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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 200682 Find in a Library
Title: Victim and Offender Self-Reports of Alcohol Involvement in Crime
Journal: Alcohol Research & Health  Volume:25  Issue:1  Dated:2001  Pages:20-31
Author(s): Lawrence A. Greenfield M.S.; Maureen A. Henneberg M.P.A
Date Published: 2001
Page Count: 12
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article examines the extent to which changes in alcohol-involved violence may have contributed to the declining rates of violent crime in the United States.
Abstract: Most knowledge about the incidence and prevalence of violence comes from the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS), an ongoing survey of U.S. households conducted since 1973. Additional questions added to the NCVS in 1986 included one that queried victims of violence about their perceptions of alcohol and other drug use by offenders. The first report to reflect this new information, published in 1989, indicated that among victims of violence who could determine whether their offenders had been using alcohol (approximately 70 percent of the victims of violence surveyed), only 49 percent of the victims believed that the offender had used alcohol. In addition to the decrease in alcohol-related violence evidenced by NCVS results, there has also been a decrease in jail inmates' self-reported alcohol use. Self-reports by State prisoners, on the other hand, showed that although the prevalence of alcohol consumption was lower among these inmates, the estimated levels of intoxication at the time of their offense were higher. This finding may be a result of more severe sanctions for alcohol-involved offenses. Recent victimization data reported by the Bureau of Justice Statistics indicate that the trend in more rapid declines for alcohol-related offenses is continuing; between 1993 and 1998, violent crime victimization declined by one-fourth. The overall decrease in alcohol-involved violence is consistent with declines in other measures of alcohol use and misuse, including per capita alcohol consumption and alcohol involvement in traffic crashes. Although the reductions in alcohol consumption have been accompanied by reductions in alcohol-involved violence, additional research is needed to determine the extent to which the crime reductions can be directly attributed to decreases in alcohol use. 13 tables, 1 figure, 10 references, and brief descriptions of the sources of data on alcohol and crime
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Alcohol-crime relationship; Alcoholic beverage consumption; Self-report studies; Trend analysis; Victimization surveys; Victims of violent crime
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