ERIC Number: ED331647
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990-Jan
Reference Count: N/A
Crime and Vandalism on Farms in Tennessee: Farmer Opinions about and Experience with. Staff Paper.
Cleland, Charles L.
Crime and vandalism on farms is possibly a symptom of rural youth delinquency and of concern to rural educators. This study of experience of Tennessee farmers with crime and vandalism is intended to provide a measure of the present social condition of rural society. Questionnaires were mailed to a weighted sample of farm operators in all Tennessee counties. The 531 usable returns represented a 75% return rate, a very high response for a lengthy mailed questionnaire. Respondents were 100% white and 94% male with a median age of 60 and a median education of high school graduate. Median farm size was 315 acres, over twice the median size of all Tennessee farms. Among responding farmers, 24% reported some vandalism on their farms in the preceding 12 months, 9% reported a burglary, and 17% reported a theft. Vandalism damage ranged as high as $8,000, with a mean of $644. Burglary losses ranged up to $15,000, with averages of $1,343 for house, $758 for barn, and $514 for other farm buildings. Losses from theft ranged up to $6,000, but were generally small. About 54% of farmers felt the crime and vandalism situation had remained the same in the last 2 years, while 42% felt it had gotten worse. Only 19% had insurance or security devices, but most took some form of protective action. Larger farm operators tend to feel that the Sheriff was not thorough in handling crimes on farms and that the court was too lenient with the convicted. Information about crime prevention came from both institutional and personal sources. Stiffer penalties and more frequent patrolling by police were endorsed for improving the situation. This report contains 23 data tables of responses to survey questions. (SV)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Numerical/Quantitative Data; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Tennessee Univ., Knoxville. Agricultural Experiment Station.
Identifiers: Farms; Tennessee
Note: This study is part of Southern Regional Project S-193, Victimization and Prevention of Rural Crime in the South. An earlier version of this paper was presented at the Annual Meeting of the Southern Rural Sociological Association (Little Rock, AR, February 3-7, 1990).