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NCJ Number: 230036 Find in a Library
Title: Reporting Crime to the Police, 1973-2005: A Multivariate Analysis of Long-Term Trends in the National Crime Survey (NCS) and National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS)
Journal: Criminology  Volume:48  Issue:1  Dated:February 2010  Pages:131-186
Author(s): Eric P. Baumer; Janet L. Lauritsen
Date Published: February 2010
Page Count: 56
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Using data of the 1973 to 2005 National Crime Survey (NCS) and the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS), this study examined long-term trends in the reporting of crime to the police, using methods that take into account possible changes in the factors that influence crime reporting at the individual and incident levels, as well as changes in survey methodology.
Abstract: The findings show that significant increases occurred in the likelihood that police would be notified of alleged sexual-assault crime and other forms of assault. These increases were observed for both violence against women and violence against men, for stranger and nonstranger violence, and for crimes committed against members of various racial/ethnic groups. Reports to police of property crimes (i.e., motor vehicle theft, burglary, and larceny) also increased across the study period. The observed increase in crime reporting accounted for approximately half of the divergence between data from the NCVS and the Uniform Crime Reporting Program (UCR) in the estimated magnitude of the 1990s crime decline. The finding emphasizes to need to corroborate findings about crime trends from multiple data sources. The study integrated data from the NCS for 1973 to 1993 and for the NCVS from 1992 to 2005. These data were derived from surveys of persons ages 12 years old and older from a representative sample of U.S. households. The surveys focused on respondents' experiences with and reactions to criminal victimizations during the previous 6 months. Among the questions asked in the interviews were whether victimization incidents were reported to the police. The NCS and the NCVS are the only national-level data sources in the United States that contain information about crimes that did not come to the attention of the police. Crime incidents were the units of analysis for the study. 5 tables, 4 figures, and 59 references
Main Term(s): Police reports
Index Term(s): Citizen crime reporting; Longitudinal studies; National crime surveys; Victimization surveys
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