Why do women commit less crimes than men?

Published on 14th January 2023 by

Why do women commit less crimes than men?

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Official statistics show that:

  • 80% of convicted offenders in England and Wales are men
  • By the age of 40, 32% of males have a criminal record,
  • men are more likely to be repeat offenders, commit more serious crimes and to have longer criminal careers than women
  • men are 15 times more likely to be convicted of homicide
  • the most common crime committed by women is shoplifting

Some sociologist and criminologists question if official statistics our giving us a true picture of the extent of gender differences in crime. They claim that official statistics underestimate the amount of female as against male offending:

1. Typically female crimes such as shoplifting and property crimes that are less likely to be reported than violent or sexual crimes which are more often committed by men.
2. Women are more likely to be let off lightly compared lightly compared two males committing crimes.

• There are three main sociological theories which help to explain the relationship between women and offending:

Functionalist sex role theory
– Control theory (Heidensohn’s patriarchal controls and Carlen’s gender deals)
– and Liberation theory.

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