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Publication Black Victims of Violent Crime

Erika Harrell, Ph.D.

August 9, 2007    NCJ 214258

Presents findings about violent crime experienced by non-Hispanic blacks. Data on nonfatal violent victimization (rape/sexual assault, robbery, aggravated and simple assault) are drawn from the National Crime Victimization Survey. Data on homicides are drawn from the FBI's Uniform Crime Reporting Program’s Supplementary Homicide Reports. Comparisons are made with the victimization experience of other racial/ethnic groups. Findings include violent victimization rates by victim characteristics. Also examined are crime characteristics, including weapon use, offender race, police reporting, and police response to violent crime incidents. Trends in violent victimization are also discussed.


  • Blacks were victims of an estimated 805,000 nonfatal violent crimes and of about 8,000 homicides in 2005.
  • Blacks accounted for 13% of the U.S. population in 2005, but were victims in 15% of all nonfatal violent crimes and nearly half of all homicides.
  • During the 5-year period from 2001 to 2005, the average annual rate of nonfatal violent victimization against blacks was 29 victimizations per 1,000 persons age 12 or older. For whites the rate was 23 per 1,000, and for Hispanics, 24 per 1,000.

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National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS)

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