NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Violent Crime Falls Again

July 19, 1999

The nation's rate of violent crime and property crimes last year hit their lowest point since the Justice Department started keeping those statistics in 1973.

According to the National Crime Victimization Survey conducted by the Bureau of Justice Statistics:

  • Violent crime rates fell 7 percent last year and overall property crime rates fell 12.5 percent between 1997 and 1998.
  • U.S. residents age 12 or older were the victims of 31 million violent and property crimes in 1998 -- an 11.4 percent drop from 35 million crimes in 1997.
  • Since 1993, the violent crime rate has dropped 26 percent -- from 50 per 1,000 people age 12 and older to 37 per 1,000 last year.
  • Virtually every demographic category of the survey showed a decline in 1998, although minorities and the poor are still not as safe as whites and the wealthy.

Source: Gary Fields, "Study Shows Decline in Violent Crime," USA Today, July 19, 1999.


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