Carjacking, streetlife and offender motivation

For all of the media attention it has received in the United States, Europe and elsewhere, carjacking remains an under-researched and poorly understood crime. In this article, we explore the decision-making processes of active carjackers in real-life settings and circumstances, focusing on the subje...

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Bibliographic Details
Main Author: Jacobs, Bruce A.
Contributors: Topalli, Volkan ; Wright, Richard
Format: Electronic/Print Article
Language:English
Published: 2003
In: The British journal of criminology
Year: 2003, Volume: 43, Issue: 4, Pages: 673-688
Online Access: doi
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Availability in Tübingen:Present in Tübingen.
IFK: In: Z 7
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Summary:For all of the media attention it has received in the United States, Europe and elsewhere, carjacking remains an under-researched and poorly understood crime. In this article, we explore the decision-making processes of active carjackers in real-life settings and circumstances, focusing on the subjective foreground conditions that move such offenders from an unmotivated state to one in which they are determined to act. Drawing from semi-structured ethnographic interviews with 28 active carjackers in St Louis, Missouri, we argue that while the decision to commit a carjacking stems most directly from a situated interaction between particular sorts of perceived opportunities and particular sorts of perceived needs and desires, this decision is activated, mediated, and shaped by participation in urban street culture
ISSN:0007-0955
DOI:10.1093/bjc/43.4.673