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NCJ Number: 221481 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Hot vs. Cold Cases: Examining Time to Clearance for Homicides Using NIBRS Data
Journal: Justice Research and Policy  Volume:9  Issue:2  Dated:2007  Pages:87-112
Author(s): Lynn A. Addington
Date Published: 2007
Page Count: 26
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study used National Institute Based Incident Reporting System (NIBRS) data to compare characteristics of homicides that were cleared quickly to those cleared over a long period of time or not cleared at all.
Abstract: Findings confirm that murder cases tend to clear quickly if they are cleared at all. A drop in the percentage of cleared cases was observed 1 week after a murder had occurred; the frequency of time to clearance showed a large drop-off after 1 week. The analyses for victim characteristics suggest that for gender and race, clearances occurring the same day may be driving the overall higher clearance percentages for female and White victims. Murders involving children have higher clearance percentages than victims of other age categories. A larger percentage of murders involving knives are cleared and cleared more quickly, whereas the opposite is true for firearms, where a smaller percentage of murders are cleared and cleared quickly. A larger percentage of murders occurring in a home are solved before the first week compared to those in other locations, and a larger percentage of murders involving multiple victims are solved after the first week compared to those involving single victims. Murders occurring with an additional serious crime take longer to clear, but a larger percentage of these are cleared overall compared to murders involving no other crimes. Murders for which the victim-offender relationship is missing are much less likely to be cleared than those for which this relationship is known. A higher percentage of murders involving intimate partners are cleared the same day, but nearly a quarter of all murders involving intimate partners are not cleared, a percentage that is comparable to uncleared murders involving strangers. Victim’s race consistently predicts clearance and appears to be the strongest for predicting same day clearance. Victim gender behaves somewhat similarly, since murders with female victims are significantly more likely to be cleared in almost every time period. The study used NIBRS homicide data from 2000 through 2002. Tables, references
Main Term(s): Comparative analysis; Comparative criminology; Homicide investigations
Index Term(s): Criminal Justice System Response to Victims; Criminal procedures; Police differential response; Police response time; Procedures
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