|The inability to self-regulate through formal and informal mechanisms is the reason disorganized communities are thought to have high crime rates. In their study of community-level control, social disorganization theorists have largely ignored the impact of public, or state control on processes of community organization and subsequent opportunities for crime. This is because formal public controls are thought of as responses to crime. Yet, there clearly is a relationship between the use of informal and public control. In earlier papers we have shown that at the individual level, exposure to incarceration influences attitudes about informal social control, and at the aggregate level there is a curvliniear relationship between admissions to prison and crime (first a negative and then a positive effect). This paper explores the relationship between aggregate levels of incarceration, informal social control and crime in 103 Tallahassee, Florida neighborhoods. Data are drawn from a 1997 Leon County Neighborhoods and Crime survey of Leon County, Florida residents, which have been merged with 1990 Census data, incarceration convictions and releases and crime data.
(Return to Program Resources)