1. Phone surveys or written questionnaires asking individuals about their past involvement in
various forms of criminal behaviour.
2. Valuable source of information for victimless crimes such as rug use.
3. Independent of police and citizen reporting practices.
1. Inaccurate or incomplete reporting
2. Reporting BIAS
3. No Independent measure if validity.
Patterns of crime in Canada
1. Crime rate comparable to what it was in 1973.
2. Majority of crimes are non-violent. E.g. 2, 5 million code offences in Canada 12% are
violent, 48 % property and the rest is other. Homicide=.002% violent crimes in
3. The majority of violent crimes are perpetrated by non-strangers; 73% strangers, 37
family, 37 friends and acquaintances.
4. Most crimes do not involve the use of a weapon or involve serious injury; 73% have
5. What are my chances of becoming victim of violent crime?
Gender: equally at risk, except sexual assault.
Age: personal victimization; decreases when getting older. Highest risk – 15-
24... 65+ = lower risk
Marital status, single or divorced
Occupation- unemployed people and students.
Activities; more time outside at night the greater the risk of being victimized.
House hold income: lower than 50,000- risk of victimization
Residence: urban areas are more risky.
The vast majority are not the serious violent dangerous crime that fit the public’s
idea, minor incidents involving neither serious crimes nor extensive injury. The use and abuse of crime statistics.
1. Role of statistics in claims-making; the process through which activities and
people are defined as social problems requiring immediate intervention. Requiring
new laws or tougher penalties.
2. Forms of abuse
Use of aggregate measures; the reference to general categories of
criminal behaviour – combine different types of crime. E.G violent youth
crime & its severe forms of youth crime. Fails to recognize that youth
crime includes homicide, sexual assa