Crime at Convenience Stores

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Reports and Publications
June 2011
Charles M. Katz, Ph.D., Michael D. White, Ph.D., Shirin Marvastian, M.A., David E. Choate, M.A.

Over the past year anecdotal evidence from media reports has suggested disproportionate levels of crime and violence occurring at Circle K stores in the Phoenix metropolitan area. Criminal events depicted by the media often took the form of individuals engaging in some type of minor criminal activity at a Circle K, and the events spiraling out of control. For example, a quick search on the internet brings up several examples over the past year of individuals attempting to steal beer or other items from a Circle K, and the incident ending with individuals being shot or stabbed. As a consequence of these observations, and subsequent federally sponsored research examining problem places in Glendale, Arizona, faculty and staff from the Center for Violence Prevention and Community Safety (CVPCS) at Arizona State University (ASU) reached out to several valley police departments and requested official data to more systematically examine this potential problem. This report presents our findings and our recommendations.