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Residential burglary

In this section of the report, findings are presented from a review of community-based crime prevention strategies that have as a primary goal a reduction in residential burglary. Following a brief review of the literature examining issues relating to the prevention of residential burglary, a summary of the evidence in support of intervention types reviewed by the research team, an explanation of how they work and the characteristics of successful strategies are outlined.

This section of the report is focused on interventions targeting break and enter—dwelling and stealing from dwelling offences. Although similar offence categories, stealing from dwelling and break and enter—dwelling differ in the way that the offender enters the building. Break and enter—dwelling refers to offences where the offender forcibly gains entry to someone’s home. Stealing from dwelling involves property being stolen from someone’s home where the offender does not break in but instead gains entry through an open door or window or steals property from the yard. For the purpose of this section of the report, residential burglary is used to refer to both break and enter—dwelling and stealing from dwelling offences.

Preventing residential burglary

Residential burglary is broadly defined as the illegal and unlawful entry into a dwelling (house, unit, caravan, garage, yard, residential shed etc) for the purpose of committing a felony (Moreto 2010; Ratcliffe 2001). The occurrence of residential burglary is frequently attributed to its opportunistic nature. Many Australian households are an attractive target for offenders due to the large number of highly valuable and portable goods, the number of houses that are empty during the day and large number of detached dwellings that have many accessible entry points such as doors and windows (Grabosky 1995).

  • Burglaries are usually ‘unplanned and speculative in nature’ (Grabosky 1995: 3). As such, successful prevention strategies are often targeted at reducing opportunity risk factors. However, some research also suggests that some offenders are ‘experts’—rational agents who ‘case’ a residence/dwelling on numerous occasions prior to committing an offence (Nee & Meenaghan 2006).

There are a number of situational and social risk factors that contribute to residential burglary. Situational risk factors include:

  • presence of suitable cover for offenders (eg overgrown shrubbery and trees) located along the perimeter of dwellings;
  • unsecured entry points to the dwelling (eg unlocked gates and windows);
  • the absence of a garage or properties with an open carport;
  • proximity to pawnshops—offenders may target areas that are in close proximity to a pawn shop so that they can dispose of their stolen goods as quickly as possible; and
  • proximity to public transport—offenders may choose dwellings that are in close proximity to public transport so they can access and leave the neighbourhood quickly and easily (Armitage 2011b; Moreto 2010).
  • Further, as previously mentioned, dwellings that are unoccupied for significant periods of time during the day are more attractive to offenders. BOCSAR data indicates that in 2011, the majority of burglaries committed in New South Wales occurred between Monday and Friday and the hours of 6 am and 6 pm (BOCSAR 2012). This is not unexpected as it is between these times and on these days that many people are at work and properties are vacant.

Considering the broad range of risk factors associated with residential burglary, multifaceted and multi-agency strategies that involve a combination of situational and social strategies and address risk factors relating to the target, location and offender are considered the most promising in terms of achieving a sustainable reduction in offending (Grabosky 1995). An important part of this process is strategic problem solving to enable a more targeted approach to identifying and tackling of residential burglary hotspots and strengthening the community’s capacity to respond to burglary risk factors (Grove 2011; Holder, Payne & Makkai 2003; Grabosky 1995; Ratcliffe 2001).

There is a range of practical strategies that may be implemented by the home or property owner to reduce the risk of residential burglary, such as:

  • increasing the ‘surveillability’ of the property, so it can be subject to natural surveillance;
  • securing any possible implements that may be used to aid an offender’s entry into the property;
  • making the property appear occupied, particularly when the homeowner is away (eg having the mail regularly collected, lights on timers);
  • restricting access by making sure access points such as window and doors are locked and secure;
  • installing additional measures such as sensor lights and alarm systems; and
  • supporting burglary victims to upgrade their security immediately after the event to deter repeat victimisation (Grabosky 1995).

Previous research also suggests the importance of taking into consideration the local context in designing and adapting residential burglary initiatives, including tailoring interventions to suit the specific crime problem (Grabosky 1995; Grove 2011). This includes factors such as the geographic distribution of offending, the methods by which offenders access property, changes in the demographic characteristics of offenders, the types of stolen property and patterns in stolen goods markets (Grabosky 1995). While the importance of community engagement has been highlighted, there are challenges associated with engaging local residents in communities that exhibit high residential mobility and low levels of social cohesion; factors that need to also be taken into consideration in designing interventions (Grabosky 1995; Grove 2011). Other implementation problems that have been encountered by burglary prevention programs and that need to be addressed include staffing problems, a lack of clarity around eligibility criteria (victims, potential victims or both), poor communication around referral processes, inflexible approaches and persistence with the original plan irrespective of changing circumstances and opposition to measures from stakeholders (Grove 2011).

Findings from the review

A comprehensive summary of the findings from a review of strategies designed to reduce residential burglary is presented in Table 8, which summarises the evidence for each intervention type identified by the review. Strategies examined as part of this review are described in Table 9. Overall, the review identified 32 studies that met the criteria for inclusion. The number and overall standard of evaluations was higher for residential burglary than any of the other property offence types. Half of the studies met level three on the SMS. Therefore, it was possible to draw robust conclusions about the effectiveness of specific interventions and their impact on residential burglary offending rates.

Interventions supported by evidence of effectiveness

After reviewing the available evidence, several interventions were supported by multiple evaluation studies finding evidence of effectiveness:

  • Access control measures that involve actively encouraging or installing improved security measures on behalf of residents (including security devices and perimeter security):
    • In three studies, all showing evidence of effectiveness, access control measures were the sole intervention and included installing barricades and street closures, installing lockable gates in alleys or the installation of security devices.
    • In 12 studies, 10 of which showed evidence of effectiveness, access control measures were supported by other interventions (eg awareness campaigns and diversionary activities).
  • Awareness raising campaigns that aim to improve awareness of risk factors for victimisation, offending hotspots and prevention measures, including strategies with a universal focus targeting whole neighbourhoods and those targeted at high-risk households, were effective when delivered alongside other interventions:
    • In eight studies, all showing evidence of effectiveness, awareness campaigns were delivered as part of a suite of interventions (eg property marking and education type projects).
    • Of the seven studies involving an awareness campaign that either had no effect on residential burglary rates or the effect was uncertain, four involved the delivery of an awareness campaign in isolation and the remaining strategies encountering issues relating to implementation.
  • Property marking, whereby residents are provided with assistance to record identifying information on valuable personal belongings, was involved in seven multicomponent strategies, five of which were supported by evidence of effectiveness.
  • Strategies that aim to improve natural surveillance appear to be an effective strategy, but are also an important by-product (be it intentional or unintentional) of other strategies such as CPTED, awareness raising and education campaigns. Of the seven studies involving interventions to improve natural surveillance, six showed some evidence of effectiveness and all except one comprised multiple interventions.
  • Strategies involving some form of CPTED (eg changing street access points) or having an urban renewal component (6 studies in total), most commonly in conjunction with another intervention (5 studies), all showed evidence of effectiveness.
  • Community patrols were an important component in three strategies, all of which were supported by evidence of effectiveness, but took different forms including security patrols, the appointment of unemployed locals and neighbourhood watch groups actively patrolling communities.
  • Diversionary activities were involved in four multicomponent strategies, three of which were effective, and generally involved providing some form of alternative activity after school or during school holidays for youths at risk of becoming involved in property crime.

Interventions with limited evidence of effectiveness

Few of the reviewed evaluations of strategies designed to reduce residential burglary produced negative findings. Ineffective strategies were typically those that were poorly implemented. In addition to awareness campaigns (as a sole intervention), the only intervention not to be supported by strong evidence of effectiveness was street lighting. Of the six studies that examined the use of street lighting, five involved the use of street lighting independent of other interventions. Of these, three were ineffective at reducing residential burglary, suggesting that the evidence in support of street lighting as a burglary prevention measure is mixed.

Suitability for implementation by local government

The interventions identified in this section appear, for the most part, to be suitable for implementation by local government. These interventions are consistent with the types of strategies that frequently appear in local crime prevention plans (Morgan & Homel 2011). In the Australian studies examined as part of this review, local government were a key stakeholder involved in the intervention. Most importantly, local government can provide a lead role in ensuring a coordinated response to residential burglary, working closely with police in particular. Central agencies such as the NSW CPD can perform a similar oversight and coordination role, particularly where a burglary prevention strategy involves a range of government (eg housing, education and criminal justice) and non-government agencies delivering a number of interventions in combination to address multiple risk factors for burglary (eg Cummings 2005). NSW CPD has also been responsible for the development of materials that can be used as part of security audits and awareness campaigns by local councils and by home owners.

Table 8: Evidence in support of crime prevention interventions targeting residential burglarya
Intervention Description of intervention Supported interventions Evidence of effectiveness Where it works How it worksb Characteristics of successful strategies

Measures to control access to residential buildings

Aims to increase the effort associated with committing an offence, usually through the alteration of the built environment or surroundings. Specifically, access control aims make it harder for potential offenders to enter a property or building by limiting its accessibility

Common strategies included the installation of security devices and alarms in residents’ homes, as well as strategies to reduce access to residential areas (such as through alley gating and street closures)

Awareness campaigns

Property marking

Natural surveillance

CPTED/urban renewal

Community patrol

Diversionary activities

In three studies, all showing evidence of effectiveness, access control measures were the sole intervention

In 12 studies, 10 of which showed evidence of effectiveness, access control measures were supported by other interventions

Residential neighbourhoods in which there is an identified lack of security at access points (as opposed to the carelessness of residents in securing properties)

Communities in which there is a high level of support for preventative measures and concern about residential burglary

Access control measures make target enclosures (fences, gates, doors and windows) harder to penetrate to increase the perceived effort associated with a crime

This prevents potential offenders from being able to access locations where there are potential targets (property or people) or where provocation may occur

Manipulate the physical environment (built or landscape) to improve surveillance, define ownership of spaces and minimise conflict between users

Successful strategies are those where there is a high take-up rate among residents

Appears to work most effectively when residents are provided with financial assistance to install security devices, or where security devices are installed on their behalf

Strategies that relied upon residents to improve access control measures with limited direct assistance or financial input were less effective

Awareness campaigns can support access control measures by encouraging residents to regularly make use of security once installed

Make use of appropriate technology, ensuring security devices are hardwearing and (where necessary) maintained over time

Awareness campaigns targeted at potential victims of residential burglary

Awareness-raising campaigns aim to improve awareness of risk from residential burglary and prevention measures, and include universal strategies that involve the distribution of material (information packs, brochures etc) to residents advising them of what action to take, as well as more targeted security audits. Targeted security audits are often directed at households that have recently been a victim of residential burglary and aim to prevent re-victimisation

Access control

Property marking

Natural surveillance

CPTED/urban renewal

Community patrol

Diversionary activities

In nine studies, all showing evidence of effectiveness, awareness campaigns were delivered as part of a suite of interventions

Of the six studies involving an awareness campaign that either had no effect on residential burglary rates or an uncertain effect, four did not involve any other intervention (the remaining strategies encountering issues relating to implementation)

Communities where property owners who are willing to adopt these measures

In the majority of projects, awareness campaigns aimed to encourage individuals (potential targets or individuals who facilitate access to targets) to consider the implications of their actions and discourage behaviour (ie leaving premises unsecure) that may create opportunities for crime to occur

Awareness campaigns only appear to be effective where they are delivered in support of other interventions, such as access control and natural surveillance measures

As such, they may have a cumulative effect—increasing the effectiveness of other strategies without necessarily being effective on their own

Universal awareness campaigns need to convey clear and simple message

Security audits should be undertaken by suitably qualified personnel

Natural surveillance

Strategies that are designed to increase the natural surveillance of an area encourage people to monitor the areas where they live or work as part of their everyday activity

Access control

Awareness campaigns

Property marking

CPTED/urban renewal

Community patrol

Diversionary activities

Of the seven studies involving interventions to improve natural surveillance, six showed some evidence of effectiveness and all except one comprised multiple interventions

Residential areas where there is a motivated group of residents prepared to undertake surveillance of their local community

Introduce or improve formal or informal surveillance to increase the perceived risk that committing an offence will result in identification or capture

Manipulate the physical environment (built or landscape) to improve surveillance, define ownership of spaces and minimise conflict between users

Interventions that aim to increase natural surveillance appear to be more effective where they are delivered in conjunction with other interventions, such as access control or CPTED/urban renewal measures

Motivated residents willing to provide surveillance and report suspicious incidents

CPTED/urban renewal

CPTED or urban renewal projects includes strategies that involve modifying the built and landscaped environment to create safer places that are less crime prone or make people feel safer, as well as strategies to improve the overall appearance of a residential area

Access control

Awareness campaigns

Property marking

Natural surveillance

Community patrol

Diversionary activities

Strategies involving some form of CPTED or urban renewal component (6 studies in total), most commonly in conjunction with another intervention (5 studies), all showed evidence of effectiveness

Residential neighbourhood environments that are amenable to the proposed changes

Manipulate the physical environment (built or landscape) to improve surveillance, define ownership of spaces and minimise conflict between users

High level of engagement with local residents in redevelopment of built and landscaped environment, particularly during design phase

Community patrols

In the case of residential burglary, a community patrol is a group of people who actively patrol their community, reporting incidents and information to police, and in some instances provide a security service to help maintain social order

Among the strategies reviewed here, community patrols included security patrols, the appointment of unemployed locals and neighbourhood watch groups actively patrolling communities

Access control

Awareness campaigns

Property marking

Natural surveillance

CPTED/urban renewal

Diversionary activities

Community patrols were an important component in three strategies, all of which were supported by evidence of effectiveness

However, since each of these interventions adopted different forms, care should be exercised in drawing overall conclusions

Residential areas where there are engaged and proactive participants prepared to participate in community patrols and report incidents and information to police

By Introducing or improving formal or informal surveillance, community patrols serve to increase the perceived risk that committing an offence will result in identification or capture

Involve engaged and proactive participants prepared to become actively involved in community patrols and report incidents and information to police

Property marking

Residents are provided with assistance to record identifying information on valuable personal belongings, thereby decreasing the rewards associated with crime by making it more difficult to ‘move on’ stolen property

Access control

Awareness campaigns

Natural surveillance

CPTED/urban renewal

Community patrol

Diversionary activities

Property marking was involved in seven multicomponent strategies, six of which were supported by evidence of effectiveness

Communities with property owners who are willing to adopt these measures

Property marking reduces the perceived rewards associated with a crime by making targets harder to sell, deterring offenders from targeting marked property

Awareness campaigns can support property marking measures by advertising the fact that property has been marked to potential offenders

Diversionary activities

Diversionary activities attempt to divert people away from engaging in criminal or antisocial behaviour by providing alternative activities in a safe environment that are rewarding, challenging and age appropriate. These activities can reduce boredom or reduce the opportunity to engage in less desirable behaviour, and can also have a socialising effect

Access control

Awareness campaigns

Property marking

Natural surveillance

CPTED/urban renewal

Community patrol

Diversionary activities were involved in four multicomponent strategies, three of which were effective, and generally involved providing some form of alternative activity after school or during school holidays for youths at risk of becoming involved in property crime

Residential areas where there is access to appropriate facilities and professionals who can provide appropriate supervision

The primary goal of diversionary activities is to prevent potential offenders from being able to access locations where there are potential targets because they are otherwise preoccupied

Further, participation in these activities can help build a person’s resilience to offending by providing them with the resources, skills, knowledge and ability to avoid situations that increase their risk of offending

Aim to encourage sustained participation in programs by the young person and where possible, their family

Access to professionals who are willing and able to provide these services

Supported by a clear strategy for identifying and engaging at-risk young participants

Involve partnerships with other support services and community-based organisations to refer young person as required

Street lighting

Involves the placement or improvement of lighting to increase visibility in public spaces and thoroughfares

Access control

Awareness campaigns

Property marking

Natural surveillance

CPTED/urban renewal

Community patrol

Diversionary activities

Of the six studies that examined the use of street lighting, five involved the use of street lighting independent of other interventions. Of these, three were ineffective at reducing residential burglary

The specific circumstances in which street lighting is most effective is unclear

Some evidence that it works more effectively in stable homogeneous communities

Appears to work most effectively in residential areas with high-density housing

Improving lighting in poorly lit areas serves to improve surveillance, define ownership of spaces and can minimise conflict between potential victims and offenders

Lighting can increase an offender’s perceived risk of detection and discourage them from committing an offence

Improved lighting in thoroughfares that are poorly lit and are potential targets for offenders

Improved lighting may act as a catalyst for further changes in the community, leading to an increase in community pride and additional changes to the physical environment

The limited impact of street lighting on residential burglary most likely due to issues relating to illuminating residential areas

a: Limited to those interventions for which there was more than one evaluated strategy

b: Based on those mechanisms that were identified for effective strategies

Table 9: Crime prevention strategies targeting residential burglary
Source Context Intervention(s) Mechanism(s) Outcomes Research design

Allatt (1984)

Target crime—residential burglary

Nature of problem—high crime rates on public housing estates

Target location—public housing estate that had difficulty attracting tenants due to high burglary rates. Northumbria, United Kingdom

Access control—upgraded internal and external security, ground floor security devices

Awareness campaign—police surveyed dwellings and recommended appropriate devices and necessary structural repairs

Make target enclosures harder to penetrate to increase the perceived effort associated with a crime

Encourage individuals (potential targets or individuals who facilitate access to targets) to consider the implications of their actions and discourage behaviour that may create opportunities for crime to occur

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—nine percent increase in residential burglaries 1980–81. Trend analyses showed that residential burglary rates had levelled off

Comparison—77 percent increase in burglaries

Adjacent—displacement effect to other estates—nine percent in private housing neighbourhood and 21 percent in adjacent council estate

Evaluation focus—outcome

Evaluation design—before–after, weak control

Research methods and source of data—police records and resident surveys

Level on SMS—2

Armitage (2000)

Secured by design

Target crime—residential burglary

Nature of problem—Secured by Design is a scheme that aims to encourage housing developers to design out crime at the planning stage. Secured by Design has particular emphasis on preventing domestic residential burglary.

Target group or beneficiaries—local residents

Target location—West Yorkshire, United Kingdom

CPTED—SBD used in the planning of a residential area

Manipulate the physical environment (built or landscape) to improve surveillance, define ownership of spaces and minimise conflict between users

Introduce or improve formal or informal surveillance to increase the perceived risk that committing an offence will result in identification or capture

Make target enclosures harder to penetrate to increase the perceived effort associated with a crime

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—26 percent fewer recorded crimes

Intervention v comparison—prevalence rate of residential burglary offences was twice as high within the non-Secured by Design sample

Intervention—before the refurbishment crime rates had been 67 percent higher pre- Secured by Design certification

Evaluation focus—outcome

Evaluation design—before–after, control

Research methods and source of data—police records and resident survey

Level on SMS—3

Atlas and LeBlanc (1994)

Impact on crime of street closures and barricades—a Florida case study

Target crime—residential burglary, larceny, auto thefts. Robbery and aggravated assaults

Nature of problem—population boom of Dade County in the 1970s and early 1980s resulted in increased traffic and higher crime rates in Miami Shores

Target group or beneficiaries—local residents

Target location—City of Miami Shores, Florida

Access control—barricades and street closures used to restrict perimeter access and security

Make target enclosures harder to penetrate to increase the perceived effort associated with a crime

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—decrease in burglaries, larcenies and auto thefts in Miami Shores

Intervention—residential burglary rate significantly declined in Miami Shores and Metro Dade County

Adjacent—residential burglary rate increased significantly in Miami

Intervention—rate of robbery and aggravated assault remained stable in Miami Shores

Adjacent—rate of robbery and aggravated assault increased in the municipalities surrounding Miami Shores

Evaluation focus—process and outcome evaluation

Evaluation design—before–after

Research methods and source of data—Florida Department of Law Enforcement

Level on SMS—2

Beedle and Stangier (1980)

Home Security Program

Target crime—residential burglary

Nature of problem—free locks and security hardware installation to low-income homeowners in Housing and Community Development designated neighbourhoods

Target group or beneficiaries—local residents

Target location—Portland, United States

Access control—installation of locks, pinning windows and placing screening on windows.

Make target enclosures harder to penetrate to increase the perceived effort associated with a crime

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—reduction of 70 percent in the residential burglary rate between pre and post site hardening in the 12 month period

Intervention—93 percent of participants in survey said they felt ‘less concerned’ now about having their homes broken into than they did before the locks were installed

Evaluation focus—outcome evaluation

Evaluation design—before–after

Research methods and source of data—Columbia Region Information Sharing System (CRISS)

Level on SMS—2

Bowers, Johnson and Hirschfield (2004)

Closing off opportunities for crime: An evaluation of alley-gating

Target crime—residential burglary

Nature of problem—high levels of burglars gaining access to terraced properties through back alleyways.

Target group or beneficiaries—local residents

Target location—City of Liverpool in Merseyside County, north-west England

Access control—installation of lockable gates

Make target enclosures harder to penetrate to increase the perceived effort associated with a crime

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—decrease of 37 percent in the risk of burglaries

Adjacent—13 percent reduction in the number of domestic burglaries

Evaluation focus—outcome evaluation

Evaluation design—before–after, control

Research methods and source of data—police records

Level on SMS—3

Bozkurt in Osborn (1994)

Target crime—residential burglary, assault, criminal damage, theft from auto, auto theft

Nature of problem—High crime rates on public housing estates

Target location—Golf Links Housing Estate in London. Area characterised by high crime rates, large ethnic minority population, high rates of unemployment, transitory residential population

Access control—installation of better security doors

Street lighting—improved street lighting in crime prone areas

CPTED—repairs and ‘beautification’ of the estate

Police enforcement—local police dedicated more time to patrolling the estate and a police office was set up in one of the blocks to establish a permanent presence

Diversionary activities—provision of afterschool and weekend activities for kids

Manipulate the physical environment (built or landscape) to improve surveillance, define ownership of spaces and minimise conflict between users

Introduce or improve formal or informal surveillance to increase the perceived risk that committing an offence will result in identification or capture

Increase the perceived effort or rewards associated with a crime by making targets harder to access, remove or dispose

Prevent potential offenders from being able to access locations where there are potential targets (property or people) or where provocation may occur

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—decrease in property crime from 1986. Assault remained constant between 1983–87, with a major spike in 1986. Assaults began to increase significantly post 1987

Overall crime levels were 77 percent lower in 1987 than they were in 1983

Evaluation focus—process and outcome

Evaluation design—before–after

Research methods and source of data—police records

Level on SMS—2

Budz, Pegnall and Townsley (2001)

Lightning Strikes Twice

Target crime—residential burglary

Nature of problem—intervention focused on preventing repeat residential burglary in Beenleigh, a town with a residential burglary rate above the regional average

Target group or beneficiaries—local residents

Target location—Beenleigh, Australia

Awareness campaign—provision of security advice and materials provided to already burgled households. Provision of more extensive prevention materials provided to households burgled more than once and home security assessments

Property marking—provided to residents in high-rate residential burglary areas

Increase the perceived effort or rewards associated with a crime by making targets harder to access, remove or dispose

Encourage individuals (potential targets or individuals who facilitate access to targets) to consider the implications of their actions and discourage behaviour that may create opportunities for crime to occur

(Uncertain effect)

Intervention—repeat residential burglary victimisations decreased by 16 percent and repeat incidents fell by 15 percent. There was an increase in total burglary offences

Comparison—increase in repeats incidence of residential burglary, decrease in total burglary offences

Intervention—more than 80 percent of victims reported police advice to be helpful, although no difference in satisfaction

No reduction in overall residential burglary relative to comparison group but since the project was targeted at reducing repeat burglaries, this outcome would not make the project a failure.

Evaluation focus—outcome evaluation

Evaluation design—before–after, control

Research methods and source of data—crime reports, police records, surveys, interviews

Level on SMS—3

Cirel et al (1977)

Seattle Community Crime Prevention Programme

Target crime—residential burglary

Nature of problem—high levels of residential burglary and low rates of reporting

Target group or beneficiaries—local residents

Target location—residential streets in the City of Seattle

Property marking—provided to residents in high residential burglary rate areas

Awareness campaign—block watch and public given information materials on residential burglary and prevention measures. Security audits provided residents with advice on security measures

Natural surveillance—residents encouraged to keep their eyes open and to look for suspicious behaviours

Increase the perceived effort or rewards associated with a crime by making targets harder to access, remove or dispose

Encourage individuals (potential targets or individuals who facilitate access to targets) to consider the implications of their actions and discourage behaviour that may create opportunities for crime to occur

Introduce or improve formal or informal surveillance to increase the perceived risk that committing an offence will result in identification or capture

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—residential burglary rate after intervention 2.4 percent

Comparison—residential burglary rate after 5.7 percent

Intervention—decrease of 61 percent in burglaries following intervention

No evidence of territorial displacement

Evaluation focus—outcome evaluation

Evaluation design—before–after, control

Research methods and source of data—surveys and interviews

Level on SMS—3

Cummings (2005) Operation Burglary Countdown

Target crime—residential burglary

Nature of problem—operation Residential Burglary Countdown was a community-based crime reduction program operating in two areas—Bentley and Morley in Western Australia. The program was implemented due to Western Australia having the highest rate of residential burglary of any state or territory in Australia.

Target group or beneficiaries—local residents

Target location—Bentley and Morley, Western Australia

Police enforcement—police increased surveillance of known offenders

Awareness campaign—crime prevention information offered to residents living near to a residential burglary site (cocooning), media campaign and home security advice and audits

Natural surveillance—residents encouraged to look for suspicious behaviours—Eyes on the Street initiative

Access control—improved home security hardware

Property marking—provided to residents

Diversionary activities—development of recreational programs targeted at specific groups of potential offenders

Increase the perceived effort or rewards associated with a crime by making targets harder to access, remove or dispose

Make target enclosures harder to penetrate to increase the perceived effort associated with a crime

Encourage individuals (potential targets or individuals who facilitate access to targets) to consider the implications of their actions and discourage behaviour that may create opportunities for crime to occur

Introduce or improve formal or informal surveillance to increase the perceived risk that committing an offence will result in identification or capture

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—residential burglary decreased by 45 percent in Bentley and by 24 percent for Morley

Comparison—residential burglary decreased by 26 percent for the whole of Metropolitan Perth

Intervention—number of residents who were burgled more than once dropped in Bentley by 49 percent and Morley by 58 percent

Intervention—satisfaction of residents with police handling their residential burglary report doubled from 34 percent to 68 percent

Intervention—proportion of residents who felt that the state government are doing enough to reduce residential burglary from 26 percent to 36 percent

There was evidence of diffusion (reduction of break and enter in surrounding suburbs) rather than displacement

Evaluation focus—process and outcome evaluation

Evaluation design—before–after

Research methods and source of data—crime reports, police records, surveys, interviews

Level on SMS—2

Crime Research Centre, University of Western Australia (2008)

Eyes on the Street Program

Target crime—residential burglary, theft, vandalism, vehicle theft and assault

Nature of problem—high rates of residential burglary rates in the South East Metropolitan Police District

Target location—metropolitan Western Australia.

Natural surveillance—people in the community were encouraged to keep an eye out and report any suspicious incidents

Awareness campaign—community awareness of program elevated through media campaign and easily recognisable insignia

Introduce or improve formal or informal surveillance to increase the perceived risk that committing an offence will result in identification or capture

Increase an offender’s perceived risk of crime, the perceived effort of crime or reduce the anticipated rewards of crime to discourage them from committing an offence

(Uncertain effect)

Intervention—property offences decreased, but this trend was present prior to program introduction

Evaluation focus—process and outcome

Evaluation design—before–after

Research methods and source of data—stakeholder interviews, administrative data (crime statistics and reports submitted by EOTS participants)

Level on SMS—2

Ekblom et al. (1996)

Safer Cities Programme. Meta-evaluation

Target crime: Residential burglary

Nature of problem: High levels of residential burglary and repeat victimizations

Target group or beneficiaries: Local residents

Target location: 20 high crime cities in England and Wales

Awareness campaign: Community informed about residential burglary in their area and how to avoid victimisation

Education-type project: Structured set of activities to deliver information on crime prevention to the community

Access control: Improved physical security of doors, windows and fencing, as well as installing entry systems, alarms and security lighting

Make target enclosures harder to penetrate to increase the perceived effort associated with a crime

Encourage individuals (potential targets or individuals who facilitate access to targets) to consider the implications of their actions and discourage behaviour that may create opportunities for crime to occur

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—decrease of 21 percent in the prevalence of residential burglary. Low intensity areas recorded a 10 percent decrease, medium intensity areas recorded a 22 percent decline and high intensity areas experienced a 43 percent decline in residential burglary

Evaluation focus—outcome evaluation

Evaluation design—before–after, control

Research methods and source of data—police records and victimisation surveys

Level on SMS—3

Forrester et al. (1990)

Kirkholt Burglary Prevention Project

Target crime—residential burglary

Nature of problem—high levels of residential burglary and repeat victimisations

Target group or beneficiaries—local residents

Target location—Kirkholt local authority state, Rochdale, England

Natural surveillance—people in the community were encouraged to keep an eye out and report any suspicious incidents

Property marking—provided to residents

Access control—upgraded security and a low cost savings and loan scheme for residents to upgrade security. Electricity and gas prepayment meters replaced with other devices Education-type project—development of a school-based crime prevention program

Diversionary activities—recreational activities developed to divert actual and potential offenders

Increase the perceived effort or rewards associated with a crime by making targets harder to access, remove or dispose

Make target enclosures harder to penetrate to increase the perceived effort associated with a crime

Prevent potential offenders from being able to access locations in which there are potential targets (property or people) or where provocation may occur

Introduce or improve formal or informal surveillance to increase the perceived risk that committing an offence will result in identification or capture

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—decrease of 75 percent in annual number of burglaries after three years

Intervention—decrease of 58 percent in number of burglaries after one year

Intervention—decrease of 25 percent in burglaries in second year from the previous year

Evaluation focus: Outcome evaluation

Evaluation design: Before-after, control

Research methods and source of data: Police records and probation department reports and surveys and interviews with local agencies, domestic residential burglary victims, neighbours of residential burglary victims and convicted burglars

Level on SMS—3

Hulin (1979)

Community-based Crime Prevention Project

Target crime—residential burglary

Nature of problem—Fontana, California, was targeted due to high crime victimisation rate, evidence of some willingness to address the crime problem and because of its size, semi-rural character, location and accessibility to interagency cooperation

Target group or beneficiaries—local residents

Target location—Fontana, California

Natural surveillance—people in the community were encouraged to keep an eye out and report any suspicious incidents and a neighbourhood watch was implemented

Introduce or improve formal or informal surveillance to increase the perceived risk that committing an offence will result in identification or capture

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—residential burglary rate decreased by 26 percent, despite a four percent population increase. The Bureau of Criminal Statistics projected a residential burglary rate 18 percent higher than the actual rate experienced

Comparison—control cities experienced residential burglary increases ranging from 10 percent to 25 percent

In addition to the residential burglary reduction a number of significant crime prevention structures and programs were established

Evaluation focus—process and outcome evaluation

Evaluation design—before–after, control

Research methods and source of data—police records

Level on SMS—3

Jacobson and Saville (1999)

Aylesbury Estate Security Patrol

Target crime: Anti-social behaviour, graffiti, general crime, drug nuisance, residential burglary and robbery

Nature of problem: High crime rates on public housing estates

Target location: Aylesbury Estate, Southwark. Estate characterised by high fear of crime victimisation and anti-social behaviour, graffiti, general crime and drug-related crime

Urban renewal: Physical improvements to housing estate eg demolition of link bridges

Community patrol: Local authority employed a private security firm to carry out uniformed patrols

Manipulate the physical environment (built or landscape) to improve surveillance, define ownership of spaces and minimise conflict between users

Introduce or improve formal or informal surveillance to increase the perceived risk that committing an offence will result in identification or capture

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—decrease in reported crime—from about 670 incidents in 1997 to 550 in 1998

Evaluation focus—outcome

Evaluation design—before–after

Research methods and source of data—police records and surveys

Level on SMS—2

Kendrick (1994)

Target crime—residential burglary, robbery and auto-crime

Nature of problem—high crime rates on public housing estates. Fear of victimisation high on estates

Target location—Stonebridge Estate and the South Kilburn Estate, Brent, United Kingdom. Characterised by high crime rates, above average rate of street robberies and assaults

Access control—upgraded internal and external security and installed a phone entry system. Filled in the gap between the two blocks to restrict perimeter access and security

CCTV—introduced CCTV cameras and a concierge service

Make target enclosures harder to penetrate to increase the perceived effort associated with a crime

Introduce or improve formal or informal surveillance to increase the perceived risk that committing an offence will result in identification or capture

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—decrease in burglaries (-49%) and robberies (-27%). A 52 percent increase in auto-crime

Comparison—burglaries increased by 16 percent and robberies decreased by 10 percent across the Division. A 15 percent increase in auto-crime

Evaluation focus—process and outcome

Evaluation design—before–after

Research methods and source of data—police records

Level on SMS—2

Knight (1994)

Target crime—assault, robbery, residential burglary and attempted residential burglary, theft and attempted theft, theft of motor vehicle, arson, vandalism/malicious damage and breach of the peace

Nature of problem—public housing estates are characterised by high unemployment and crime rates. In particular, empty residences are regularly vandalised and stripped of their copper and lead

Target location—Possil Park, north central Glasgow

Community patrolling—unemployed locals were given work patrolling estates with empty residences

CPTED—painting, cleaning and decorating the estate

Introduce or improve formal or informal surveillance to increase the perceived risk that committing an offence will result in identification or capture

Manipulate the physical environment (built or landscape) to improve surveillance, define ownership of spaces and minimise conflict between users

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—37 percent decrease in residential burglary between 1987 and 1988. A 25 percent reduction in total recorded crimes. Crime levels rose again during 1989–90. A 14 percent to 32 percent decrease in housebreaking in 1991–92

Adjacent—27 percent increase in crime in 1987. A 61 percent increase in and motor vehicle crime

Evaluation focus—process and outcome

Evaluation design—before–after, weak control

Research methods and source of data—police records

Level on SMS—2

Lindsay & McGillis (1986)

Target crime—residential burglary

Nature of problem—Seattle citizens rated residential burglary to be their greatest concern of the index crimes. Town planners anticipate an increase in residential burglary rates due to demographic and economic factors

Target location—sites selected were at high risk of residential burglary

Natural surveillance—formation of a neighbourhood watch group

Awareness campaign—trained personnel performed security audits of dwellings

Property-marking—each targeted block was given an engraving instrument for marking property

Introduce or improve formal or informal surveillance to increase the perceived risk that committing an offence will result in identification or capture

Prevent potential offenders from being able to access locations where there are potential targets (property or people) or where provocation may occur

Encourage individuals (potential targets or individuals who facilitate access to targets) to consider the implications of their actions and discourage behaviour that may create opportunities for crime to occur

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—increase in residential burglary-in-progress calls to police

Lower rates of victimisation (9%)

Comparison—higher rates of victimisation (11%)

Evaluation focus–outcome

Evaluation design—before–after, weak control

Research methods and source of data—police records and resident surveys

Level on SMS—2

Matthews & Trickey (1994)

The New Parks Crime Reduction Project

Target crime—residential burglary

Nature of problem—high crime rates on public housing estates

Target location—New Parks Estate. Characterised by high crime rates, in particular, residential burglary

Access control—upgraded internal and external security and installed locks on dwellings

Community patrol—formation of Neighbourhood Watch groups

Awareness campaign—leaflets distributed to residents with information about project

Make target enclosures harder to penetrate to increase the perceived effort associated with a crime

Introduce or improve formal or informal surveillance to increase the perceived risk that committing an offence will result in identification or capture

Encourage individuals (potential targets or individuals who facilitate access to targets) to consider the implications of their actions and discourage behaviour that may create opportunities for crime to occur

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—20 percent decrease in burglaries

Number of households that experienced repeated burglaries decreased from 26 in 1992 to 13 in 1993

Evaluation focus—process and outcome

Evaluation design—before–after

Research methods and source of data—police records, resident interviews, longitudinal panel survey, administrative data, employee self-evaluation and observations

Level on SMS—2

Painter & Farrington (1997)

Dudley Street Lighting Project

Target crime—residential burglary, theft outside the home, vehicle theft and personal crime

Nature of problem—intervention to reduce the prevalence and incidence of residential burglary

Target group or beneficiaries—local residents

Target location region—City of Dudley, England United Kingdom

Street lighting—improved street lighting in crime-prone areas

Manipulate the physical environment (built or landscape) to improve surveillance, define ownership of spaces and minimise conflict between users

Increase an offender’s perceived risk of crime, the perceived effort of crime or reduce the anticipated rewards of crime to discourage them from committing an offence

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—prevalence of all crime declined by 23 percent from a victimisation rate of 42 percent in the before period to 32 percent in the after period

Comparison—prevalence of crime decreased from 39 percent to 38 percent during the intervention period

Intervention—a victim survey revealed a 38 percent reduction in residential burglary

Comparison—a victim survey revealed a 13 percent reduction in residential burglary

Evaluation focus—outcome evaluation

Evaluation design—before–after, control

Research methods and source of data—victimisation surveys

Level on SMS—3

Shaftoe (1994b)

Target crime—residential burglary, auto theft, vandalism

Nature of problem—high rates of crime on public housing estates

Target location—Niddrie Housing estate, Edinburgh, United Kingdom. Characterised by physical deterioration of buildings and surroundings, transient tenancy, and rising crime rates, particularly residential burglary

CPTED—rejuvenated interiors and exteriors of estate- painting, landscaping etc. Redesigned estate layout to enhance natural surveillance and defensible space

Access control—upgraded internal and external security. Enclosed the gap between the two blocks to restrict perimeter access and security

Make target enclosures harder to penetrate to increase the perceived effort associated with a crime

Manipulate the physical environment (built or landscape) to improve surveillance, define ownership of spaces and minimise conflict between users

Introduce or improve formal or informal surveillance to increase the perceived risk that committing an offence will result in identification or capture

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—61 percent decrease in overall crime rate July–December 1989 which has been sustained over time. Residential break-ins dropped from 53 in January–June 1987 to 17 in July–December 1990

Evaluation focus—outcome

Evaluation design—before–after

Research methods and source of data—police records

Level on SMS—2

Sturgeon-Adams, Adamson and Davidson (2005)

Target crime—residential burglary

Nature of problem—area characterised by high crime rates, drug use and antisocial behaviour

Target location—Belle Vue and Rift House East, South Hartlepool, United Kingdom

Access control—upgraded internal and external security. Installed lockable gates

Diversionary activities—provision of afterschool activities such as sports for local youths

Awareness campaign—residents made aware of crime prevention techniques through leaflets

Property marking—residents provided with property marking tools

Increase the perceived effort or rewards associated with a crime by making targets harder to access, remove or dispose

Make target enclosures harder to penetrate to increase the perceived effort associated with a crime

Prevent potential offenders from being able to access locations in which there are potential targets (property or people) or where provocation may occur

Encourage individuals (potential targets or individuals who facilitate access to targets) to consider the implications of their actions and discourage behaviour that may create opportunities for crime to occur

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—28 percent decrease in overall burglaries over four years. No burglaries in houses protected by the early phase of alley gates

Adjacent—13 percent decrease in residential burglary rates in local police division and eight percent in Cleveland Police Force Area. Decrease in burglaries of houses near the alley gating schemes

Evaluation focus—process and outcome

Evaluation design—before–after Research methods and source of data—police records and surveys

Level on SMS—2

Tilley and Webb (1994) Birmingham: Primrose Estate—Safer Cities

Target crime—residential burglary

Nature of problem—high levels of residential burglary with the target area had a residential burglary rate of 21percent

Target group or beneficiaries—local residents

Target location—the Primrose Estate is part of the Three Estates development on the southern outskirts of Birmingham, West Midlands, United Kingdom

Access control—installed rigid plastic combination door and window units. High security wooden doors were fitted according to housing designs, window locks were fitted to metal sliding windows and rear doors were replaced

Awareness campaign—high levels of initial press coverage and a one day conference. A sign was placed on the estate advertising the scheme

Natural surveillance—formation of Neighbourhood Watch Schemes in four of the eight streets

Make target enclosures harder to penetrate to increase the perceived effort associated with a crime

Encourage individuals (potential targets or individuals who facilitate access to targets) to consider the implications of their actions and discourage behaviour that may create opportunities for crime to occur

Introduce or improve formal or informal surveillance to increase the perceived risk that committing an offence will result in identification or capture

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—the rate of residential burglary decreased 65 percent following the intervention

Comparison—the rest of the three estates experienced a nine percent residential burglary rate decline, while the rest of the sub division experienced a 39 percent increase in the residential burglary rate for the same period

Evaluation focus—outcome evaluation

Evaluation design—before–after, control

Research methods and source of data—police records

Level on SMS—3

Ball Public Relations and Walters (2002); Henderson (2002)

Tee Tree Gully

Target crime—residential burglary

Nature of problem—this intervention was implemented to prevent repeat residential burglaries in Tee Tree Gully and three nearby police subdivisions.

Target group or beneficiaries—local residents

Target location—Tee Tree Gully, Adelaide, Australia

Awareness campaign—home security audits conducted and recommendations around security improvements services

Encourage individuals (potential targets or individuals who facilitate access to targets) to consider the implications of their actions and discourage behaviour that may create opportunities for crime to occur

(Uncertain effect)

Intervention v comparison—some evidence of a reduction in repeat residential burglary in treatment area compared with comparison area

Intervention v comparison—increase in overall burglaries in the treatment area compared with the comparison areas

Evaluation focus—outcome evaluation

Evaluation design—before–after, control

Research methods and source of data—police records and surveys

Level on SMS—3

Bennett and Durie (1999)

Preventing residential burglary in Cambridge

Target crime—residential burglary

Nature of problem—the project was established by the Domestic Burglary Task Force (DBTF) in 1994 to examine the nature of residential burglary in Cambridge and design and implement initiatives to prevent it

Target location—north of the City of Cambridge

Awareness campaign—through cocoon neighbourhood watch; post watch, community seminar and community centre information link

Access control—implementation of a loan alarm scheme. Installation of KeepSafe (fitting additional security locks), GateSafe (fitting additional external gates) and security pack to residents

Police enforcement—targeted police patrols in high crime areas

Diversionary activities—Youth Development Project provided potential offenders with focused activities in order to help the young person’s development with particular attention to antisocial behaviour

Make target enclosures harder to penetrate to increase the perceived effort associated with a crime

Prevent potential offenders from being able to access locations where there are potential targets (property or people) or where provocation may occur

Encourage individuals (potential targets or individuals who facilitate access to targets) to consider the implications of their actions and discourage behaviour that may create opportunities for crime to occur

Introduce or improve formal or informal surveillance to increase the perceived risk that committing an offence will result in identification or capture

(Null effect)

Intervention v comparison—no marked difference in the level of residential burglary reduction between the intervention areas and comparison areas

Similar or greater reductions in residential burglary in comparison area compared with intervention area

No evidence of an overall reduction in repeat burglaries during the program attributable to interventions. Reductions were greater and/or similar in control areas

Evaluation focus—process and outcome evaluation

Evaluation design—before–after, control

Research methods and source of data—police records, interviews with local burglars, environmental survey, repeat residential burglary victim survey and household survey

Level on SMS—3

Madensen and Skubak (2005) University Student Crime Prevention

Target crime—assault, rape, robbery, theft, vehicle theft and residential burglary

Nature of problem—due to a spike in crime occurring over the academic winter break in residential areas adjacent to the University of Cincinnati campus this program was implemented

Target group or beneficiaries—local residents

Target location—residential areas adjacent to the University of Cincinnati campus

Awareness campaign—police focused on distributing information about how residents can avoid victimisation and what resources are available (eg, police contact telephone numbers, ‘Nightwalk’ program availability)

Encourage individuals (potential targets or individuals who facilitate access to targets) to consider the implications of their actions and discourage behaviour that may create opportunities for crime to occur

(Null effect)

Intervention—no significant decrease in residential burglary or vehicle theft

Intervention—although there was a 42 percent decrease in robberies, the low base numbers prevent this decline from reaching significance

Intervention—the significant reduction in overall crime during the treatment period was due primarily to a reduction in the number of thefts

Evaluation focus—outcome evaluation

Evaluation design—before–after

Research methods and source of data—Cincinnati Police Department

Level on SMS—2

Pennington (1977)

Open garage door burglary program

Target crime—residential burglary and garage residential burglary

Nature of problem—increased percentage of burglaries committed in areas patrolled by the St. Louis County Police Department than in the rest of St. Louis County

Target group or beneficiaries—local residents

Target location—St. Louis, United States

Awareness campaign—police sent letters to homes where an open garage door was spotted and where no resident(s) appeared to be at home. The letter included general security information

Encourage individuals (potential targets or individuals who facilitate access to targets) to consider the implications of their actions and discourage behaviour that may create opportunities for crime to occur

(Null effect)

Intervention—no discernible impact on garage residential burglary

Intervention—rate of garage residential burglary decreased by 32 percent, there was a 34 percent decrease in the control area

Intervention v comparison—no apparent effect on home burglaries when compared with control area, although total burglaries in intervention area did increase by seven percent during the intervention

Evaluation focus—outcome evaluation

Evaluation design—before–after, control

Research methods and source of data—police records

Level on SMS—3

Shaftoe (1994a) Easton/Ashley, Bristol lighting improvements

Target crime—street robberies (muggings), theft from cars, residential burglaries, vandalism and damage

Nature of problem—Easton and Ashley suffered from a higher than average rate of crime

Target group or beneficiaries—local residents

Target location—Easton/Ashley, Bristol

Street lighting—lighting improvements implemented in prioritised areas (as identified by the police and the city’s lighting engineers). The overall result is a patchwork of original lighting, new low pressure sodium lamps and in particularly vulnerable areas, high-pressure sodium lamps

Manipulate the physical environment (built or landscape) to improve surveillance, define ownership of spaces and minimise conflict between users

Increase an offender’s perceived risk of crime, the perceived effort of crime or reduce the anticipated rewards of crime to discourage them from committing an offence

(Null effect)

Intervention—some reductions in crimes committed at night but could not be associated with the lighting improvements

Comparison—recorded crime levels decreased by nine percent and night-time crimes levels by 14 percent

Intervention—recorded crime level decreased by eight percent and night-time crime by 14 percent

The decrease in the three improved beats over the course of the monitoring period was a reflection of trends in the police division as a whole

Evaluation focus—outcome evaluation

Evaluation design—before–after, control

Research methods and source of data—police records

Level on SMS—3

Tilley and Webb (1994) Nottinghan—St Ann’s Burglary Reduction Project—Safer Cities

Target crime—residential burglary

Nature of problem—high levels of residential burglary with at least half of the area consists of a local authority estate

Target group or beneficiaries—local residents

Target location region—St Ann’s, Nottingham United Kingdom

Access control—installation of improved internal and external security (eg bolts on the secondary exit door)

Property marking—visible stickers for marked items and for windows/doors

Awareness campaign—formation of Neighbourhood Concern Groups, which were street-based groups encouraged to address any issues affecting their neighbourhood. Crime prevention advice and ‘victim support’ were given by the project staff when visiting residential burglary victims. Help Packs distributed information about crime prevention and security

Education type project—offender interviews recorded and distributed on a video to form part of a pack to be used with offenders to enable them to understand the victim’s perspective

Make target enclosures harder to penetrate to increase the perceived effort associated with a crime

Encourage individuals (potential targets or individuals who facilitate access to targets) to consider the implications of their actions and discourage behaviour that may create opportunities for crime to occur

Increase an offender’s perceived risk of crime, the perceived effort of crime or reduce the anticipated rewards of crime to discourage them from committing an offence

(Uncertain effect)

Intervention—residential burglary rate increased to 12.4 percent. However, residential burglary rate in St Ann’s rose less than elsewhere (42.8%)

Comparison—residential burglary rate rose 57.3 percent

Intervention—re-victimisation rate of target hardened properties was 11 percent

Comparison—Re-victimisation rate was 17 percent for those not target hardened

Evaluation focus—outcome evaluation

Evaluation design—before–after

Research methods and source of data—police records and victimisation surveys

Level on SMS—2

Donnelly and Kimble (1997)

Target crime—assault, residential burglary, larceny, auto theft, and vandalism

Nature of problem—high crime rates in ‘permeable’ neighbourhoods

Target group or beneficiaries—neighbourhood characterised by high crime rates and large ethnic population. Close to downtown area and interstate highway

Target location—Five Oaks neighbourhood of Dayton Ohio

Access control—barricades erected in high crime thoroughfares

CPTED—changed access points to streets to make outsiders more noticeable

Manipulate the physical environment (built or landscape) to improve surveillance, define ownership of spaces and minimise conflict between users

Make target enclosures harder to penetrate to increase the perceived effort associated with a crime

Prevent potential offenders from being able to access locations where there are potential targets (property or people) or where provocation may occur

(Desirable effect)

Intervention—in the 12 month post-intervention period, the following crime types decreased:

  • violent crimes (-40%)
  • burglaries (-39%)
  • larceny (-25%)
  • vandalism (-21%)

Evidence of displacement

Evaluation focus—outcome

Evaluation design—before–after, some control

Research methods and source of data—resident surveys and police records

Level on SMS—2

Painter and Farrington (1999) in Farrington and Welsh (2006)

Target crime—residential burglary, vehicle crime (theft from and of), violence (primarily assault).

Nature of problem—high crime rates on housing estates.

Target location—local housing authority in Stoke-on-Trent, United Kingdom

Street lighting: Improved street lighting in high-crime areas

Manipulate the physical environment (built or landscape) to improve surveillance, define ownership of spaces and minimise conflict between users

Increase an offender’s perceived risk of crime, the perceived effort of crime or reduce the anticipated rewards of crime to discourage them from committing an offence

(Desirable effect)

Intervention v comparison—significant decline in violence crime in intervention area, over and above comparison area.

Intervention—43 percent decrease in overall crime. A 68 percent decrease in violent crimes. A 15 percent decrease in residential burglary

Comparison—two percent decrease in crime. A 39 percent decrease in violent crimes. Residential burglary increased by six percent

Adjacent—45 percent decrease in crime. A 66 percent decrease in violent crimes. A 20 percent decrease in residential burglary

Some evidence of diffusion of benefits

Evaluation focus—outcome

Evaluation design—before–after, control

Research methods and source of data—victim surveys and police records

Level on SMS—3

Inskeep & Goff (1974) in Welsh & Farrington (2007)

Target crime—robbery, assault and residential burglary

Nature of problem—residential neighbourhood with high crime rates

Target location: Portland, United States

Street lighting—improved street lighting in high-crime areas

Manipulate the physical environment (built or landscape) to improve surveillance, define ownership of spaces and minimise conflict between users

Increase an offender’s perceived risk of crime, the perceived effort of crime or reduce the anticipated rewards of crime to discourage them from committing an offence

(Null effect)

Intervention v comparison—no significant different between crime rates in the intervention and control areas

No evidence of displacement or diffusion of benefits

Evaluation focus—outcome

Evaluation design—before–after, control

Research methods and source of data—police records

Level on SMS—3

Sternhell (1977) in Welsh and Farrington (2007)

Target crime—residential burglary, vehicle theft and assault

Target location—residential and commercial areas, Orleans, United States

Street lighting—improved street lighting in high-crime areas

Manipulate the physical environment (built or landscape) to improve surveillance, define ownership of spaces and minimise conflict between users

Increase an offender’s perceived risk of crime, the perceived effort of crime or reduce the anticipated rewards of crime to discourage them from committing an offence

(Null effect)

Intervention v comparison—no significant different between crime rates in the intervention and control areas

No evidence of displacement

Evaluation focus—outcome

Evaluation design—before–after, control

Research methods and source of data—police records

Level on SMS—3