18. Anything else? Finnegan, 1988; Klein, 1984) derives, although this is thought to be in relation to themes (Youngs, 2004) rather You have entered the building for the first time. than specific crimes. If the theme is detection avoidance and offenders who prioritize this switch to low-risk offenses 1. What is the first thing you would do once inside? before the process of apprehension finally catches up with 2. Why? them, as was the case in for the non-apprehended offenders 3. Then what? here, then this poses a real challenge to law-enforcement 4. Anything else? agencies as well as to advances in research in relation to this 5. Where is the equipment that you would bring with type of offender. you? 6. Why? Conclusion You are in the building and have located the items you want The results from the non-apprehended group suggest that long- to take. You do not know how much time you have before term anti-detection success derives in part from using a combi- anyone arrives. There are a couple of items which are bulky, nation of some of the techniques that are in use by apprehended although you can carry them. They are worth a lot of money, burglars, while rejecting or adapting others. The effectiveness of and you could sell them quickly. There is also a larger num- these selective techniques is magnified when operated in com- ber of smaller items, which you could sell as a job lot but bination with a more cautious strategy than that of general speed would not fetch as much money. or reactive decision-making approach. Apprehension near to the scene of a burglary or within a relatively short time period after- 1. Which would you take? ward represents the best chance of solving the offence from a 2. Where would you do with the goods you are going to crime detection perspective. Therefore, any strategy that places take while still inside the building? a greater emphasis on reducing that risk is going to be more 3. What about the equipment? effective. What is of interest here is the psychological constructs 4. Where would you put the goods once you have taken that enable these long-term non-apprehension methods and the them outside? implications for apprehended offenders. You are ready to go when you hear the police in the distance driving hurriedly toward the building. It sounds as if they Appendix could be approaching from different directions at the same A property located in a secluded area, which you decide to time. burgle as it is understood to contain some high-value goods. 1. What would you do? 1. What is the most important goal of the burglary? 2. Why? 2. What other goals if any might there be? 3. What do you take . . . the goods or your equipment? 3. When would you prefer to commit the burglary? 4. Why? Day/Night 5. What about the vehicle you used to get there? 4. Why that choice? 5. How would you get there? (walk, public transport, The police are now searching the area. Some are patrolling in Drive?) cars while others are on foot searching places where some- 6. How far would you walk? one might be hiding. 7. What type of transport? 1. What would you do? Hockey 11 2. When do you make your getaway from the area? Canter, D. V. (1994). Criminal shadows. London, England: HarperCollins. 3. You have decided to: Canter, D. V., & Alison, L. (2000). Profiling property crimes. In 4. Hide D. V. Canter & L. Alison (Eds.), Profiling property crimes 5. Walk down the road as an innocent passer by (pp. 1-30). Aldershot, UK: Ashgate. 6. Run to the vehicle and drive away Canter, D. V., & Youngs, D. (2010). Investigative psychol- 7. Etc. ogy: Offender profiling and the analysis of criminal action. 8. Tell me about why you have made that choice? Chichester, UK: John Wiley. Carrabine, E., Iganski, P., Lee, M., Plummer, K., & South, N. (2004). You have got away from the building. Criminology: A sociological introduction. Oxon, UK: Routledge. Ceci, S. J., Fitneva, S. A., Aydin, F. C., & Chernyak, N. (2011). 1. What would you do next? Memory development and eyewitness testimony. In A. Slater 2. What would you do with the goods if you have any? & G. Bremner (Eds.), An introduction to developmental psy- chology (2nd ed., pp. 417-452). London, England: Blackwell. 3. What would you do with your clothing? Clarke, R. V. (1997). Situational crime prevention: Successful case 4. At what point would you decide you have safely got studies (2nd ed.). Albany, NY: Harrow and Heston. away with the crime? Clarke, R. V., & Cornish, D. B. (1985). Modelling of offenders deci- sions: A framework for research and policy. In M. Tonry & N. Acknowledgment Morris (Eds.), Crime and justice: An annual review of research The author wishes to thank Professor Rob Honey for his critique of (Vol. 6, pp. 147-185). Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press. the article and support in its development. The author thanks two Cohen, L., & Felson, M. (1979). Social change and crime rate anonymous reviewers for their helpful comments on this article. trends: A routine activity approach. American Sociological Review, 44, 588-608. Cornish, D. B. (1994a). Crimes as scripts. In D. Zahm & P. Declaration of Conflicting Interests Cromwell (Eds.), Proceedings of the International Seminar on The author(s) declared no potential conflicts of interest with respect Environmental Criminology and Crime Analysis (pp. 30-45). to the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article. Tallahassee, FL: Florida Criminal Justice Executive Institute. Cornish, D. B. (1994b). The procedural analysis of offending and Funding its relevance for situational prevention. In R. V. Clarke (Ed.), Crime prevention studies (Vol. 3, pp. 151-196). Monsey, NY: The author(s) received no financial support for the research and/or Criminal Justice Press. authorship of this article. Cornish, D. B., & Clarke, R. V. (1986). Introduction. In D. B. Cornish & R. V. Clarke (Eds.), Research in Criminology: The References reasoning criminal: Rational choice perspectives on offending Alison, L., & Eyre, M. (2009). Killer in the shadows: The mon- (pp. 1-13). New York, NY: Springer-Verlag. strous crimes of Robert Napper. London, England: Pennant Cornish, D. B., & Clarke, R. V. (1987). Understanding crime Books. displacement: An application of rational choice theory. Baker, M. (2000). The Criminal range of small-town burglars. In Criminology, 25, 933-947. D. V. Canter & L. Alison (Eds.), Profiling property crimes Coupe, T., & Griffiths, M. (1996). Solving residential burglary. (pp. 57-106). Aldershot, UK: Ashgate. Crime Detection and Prevention Series Paper 77. London, Bekerian, D. A., & Jackson, J. L. (1997). Critical issues in offender England: Home Office. profiling. In J. L. Jackson & D. A. Bekerian (Eds.), Offender pro- Cromwell, P. F., Olson, J. N., & Avary, D. W. (1991). Breaking filing: Theory, research and practice (pp. 209-220). Chichester, and entering: An ethnographic analysis of burglary. London, UK: John Wiley. England: SAGE. Bennett, T., & Wright, R. (1984). Burglars on burglary. Aldershot, Davies, A., Wittebrood, K., & Jackson, J. L. (1997). Predicting UK: Gower Publishing. the criminal antecedents of a stranger rapist from his offence Blackburn, R. (2001). The psychology of criminal conduct: Theory, behaviour. Science & Justice, 37, 161-170. doi:10.1016/ research and practice. Chichester, UK: John Wiley. S1355-0306(97)72169-5 Bower, G. H., Black, J. B., & Turner, T. J. (1979). Scripts in mem- Drever, E. (2003). Using semi-structured interviews in small-scale ory for text. Cognitive Psychology, 11, 177-220. research: A teacher’s guide. Glasgow, Scotland: The Scottish Bowles, R., & Pradiptyo, R. (2004). Reducing burglary initiative: Council for Research Education Centre. An analysis of costs, benefits and cost effectiveness (Home Farrington, D. P., & Lambert, S. (2000). Statistical approaches to Office Online Report 43/04). London, England: Home Office. offender profiling. In D. V. Canter & L. Alison (Eds.), Profiling Brantingham, P. L., & Brantingham, P. J. (1981). Patterns in crime. property crimes (pp. 233-274). Aldershot, UK: Ashgate. New York, NY: Macmillan. Farrington, D. P., Snyder, H. N., & Finnegan, T. A. (1988). Braun, V., & Clarke, V. (2006). Using thematic analysis in psychol- Specialisation in juvenile court careers. Criminology, 26, 461-487. ogy. Qualitative Research in Psychology, 3, 77-101. British Crime Survey (BCS). (2002/2003). Crime in England and Fox, B. H., & Farrington, D. P. (2012). Creating burglary pro- Wales 2002/2003. Retrieved from http://webarchive.nation- files using latent class analysis: A new approach to offender alarchives.gov.uk/20110220105210/rds.homeoffice.gov.uk/ profiling. Criminal Justice and Behavior, 39, 1582-1611. rds/pdfs2/hosb703.pdf doi:10.1177/0093854812457921 12 SAGE Open Garcia-Retamero, R., & Dhami, M. K. (2009). Take-the-best in Mawby, R. I. (2001). Crime and Society Series: Burglary. expert-novice decision strategies for residential burglary. Cullompton, UK: Willan Publishing. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 16, 163-169. Merry, S., & Harsent, L. (2000). Intruders, pilferers, raiders and invad- Gigerenzer, G., & Goldstein, D. G. (1996). Reasoning the fast and ers: The interpersonal dimension of burglary. In D. V. Canter & L. frugal way: Models of bounded rationality. Psychological Alison (Eds.), Profiling property crimes (pp. 31-56). Aldershot, Review, 103, 650-669. UK: Ashgate. Halliday, J. (2001). Making punishments work. Retrieved from Michael, S. E., Hull, R. B., & Zahm, D. L. (2001). Environmental http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/+/http:/www. factors influencing auto burglary. Environment & Behavior, homeoffice.gov.uk/documents/halliday-report-sppu/chap- 33, 368-388. 1-2-halliday2835.pdf?view=Binary Millie, A., & Hough, M. (2004). Assessing the impact of the reduc- Hammond, S., & Brown, J. (2005). Comparing three multivariate ing burglary initiative in southern England and Wales (2nd statistical procedures when profiling residential burglaries. ed.) (Home Office Online Report 42/04). London, England: Forensic Update, 80, 9-16. Home Office. Harris, D. A., Pedneault, A., & Knight, R. A. (2013). An explo- Morgan, R. (2002). Imprisonment: A brief history, the contempo- ration of burglary in the criminal histories of sex offenders rary scene, and the likely prospects. In M. Maguire, R. Morgan, referred for civil commitment. Psychology, Crime & Law, 19, & R. Reiner (Eds.), The Oxford handbook of criminology (3rd 765-781. doi:10.1080/1068316X.2012.678850 ed., pp. 1113-1165). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. Hayes, N. (2000). Doing psychological research. Buckingham, Moston, S., & Engelberg, T. (2011). The effects of evidence on the UK: Open University Press. outcome of interviews with criminal suspects. Police Practice Hearnden, I., & Magill, C. (2004). Decision-making by house bur- & Research: An International Journal, 12, 518-526. glars: Offenders’ perspectives (Home Office Findings 249). Muller, D. A. (2000). Criminal profiling: Real science or just wish- London, England: Home Office. ful thinking? In C. R. Bartol & A. M. Bartol (Eds.), Current Hirschfield, A. (2004). The impact of the reducing burglary ini- perspectives in forensic psychology and criminal justice tiative in the North of England (Home Office Online Report (pp. 55-66). London, England: SAGE. 40/04). London, England: Home Office. Nee, C. (2004). The offender’s perspective on crime: Methods and Hockey, D. T. (2014). Understanding crime scene movements of principles in data collection. In A. Needs & G. Towl (Eds.), non-apprehended burglars: Combining thematic analysis with Applying psychology to forensic practice (pp. 3-17). Oxford, log-linear and lag-sequence analysis. SAGE Research Methods UK: British Psychological Society Blackwell. Cases. Advance online publication. doi:10.4135/9781446273 Nee, C., & Meenaghan, A. (2006). Expert decision making in bur- 05014537784 glars. British Journal of Criminology, 46, 935-949. Hockey, D. T. (2008). Cognitive scripts in versatile and repeat Nee, C., & Taylor, M. (1988). Residential burglary in the Republic offenders (Unpublished doctorate thesis). Cardiff University, of Ireland: A situational perspective. The Howard Journal, 27, Wales. 105-116. Hockey, D. T., & Honey, R. (2013). Evaluating script-like knowl- Nee, C., & Taylor, M. (2000). Examining burglars’ target selec- edge in offenders and a small group of non-apprehended tion: Interview, experiment or ethnomethodology? Psychology, offenders. Psychology, Crime & Law, 19, 161-178. Crime & Law, 6, 45-59. Homant, R. J., & Kennedy, D. B. (2006). Psychological aspects of Poyner, B., & Webb, B. (1991). Crime free housing. Oxford, UK: crime scene profiling. In C. R. Bartol & A. M. Bartol (Eds.), Butterworth-Heinemann. Current perspectives in forensic psychology and criminal jus- Ross, R. R., & Ross, R. D. (1995). Thinking straight: The reason- tice (pp. 45-54). London, England: SAGE. ing and rehabilitation program for delinquency prevention and Hope, T., Bryan, J., Crawley, E., Crawley, P., Russell, N., & offender rehabilitation. Ottawa, Ontario, Canada: Air Training Trickett, A. (2004). Strategic development projects in the & Publications. Yorkshire and the Humber, East Midlands and Eastern regions Schank, R. C., & Abelson, R. P. (1977). Scripts, plans, goals and (Home Office Online Report 41/04). London, England: Home understanding: An inquiry into human knowledge structures. office. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum. Huesmann, L. R. (1994). Aggressive behaviour. London, England: Smith, K., Taylor, P., & Elkin, M. (2013). Crimes detected in England Plenum Press. and Wales 2012/13 (2nd ed.) (National Statistics: HOSB 02/13). Huesmann, L. R., & Eron, L. D. (1989). Individual differences and Retrieved from https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/sys- the trait of aggression. European Journal of Personality, 3, tem/uploads/attachment_data/file/224037/hosb0213.pdf 95-106. Snook, B., Dhami, M. K., & Kavanagh, J. M. (2011). Simply crimi- Jacobson, J., Maitland, L., & Hough, M. (2003). The reducing bur- nal: Predicting burglars’ occupancy decisions with a simple glary initiative: Investigating burglary. Home Office Research heuristic. Law Human Behaviour, 35, 316-326. doi:10.1007/ Study 264. London, England: Home Office. s10979-010-9238-0 Klein, M. W. (1984). Offence specialisation and versatility among Taylor, M., & Nee, C. (1988). The role of cues in simulated resi- juveniles. British Journal of Criminology, 24, 185-194. dential burglary: A preliminary investigation. British Journal Letkermann, P. (1973). Crime as work. England Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Criminology, 28, 396-401. Hall. Taylor, P., & Bond, S. (2012). Crimes detected in England and Maguire, M., & Bennett, T. (1982). Burglary in a dwelling: Wales 2011/12 (1st ed.). National Statistics: HOSB 08/12. The offence, the offender and the victim. London, England: Retrieved from https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/sys- Heinemann. tem/uploads/attachment_data/file/116435/hosb0812.pdf Hockey 13 Taylor, P., & Chaplin, R. (2011). Crimes detected in England and Wilson, D. B., Allen-Bouffard, L., & Mackenzie, D. L. (2005). A Wales 2010/11 (1st ed.) (National Statistics: HOSB 11/11). quantitative review of structured, group-oriented, cognitive- Retrieved from https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/ behavioral programs for offenders. Criminal Justice & system/uploads/attachment_data/file/116404/hosb1111.pdf Behavior, 32, 172-204. Tilley, N. (2007). Thinking realistically about crime prevention. In Wilson, J. Q. (1983). Thinking about crime (Rev. ed.). New York, N. Tilley (Ed.), Handbook of crime prevention and community NY: Vintage. safety (pp. 3-13). Cullompton, UK: Willan Publishing. Wright, R. T., & Decker, S. H. (1994). Burglars on the job. Boston, Townsley, M., Homel, R., & Chaseling, J. (2003). Infectious bur- MA: Northeastern University Press. glaries: A test of the near repeat hypothesis. British Journal of Wright, R. T., Logie, R. H., & Decker, S. H. (1995). Criminal exper- Criminology, 43, 615-633. tise and offender decision making: An experimental study of Tunnell, K. D. (1992). Choosing crime: The criminal calculus of the target selection process in residential burglary. Journal of property offenders. Chicago, IL: Nelson-Hall. Research in Crime & Delinquency, 32, 39-54. Walsh, D. (1986). Heavy business: Commercial burglary and rob- bery. London, England: Routledge. Youngs, D. (2004). Personality correlates of offence style. Journal Ward, T., & Hudson, S. M. (2000). Sexual offenders’ implicit of Investigative Psychology and Offender Profiling, 1, 99-119. planning: A conceptual model. Sexual Abuse: A Journal of doi:10.1002/jip.008 Research and Treatment, 12, 189-202. West, D. J., & Farrington, D. P. (1973). Who becomes delinquent? Author Biography London, England: Heinemann. Wiles, P., & Costello, A. (2000). The road to nowhere: The evi- David Hockey is now at Bristol, England, the United Kingdom. His dence for travelling criminals (Home Office Research Study research interests are particularly in the anti-detection methods used No. 207). London, England: Home Office. by offenders. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png SAGE Open SAGE

Burglary Crime Scene Rationality of a Select Group of Non-Apprehend Burglars:

SAGE Open , Volume 6 (2): 1 – Apr 7, 2016

Loading next page...
 
/lp/sage/burglary-crime-scene-rationality-of-a-select-group-of-non-apprehend-uodLMwarFs

References (86)

Publisher
SAGE
Copyright
Copyright © 2022 by SAGE Publications Inc, unless otherwise noted. Manuscript content on this site is licensed under Creative Commons Licenses.
ISSN
2158-2440
eISSN
2158-2440
DOI
10.1177/2158244016640589
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Burglary continues to yield low detection rates, and although the characteristics of how burglaries are committed has been investigated in some detail, less is known about how burglars avoid detection generally and in particular the activities of non-apprehended burglars. To investigate this issue, one can at least in principle investigate the special case of burglars who claim to have avoided apprehension in spite of the fact that they have committed a large number of burglaries over time. The approach taken here was to thematically analyze the interview data from a previous study comparing the crime scene movements of a small group of non-apprehended burglars with experienced but apprehended burglars. The results here from a thematic analysis of that previous study revealed marked differences in the rationales between the experienced, apprehended burglars and the experienced non-apprehended burglars when implementing different crime scene behaviors. A series of techniques and strategies emerges, which appear to aid in avoiding detection around the burglary scene and are summarized with implications discussed. Keywords burglary scripts, residential burglary, non-apprehended offenders, crime scene behaviors, anti-detection methods Burglary is one of those offenses that repeatedly results in a and “wipes the slate clean” (Maguire & Bennett, 1982). The relatively low detection rate (e.g., reported burglars during difficulty for the TIC scheme is that it relies on apprehending 2009/2010, resulted in a sanction for 12.7%; 2010/2011 = offenders in the first place and then persuading them to admit 13.3%, Taylor & Chaplin, 2011; and 13% for 2011/2012, to as many burglaries as they can remember committing, Taylor & Bond, 2012). That said, it has been noted that bur- although admissions often depend on the perceived strength glary rates have declined since the peak period of reported of the evidence against the suspect (see Moston & Engelberg, crime around 1994-1996 (Nee, 2004). However, rates have 2011). Nevertheless, improving initial apprehension rates is stabilized at approximately 550,000 per year, although no critical not only in its own right but also to increase the effec- significant increase in detections for crimes overall has been tiveness of the TIC scheme. observed (see Smith, Taylor, & Elkin, 2013). There are a In Hockey and Honey (2013), the analysis was concerned number of potential reasons why burglary detection rates are with plotting the movements around the burglary crime scene lower than for other offense types: Maguire and Bennett for each participant. The data were generated from semi- (1982) summarized these as follows: There is no prior structured interviews. In Hockey and Honey (2013), it was offense relationship between the burglar and the victim on only the data that related to a participant’s whereabouts at the many occasions (hence, fewer leads for the police to pursue); crime scene, which was analyzed. The results showed that offenses are typically reported many hours after being com- the non-apprehended burglars engaged in a pattern that was mitted, by which time the trail has gone cold and they are quite different from the apprehended burglars. Although the usually committed in the absence of witnesses—the single apprehended burglars operated in a linear approach, by greatest source of evidence that the police rely on for record- attacking the property in as short a number of stages as pos- ing and investigating reported crime (Carrabine, Iganski, sible and retreating in a similar way, the non-apprehended Lee, Plummer, & South, 2004). Moreover, existing detection offenders moved forward and backward on a number of rates would be almost halved but for the number of addi- occasions before attacking the property. Each new advance tional burglaries that apprehended offenders admit to while forward took the non-apprehended burglars closer to the in custody (see Taylor & Chaplin, 2011). Many of these bur- glaries are unlikely to have ever been solved without the Cardiff University, UK admissions by apprehended offenders under the “taking into Corresponding Author: consideration” (TIC) scheme. Briefly, the TIC scheme is David Hockey, School of Psychology, Cardiff University, Cardiff, UK. affected through police interviews of offenders in custody, Email: davidhockey121@hotmail.com Creative Commons CC-BY: This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License (http://www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/) which permits any use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access pages (https://us.sagepub.com/en-us/nam/open-access-at-sage). 2 SAGE Open Figure 1. Individual lag sequence plots for participants in the non-apprehended group (n = 3; upper row) and the offender group (n = 4; lower row) for the actions surrounding a burglary. Note. The five action categories are shown on the Y axis and the first 12 lag positions on the X axis. Each square indicated the action category for an individual at each lag position; the arrows indicate the lag at which participants first indicated that they were inside the property; and squares above the dotted lines indicate the lag positions where the participants were in the immediate vicinity of the property. point of entering the building. That study focused on the sta- apprehended population, whilst high levels of undetected tistical movement of the participants through the use of lag- crime remain a feature of annual figures. Indeed, Mawby sequence analysis. In this article, the remaining interview (2001) suggests that known burglars may be very different data from Hockey and Honey (2013), is thematically analy- from successful ones. At the very least, habitual offenders sied. A comparison of the rationale and decision making must be non-apprehended for a period of time to be able to between the two groups is explored and located within the become “habitual.” An issue then is whether some habitual script theory framework. One aim of this study was to seek offenders behave in a way, both at the crime scene and per- an explanation for the marked differences in the patterns of haps during the post investigation phase that enables greater movement between the apprehended and non-apprehended capacity in evading detection until they desist from offend- burglar groups. To re-cap, a small group of non-apprehended ing or switch to “lower” risk activities (Halliday, 2001). offenders had self-declared a long history of burglary, had To explore this in the context of burglary, Hockey and retired from burglary without adult convictions, and came by Honey (2013) compared the hypothetical movements gener- recommendation from known offenders within the Criminal ated by the non-apprehended group and the experienced but Justice System. The small group of apprehended offenders apprehended group during a burglary scenario. They used a were experienced repeat burglars with multiple convictions. lag-sequential analysis, which revealed that the non- The thematic analysis conducted here was intended to shed apprehended offenders took more steps to progress through further light on the differences between the two groups by the different stages (i.e., prior to entry; during the acquisitive understanding more about the patterns of movement initially phase and withdrawing from the scene). Also, having revealed through the lag-sequential analysis. advanced to a given stage in the burglary sequence, the non- apprehended offenders repeatedly retraced their steps back to previous locations where they paused before returning once General Issues Regarding Detected and again to the more advanced stage in the sequence (see top row Undetected Offenders of Figure 1 below). In contrast, the apprehended group moved Letkermann (1973) views apprehension as inevitable for forward through the various stages without retracing previous habitual offenders; therefore, “uncaught” offenders do not steps, thus creating a linear sequence of movements (see bot- exist. Similarly, West and Farrington (1973), and Fox and tom row of Figure 1 below). Although the differences between Farrington (2012) concluded from self-report studies that these two groups were marked and consistent, their origin detected offenders are similar to undetected offenders in remains a matter of considerable interest. One way in which many respects. However, Muller (2000), Blackburn to pursue this important issue is to conduct a further and more (2001),Maguire and Bennett (1982), Poyner and Webb detailed analysis of the responses made by the participants (1991), and Alison and Eyre (2009) have cautioned against who generated the patterns found in the lag-sequential analy- drawing inferences about the characteristics of the offend- sis. Such an analysis may bring additional clarity to earlier ing population as a whole from the characteristics of the findings regarding hard to catch burglars. Hockey 3 similarity to previous targets (Townsley, Homel, & Chaseling, Summarizing Burglar Performance 2003). This makes sense of the different views above because Characteristics well-rehearsed script style processing not only means effi- Drawing from different methods and aims, a number of ciency (Nee & Meenaghan, 2006; Wright, Logie, & Decker, influential studies have researched the phenomenon of bur- 1995) but also directs attention to behaviors consistent with glars, resulting in a range of views (Maguire & Bennett, it (Ceci, Fitneva, Aydin, & Chernyak, 2011), or in this con- 1982) around issues relating to the competencies of experi- text, burglary cues (Cornish & Clarke, 1986). This is particu- enced burglars. For example, Merry and Harsent (2000) larly poignant when considering the evidence regarding describe what they call “high skilled” burglars, or target selection (e.g., Baker, 2000; Clarke & Cornish, 1985; “Breaksmen.” These are skilled artists, knowledgeable and Nee & Taylor, 1988, 2000; Wright & Decker, 1994). secretive, who plan ahead and attack the most vulnerable entry point. Their search is neat and tidy, and they are self- Sources of Detection disciplined. However, other research has found that it is not uncommon for less experienced burglars to attack the most For Maguire and Bennett (1982), the best two sources of detec- vulnerable entry points, and many failed burglars use search tion come from identification of the burglar and from subse- methods that do not make a mess of the contents of the prop- quent questioning of suspects, leading to either admissions or erty (see Wright & Decker, 1994). Canter and Alison (2000) the discovery of evidence during the investigative stage. argue that it is the degree of planning in contrast to the casual However, they noted that these sources tended to be only really opportunist burglar or those that impulsively attack a prop- effective against certain types of burglars, namely, those local erty that produces the salient variation between crimes and to a specific area and persistent burglars within a town. offenders. As with many other offenders, burglars can be classified However, Cromwell, Olson, and Avary (1991) suggest into two basic categories “high”- and “low”-volume offend- that being an opportunist does not of-its-self differentiate the ers (Halliday, 2001). As the label suggests, high-volume skilled from the novice or amateur, although the skilled do offenders can commit a lot of offenses before being appre- not typically commit opportunistic burglaries, they plan and hended, which is then usually for a portion of their offence execute their crimes with deliberation and have excellent total . Given that many apprehended burglars admit to addi- contacts. They describe the “Professional” as the “elite” of tional burglaries, suggests that apprehension for high- the burglary world, with a high degree of technical skill and volume offenders appears to be almost inevitable sooner or organizational ability. Baker (2000) also described how later for at least some of these (for example, see Hearnden & “Professionals” committed burglary in such a way as to min- Magill, 2004). Low-volume offenders are perhaps more dif- imize the risk of being apprehended and select targets on the ficult to apprehend for a number of reasons. One of these basis of the value of the contents, but stop short of defining may be that the fewer times a burglar goes out to commit criteria for how detection is avoided. These different conclu- offenses, the fewer occasions they are exposed to the risk of sions may be explained theoretically within the tradition of being apprehended at the scene or from the post-offence script theory (Schank & Abelson, 1977). The main character- investigation. Over an extended period of time, they may istics of the theory are that there is a routine that develops commit as many offenscs as the high-volume offender from rehearsal. The routine is designed to achieve a concrete squeezes into a shorter period, but without the inevitability goal such as eating a meal in a restaurant. As the script holder of apprehension. becomes more familiar with the routine, less cognitive pro- cessing is required to perform it, and the route to obtaining Method of Detection Avoidance the goal becomes more automated. A number of studies have utilized script theory (Cornish, 1994b; Cornish & Clarke, For Walsh (1986), if a burglar is winning, he will continue 1987; Hammond & Brown, 2005; Hockey & Honey, 2013; until something stops him, and on this basis, a prison popula- Huesmann, 1994; Huesmann & Eron, 1989; Michael, Hull, tion should contain some past successes that are likely to be & Zahm, 2001; Nee & Taylor, 2000; Tunnell, 1992; Ward & typical of offenders who are at large at any given time. Hudson, 2000; Wright & Decker, 1994), which have shown However, some offenders switch to lower risk activities offender behavior to resemble the characteristics of scripts. (Halliday, 2001) which reduces the ongoing and higher risk Idiosyncratic routines (i.e., the modus operandi; Alison & of apprehension. Maguire and Bennett (1982) suggest that Eyre, 2009; Homant & Kennedy, 2006) can develop from the getting away with a high volume of burglaries before being basic offense script (Cornish, 1994a). caught for the odd one is success. Furthermore, experienced burglars may typically make There have also been a number of contributions about decisions to commit an offence away from a burglary site what methods work best for avoiding detection over an (Wright & Decker, 1994) but could still take advantage when extended period of time. Merry and Harsent (2000) regard ‘happening’ upon an immediate opportunity (Davies, “high craft” burglars as those who perform “proactive” skilled Wittebrood, & Jackson, 1997), which may be assessed by entry with a carried tool, while for Walsh (1986), burglars 4 SAGE Open tend to use forcing tools found at the scene, as equipment car- to have spent (subsequent to convictions as teenagers) many ried is as incriminating as the burglary itself (Canter, 1994). years of their adult lives offending in high-risk activities (e.g., Nee and Meenaghan (2006) observed that speed in assessing burglary) without detection before moving on to other lower suitable targets and search methods is associated with “exper- risk criminal activities. They described their burglary experi- tise” because of the efficiency in which experienced burglars ence as “a lot,” “many,” and “countless.” Their recruitment conduct these tasks. This speed approach is likely to be came by a snow-balling technique in terms of recommenda- advantageous for high-volume offending and would support tion from participants in a previous study (Hockey, 2008, Maguire and Bennett’s (1982) view that success means get- unpublished thesis). The offender group consisted of four ting caught for the occasional burglary only. Walsh (1986) male participants, also from the previous study (Hockey, 2008 reported that his burglars described how they would affect an unpublished thesis), who self-reported multiple convictions entrance into a building and then retreat for a period of time for a wide variety of offenses (including burglary) over an to wait and see whether that action had activated a silent extended period of time. They were aged 29, 29, 32, and 43 alarm before progressing with the next stage of the burglary. years old, respectively (M age = 33.25, SD = 6.65). The groups Hockey and Honey (2013) also found that when plotted on a did not differ significantly in age (T = 0.90, p > .05). graph, the pattern of movements for the non-apprehended group reflected a similar behavior to that found by Walsh. Procedure These various approaches to burglary appear to derive from a general emphasis on the methods used to select and Participants were met individually, and the purpose of the commit burglaries, and the volume of burglaries committed study, together with the general procedure, was outlined to in a given period of time. Committing the offence has a dif- them. Their ethical rights were also made clear . The vignette ferent focus to an offender’s ability to avoid detection. This questions were read aloud, slowly and purposefully. The use study sought to focus on the rationales for the most effective of questions as prompts for participants to provide a descrip- approach to avoiding detection according to these non- tion of a sequence of actions was based on the reluctance of apprehended offenders. some participants (in a pilot study), to provide a list of actions when requested to do so (cf. Bower, Black, & Turner, 1979). Participants took as much time as they wanted, to think about Method their responses and to write it down in their own words. The The method used here was designed to facilitate a direct next question was only revealed once a participant had indi- comparison of the methods used in a burglary scenario cated that they were ready to move on. On some occasions, between a small group of experienced non-apprehended bur- questions became redundant, either because the participant glars who had desisted and a comparable group (in terms of had already answered them in the course of a previous mean age and burglary activity) of experienced but appre- answer, or because the option chosen by the participant in the hended burglars. previous question rendered them redundant. As will become A vignette was developed to include distinct stages to a clear from the results, the procedure was sufficiently flexible burglary scenario (see the appendix). These stages derived to allow different patterns of actions to be described. from the body of research alluded to above in conjunction with Results were subjected to the Hayes (2000) model of law enforcement agents, other researchers’ comments, and theory-led thematic analysis, which was utilized due to its flex- participants from an earlier burglary study (see Hockey, 2008, ibility to theory (Braun & Clarke, 2006) and semi-structured unpublished thesis). A semi-structured interview (appendix) interview (Hockey, 2014). The process first involves identify- was constructed around the key features of the vignette, which ing the themes that may derive from a review of the literature. consisted of a combination of prompts (open questions) and These themes are a little more general and underpin the princi- probes (closed questions) for specific areas of interest (Drever, pal questions that will be asked in the study. The second stage 2003). The flexibility of this approach supports sufficient is to prepare the gathered data (i.e., the interview extracts) in a structure to the interview to facilitate some direction through way that allows it to be searched through repeatedly. Third, the key features, while also allowing adequate opportunity for each theme is taken separately, and a search of the data is con- participants to expand on any area of their account, which they ducted to identify all items relating to that theme. Themes are perceived as important to their own experiences. then titled, described, and include relevant data extracts. Participants Results The United Kingdom based participants in this study were Theme 1. The Most Important Goals When those who featured in the previous study (see Hockey & Committing a Burglary Honey, 2013) for full recruitment details. In brief, the non- apprehended participants were all male, self-declared offend- The goals are those that the burglar subjectively defines as ers and former burglars, who gave their ages as 33, 37, and 42 being the most important objectives when carrying out a years old (M age = 37.33, SD = 4.5). Each participant claimed burglary. Hockey 5 Burglars are rarely asked whether there are goals of be less fixated on the need to commit a burglary; in this sense, importance other than for profit. If differences exist between Walsh’s (1986) notion of not being under pressure to make high apprehended and non-apprehended offenders, these differ- gains on any given occasion is plausible here. ences may exist in areas that have not been fully explored. For example, Walsh (1986) suggested that burglary is an Theme 2. When to Commit a Burglary unpredictable form of income generation, in that without work, there is no pay. Only unknown gains lie ahead as the When to commit a burglary is based on whether an offender outcome of burglary opportunities. From this standpoint, commits offences in the day or at night, and this will depend Walsh suggests that most burglars would most likely be on the individual offender’s preference. employed in legitimate work so as to avoid being dependent British Crime Survey (BCS; 2002/2003) figures indicate on an unreliable source of income. This is perhaps more that almost as many burglaries are committed in the day as at suited to the low-volume offender. It follows that a legitimate night. However, Maguire and Bennett’s (1982) high-level source of income alongside the illegal income would reduce burglars preferred day to night burglaries in the particular the pressure to always obtain high gains on any given occa- circumstances that they operated, while Coupe and Griffiths sion, which would facilitate the selection and identification (1996) found that fewer burglars were caught at night. What of unsuitable and inappropriate targets to avoid attacking. is less clear is how many of each type are solved and whether All participants from both groups answered this question. day or night burglars (to assume a dichotomous group for However, there was a difference in that the apprehended group now) are more or less successful in long-term avoidance of responded with two different goals: Two participants said that detection than the opposite group. avoiding being caught was the most important goal (“not get- In this study, participants were asked to state when they ting caught” P1), while the other two participants said that would prefer to commit a burglary in terms of day or night. making a profit was (“get top quality goods for money” P2). Three members of the apprehended group responded by All four participants from this group then alternated when replying with “day” and one with “night.” In a follow-up asked whether there were any additional goals (“not to leave question, the rationale given for day time burglaries related any evidence” P3 & “locate contents of safe and steel” P4). to the notion that the activity was more accessible (“not The non-apprehended group all said that avoiding detec- expected during the day” P1 & “so they are not at home” P2). tion was the most important goal (“avoiding capture” P6 & The non-apprehended group all responded with “night” “getting away with it” P7). The participants from this group (“fewer witnesses, less chance of being disturbed” P5 & “can agreed that profit was the second most important goal (“mak- be more concealed” P7). ing it worthwhile financially” P5 & “earning money” P6). The apprehended group’s responses show an emphasis Although it may not be surprising to expect these two toward physically committing the burglary through a con- responses (i.e., profit and non-apprehension) to be top priori- cern with occupancy of the property. Apprehended burglars ties, the difference in the ordering is an early indication of the have previously been associated with using a range of tech- differences between the two groups. The non-apprehended niques to determine whether a property is unoccupied group exclusively saw avoiding detection as the most impor- (Cromwell et al., 1991; Wright & Decker, 1994). However, tant goal, while the apprehended group was evenly split the risk of burgling a property that is actually occupied between avoiding detection and making financial gains. remains a strong possibility (for example, see BCS, Bennett and Wright (1984) noted that many of the offenders in 2002/2003). In addition, neighbours or passers-by can also their study were not worried about getting caught because they play a part in alerting the police to the burglary in progress chose not to think about it and focused on the offence gains. (e.g., 8% of burglars are apprehended through being seen Given that the apprehended group are failed burglars, a princi- acting suspiciously; Farrington & Lambert, 2000) and also in pal goal of avoiding detection does not of its self ensure success identification of the burglar retrospectively (i.e., 7% of bur- at doing so. The mixed responses from the apprehended group glars are apprehended through witness identification). The are consistent with previous findings, where there is a chaotic non-apprehended groups’ responses suggest that there is lifestyle generally and an orientation toward the here and now greater consideration for reducing the chances of being (Ross & Ross, 1995), particularly where there is a need for exposed to either direct interruption or to later identification. immediate access to money for those with a drug abuse and/or Perhaps the cover of darkness provides greater possibilities a dependency problem (Cromwell et al., 1991). In this context, for this, although Maguire and Bennett’s (1982) “profes- the mixed responses of the apprehended group can be explained sional” but ultimately failed burglars preferred to commit in that not all apprehended burglars have the same motivation their burglaries during the day. for immediate access to money. For example, they may not all have a dependency or an illicit drug abuse issue, and although Theme 3. Traveling to the Burglary two members of this group said that avoiding detection was the most important goal, that is not of its self, evidence of high Traveling to a burglary site is about whether an offender uses levels of “know how.” The non-apprehended group appeared to a vehicle or walks and the reasons given for those decisions. 6 SAGE Open Many offenders are thought to commit their offences of the burglary (see Maguire & Bennett, 1982; Nee & Taylor, within a relatively short distance from their typical place of 2000; Tunnell, 1992; Wright & Decker, 1994). Consistent residence (i.e., an approximate 2– to 3-mile radius; Alison & with that, the apprehended offenders focused on the most Eyre, 2009; Baker, 2000; Brantingham & Brantingham, suitable property to attack and the most vulnerable points of 1981; Canter & Youngs, 2010; Wiles & Costello, 2000). This entry. Their responses amounted to a general description is in part due to their routine activities (Cohen & Felson, rather than techniques designed to specifically account for 1979) in that their general environment is a relatively small avoiding apprehension (“cautiously, make sure next door area of familiarity from which they do not tend to leave very hasn’t seen me” P3 & “with caution” P4). frequently, although Hearnden and Magill (2004) found that The non-apprehended group responded with more detail most of their burglars still used a car. (“use an approach which can’t be seen by anyone but try to be Participants were asked to explain how far they would low profile if you do have to pass by anyone or where you can travel to the burglary and how they would get there. be seen” P6 & “sneak up so you can see the place but you Consistent with previous research, the apprehended group can’t be seen. I would make sure it is a way that means a good responses were that they would use a vehicle: (“car” P1 & getaway without anyone seeing which way it is” P7). The “drive” P4), although one participant added walking as a responses from the non-apprehended group are more detailed possibility (“car or walk” P2). In the initial follow-up ques- and incorporate more consideration toward avoiding being tion, two of the participants qualified this in terms of distance apprehended as well as the desire to avoid interruption. and time (“3-5 miles” P2 & “minimum 15 mins” P3). When In the series of follow-up questions relating to what the asked how far away from the burglary would they park the participant would do once outside of the building, the appre- vehicle, the responses were similar in terms of strategy (“5 hended group responded in the following way: (“find the minutes walk out of sight” P1 & “3-4 hundred yards” P4). easiest route to getting in” P3 and “check the security The non-apprehended group also stated that a vehicle arrangements, dogs, cameras, guards” P4). These responses would be used (“drive” P5 & “drive to the plot” P6). None on are entirely consistent with the notion of the burglar being the participants in the non-apprehended group commented fixated on the target selection and the execution of the bur- on how far they would travel to commit a burglary. However, glary. That said, one participant from this group offered a when asked how far away from the burglary they would park different response (“escape route, scan local area” P1). This the vehicle, the responses showed some difference to the suggests that at least one participant from the apprehended apprehended group (“depends on the layout but about half a group took the broader view that there are other consider- mile away” P5 & “a good walk away from where the bur- ations beyond “how to commit the burglary.” This notion glary is” P7). Here again, there is more consideration about was exemplified by the non-apprehended group who pro- where to position the vehicle in relation to the burglary. The duced more in-depth responses such as the potential for apprehended group was prepared to park the vehicle in rela- police activity (“find a nearby spot that isn’t part of the tive close proximity to where they were about to commit a grounds. Wait in the dark and observe for a while” P5 & burglary, which indicates two points: the consistency with “locate a place away from the building that isn’t seen so you earlier findings resulting in Cornish and Clarke’s (1987) can escape if the law did go to the burglary” P7). “principal of least effort” (though normally associated with The non-apprehended group sought to establish personal break-in techniques) in that the apprehended group showed a safety in the form of effective hideout spots and escape routes propensity toward minimal investment in both time and before considering progressing with a direct attempt to com- energy at an earlier stage than the break-in phase; and sec- mit the burglary. Further follow-up questions regarding what ondly, it also shows less consideration toward the connection else would be done produced the following from the appre- that might be made between the burglary and the vehicle hended group: (“scan the property vacant, was in and out” P1 used to transport the offender. The non-apprehended group & “look for weaknesses in security” P2). These responses showed a greater willingness to put in more time and effort appear to be concerned with decisions regarding the next stage to decrease the chances of such a connection being made and in the actual commission of the burglary in that the focus is on thereby reducing one potential source of police enquiry, both searching for any occupants and the most vulnerable access at the time of the burglary and in any subsequent point. The non-apprehended group responded with (“go to the investigation. building, go around it and go back to the hiding place” P6 & “check out the grounds around the plot and any other places where someone could be hiding from you” P6). Again, the Theme 4. Approaching the Burglary Site non-apprehended group remains consistent in that there is a This theme is concerned with the decisions and strategies clear distinction between decisions about how to commit the that burglars use around the crime scene in preparation to the burglary and whether to do so by continuing to check its safety burglary. as thoroughly as possible before making an actual attempt to A great deal of work has gone into developing knowledge break-in. The final question in this section asked the partici- on burglary target selection and decision making at the scene pants whether there was anything else to add. The apprehended Hockey 7 group responded with (“no” P1 & “check kit and inhabitation, use the time to exploit the opportunity as much as possible to alarms off” P4), which amounted to a repeat of the burglary acquire goods. It is not to suggest that once inside and ready orientated responses to the previous questions. The other two to steal, the non-apprehended group would not also use participants in the apprehended group did not reply, suggest- speed, but rather that the apprehended group missed out a ing that they had no other ideas at that point. The non- complete stage in the process, which, according to the non- apprehended group replied with, (“keep a look out for some apprehended group, is vital to protect one’s self from increas- time, then go and bring the equipment outside” P6 and “keep ing the chances of being caught inside the building. watching for any movement around the place last check out- side go wait a bit longer” P7). By this point in the process, the Theme 6. Pressurized Decision Making at the non-apprehended group has made very little attempt to con- Scene of the Burglary sider the most vulnerable point to break in but has spent much more time checking out the grounds of the building, checking The purpose of this line of questioning was to explore deci- escape routes and hidden look out spots than the apprehended sion making while under immediate pressure from the group, who by contrast, race ahead with the stages of progress- approaching police. ing through the burglary. Farrington and Lambert (2000) showed that 14% of appre- hended burglars were caught in the act and 12% were caught near or leaving the scene of the burglary. Decision making in Theme 5. Initial Decisions Once Inside the this context is perhaps about having a plan of action in place Property and ready to utilize it, if and when required. Previous research This theme is defined by what the burglars decided to do at has emphasized decision making in “experienced” or “expert” this point in the burglary and their rationale for doing so. burglars (Nee & Meenaghan, 2006) in terms of target selec- Previous findings have indicated that experienced bur- tion for the purposes of: avoiding being seen while commit- glars go into search mode by systematically following an ting the burglary; vulnerable access points into the property idiosyncratic routine (Nee & Meenaghan, 2006; Wright & and perceived relative wealth (Clarke, 1997). Decker, 1994). This was borne-out by the responses from the Here, the apprehended group makes the basic but obvious apprehended group in this study (“go to bedroom get quilt statement in that it is simply going to try and get away (“drive cover for goods to go in” P2 & “check all rooms” P3). off normal” P2 & “leave everything make hast and try to However, the non-apprehended group did not follow this pat- look unsuspicious” P3). References to “normal” and “unsus- tern (“go everywhere that I would intend to go and then get picious” suggest that they are expecting to be seen as they do out quick and go back outside” P5 & “go in, get out quick so, which can be related to the earlier responses explored in make sure you have a good search” P7). The responses from Theme 3, where the getaway vehicle is parked in close prox- the non-apprehended group are characterized by the strategy imity to the burglary. However, is it reasonable to expect the of getting in and out so quickly that there is no time or inten- police to allow someone to move off from near a property tion to steal any property at that first point of entrance. The that is reportedly a burglary in progress? follow-up questions to this section regarding any additional The non-apprehended group’s responses suggested a sub- information illustrates this point and increases the contrast- tle difference in that they do not expect to be seen leaving the ing differences between the two groups. The apprehended area (“leave the goods and head in the direction of my vehi- group responded with, (“get more stuff in” P2 and “make cle” P5 & “just leave things if the law are near and either run sure nobodys home,”) while the non-apprehended group pro- or get in the motor and go” P7). This difference is interpreted vided a rationale (“this is the best way to check for any hid- within the context that the non-apprehended offendershad den security alarms. If nothing happens for quite a while positioned their vehicles in more strategic locations further chances are you have not activated an alarm and so you will away from the burglary (see Theme 3 above) and that they be able to go back inside safely” P5, and had previously identified discrete escape routes (see Theme 4 above). These strategies were identified by Poyner and Webb once inside you must go round and see if you set off any alarms, (1991). Although they described the footpaths to places where then get out and wait to see, you don’t want to be inside the cars can be left without causing suspicion, as being “short,” in building when the police turn up because of a silent alarm or a the case of these non-apprehended offenders, the correspond- witness who has called them secretly. (P6)) ing parking location appears to be further away. This retreat method replicates the earlier findings of Walsh’s (1986) burglars. Here, the non-apprehended group Theme 7. Getaway Strategies and Decisions appears to take each stage seriously and continues to mini- This theme is defined by the burglars’ pre-offence decisions mize the prospect of being interrupted, while providing the about what they would do and be able to do should the police maximum prospect of being able to get away should any arrive while they are still at the burglary site. problems occur. The focus of the apprehended group was to 8 SAGE Open Of all apprehended burglars, 43% are caught within an the risks outlined by Farrington and Lambert (2000) in hour of the offence (Canter & Alison, 2000), suggesting that Theme 2 (above). they have not developed suitable escape strategies or that The participants from the non-apprehended group here all their capacity to dispose of stolen property is also similarly committed their offenses at night. Furthermore, although under-developed (see Jacobson, Maitland, & Hough, 2003, occupancy is an issue for many burglars of all levels of expe- for an example). Not only are burglary detection rates low rience and competence, the reduction of potential targets generally, but that once the first 24 hours have passed, detec- imposed by the restriction of offences to night time only does tion rates fall off still further and much of the clear-up rate not necessarily impose major difficulties for non- then comes from TICs. apprehended offenders, who by design commit a lower vol- The apprehended offender group replied with simplified ume of burglaries than failed burglars in the same time frame, statements about what they would do (“go off somewhere” which of its self is another risk reducing strategy. Reasons P3 & “look as calm as possible and walk on” P4). The non- for a lower volume of offending may be due to a more con- apprehended group provided more detail about what they trolled approach, where the offender does not rely solely on would do and why (“you should already be far enough away burglaries for an income (see Walsh, 1986) and/or that per- from the burglary so as not to be found during an immediate ceived opportunities may be fewer to a burglar who is risk- search around it” P5 & “I always make sure that I don’t stay aversive in that his or her target choice is highly selective to near the place cus they always search nearby so no point in meet those criteria, as opposed to high-profit reasons. staying there” P7). It appears that members of both groups Some offenders use the strategy of speed to commit bur- have experienced burglary events where the police have glary offences; this, in turn, facilitates a high volume of closed in during its execution. The responses from the appre- offences (Halliday, 2001). Nee and Meenaghan (2006) hended group do not provide much information about a strat- rightly suggest that there is a great deal of efficiency in this egy, which appears to be limited to reactive decisions as approach, particularly during the target selection and search opposed to options planned in advance. The responses from phase. However, in the context of avoiding detection, the the non-apprehended group suggest that they are clear about burglars’ strategy here is ultimately flawed as it exposes the the need to put as much distance as they can between them- offender to the repeated risks of committing burglaries many selves and the burglary. Given the time and effort that would more times over than a lower volume offender (Halliday, have gone into planning both effective escape routes and the 2001) within a short period. positioning of the getaway vehicle, these responses are The offenders in the apprehended group of this study, like entirely consistent with the general approach to committing a many others, utilized a simplified technique for accessing the burglary, which has a strongly developed emphasis on avoid- items inside the building. Once they had decided that it was ing detection. not occupied, they would force an entry and immediately proceed inside to begin stealing items. The non-apprehended offenders utilized a similar technique to some of the offend- Discussion ers in Walsh’s (1986) study in that a more measured approach Fox and Farrington (2012) took the view that because many was used, whereby an entry is effected and followed by a convicted offenders committed most of the offences on a period of waiting in a safe place to test whether any silent self-report study, it is unlikely that if non-apprehended alarms had been activated or whether any other problems offenders exist, they will be any different to apprehended might occur. This is because there are fewer potential wit- offenders. This inductive argument makes a great deal of nesses around during the night, there is greater opportunity sense to a point, in that as Maguire and Bennett (1982) noted, to see or hear anyone approaching and that well-devised some offenders commit a lot of offences before getting escape routes are established prior to the burglary. Moreover, caught for the odd one. However, non-apprehended offend- the non-apprehended offenders in this study took much more ers are an unknown quantity both in terms of their numbers time and caution during the approach and break-in phase. and their characteristics. Subtle differences in their approach Although this means that they were at the scene for much to offending may result from important differences in those longer, the strategy intelligently applied, actually reduces the characteristics and there is a sufficient number of unsolved risk of apprehension at the scene, which is the principal burglaries to allow room for both the unsolved portion of source of detection (Canter & Alison, 2000; Farrington & offences from apprehended offenders and those of non- Lambert, 2000). It is interesting to note that Hearnden and apprehended offenders. Magill (2004) found that their experienced but apprehended Many of offenders who have participated in the various burglars perceived being inside the building as virtually risk studies on burglary have had some success in avoiding detec- free. tion for a period of time. Although some of that success is The advanced planning of the non-apprehended offenders due to random chance, the techniques and strategies used does not necessarily mean that a high-volume of burglaries are have also contributed. One of these failed strategies may be not committed, but maybe spread over a much longer period committing burglaries during the day, which exposes them to of time compared with the high-volume failed burglars. As Hockey 9 predicted from previous research, the experienced appre- prison population generally suggest that it is embedded in the hended offenders in this study searched and stole from the offender. The non-apprehended offender group also appears premises at the first opportunity once inside. The non- to have a routine, but decisions are based on more abstract apprehended offenders took more time and operated more planning in that there is a great deal of consideration given to cautiously by getting in and out as quickly as possible on the what might occur rather than what is or has occurred. The first occasion of entering the building, which did not, of its script offence has more stages in the pattern of movement self, occur until a series of precautionary actions were under- around the crime scene, which are underpinned by a risk- taken. They only returned and removed property once they aversive rationale. There also appears to be more control were sure that no one, such as the police, was approaching the over any impulse to rush in at the first opportunity; this building. allows for a more calculated approach, which, although is Distance between burglary and place of residence is also more time-consuming and restricts available opportunities, a contributing feature in the apprehension of burglars. It is is less adverse to risk exposure. generally observed that most failed burglars commit their offences within approximately 2 miles of their base. Those Limitations who travel further usually last longer before being appre- hended (see Maguire & Bennett, 1982; Walsh, 1986), and Some studies into burglary have utilized large numbers of although distance may create logistical problems of their participants, which is helpful for gaining insights into a wide own, apprehension for traveling offenders is likely to be due range of burglary activities. Others have focused on very to reasons unconnected to that additional distance, such as small sample sizes (for example, see Hockey & Honey, 2013; being placed under surveillance (see Maguire & Bennett, Maguire & Bennett, 1982) for the finite detail associated 1982). Interestingly, the non-apprehended offenders in this with the more successful offenders. These non-apprehended study did not provide information about the distances that offenders may be genuinely rare, difficult to identify, and they traveled to commit burglary, but they did indicate less willing to take part in a study. Therefore, it is important greater distances between where they would position their to recognize that the few opportunities to study their methods vehicle and the burglary. Given what is known in the wider are valuable for greater understanding in its own right (e.g., context of apprehension rates between those who travel and do non-apprehended burglars use similar or different those who do not, distance, whether it is to the burglary or decision-making strategies to experienced burglars; see between the burglary and the vehicle, can be an effective Garcia-Retamero & Dhami, 2009). This may also enable technique in reducing the prospect of apprehension. understanding of any links between their methods and those The exit strategy for the apprehended group favored leaving of less unsuccessful burglars (e.g., knowledge transfer the scene in a way that they perceived made them look incon- between groups). spicuous in the event of being seen by the police. The non- apprehended group did not view that as the most risk-aversive Policy and Research Implications method and had pre-planned their escape routes in such a way as to minimize the risk of actually being seen. Getting away Previous research (Taylor & Nee, 1988) suggests that there is from the scene of a burglary is of paramount importance in learning in the development of burglary skills, and what is terms of avoiding detection. Putting in place exist strategies clear is that there has been a number of burglary prevention before the burglary takes place will make an important contribu- exercises conducted with mixed success (Bowles & tion to this aim compared with attempting a reactive approach to Pradiptyo, 2004; Hirschfield, 2004; Hope et al., 2004; Millie prevailing circumstances. The non-apprehended group took & Hough, 2004). Over time, offenders adapt to efforts to time to work on this before attempting the burglary. This put thwart these measures (Tilley, 2007). Moreover, although them in a position whereby in the event of being disturbed, they Canter (1994) takes the view that learning in the apprehended could exit the building and immediately use these escape routes. offender occurs by previous mistakes and convictions, which Within the script theory framework, the apprehended is a worthwhile starting point, there is currently no overall offenders appear to follow linear patterns of movement. agreed explanation for this learning process (Bekerian & These are simplified routines or offence scripts (Cornish, Jackson, 1997). That said, it is certainly a worthwhile area of 1994a) that have been developed through rehearsal and study given the paucity of research into the extent of and appear as an heuristic device (Snook, Dhami, & Kavanagh, capabilities of non-apprehended burglars particularly. 2011) for obtaining concrete goal aims as it requires little Understanding more about the methods of non- time, minimal information, and less cognitive capacity apprehended offenders will not only increase the prospect of Gigerenzer & Goldstein, 1996). Whether this style of think- law-enforcement success but could actually undermine the ing and the pursuit of concrete goals are characteristically confidence of some apprehended burglars who may then be indicative of this genre of apprehended offender or whether deterred if they believed that getting caught is inevitable. For it is adopted due to its perceived success is a matter of further example, the non-apprehended burglars in this study came research, although the dysfunctional characteristics of the by recommendation from other offenders, meaning that those 10 SAGE Open doing the recommending were aware of others who avoided 8. Is it stolen, borrowed, or your own? detection. Furthermore, given the cognitive errors typically 9. How far away would you park it? associated with offenders (for example, see Morgan, 2002, 10. What if you got stopped or chased on the way to the for a breakdown of the dysfunctional characteristics in the burglary? general prison population; also Wilson, Allen-Bouffard, & 11. Why that choice? Mackenzie, 2005), the existence of non-apprehended offend- 12. List the equipment you would take on a burglary? ers may lead apprehended offenders to wrongly believe that 13. Why? they can avoid detection next time and inspire them to carry 14. Where did you get it from? on trying (see Wilson, 1983, for a discussion on increasing 15. How will you approach the building once you get the certainty of sanctions). These questions need to be further there? explored of course. 16. What is the first thing you would do when you get Moreover, Harris, Pedneault, and Knight (2013) see bur- outside? glary as representative of a general pattern of versatility. 17. Then what would you do? From versatility, specialization (Farrington, Snyder, & 18. Anything else? Finnegan, 1988; Klein, 1984) derives, although this is thought to be in relation to themes (Youngs, 2004) rather You have entered the building for the first time. than specific crimes. If the theme is detection avoidance and offenders who prioritize this switch to low-risk offenses 1. What is the first thing you would do once inside? before the process of apprehension finally catches up with 2. Why? them, as was the case in for the non-apprehended offenders 3. Then what? here, then this poses a real challenge to law-enforcement 4. Anything else? agencies as well as to advances in research in relation to this 5. Where is the equipment that you would bring with type of offender. you? 6. Why? Conclusion You are in the building and have located the items you want The results from the non-apprehended group suggest that long- to take. You do not know how much time you have before term anti-detection success derives in part from using a combi- anyone arrives. There are a couple of items which are bulky, nation of some of the techniques that are in use by apprehended although you can carry them. They are worth a lot of money, burglars, while rejecting or adapting others. The effectiveness of and you could sell them quickly. There is also a larger num- these selective techniques is magnified when operated in com- ber of smaller items, which you could sell as a job lot but bination with a more cautious strategy than that of general speed would not fetch as much money. or reactive decision-making approach. Apprehension near to the scene of a burglary or within a relatively short time period after- 1. Which would you take? ward represents the best chance of solving the offence from a 2. Where would you do with the goods you are going to crime detection perspective. Therefore, any strategy that places take while still inside the building? a greater emphasis on reducing that risk is going to be more 3. What about the equipment? effective. What is of interest here is the psychological constructs 4. Where would you put the goods once you have taken that enable these long-term non-apprehension methods and the them outside? implications for apprehended offenders. You are ready to go when you hear the police in the distance driving hurriedly toward the building. It sounds as if they Appendix could be approaching from different directions at the same A property located in a secluded area, which you decide to time. burgle as it is understood to contain some high-value goods. 1. What would you do? 1. What is the most important goal of the burglary? 2. Why? 2. What other goals if any might there be? 3. What do you take . . . the goods or your equipment? 3. When would you prefer to commit the burglary? 4. Why? Day/Night 5. What about the vehicle you used to get there? 4. Why that choice? 5. How would you get there? (walk, public transport, The police are now searching the area. Some are patrolling in Drive?) cars while others are on foot searching places where some- 6. How far would you walk? one might be hiding. 7. What type of transport? 1. What would you do? Hockey 11 2. When do you make your getaway from the area? Canter, D. V. (1994). Criminal shadows. London, England: HarperCollins. 3. You have decided to: Canter, D. V., & Alison, L. (2000). Profiling property crimes. In 4. Hide D. V. Canter & L. Alison (Eds.), Profiling property crimes 5. Walk down the road as an innocent passer by (pp. 1-30). Aldershot, UK: Ashgate. 6. Run to the vehicle and drive away Canter, D. V., & Youngs, D. (2010). Investigative psychol- 7. Etc. ogy: Offender profiling and the analysis of criminal action. 8. Tell me about why you have made that choice? Chichester, UK: John Wiley. Carrabine, E., Iganski, P., Lee, M., Plummer, K., & South, N. (2004). You have got away from the building. Criminology: A sociological introduction. Oxon, UK: Routledge. Ceci, S. J., Fitneva, S. A., Aydin, F. C., & Chernyak, N. (2011). 1. What would you do next? Memory development and eyewitness testimony. In A. Slater 2. What would you do with the goods if you have any? & G. Bremner (Eds.), An introduction to developmental psy- chology (2nd ed., pp. 417-452). London, England: Blackwell. 3. What would you do with your clothing? Clarke, R. V. (1997). Situational crime prevention: Successful case 4. At what point would you decide you have safely got studies (2nd ed.). Albany, NY: Harrow and Heston. away with the crime? Clarke, R. V., & Cornish, D. B. (1985). Modelling of offenders deci- sions: A framework for research and policy. In M. Tonry & N. Acknowledgment Morris (Eds.), Crime and justice: An annual review of research The author wishes to thank Professor Rob Honey for his critique of (Vol. 6, pp. 147-185). Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press. the article and support in its development. The author thanks two Cohen, L., & Felson, M. (1979). Social change and crime rate anonymous reviewers for their helpful comments on this article. trends: A routine activity approach. American Sociological Review, 44, 588-608. Cornish, D. B. (1994a). Crimes as scripts. In D. Zahm & P. Declaration of Conflicting Interests Cromwell (Eds.), Proceedings of the International Seminar on The author(s) declared no potential conflicts of interest with respect Environmental Criminology and Crime Analysis (pp. 30-45). to the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article. Tallahassee, FL: Florida Criminal Justice Executive Institute. Cornish, D. B. (1994b). The procedural analysis of offending and Funding its relevance for situational prevention. In R. V. Clarke (Ed.), Crime prevention studies (Vol. 3, pp. 151-196). Monsey, NY: The author(s) received no financial support for the research and/or Criminal Justice Press. authorship of this article. Cornish, D. B., & Clarke, R. V. (1986). Introduction. In D. B. Cornish & R. V. Clarke (Eds.), Research in Criminology: The References reasoning criminal: Rational choice perspectives on offending Alison, L., & Eyre, M. (2009). Killer in the shadows: The mon- (pp. 1-13). New York, NY: Springer-Verlag. strous crimes of Robert Napper. London, England: Pennant Cornish, D. B., & Clarke, R. V. (1987). Understanding crime Books. displacement: An application of rational choice theory. Baker, M. (2000). The Criminal range of small-town burglars. In Criminology, 25, 933-947. D. V. Canter & L. Alison (Eds.), Profiling property crimes Coupe, T., & Griffiths, M. (1996). Solving residential burglary. (pp. 57-106). Aldershot, UK: Ashgate. Crime Detection and Prevention Series Paper 77. London, Bekerian, D. A., & Jackson, J. L. (1997). Critical issues in offender England: Home Office. profiling. In J. L. Jackson & D. A. Bekerian (Eds.), Offender pro- Cromwell, P. F., Olson, J. N., & Avary, D. W. (1991). Breaking filing: Theory, research and practice (pp. 209-220). Chichester, and entering: An ethnographic analysis of burglary. London, UK: John Wiley. England: SAGE. Bennett, T., & Wright, R. (1984). Burglars on burglary. Aldershot, Davies, A., Wittebrood, K., & Jackson, J. L. (1997). Predicting UK: Gower Publishing. the criminal antecedents of a stranger rapist from his offence Blackburn, R. (2001). The psychology of criminal conduct: Theory, behaviour. Science & Justice, 37, 161-170. doi:10.1016/ research and practice. Chichester, UK: John Wiley. S1355-0306(97)72169-5 Bower, G. H., Black, J. B., & Turner, T. J. (1979). Scripts in mem- Drever, E. (2003). Using semi-structured interviews in small-scale ory for text. Cognitive Psychology, 11, 177-220. research: A teacher’s guide. Glasgow, Scotland: The Scottish Bowles, R., & Pradiptyo, R. (2004). Reducing burglary initiative: Council for Research Education Centre. An analysis of costs, benefits and cost effectiveness (Home Farrington, D. P., & Lambert, S. (2000). Statistical approaches to Office Online Report 43/04). London, England: Home Office. offender profiling. In D. V. Canter & L. Alison (Eds.), Profiling Brantingham, P. L., & Brantingham, P. J. (1981). Patterns in crime. property crimes (pp. 233-274). Aldershot, UK: Ashgate. New York, NY: Macmillan. Farrington, D. P., Snyder, H. N., & Finnegan, T. A. (1988). Braun, V., & Clarke, V. (2006). Using thematic analysis in psychol- Specialisation in juvenile court careers. Criminology, 26, 461-487. ogy. Qualitative Research in Psychology, 3, 77-101. British Crime Survey (BCS). (2002/2003). Crime in England and Fox, B. H., & Farrington, D. P. (2012). Creating burglary pro- Wales 2002/2003. Retrieved from http://webarchive.nation- files using latent class analysis: A new approach to offender alarchives.gov.uk/20110220105210/rds.homeoffice.gov.uk/ profiling. Criminal Justice and Behavior, 39, 1582-1611. rds/pdfs2/hosb703.pdf doi:10.1177/0093854812457921 12 SAGE Open Garcia-Retamero, R., & Dhami, M. K. (2009). Take-the-best in Mawby, R. I. (2001). Crime and Society Series: Burglary. expert-novice decision strategies for residential burglary. Cullompton, UK: Willan Publishing. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 16, 163-169. Merry, S., & Harsent, L. (2000). Intruders, pilferers, raiders and invad- Gigerenzer, G., & Goldstein, D. G. (1996). Reasoning the fast and ers: The interpersonal dimension of burglary. In D. V. Canter & L. frugal way: Models of bounded rationality. Psychological Alison (Eds.), Profiling property crimes (pp. 31-56). Aldershot, Review, 103, 650-669. UK: Ashgate. Halliday, J. (2001). Making punishments work. Retrieved from Michael, S. E., Hull, R. B., & Zahm, D. L. (2001). Environmental http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/+/http:/www. factors influencing auto burglary. Environment & Behavior, homeoffice.gov.uk/documents/halliday-report-sppu/chap- 33, 368-388. 1-2-halliday2835.pdf?view=Binary Millie, A., & Hough, M. (2004). Assessing the impact of the reduc- Hammond, S., & Brown, J. (2005). Comparing three multivariate ing burglary initiative in southern England and Wales (2nd statistical procedures when profiling residential burglaries. ed.) (Home Office Online Report 42/04). London, England: Forensic Update, 80, 9-16. Home Office. Harris, D. A., Pedneault, A., & Knight, R. A. (2013). An explo- Morgan, R. (2002). Imprisonment: A brief history, the contempo- ration of burglary in the criminal histories of sex offenders rary scene, and the likely prospects. In M. Maguire, R. Morgan, referred for civil commitment. Psychology, Crime & Law, 19, & R. Reiner (Eds.), The Oxford handbook of criminology (3rd 765-781. doi:10.1080/1068316X.2012.678850 ed., pp. 1113-1165). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. Hayes, N. (2000). Doing psychological research. Buckingham, Moston, S., & Engelberg, T. (2011). The effects of evidence on the UK: Open University Press. outcome of interviews with criminal suspects. Police Practice Hearnden, I., & Magill, C. (2004). Decision-making by house bur- & Research: An International Journal, 12, 518-526. glars: Offenders’ perspectives (Home Office Findings 249). Muller, D. A. (2000). Criminal profiling: Real science or just wish- London, England: Home Office. ful thinking? In C. R. Bartol & A. M. Bartol (Eds.), Current Hirschfield, A. (2004). The impact of the reducing burglary ini- perspectives in forensic psychology and criminal justice tiative in the North of England (Home Office Online Report (pp. 55-66). London, England: SAGE. 40/04). London, England: Home Office. Nee, C. (2004). The offender’s perspective on crime: Methods and Hockey, D. T. (2014). Understanding crime scene movements of principles in data collection. In A. Needs & G. Towl (Eds.), non-apprehended burglars: Combining thematic analysis with Applying psychology to forensic practice (pp. 3-17). Oxford, log-linear and lag-sequence analysis. SAGE Research Methods UK: British Psychological Society Blackwell. Cases. Advance online publication. doi:10.4135/9781446273 Nee, C., & Meenaghan, A. (2006). Expert decision making in bur- 05014537784 glars. British Journal of Criminology, 46, 935-949. Hockey, D. T. (2008). Cognitive scripts in versatile and repeat Nee, C., & Taylor, M. (1988). Residential burglary in the Republic offenders (Unpublished doctorate thesis). Cardiff University, of Ireland: A situational perspective. The Howard Journal, 27, Wales. 105-116. Hockey, D. T., & Honey, R. (2013). Evaluating script-like knowl- Nee, C., & Taylor, M. (2000). Examining burglars’ target selec- edge in offenders and a small group of non-apprehended tion: Interview, experiment or ethnomethodology? Psychology, offenders. Psychology, Crime & Law, 19, 161-178. Crime & Law, 6, 45-59. Homant, R. J., & Kennedy, D. B. (2006). Psychological aspects of Poyner, B., & Webb, B. (1991). Crime free housing. Oxford, UK: crime scene profiling. In C. R. Bartol & A. M. Bartol (Eds.), Butterworth-Heinemann. Current perspectives in forensic psychology and criminal jus- Ross, R. R., & Ross, R. D. (1995). Thinking straight: The reason- tice (pp. 45-54). London, England: SAGE. ing and rehabilitation program for delinquency prevention and Hope, T., Bryan, J., Crawley, E., Crawley, P., Russell, N., & offender rehabilitation. Ottawa, Ontario, Canada: Air Training Trickett, A. (2004). Strategic development projects in the & Publications. Yorkshire and the Humber, East Midlands and Eastern regions Schank, R. C., & Abelson, R. P. (1977). Scripts, plans, goals and (Home Office Online Report 41/04). London, England: Home understanding: An inquiry into human knowledge structures. office. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum. Huesmann, L. R. (1994). Aggressive behaviour. London, England: Smith, K., Taylor, P., & Elkin, M. (2013). Crimes detected in England Plenum Press. and Wales 2012/13 (2nd ed.) (National Statistics: HOSB 02/13). Huesmann, L. R., & Eron, L. D. (1989). Individual differences and Retrieved from https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/sys- the trait of aggression. European Journal of Personality, 3, tem/uploads/attachment_data/file/224037/hosb0213.pdf 95-106. Snook, B., Dhami, M. K., & Kavanagh, J. M. (2011). Simply crimi- Jacobson, J., Maitland, L., & Hough, M. (2003). The reducing bur- nal: Predicting burglars’ occupancy decisions with a simple glary initiative: Investigating burglary. Home Office Research heuristic. Law Human Behaviour, 35, 316-326. doi:10.1007/ Study 264. London, England: Home Office. s10979-010-9238-0 Klein, M. W. (1984). Offence specialisation and versatility among Taylor, M., & Nee, C. (1988). The role of cues in simulated resi- juveniles. British Journal of Criminology, 24, 185-194. dential burglary: A preliminary investigation. British Journal Letkermann, P. (1973). Crime as work. England Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Criminology, 28, 396-401. Hall. Taylor, P., & Bond, S. (2012). Crimes detected in England and Maguire, M., & Bennett, T. (1982). Burglary in a dwelling: Wales 2011/12 (1st ed.). National Statistics: HOSB 08/12. The offence, the offender and the victim. London, England: Retrieved from https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/sys- Heinemann. tem/uploads/attachment_data/file/116435/hosb0812.pdf Hockey 13 Taylor, P., & Chaplin, R. (2011). Crimes detected in England and Wilson, D. B., Allen-Bouffard, L., & Mackenzie, D. L. (2005). A Wales 2010/11 (1st ed.) (National Statistics: HOSB 11/11). quantitative review of structured, group-oriented, cognitive- Retrieved from https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/ behavioral programs for offenders. Criminal Justice & system/uploads/attachment_data/file/116404/hosb1111.pdf Behavior, 32, 172-204. Tilley, N. (2007). Thinking realistically about crime prevention. In Wilson, J. Q. (1983). Thinking about crime (Rev. ed.). New York, N. Tilley (Ed.), Handbook of crime prevention and community NY: Vintage. safety (pp. 3-13). Cullompton, UK: Willan Publishing. Wright, R. T., & Decker, S. H. (1994). Burglars on the job. Boston, Townsley, M., Homel, R., & Chaseling, J. (2003). Infectious bur- MA: Northeastern University Press. glaries: A test of the near repeat hypothesis. British Journal of Wright, R. T., Logie, R. H., & Decker, S. H. (1995). Criminal exper- Criminology, 43, 615-633. tise and offender decision making: An experimental study of Tunnell, K. D. (1992). Choosing crime: The criminal calculus of the target selection process in residential burglary. Journal of property offenders. Chicago, IL: Nelson-Hall. Research in Crime & Delinquency, 32, 39-54. Walsh, D. (1986). Heavy business: Commercial burglary and rob- bery. London, England: Routledge. Youngs, D. (2004). Personality correlates of offence style. Journal Ward, T., & Hudson, S. M. (2000). Sexual offenders’ implicit of Investigative Psychology and Offender Profiling, 1, 99-119. planning: A conceptual model. Sexual Abuse: A Journal of doi:10.1002/jip.008 Research and Treatment, 12, 189-202. West, D. J., & Farrington, D. P. (1973). Who becomes delinquent? Author Biography London, England: Heinemann. Wiles, P., & Costello, A. (2000). The road to nowhere: The evi- David Hockey is now at Bristol, England, the United Kingdom. His dence for travelling criminals (Home Office Research Study research interests are particularly in the anti-detection methods used No. 207). London, England: Home Office. by offenders.

Journal

SAGE OpenSAGE

Published: Apr 7, 2016

Keywords: burglary scripts; residential burglary; non-apprehended offenders; crime scene behaviors; anti-detection methods

There are no references for this article.