In “Do Victims of Crime Fear Crime More? Empirical Evidence from
the Survey of Living Conditions (2005) of Trinidad and Tobago”, authors Sandra
Sookram, George Saridakis, and Anne-Marie Mohammed use micro level data (i.e.

part of a national survey) to analyze whether victims of crime fear crime more
than non-victims. The authors hypothesize that one’s own victimization
experience, or exposure to others who have been victimized (eg. through family
or friends) may cause one to update their perceptions of the likelihood of
further victimization or its consequences (Sookram, Saridakis and Mohammed,

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            The primary research method used is a national survey: namely, Section
9 (Personal Safety and Crime) of the Survey of Living Conditions (SLC) 2005. The
SLC is administered to a random sample of households from different districts
in Trinidad and Tobago. Using this survey, the authors created tables to
compare and contrast the responses to different questions from individuals
living in different regions of Trinidad and Tobago (i.e. North, South, Central,
and Tobago).

an analysis of the survey, it was found that almost 80% of survey respondents
said the household was fearful of crime. 9% of respondents admitted
victimization within the last year – and from that 9%, only 35% of reported
incidents to the police were followed by police action. The remaining individuals
either reported to the police but no action was taken (37%) or did not report
the crime at all (28%). When compared to those not victims of crime, whether action
was taken regarding a victim’s reporting of an incident did not affect the
likelihood of a victim of crime being fearful of crime; however, those who did
not report the crime, or those who reported the crime but no action was taken,
have a higher likelihood of being fearful of crime in comparison to those who
had not been victims of crime – suggesting that whether police do or do not
take action severely influences fear regarding crime (Sookram, Saridakis and
Mohammed, 2011).

all, the results of this study illustrate that past victimization, notably when
no police action is taken or the crime is not reported, sustains and heightens
the fear of crime. This has a contentious correlation with the police: as of
late, there has been a significant decrease in the detection rate from 33% in
1970 to 19% in 2007. Thus, if the effectiveness of the police increased, the
public would feel more confident about reporting crime. (Sookram, Saridakis and
Mohammed, 2011).

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