Journal of Penal Law and Criminology
Spatiotemporal Analysis of Stadium-Related Theft: An English Case-StudyDerya Tekin, Justin Kurland
Academic studies on football-related crimes have predominantly focused on violent crimes and fans engaged in these crimes. Unlike these studies which may be deemed a reflection of the traditional criminology in the football context, this paper examines the crime patterns focused on where and when theft crimes might occur on match days and why such patterns might emerge. Routine activities theory and crime pattern theory which are two related theories of environmental criminology provide a theoretical framework for the study. These two theories successfully reveal how the components of the social and physical environment provide the necessary conditions for stadium-related theft. Methodologically, for the spatial analysis of theft crimes, the methods of Kernel Density Estimation and spatial permutation test are employed; for the temporal analysis, a “match adjusted temporal analysis” is developed. Using the hotspotting technique around the Elland Road Stadium of Leeds United football team, it is suggested that theft crimes are not randomly distributed in time (match days and non-match days) and space. The risk of theft (per unit of time) is found to be particularly elevated at certain locations near to the stadium on match days, and for a window of time before, during and after matches take place. Analysing the spatial and temporal dimensions of stadium-related theft crime is likely to provide guidance about when and where to deploy officers by informing intelligence services.
Stadyum İlişkili Hırsızlık Suçunun MekânsalZamansal Analizi: İngiliz Örnekleminde Olay İncelemesiDerya Tekin, Justin Kurland
Futbola ilişkin akademik çalışmalar, çoğunlukla, şiddet suçlarını ve bu suçları işleyen taraftarları konu edinmiştir. Geleneksel kriminolojinin futbol kontekstine bir yansıması olarak düşünülebilecek bu çalışmalardan farklı olarak bu araştırma, hırsızlık suçlarının maç günlerinde nerede ve ne zaman ortaya çıkabileceğine odaklanan suç desenlerini ve bu desenlerin neden ortaya çıkabileceğini incelemektedir. Çevresel kriminolojinin birbiriyle bağlantılı teorilerinden rutin aktiviteler teorisi ile suç deseni teorisi, bu çalışmanın teorik çerçevesini oluşturmaktadır. Bu iki teori sosyal ve fiziksel çevrenin bileşenlerinin stadyum ilişkili hırsızlık suçu için gerekli şartları nasıl sağladığını başarılı bir şekilde göstermektedir. Metodolojik olarak hırsızlık suçlarının mekânsal analizi için Kernel Yoğunluk Tahmini ve uzaysal permütasyon testi kullanılmış, zamansal analiz içinse bir “maç ayarlı zamansal analiz” geliştirilmiştir. Leeds United futbol takımının Elland Road Stadyumu çevresinde sıcak noktalama tekniği uygulanarak hırsızlık suçlarının zamanda (maç günlerinde ve maç olmayan günlerde) ve mekânda rastgele dağılmadığı ortaya konulmuştur. Stadyum ilişkili hırsızlık suçlarının zamansal ve mekânsal analizi, istihbarat hizmetlerine bilgi sağlayarak güvenlik görevlilerinin ne zaman ve nerede konuşlanması gerektiği konusunda bir rehber olarak kullanılabilecektir.
Crime associated with football dates back to the Middle-Ages. There have been diverse attempts at explanation and prevention, which go back just as far and largely mirror the concerns of traditional criminology insofar as the focus has been on underlying biological developmental, social and political conditions thought liable to foster the motivation of “hooligans”. However, little exists in the way of empirical research to determine whether these explanations are sufficient or whether preventive interventions have been effective. The problems persist and anecdotal evidence suggests that crime events other than just violence are associated with football matches continue within and beyond stadiums. In this paper we adopt a novel perspective that utilizes the framework of environmental criminology whose principle concern is patterns of crime events focusing not on who engages in crime but on where and when crime occurs on football match days and why such patterns might emerge. The approach is also pragmatic and so findings are interpreted in terms of what can be done in the relatively short term to deal with football-related crime. The paper is organized as follows. First, we briefly discuss the history of interventions to suppress the game and the associated violence often associated with the game. Second, we discuss two theoretical frameworks, which are routine activities theory and crime pattern theory, and how they might inform our understanding of patterns of crime in and around football grounds and briefly indicate how these frameworks have been applied to forecast and prevent crime. The first, “routine activity theory” provides insight into why and where crime might occur on football match days and proposes that crime is dependent on the convergence in space and time of (1) a likely offender (someone motivated to commit crime), (2) a suitable target (someone or something that the likely offender will be attracted to offend against) and (3) the lack of a capable guardian (someone who is able and empowered to protect the target). Changes in the availability of any of these groups affect the likelihood of crime. Crime pattern theory, on the other hand, focuses on spatial patterns of crime and how they emerge. Offenders, like everyone else, engage in routinized patterns of activity, repeatedly travelling to and from various nodes of activity, such as work, school, home, or entertainment facilities. This regularity of movement leads people to develop activity spaces consisting of their activity nodes and the routes between them with which they become familiar. Potential offenders develop an awareness of criminal opportunities within these activity/awareness spaces, which furnishes them with knowledge as to the likely risks, effort and rewards associated with exploiting them. The theory suggests that a crime could occur as a result of the interaction between offender and victim at a number of activity nodes (pub, fast-food restaurant and stadium) or the paths between them. When matches are played the change in the ecology of the areas around stadiums may facilitate the confluence of many potential victim/offender activity spaces that under normal conditions would not occur. Third, we address some questions about patterns of stadium-related crime events such as, “Do hotspots of football-related crime emerge around stadiums on match days and, if so, where?” and, related to this, “Do such hotspots (if they occur) appear in the same places (and times) on match and non-match days”? To address these questions and illustrate the utility of the approach, an empirical example related to theft offences in and around a stadium, the Elland Road Stadium of Leeds United football team, is presented. Methodologically, for the spatial analysis of theft crimes, the methods of Kernel Density Estimation and spatial permutation test are employed; for the temporal analysis, a “match adjusted temporal analysis” is developed. Last, the results, their implications, and methodological issues associated with traditional hotspotting techniques are discussed. The research suggests that theft crimes are not randomly distributed in time (match days and non-match days) and space. The risk of theft (per unit of time) is found to be particularly elevated at certain locations near to the stadium on match days, and for a window of time before, during and after matches take place. Analysing the spatial and temporal dimensions of stadium-related theft crime is likely to provide guidance about when and where to deploy officers by informing intelligence services.