BJS: Bureau of Justice Statistics

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Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS)
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ADVANCE FOR RELEASE AT 10:00 A.M. ET Bureau of Justice Statistics
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 20, 2016                          Contact: Kara McCarthy (202) 307-1241
HTTP://WWW.BJS.GOV/ After hours: (202) 598-9320

BJS’S CRIME VICTIMIZATION SURVEY SHOWS RATE OF OVERALL VIOLENT CRIME REMAINED FLAT FROM 2014 TO 2015; PROPERTY CRIME RATE DECREASED

WASHINGTON – From 2014 to 2015, there was no statistically significant change in the overall rate of violent crime (rape or sexual assault, robbery, aggravated assault and simple assault), the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) announced today. The rate of violent victimization was 18.6 victimizations per 1,000 persons age 12 or older in 2015, which was significantly lower than the rate in 1993 (79.8 per 1,000), the oldest year of data currently available from the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS).  

From 2014 to 2015, the NCVS rate of overall property crime (household burglary, theft and motor vehicle theft) decreased from 118.1 victimizations per 1,000 households to 110.7 per 1,000. A decline in theft accounted for most of this decrease.

The NCVS collects information from a nationally representative sample of U.S. households on nonfatal crimes reported and not reported to police. The NCVS estimate of violence varies from the FBI's Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program because the UCR includes only crimes reported to police and the two programs measure an overlapping, but not identical, set of offenses and use different methodologies.

In 2015, an estimated 2.7 million people, or nearly one percent of all persons age 12 or older in the United States, experienced one or more violent victimizations. An estimated 10.0 million households, 7.6 percent of all households, experienced one or more property victimizations.

In 2015, 47 percent of violent victimizations and 55 percent of serious violent victimizations (rape or sexual assault, robbery and aggravated assault) were reported to police. From 2014 to 2015, there were no statistically significant changes in the percentages of violent or serious violent victimizations reported to police. However, property victimizations reported to police declined from 37 to 35 percent. The percentage of household burglaries reported to police and motor vehicle thefts reported to police also declined from 2014 to 2015.

Other findings include—

  • From 2014 to 2015, no statistically significant changes were detected in the rates of serious violent crime or intimate partner violence (victimizations committed by current or former spouses, boyfriends or girlfriends).
  • In 2015, the percentage of violent crime victimizations in which assistance was received from a victim service agency was 9.1 percent, which was similar to the percentage in 2014.
  • The rate of violent victimization committed against males decreased from 21.1 victimizations per 1,000 in 2014 to 15.9 per 1,000 in 2015.
  • From 2014 to 2015, there were no statistically significant differences in the rates of violent or serious violent crime by victims' race or Hispanic origin, marital status or household income.
  • In 2015, the rates of violent crime and property crime were higher in urban areas than in suburban and rural areas.

The report, Criminal Victimization, 2015 (NCJ 250180), was written by BJS statisticians Jennifer L. Truman and Rachel E. Morgan. The report, related documents and additional information about BJS's statistical publications and programs can be found on the BJS website at http://www.bjs.gov/.

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The Office of Justice Programs (OJP), headed by Assistant Attorney General Karol V. Mason, provides federal leadership in developing the nation's capacity to prevent and control crime, administer justice and assist victims. OJP has six components: the Bureau of Justice Assistance; the Bureau of Justice Statistics; the National Institute of Justice; the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention; the Office for Victims of Crime; and the Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering and Tracking. More information about OJP can be found at http://www.ojp.gov.



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