The overlap of victimisation and offending


The circuitous nature of victimisation and offending.

The circuitous nature of victimisation and offending.

The overlap of victimisation and offending. Looking at victims of violence desisting from crime and reaffirming social bonds. (Work, routine; Something to live for again; Feeling of self worth; Familial reconnections, Sense of being, Reconnecting bonds)


The overlap between victimisation and offending and PTSD.


The overlap of victimisation and offending in renowned low socio-economic areas with regards to mental health.


The overlap between victimisation and offending in marginilised urban areas renowned for sectarian and territorial gang behaviour in the West of Scotland. Specifically renowned and run down hotspots (high poverty stricken areas).





Other Theories



1. Individuals who have been victims of violence desisting from crime and reaffirming social bonds in renowned low socio-economic areas.


2. Individuals who experience more serious victimisations more likely to offend (Self-Help Theory) and join gangs for support of fear of another attack.




Previous Research and Methodologies



Investigating the implications that can arise from a victim of crime is a delicate subject – even for the benefits of scientific research (Crighton, 2010). Subsequently an important aspect of studying a victim of crime is that they have rights and they have been subject to a social injustice, therefore is must not be assumed that criminogenic incidents are simply a misfortune (Crighton, 2010). When researching a topic with this level of sensitivity one must not fall into the trap of voyeuristically objectifying events of this magnitude (Sontag, 2003). It is certainly not the researchers intention by merely a by-product of systematic data collection (Crighton, 2010). Furthermore, how does an individual provide even a modicum of truth that their research is based on altruistic intent? Surely, the aim of most research is to find significant patterns of results (Crighton, 2010) Perhaps, due to this difficult balance, there has been lack of research in the area of victimisation and offender violence (Crighton, 2010). However, there has been a significant switch in focus in the past century and now research into this area is becoming slightly more prolific – although there is still a dearth of research in this particular area (Crighton, 2010)


Consequently, most of the research on violence tends to bifurcate into two separate groups of individuals: the group that inflicts violence – the offenders, and the group that are subject to harm from violent behaviour – the victims (Posick, 2013) Moreover, from the research that has looked into the overlap of victimisation and offenders – there is a revelation that implicates a commonality between offenders and victims ranging from personal characteristics to experiences with crime (Posick, 2013). In fact, some researchers (e.g. Lauritsen, Sampson & Laub, 1991) have argued that it is difficult to understand offending or victimisation without understanding both. Thus, most recent research is beginning to seriously consider the relationship between offending and victimisation along with the explanations of each.


An important link between offending and victimisation is the social setting, the contextual environment (Posich, 2013). Luckenbill (1977) and Katz (1988) found that location and social interaction could possibly predetermine who is more likely to become a victim and who is likely to become an offender within a particular violent event. For example, many times the initial offender becomes the ultimate victim and vice versa (Apel & Burrow, 2011). Furthermore, Schreck (1999) examined the cycle of violence and how this can have a major impact on view victims and offenders as similar groups of individuals. Major theories of victimisation such as lifestyles and routine activity theory (Cohen & Felson, 1979) offer powerful insights and explanations of offending typology as well (Miethe & Meier, 1994). Similarly, salient theories of delinquency and crime, such as self-control, strain, and criminal subcultures also offer expandable explanations for victimisation (Siegel, 2010).


If offending is related to victimisation, and thus victimisation to offending, then it stands to reason that there may be similar explanations of both outcomes. To explore this possibility, researchers are beginning to extend explanations of crime to additionally account for victimisation. Empirical research exists for extending three of the most popular approaches to explaining crime to also explain victimisation: Control theories, learning theories and strain theories. These approaches for explaining crime have been utilised, conceptually and empirically, for explaining victimisation. Also, other particular theories of interest are; repeat victimization, victim precipitation and deviant place theory (Siegel, 2010).




New Angle On Current Research



The point of departure in this research is the possibility that an offenders experiences as a crime victim – depending on the seriousness of the assault – might motivate them to rethink and re-evaluate their chosen path of crime and violence. Or conversely, whether victims of violent attacks seek to engage in certain forms of violent behaviour as a form of “self-help” (an eye for an eye [a tooth for a tooth]) (Posick, 2008). Violent self-help is conceptualised to encompass gang membership, weapon carrying, and aggravated assault (Posick, 2008). This could stem from the whole “a friend in need is a friend indeed” element of one feeling more secure and having less chance of a similar attack being carried out against them (Posick, 2008).










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