Academic journal article The Indonesian Journal of Geography

Spatio -Temporal Analysis of Urban Crime Pattern and Its Implication for Abuja Municipal Area Council, Nigeria

Academic journal article The Indonesian Journal of Geography

Spatio -Temporal Analysis of Urban Crime Pattern and Its Implication for Abuja Municipal Area Council, Nigeria

Article excerpt

1.Introduction

Different definitions exist for an urban area United Nations [2008], they also vary from one continent to another and from country to country on the basis of population, size of city, function or extent of built-up areas. It is a place-based characteristic that incorporates elements of population density, social and economic organisation, and the transformation of the natural environment into a built environment Weeks, J.R. [2010].

This transformation makes urban communities to have some unique characteristics among which are size, density of population, family, marriage, occupation, class extremes, social heterogeneity, social distance, system of interaction, mobility, materialism, individualism, to mention a few Lederbogen, F., Kirsch, P., Haddad, L., Streit, F., Tost, H., Schuch, P., et al. [2011]. This unique characteristic of urban areas has been known to generate so many problems some of which are fiscal problems Knauss, T. [2012], crowding Regoeczi, W. C. [2008], housing Massey, D. S., & Denton, N. A. [1993], homelessness Lee, B. A., Tyler, K. A., & Wright, J. D. [2010] , traffic and transportation Rosenthal, E. [2011], air pollution Stylianou, M., & Nicolich, M. J. [2009]., mental health problemsLederbogen, et al. [2011], public education and crime Lederbogen, et al. [2011]. Consequently, cities have been known to have much higher rates of violence and property crime than small towns or rural areas. Several of these problems stem directly from the fact that urban areas involve large numbers of people living in a relatively small amount of space Barkan, S.E [2016].

Crime is one of the major problems that accompany the development of modern society Ackerman W.V., and Murray A.T. [2004]. Crimes undermine the social fabric of society, by first eroding the sense of safety and security Danbazau, A.B. [1999]. Crime analysis, which is aimed at developing effective crime prevention strategies to combat crime, is yet to be fully developed in a developing country like Nigeria. This is in spite of the fact that organizations, especially in the developed countries of the world, are increasingly depending on Geographical Information System (GIS) and other statistical techniques for analytical modelling and real-world representation. This dependency has attracted law enforcement agencies to integrate different data types such as, crime statistics, location of crime and socio- demographic data in order to improve on crime analysis for effective crime prevention and control.

An effective crime analysis study using Geographic Information System (GIS) and other statistical techniques i s capable of providing the information required by policy makers and law enforcement officers. This will help analyze and make decisions by understanding areas of high crime rates (crime ¡hot spot) within a law enforcement or Police jurisdiction. The importance of the application of GIS in effective crime management is tied to a map which helps the c r i m i n a l j u s t i c e s y s t e m providers to visualize the location of crime incidents Saddler, D. [1999]. The ability to access and process information spatio-temporally with the aid of a map, also allows law enforcement agents to allocate resources quickly and more efficiently. This point was also underscored given the critical nature of law enforcement, information about the location of crime incident, suspect or victim is often crucial in determining the size and shape of resources to be deployed in a specific location Ratcliffe, J.H. & McCullagh, MJ [1998].

Crime occurrence is influenced by varied factors such as unequal distribution of resources, social class, income level, poverty level, population density, unemployment level, and other demographic factors Ratcliffe, J.H. & McCullagh, MJ (1998). When these social factors and crime data are integrated in a GIS environment, they assist in determining a pattern between crime and location. …

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