University of Missouri - Saint Louis

The Graduate School


An oral examination in defense of the dissertation for the degree

Doctor of Philosophy in Criminology and Criminal Justice

Jennifer Gatewood Owens
M.A. in Criminal Justice, May, 2008, University of Nebraska at Omaha
B.S. in Criminal Justice, December, 2005 University of Nebraska at Omaha

Defining Stalking and Its Relationship to Other Forms of Violent and Property Victimization: An Analysis of NCVS Data



A large amount of research has been amassed on the causes and correlates of victimization, and while there is a growing understanding of stalking, there are two overarching limitations of stalking research. First, stalking is difficult to define, and the characterizations vary within the literature. As such, research is needed to understand how variations in the definition of stalking may change the correlates of victimization and limit the generalizability of findings across previous studies. Of particular interest is the role of fear and gender in shaping who is defined as a victim. Second, it is not yet clear if the predictors of stalking are similar to other types of victimizations because little research has compared stalking and other forms of victimization simultaneously. This research links two nationally representative samples of adults; the 2006 National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) and the 2006 Supplemental Victimization Survey (SVS), a one-time supplement to the NCVS that specifically assessed the nature and extent of stalking victimization. Results suggest that the definition of stalking matters in some contexts and prior research has potentially excluded stalking victims due to restrictive operationalizations. This research also finds that stalking is a unique type of victimization not captured by the annual NCVS victimization survey. Furthermore, the correlates of stalking, while similar in some respects, frequently differ from the correlates of violent and property victimizations. Avenues for future research, policy, and theoretical implications are addressed.


Date: April 23, 2013

Time:1:00 pm

Place:Jim Short Conference Room, 325 Lucas Hall


Defense of Dissertation Committee


Janet L. Lauritsen, Ph.D. (Chair)

Lee Ann Slocum, Ph.D.


Kristin Carbone-Lopez, Ph.D.

Lynn Addington, Ph.D.