For Second Consecutive Year Violent And Property Crime Rates Increased In 2012

PR Newswire

Increases driven by simple assaults and crime not reported to police

WASHINGTON, Oct. 24, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Violent and property crime rates rose for U.S. residents in 2012, the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) announced today. These estimates are based on data from the annual National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) which has collected information from victims of crime age 12 or older since 1973.

The violent crime rate (which includes rape or sexual assault, robbery, aggravated and simple assault) rose from 22.6 victimizations per 1,000 persons in 2011 to 26.1 in 2012. Crime not reported to police and simple assault accounted for the majority of this increase. Violent victimizations not reported to police increased from 10.8 per 1,000 persons in 2011 to 14.0 in 2012, and simple assault rates rose from 15.4 to 18.2 per 1,000. The rate of violent crime reported to police did not change significantly from 2011 to 2012.

The rate of property crime (which includes burglary, theft and motor vehicle theft) increased from 138.7 per 1,000 households in 2011 to 155.8 in 2012, primarily due to an increase in theft. The rate of theft victimization increased from 104.2 per 1,000 households in 2011 to 120.9 in 2012.

In 2012, 44 percent of violent victimizations and 54 percent of serious violent victimizations were reported to police. These percentages were not statistically different from 2011.  The percentage of property victimizations reported to police declined from 37 percent in 2011 to 34 percent in 2012.

There was no significant change in the percentage of crime victims receiving assistance from 2011 to 2012.  In 2012, about 8 percent of violent crime victims received assistance from public or private victim service agencies that provide support for physical or emotional recovery, guidance through the criminal justice system, or assistance with obtaining restitution. Rape or sexual assault victims (22 percent) were more likely to receive assistance than victims of robbery (6 percent), aggravated assault (8 percent) or simple assault (8 percent).

Other findings from the report include the following:

  • The rates of domestic violence, intimate partner violence, and violence involving an injury or firearm violence did not change significantly from 2011 to 2012.
  • Violent crime rates increased slightly in 2012 for blacks but remained stable for whites and Hispanics.
  • In 2012, residents in urban areas continued to experience the highest rate of violent crime. Residents in the West had higher rates of violent victimization than residents in other regions of the country.
  • The composition of violent crime remained stable in 2012. From 1993 to 2012, simple assaults made up approximately 70 percent of all violent victimizations.

The NCVS is the largest data collection on criminal victimization independent of crimes reported by law enforcement agencies to the FBI's Uniform Crime Reporting Program (UCR)—the nation's other key measure of the extent and nature of crime in the United States. During 2012, about 92,390 households and 162,940 persons age 12 or older were interviewed for the NCVS. Since the NCVS interviews victims of crime, homicide is not included in these nonfatal victimization estimates.

The report, Criminal Victimization, 2012 (NCJ 243389), was written by BJS statisticians Jennifer L. Truman, Lynn Langton and Michael Planty. More information on criminal victimization from 1993 to 2012 is available from the NCVS Victimization Analysis Tool on the BJS website at http://www.bjs.gov/. The report, related documents and additional information about the Bureau of Justice Statistics' statistical publications and programs can be found on the BJS website.

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.

SOURCE Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs

View Comments (0)