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'Location, Location, Location' : effects of neighborhood and house attributes on Burglars’ target selection

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HPC-UGent: the central High Performance Computing infrastructure of Ghent University
Abstract
Objectives To empirically test whether offenders consider environmental features at multiple spatial scales when selecting a target and examine the simultaneous effect of neighborhood-level and residence-level attributes on residential burglars' choice of residence to burglarize. Methods We combine data on 679 burglaries by 577 burglars committed between 2005 and 2014 with data on approximately 138,000 residences in 193 residential neighborhoods in Ghent, Belgium. Using a discrete spatial choice approach, we estimate the combined effect of neighborhood-level and residence-level attributes on burglars' target choice in a conditional logit model. Results Burglars prefer burglarizing residences in neighborhoods with lower residential density. Burglars also favor burglarizing detached residences, residences in single-unit buildings, and renter-occupied residences. Furthermore, burglars are more likely to target residences in neighborhoods that they previously and recently targeted for burglary, and residences nearby their home. We find significant cross-level interactions between neighborhood and residence attributes in burglary target selection. Conclusions Both area-level and target-level attributes are found to affect burglars' target choices. Our results offer support for theoretical accounts of burglary target selection that characterize it as being informed both by attributes of individual properties and attributes of the environment as well as combinations thereof. This spatial decision-making model implies that environmental information at multiple and increasingly finer scales of spatial resolution informs crime site selection.
Keywords
Discrete spatial choice, Location choice, Target choice, Burglary, Rational choice, Conditional logit, SPATIAL CHOICE MODEL, RESIDENTIAL BURGLARY, MULTILEVEL ANALYSIS, DECISION-MAKING, CRIME, VICTIMIZATION, REPEAT, OFFENDERS, RISK, TIME, Discrete spatial choice, Location choice, Target choice, Burglary, Rational choice, Conditional logit

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Citation

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MLA
Vandeviver, Christophe, and Wim Bernasco. “‘Location, Location, Location’ : Effects of Neighborhood and House Attributes on Burglars’ Target Selection.” JOURNAL OF QUANTITATIVE CRIMINOLOGY, 2019.
APA
Vandeviver, C., & Bernasco, W. (2019). “Location, Location, Location’ : effects of neighborhood and house attributes on Burglars” target selection. JOURNAL OF QUANTITATIVE CRIMINOLOGY.
Chicago author-date
Vandeviver, Christophe, and Wim Bernasco. 2019. “‘Location, Location, Location’ : Effects of Neighborhood and House Attributes on Burglars’ Target Selection.” JOURNAL OF QUANTITATIVE CRIMINOLOGY.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
Vandeviver, Christophe, and Wim Bernasco. 2019. “‘Location, Location, Location’ : Effects of Neighborhood and House Attributes on Burglars’ Target Selection.” JOURNAL OF QUANTITATIVE CRIMINOLOGY.
Vancouver
1.
Vandeviver C, Bernasco W. “Location, Location, Location’ : effects of neighborhood and house attributes on Burglars” target selection. JOURNAL OF QUANTITATIVE CRIMINOLOGY. 2019;
IEEE
[1]
C. Vandeviver and W. Bernasco, “‘Location, Location, Location’ : effects of neighborhood and house attributes on Burglars’ target selection,” JOURNAL OF QUANTITATIVE CRIMINOLOGY, 2019.
@article{8631604,
  abstract     = {Objectives To empirically test whether offenders consider environmental features at multiple spatial scales when selecting a target and examine the simultaneous effect of neighborhood-level and residence-level attributes on residential burglars' choice of residence to burglarize. Methods We combine data on 679 burglaries by 577 burglars committed between 2005 and 2014 with data on approximately 138,000 residences in 193 residential neighborhoods in Ghent, Belgium. Using a discrete spatial choice approach, we estimate the combined effect of neighborhood-level and residence-level attributes on burglars' target choice in a conditional logit model. Results Burglars prefer burglarizing residences in neighborhoods with lower residential density. Burglars also favor burglarizing detached residences, residences in single-unit buildings, and renter-occupied residences. Furthermore, burglars are more likely to target residences in neighborhoods that they previously and recently targeted for burglary, and residences nearby their home. We find significant cross-level interactions between neighborhood and residence attributes in burglary target selection. Conclusions Both area-level and target-level attributes are found to affect burglars' target choices. Our results offer support for theoretical accounts of burglary target selection that characterize it as being informed both by attributes of individual properties and attributes of the environment as well as combinations thereof. This spatial decision-making model implies that environmental information at multiple and increasingly finer scales of spatial resolution informs crime site selection.},
  author       = {Vandeviver, Christophe and Bernasco, Wim},
  issn         = {0748-4518},
  journal      = {JOURNAL OF QUANTITATIVE CRIMINOLOGY},
  keywords     = {Discrete spatial choice,Location choice,Target choice,Burglary,Rational choice,Conditional logit,SPATIAL CHOICE MODEL,RESIDENTIAL BURGLARY,MULTILEVEL ANALYSIS,DECISION-MAKING,CRIME,VICTIMIZATION,REPEAT,OFFENDERS,RISK,TIME,Discrete spatial choice,Location choice,Target choice,Burglary,Rational choice,Conditional logit},
  language     = {eng},
  title        = {'Location, Location, Location' : effects of neighborhood and house attributes on Burglars’ target selection},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10940-019-09431-y},
  year         = {2019},
}

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