Date of Award

Spring 2010

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Sociology & Criminal Justice


Applied Sociology

Committee Director

Allison T. Chappell

Committee Member

Ruth Triplett

Committee Member

Garland White

Call Number for Print

Special Collections LD4331.S62 A46 2010


Fear of crime has been a major research topic over the past several decades. However, multiple explanations have been proposed and no clear theoretical model exists. Building on existing research, this study attempts to build a crime type-specific theoretical model of fear. In particular, the predictive power of three theoretical models is explored. This study addresses several methodological shortcomings by measuring offense type-specific, emotionally-based fear of violent and property crime. The results suggest that the predictors of each type of fear vary, and some theoretical models are a better explanation of one type of fear than the other. Overall, the models are a better fit with fear of violent crime than fear of property crime. The vulnerability model is more strongly related to fear of property crime, while the social integration model is more strongly related to fear of violent crime. Implications and suggestions for future research are discussed.


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