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Police overestimation of criminal career homogeneity

Roach, Jason and Pease, Ken (2013) Police overestimation of criminal career homogeneity. Journal of Investigative Psychology and Offender Profiling. ISSN 1544-4759

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Police presumptions about criminal career trajectories have been little studied. The exploratory
study reported here involved 42 police staff of varying rank and experience. Participants were
asked to complete a questionnaire which asked them to predict the type of offence that an
individual with specified prior record was most likely to commit next. Participating police
personnel substantially overstated the homogeneity of criminal careers, i.e. the nature of prior
offences determined their prediction of their next offence more than available official data would
deem reasonable. An incidental finding was that officers who rated the probability of further
offending highest were also those who thought criminal careers most specialised. Theimplications
for operational police decision making are discussed and held to be profound.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
Schools: School of Human and Health Sciences
School of Human and Health Sciences > Applied Criminology Centre
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Depositing User: Sara Taylor
Date Deposited: 12 Sep 2013 13:10
Last Modified: 04 Nov 2015 18:49


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