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ERIC Number: ED076923
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1972
Pages: 6
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
Crime, Commitment and the Responsive Bystander.
Moriarty, Thomas
The paper describes a field experiment conducted at Jones Beach, New York, to determine (1) how responsive are individuals who witness a crime, and (2) under what conditions will bystanders take action to prevent a crime. The major independent variable in this study was the degree of prior commitment to the victim; whether or not the subject had agreed to watch the victim's belongings. Results obtained from the 56 subjects placed in the experimental conditions indicate that in the absence of prior commitment to the victim, only 20% of the subjects were responsive; under conditions of commitment, the result was clearly reversed and 95% of the subjects were responsive and intervened in the theft. The author feels that the dramatic effect of even mild commitment on the part of the bystander is a positive, heartening result at a point in time when evidence of public apathy and indifference abound. (Author/SES)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: N/A
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A