University students' support to penalty enhancement for hate crime

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University students' support to penalty enhancement for hate crime

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Publication Article, peer reviewed scientific
Title University students' support to penalty enhancement for hate crime
Author Mellgren, Caroline
Date 2016
English abstract
Laws enabling penalty enhancement for crimes motivated by hostility or prejudice, i.e. hate crimes, have become common in many countries. However, laws as a measure against hate crimes have been contested, because their deterrent effect has gained none or little support in the (limited) literature, and they may be considered symbolic rather than deterrent. This study investigates attitudes towards penalty enhancement for hate crimes. Previous empirical investigations of this question are scarce. The material consists of a survey targeting nearly 3000 Swedish university students. Support for penalty enhancement for hate crime was moderate, shown by one third of the total sample. Results supported the premise that students belonging to a minority group, assumed to be at risk of hate crime victimization, agree to a higher extent of penalty enhancement than students belonging to the majority. Previous victimization experiences and worrying about being victimized were not significantly related to punitive attitudes. However, respondents who perceived the risk of victimization to be increased for minority groups in general were more likely to support penalty enhancement for hate crime. Findings should be confirmed in a nationally representative sample since the public’s perspective on the criminal justice system is important for understanding and dealing with the social problem of hate crime.
DOI https://doi.org/10.1080/14043858.2016.1260328 (link to publisher's fulltext.)
Publisher Taylor & Francis
Host/Issue Journal of Scandinavian Studies in Criminology and Crime Prevention;2
Volume 17
ISSN 1404-3858
Pages 185-202
Language eng (iso)
Subject Hate crime
Humanities/Social Sciences
Research Subject Categories::SOCIAL SCIENCES
Handle http://hdl.handle.net/2043/21722 Permalink to this page
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