White and Mexican heritage elders’ crime victimization perspectives

Frances P. Bernat, Sara Alemán, Richard Gitelson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Prior research on the fear of crime among the elderly has shown that elders are more afraid of being a victim of crime than are younger persons and that such fears may vary depending upon where people reside. This study compares the level of fear of criminal victimization of elders living in three adjacent southwestern communities. White elders live in an age-restricted community within two of the studied communities. The third community is not age-restricted, and the elders who reside there are primarily of Mexican heritage. This study found that Mexican heritage elders expressed more fears associated with crime and victimization than did white elders. In studying gender differences, this study found no significant differences between the expressed level of fear of crime between male and female respondents. Nonetheless, most elders will undertake a variety of reasonable measures to protect themselves when they are home or go out, a finding that is consistent with previous research that studied white elders.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)41-65
Number of pages25
JournalJournal of Ethnicity in Criminal Justice
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - Dec 22 2003


  • Elders
  • Fear of crime
  • Gender
  • Race/ethnicity
  • Victimization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anthropology
  • Law


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