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      Exploring the Immediate Effects of COVID-19 Containment Policies on Crime: an Empirical Analysis of the Short-Term Aftermath in Los Angeles


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          This work investigates whether and how COVID-19 containment policies had an immediate impact on crime trends in Los Angeles. The analysis is conducted using Bayesian structural time-series and focuses on nine crime categories and on the overall crime count, daily monitored from January 1st 2017 to March 28th 2020. We concentrate on two post-intervention time windows—from March 4th to March 16th and from March 4th to March 28th 2020—to dynamically assess the short-term effects of mild and strict policies. In Los Angeles, overall crime has significantly decreased, as well as robbery, shoplifting, theft, and battery. No significant effect has been detected for vehicle theft, burglary, assault with a deadly weapon, intimate partner assault, and homicide. Results suggest that, in the first weeks after the interventions are put in place, social distancing impacts more directly on instrumental and less serious crimes. Policy implications are also discussed.

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          The online version of this article (10.1007/s12103-020-09578-6) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

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          Most cited references44

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          The psychological impact of quarantine and how to reduce it: rapid review of the evidence

          Summary The December, 2019 coronavirus disease outbreak has seen many countries ask people who have potentially come into contact with the infection to isolate themselves at home or in a dedicated quarantine facility. Decisions on how to apply quarantine should be based on the best available evidence. We did a Review of the psychological impact of quarantine using three electronic databases. Of 3166 papers found, 24 are included in this Review. Most reviewed studies reported negative psychological effects including post-traumatic stress symptoms, confusion, and anger. Stressors included longer quarantine duration, infection fears, frustration, boredom, inadequate supplies, inadequate information, financial loss, and stigma. Some researchers have suggested long-lasting effects. In situations where quarantine is deemed necessary, officials should quarantine individuals for no longer than required, provide clear rationale for quarantine and information about protocols, and ensure sufficient supplies are provided. Appeals to altruism by reminding the public about the benefits of quarantine to wider society can be favourable.
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            Social Change and Crime Rate Trends: A Routine Activity Approach

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              Estimating causal effects of treatments in randomized and nonrandomized studies.


                Author and article information

                Am J Crim Justice
                Am J Crim Justice
                American Journal of Criminal Justice
                Springer US (New York )
                19 October 2020
                19 October 2020
                : 1-24
                [1 ]GRID grid.11696.39, ISNI 0000 0004 1937 0351, Department of Sociology and Social Research, , University of Trento, ; Trento, Italy
                [2 ]GRID grid.8142.f, ISNI 0000 0001 0941 3192, School of Political and Social Sciences, , Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, ; Milan, Italy
                [3 ]Transcrime – Joint Research Centre on Transnational Crime, Milan, Italy
                Author information
                © The Author(s) 2020

                Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.

                : 4 August 2020
                : 5 October 2020
                Funded by: Università degli Studi di Trento

                coronavirus,bayesian modelling,causal impact,routine activity theory,crime pattern theory,general strain theory


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