The notion of ‘fear of crime’ forms the basis of some critical discussions in criminology; however, the concept appears to show little in the way of consistency over time, location, victimisation, crime level and/or individual differences. This article reports the findings of a preliminary study designed to test the applicability of authoritarian theory to understanding the concept of fear of crime. With [normative] fear being a prominent component in authoritarian research and also featuring in contemporary criminological literature, it was hypothesised that there would be a relationship between authoritarian attitudes/predispositions and fear of crime. In accordance with the literature, it was hypothesised that fear of crime would represent itself differently according to the social environment in which it is experienced. Results indicated that more authoritarian residents from a rural area were concerned about offenders travelling into their community to offend, whereas there were no differences among urban dwellers. The findings are discussed in the context of the strong in-group/out-group bias of the authoritarian.