NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Violent Crime Rates Drop

November 17, 1997

The nation's violent crime rate fell 10 percent in 1996, reaching its lowest level since the Justice Department began keeping statistics in 1973, according to the new National Crime Victimization Survey.

The survey of 100,000 households nationwide by the Bureau of Justice Statistics shows the poor and minorities are far more likely to be crime victims than whites and the wealthy.

  • There were 12.4 murders, rapes, robberies and assaults per 1,000 residents 12 years old and older in 1996.
  • Property crimes dropped 8 percent, to 266 crimes per 1,000 households.
  • For households with income of $7,500 or less, the victimization rate was 65.3 per 1,000 -- 25 percent higher than the next most victimized income group.
  • Blacks were victimized at a rate of 52.3 per 1,000 people, Latinos at a rate of 44.0 and whites at a rate of 40.9.

Rates of crime victimization are a broader measure of crime rates, since they include crimes not reported to police.

Source: "Survey: Violent Crime at Lowest Level Since '73," USA Today, November 17, 1997.


Browse more articles on Government Issues