This article investigates different types of fear of crime as predictors for punitive attitudes. Using data from a Germany-wide representative survey (n = 1272) it examines the reliability and validity of survey instruments through confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) and uses structural equation modeling (SEM) to explain variations in the level of respondents’ punitive attitudes. The results show that different emotional and cognitive responses to crime have a distinctive effect on the formation of punitive attitudes. These effects vary significantly depending on socio-demographic factors and assumed purposes of punishment. A crucial observation of the study is that men’s fear of crime works in a different way in the formation of punitive attitudes than women’s fear of crime. The perceived locus of control for the crime threat is a possible explanation for this difference.
European Journal on Criminal Policy and Research – Springer Journals
Published: Jun 9, 2017
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