Selected Publications

Ensuring police resources are focused where they are most needed requires understanding of the consequences of crime in relation to offenders, victims, and places. Most crime analysis is based on counts of crimes, but not all crimes are equivalent to one another. Researchers have recently developed two methods—the Crime Harm Index and the Crime Severity Score—for weighting crime counts according to the severity of different crime types. This article compares these two methods by applying them to two common crime-analysis scenarios: focusing resources on the most-important types of crime and in the areas most affected by crime. The two measures are found to produce substantially different results when other factors are held constant. The results of severity-weighted crime analysis (and the decision made based on them) could therefore be greatly influenced by the method chosen. The implications of this are discussed and future research avenues outlined.
Policing: A Journal of Policy and Practice

There has been extensive research on the value of closed-circuit television (CCTV) for preventing crime, but little on its value as an investigative tool. This study sought to establish how often CCTV provides useful evidence and how this is affected by circumstances, analysing 251,195 crimes recorded by British Transport Police that occurred on the British railway network between 2011 and 2015. CCTV was available to investigators in 45% of cases and judged to be useful in 29% (65% of cases in which it was available). Useful CCTV was associated with significantly increased chances of crimes being solved for all crime types except drugs/weapons possession and fraud. Images were more likely to be available for more-serious crimes, and less likely to be available for cases occurring at unknown times or in certain types of locations. Although this research was limited to offences on railways, it appears that CCTV is a powerful investigative tool for many types of crime. The usefulness of CCTV is limited by several factors, most notably the number of public areas not covered. Several recommendations for increasing the usefulness of CCTV are discussed.
European Journal on Criminal Policy and Research

Recent Publications

More Publications

  • Comparing methods for measuring crime harm/severity

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  • The value of CCTV surveillance cameras as an investigative tool: an empirical analysis

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  • Self-guardianship at automated teller machines

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  • Children, gender, and sexual exploitation: a quantitative analysis of administrative data

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  • Using crime science for understanding and preventing theft of metal from the British railway network

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  • Immaterial boys? A large-scale exploration of gender-based differences in child sexual exploitation service users

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  • Routine activities and proactive police activity: a macro-scale analysis of police searches in London and New York City

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  • Concentrations of railway metal theft and the locations of scrap-metal dealers

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  • Is metal theft committed by organized crime groups, and why does it matter?

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  • The when and where of an emerging crime type: the example of metal theft from the railway network of Great Britain

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