Multidimensional Latent Classification of ‘Street Robbery’ Offences
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In a recent study of personal robbery, commissioned by the Home Office in the UK, a qualitative typology of robbery offences was proposed based on the approach used by the offender to commit the crime, consisting of four approach types: Blitz, Confrontation, Con, and Snatch. Conceptual inspection of the typology reveals that these proposed types may be hypothetically demarcated as the product of two latent dimensions: interaction (between the offender and the victim) and violence (used to threaten/harm the victim). The current paper utilises crime scene information from 72 incarcerated male offenders convicted of ‘street’ robbery to test this hypothesis. Convergent statistical analysis was utilised to test the structure of Smith’s typology first using multidimensional scaling (MDS) and then principal component analysis (PCA). MDS and PCA analyses provided convergent support for the existence of the four robbery styles and the latent dimensions of interaction and violence. Implications of Smith’s typological structure and latent behavioural dimensions on the conceptualisation and classification of robbery offences are discussed within the existing literature on ‘street’ robbery. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Journal of Investigative Psychology and Offender Profiling;
J. Investig. Psych. Offender Profil. 9: 93–109 (2012)
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