Degree Name

MA (Master of Arts)


Criminal Justice and Criminology

Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Larry S. Miller

Committee Members

David W. Holleran III, Michael C. Braswell


This study measured police officers perception of the validity of General Theory of Crime. Using a sample of 117 officers and an adapted version of the Grasmick et al. (1993) self-control scale, this study measures the level of agreement officers exhibit that low self-control traits are present in property and violent offenders. Measurement is also performed to determine variation in officers agreement based on the personal characteristics gender, age, education, experience, and rank.

Findings indicate officers show agreement with self-control items across the six dimensions of self control traits, as well as significant variation in agreement with the property offender self-control scale based on gender. Analysis on individual items of the property and violent offender self-control scales indicates significant variation in agreement on several items based on personal characteristics. Conclusions demonstrate the need for further studies measuring police perception of offenders and the validity of criminological theories. Limitations of this study are also discussed.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.