For the purpose of explaining why individuals participate in employee theft crimes, the researcher conducted a cross-sectional study over a period of four months.
To select the target population the researcher requested a list of adult offenders convicted of larceny crimes in the Waterford County Courts as the target population. These offenders were sentenced to the Waterford County Office of Probation. Chief Probation Officer Joseph Wells provided the researcher with a list of 4,000 adult offenders convicted of misdemeanor larceny crimes within the past four years in Waterford County. They were sentenced to a period of supervised probation. .
For the purpose of this research study, employee theft, also known as internal theft is defined as, the unauthorized taking of money, merchandise or services from one's employer. The term employee includes those working part-time, full-time and regular employees and managerial staff. As previously mentioned in the theoretical model, the researcher presented four independent variables that seek to explain why individuals are involved in employee theft crimes. Variable one, known as the lack of conventional values, summarized in the Social Bond theory by Travis Hirschi. Conventional values are recognized as the normal or acceptable behaviors recognized by law-abiding citizens. The absence or lack of these values makes and individual susceptible to committing criminal acts. Variable two is known as the negative influence of peers and summarized in principle three of Edwin Sutherland's Differential Association theory. For this research study, the negative influence of peers is recognized as pressure or compelling factors from one's peers including co-workers to participate in employee theft crimes despite the possibility of apprehension and punishment. The lack of management supervision, variable three, is recognized as the absence of adequate internal controls in the form of management staff persons.