European Journal on Criminal Policy and Research

, Volume 3, Issue 3, pp 113–123 | Cite as

Identifying, explaining, and targeting burglary ‘hot spots’

  • Trevor Bennett


The data-gathering and crime analysis part of the Task Force programme (while not yet completed) has generated some useful information about burglary in Cambridge which might inform a crime prevention strategy. The research has shown that residential burglary is not evenly distributed across Cambridge, but tends to be clustered in the northwest of the City. It has also shown that even in these high-burglary areas there are ‘hot spots’ and ‘cold spots’ of crime. These hot spots account for a relatively large proportion of all burglary.

One factor contributing to the high burglary counts in the hot spot area is the high number of repeat burglaries, with as many as 35 percent of all burglaries recorded in the area being one of a repeat series of burglaries. Another factor which might have contributed to the high burglary counts was the abundance of access and escape routes of the kind identified in the environmental survey. Perhaps the most important factor which explains the high number of burglaries was the closeness of the area to the place of residence of known offenders. The hot spot site thus provides a local source of easy and rewarding opportunities for offenders who live in these areas.

In the second stage of its work, the Cambridge Burglary Task Force will collate the information that has been collected in the first stage and devise appropriate intervention strategies. We aim to continue to monitor crime and criminals in the area and to evaluate the effectiveness the programmes implemented.


Prevention Strategy Local Source Crime Prevention Analysis Part Cold Spot 
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Copyright information

© Kugler Publications 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Trevor Bennett
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of CriminologyUniversity of CambridgeCambridgeGreat Britain

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