The space-time risk window associated with near-repeat burglary patterns would seem to present a natural opportunity for burglary prevention efforts. However, constraints associated with the reporting of, police response to, and space-time patterning of burglaries can reduce the crime prevention potential of such efforts. To better estimate the crime prevention potential of focusing on near-repeat burglaries, we studied burglary patterns in 10 U.S. cities. Descriptive aspatial and spatial statistics were used to answer the research questions. Significant space-time clustering does not necessarily indicate an actionable near-repeat problem. Police analysts and researchers should also consider the crime prevention potential of focusing on near repeats-in other words, the proportion of burglaries that are preventable. The results of this test provide new information to guide the implementation and evaluation of crime prevention efforts focused on near-repeat events.
Quantifying crime prevention potential of near-repeat burglary