The decision-making process on the basis of property crime. Qualitative analysis of in-depth interviews Cover Image

Proces decyzyjny na przykładzie przestępczości przeciwko mieniu. Analiza jakościowa wywiadów pogłębionych.
The decision-making process on the basis of property crime. Qualitative analysis of in-depth interviews

Author(s): Agnieszka Tajak-Bobek
Subject(s): Cognitive Psychology, Criminology
Published by: Fundacja Pro Scientia Publica
Keywords: decision-making process; property crime; qualitative research; narratives; cognitive distortions;

Summary/Abstract: Aim. The aim of the article is to present an analysis of the criminal decision-making process in a group of people who have committed property crimes. The research subject was to analyse how perpetrators perceive their criminal decisions and their own role in this process. Methods. The research was conducted in the form of a qualitative analysis of narrative interviews performed in Polish prisons on a group composed of 45 first-time offenders and recidivists who had committed theft, burglary and robbery. The theoretical research model complies with the paradigm of a criminal being treated as a rational, but simultaneously cognitively limited person. Results. The criminal decision-making process differs depending on the type of crime committed. Despite this, the process can be divided into three stages: pre-decision activities, central activities and post-decision activities. Different cognitive distortions appear at each decision-making stage. Conclusions. There is no universal decision-making model for all property crime perpetrators. Criminals experience cognitive distortions that interfere with rational decisions (which in effect, facilitate breaking the law) at each stage of the decision-making process. Research value. The research results presented fill in significant gaps in the literature on the subject, in particular Polish. The research has made it possible to identify and describe factors correlated with committing crimes, which are important from the perspective of rehabilitation activities.

  • Issue Year: 2022
  • Issue No: 12
  • Page Range: 29-46
  • Page Count: 18
  • Language: Polish