Reducing burglary by crackdown and consolidation

Millie, Andrew (2005). Reducing burglary by crackdown and consolidation. Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies and Management, 28(1) pp. 174–188.



Purpose - To assess whether a programme of “crackdown and consolidation” could lead to measurable and sustainable reductions in domestic burglary.
Design/methodology/approach - In 1998 the Home Office reducing burglary initiative was launched in England and Wales. Phase I comprised 63 projects; the evaluation of one such project based on crackdown and consolidation is considered here. The aim was to crack down on known burglary recidivists, and then consolidate any gains by engaging the local community and implementing various prevention measures. The article considers the background to the project, the history of the method and how it was applied in this instance. The plausibility of the view that this action led to reductions in offending is examined.
Findings - The project did not follow its original plan of a continuous cycle of crackdown and consolidation. However, the approach undoubtedly has the potential to work, although in this instance the consolidation served only to prolong the impact of the initial crackdown, rather than offer a sustainable solution.
Practical implications - There are financial and staffing implications of adopting a cycle of crackdown and consolidation. There also needs to be neighbourhood buy‐in – especially for the crackdown element – and early warning of changes in the burglary trend.
Originality/value - Whilst the concept of crackdown and consolidation has existed for some years, published accounts of it are limited. This article goes some way towards filling that gap by providing an evaluation of the method within an operational police setting.

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