Security and the Drop in Car Theft in the United States

  • Shuryo Fujita
  • Michael Maxfield
Part of the Crime Prevention and Security Management book series (CPSM)

Abstract

Since the early 1990s, all categories of crime have fallen in the United States. Previous research has provided various explanations for this downward trend in crime. These include, for example, increases in incarceration and police staffing, legalization of abortion, and changes in demographic composition, economic conditions, and crack cocaine markets (Levitt, 2004; Blumstein and Wallman, 2006; Zimring, 2007; Blumstein and Rosenfeld, 2008). However, most research on the US crime drop has focused disproportionately on violent crime. Relatively little attention has been paid to car theft, which had the biggest drop between 1991 and 2008 (FBI, 2009).

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Block, S., Clarke, R.V., Maxfield, M.G. and Petrossian, G. (In press) ‘Estimating the Number of U.S. Vehicles Stolen for Export Using Crime Location Quotients’. In Essays in Honor of Paul and Patricia Brantingham, Andresen, M. (ed). Cullompton, Devon, UK: Willan Publishing. [NB: Not sure of volume title and other publication details; recently changed.]Google Scholar
  2. Blumstein, A. and Wallman, J. (2006) The Crime Drop in America, Revised Edition. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  3. Blumstein, A. and Rosenfield, R. (2008) ‘Factors contributing to U.S. crime trends’. In Understanding Crime Trends: Workshop Report (pp.13–43). National Research Council Committee on Understanding Crime Trends, Committee on Law and Justice, Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education. Washington, DC: The National Academic Press.Google Scholar
  4. Brown, R. (2004) ‘The Effectiveness of Electronic Immobilization: Changing Patterns of Temporary and Permanent Vehicle Theft’. In Understanding and Preventing Car Theft, Maxfield, M.G. and Clarke, R.V. (eds). Crime Prevention Studies 17. Monsey, NY: Criminal Justice Press.Google Scholar
  5. Bureau of Justice Statistics (2009) Criminal Victimization in the United States. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Justice.Google Scholar
  6. Clarke, R.V. (2008) ‘Situational crime prevention’. In Environmental Criminology and Crime Analysis, Wortley, R. and Mazerolle, L. (eds). Cullompton, UK: Willan Publishing.Google Scholar
  7. Coalition Network of Forensic Examiners (2009) Vehicle Transponder List. Retrieved April 2009 from http://www.forensicauto.net/id68.html.Google Scholar
  8. Cohen, L. E. and Felson, M. (1979) ‘Social Change and Crime Rate Trends: A Routine Activity Approach’. American Social Review, 44, pp.588–608.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. van Dijk, J. (2007) The World of Crime: Breaking the Silence on Problems of Security, Justice and Development Across the World. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.Google Scholar
  10. van Dijk, J., van Kesteren, J., Smit, P. (2007) Criminal Victimization in International Perspective: Key Findings from the 2004–2005 ICVS and EUICS. Tilburg University and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.Google Scholar
  11. van Dijk, J., Manchin, R., van Kesteren, J., Hidge, G. and Nevala, S. (2007) The Burden of Crime in the EU. Research Report: A Comparative Analysis of the European Crime and Safety Survey (EU ICS) 2005.Google Scholar
  12. Farrell, G., Tilley, N., Tseloni, A. and Mailley, J. (2008) ‘The crime drop and the security hypothesis’. British Society of Criminology Newsletter, 62, pp.17–22.Google Scholar
  13. Farrell, G., Tilley, N., Tseloni, A. and Mailley, J. (2011) ‘The crime drop and the security hypothesis’. Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency, 48. First published on 22 February 2011 as DOI: 10.1177/0022427810391539.Google Scholar
  14. Farrell, G. et al. (2009) Sustaining the Crime Drop in Industrialised Nations: A Crime-Specific Problem-Solving Approach. Research Report, ESRC End of Award Report, RES-000–22-2386. Swindon: ESRC.Google Scholar
  15. Federal Bureau of Investigation (2004) Uniform Crime Reporting Handbook. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Justice.Google Scholar
  16. Federal Bureau of Investigation (2009) Crimes in the United States. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Justice.Google Scholar
  17. Jeffery, C.R. (1977) Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design. Beverly Hills, CA: Sage Publications.Google Scholar
  18. JP Research, Inc. (2006) Phase 2 Final Report: Effectiveness of Parts Marking and Anti-Theft Devices in Inhibiting Auto Theft. Mountain View, CA: J.P. Research.Google Scholar
  19. Kriven, S. and Ziersch, E. (2007) ‘New Car Security and Shifting Vehicle Theft Patterns in Australia’. Security Journal, 20, pp.111–122.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Levitt, S.D. (2004) ‘Understanding why crime fell in the 1990s: Four factors that explain the decline and six that do not’. Journal of Economic Perspectives, 18, pp.163–190.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Maxfield, M.G. and Clarke, R.V. (2009) Parts Marking and Anti-Theft Devices Technology Study. Report to National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration. Washington DC: Maryn Consulting.Google Scholar
  22. Miller, M.V. (1987) ‘Vehicle Theft Along the Texas-Mexico Border’. Journal of Borderlands Studies, 2, pp.12–32.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (1998) Auto Theft and Recovery: Effects of the Anti Car Theft Act of 1992 and the Motor Vehicle Theft Law Enforcement Act of 1984. Report to the Congress. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Transportation.Google Scholar
  24. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (2006) Parts-Marking Quick Reference Guide for the Law Enforcement Community: Year 2007/2008. Washington DC: U.S. Department of Transportation.Google Scholar
  25. Newman, G.R. (2004) ‘Car Safety and Car Security: An Historical Comparison’. In Understanding and Preventing Car Theft, Maxfield, M.G. and Clarke, R.V. (eds). Crime Prevention Studies 17. Monsey, NY: Criminal Justice Press.Google Scholar
  26. Pease, K. (2001) Cracking Crime Through Design. London, UK: Design Council.Google Scholar
  27. Plouffe, N. and Sampson, R. (2004) ‘Auto Theft and Theft from Autos in Parking Lots in Chula Vista, CA’. In Understanding and Preventing Car Theft, Maxfield, M.G. and Clarke, R.V. (eds). Crime Prevention Studies 17. Monsey, NY: Criminal Justice Press.Google Scholar
  28. R.L. Polk & Co. (2009) Cars in Operation by Model Year. Southfield, MI.Google Scholar
  29. Raphael, S. and Winter-Ebmer, R. (2001) ‘Identifying the effect of unemployment on crime’. Journal of Law and Economics, 44, pp.259–84.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Rhodes, W., Norman, J. and Kling, R. (1997) An Evaluation of the Effectiveness of Automobile Parts Marking on Preventing Theft. Cambridge, MA: Abt Associates.Google Scholar
  31. Rhodes, W. and Kling, R. (2003) An Evaluation of the Effectiveness of Automobile Parts marking and Anti-Theft Devices on Preventing Theft. Cambridge, MA: Abt Associates.Google Scholar
  32. Ward’ s Automotive (1986–2009) Ward’s Automotive Yearbook. Southfield, MI.Google Scholar
  33. Webb, B. (1994) ‘Steering Column Locks and Motor Vehicle Theft: Evaluations from Three Countries’. In Crime Prevention Studies 2, R.V. Clarke (ed). Monsey, NY: Criminal Justice Press.Google Scholar
  34. Zimring, F.E. (2007) The Great America Crime Decline. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Shuryo Fujita and Michael Maxfield 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shuryo Fujita
  • Michael Maxfield

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations