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Ordinary Business: Impacts on Commercial and Residential Burglary

NCJ Number
British Journal of Criminology Volume: 54 Issue: 2 Dated: March 2014 Pages: 298-320
Sung-Suk Violet Yu; Michael G. Maxfield
Date Published
March 2014
23 pages
This study examined how ordinary businesses could be associated with commercial and residential burglary.
This study sought to fill a gap in the research literature on situational crime prevention by examining how ordinary businesses could be associated with commercial and residential burglary. The study identified three business characteristics which could play a role as attractors or generators for burglary. These three characteristics are 1) whether the business generates a large or small volume of transactions; 2) whether the business services or products are offered on-site or off-site; and 3) whether customers are primarily local, or attracted from a wider area. The city of Newark, NJ was chosen as the research site for this study. Data from two sources were used to provide measures of independent variables: bus stops from the New Jersey Transit Corporation and business locations from Verizon's 2007 YellowBook. Eight categories of service businesses and six categories of retail businesses were included in the study. Analysis of the data found that residential and commercial burglaries were related to different business types, businesses providing services to individuals were related to increased risk of commercial burglary, 3 of the 15 predictors used in the analysis were found to be significantly related to residential burglaries while 9 of the 15 predictors displayed a significant association with commercial burglaries, and 1 predictor, food stores, was related to increased risk for both residential and commercial burglary. Study limitations and implications for prevention efforts are discussed. Tables and references