The Uniform Crime Report (UCR) Program’s latest report, NIBRS, 2017, presents data regarding victims, known offenders, and relationships for offenses reported in 52 categories. Although this latest FBI endeavor is adding much more than previous crime reports, the process for obtaining crime figures from local and state law enforcement agencies is remains voluntary.
The report provides information on arrests for those crimes as well as 10 additional categories for which only arrest data is collected, according to NACOP crime analysts.
Highlights of NIBRS, 2017
In 2017, almost 7,000 law enforcement agencies, with jurisdictions possessing an estimated 105.6 million U.S. inhabitants, submitted NIBRS data to the UCR Program. These agencies comprised 42.0 percent of the 16,655 law enforcement agencies who submitted data to the UCR Program in 2017.
Based on NIBRS submissions, the FBI compiled aggregate tables on 5,369,204 incidents involving 6,290,042 offenses, 6,631,461 victims, 5,266,175 known offenders, and 3,361,416 arrestees. (Currently, the FBI does not estimate for agencies that do not submit NIBRS data.)
Of the reported offenses, 61.0 percent were crimes against property, 23.0 percent were crimes against persons, and 16.0 percent were crimes against society.
Victim types, collected for all reported NIBRS offenses, include individuals, businesses, institutions, or society as a whole. For 2017, the data regarding victims who were individuals revealed the following:
- Of the 4,524,968 individuals, 23.4 percent were between 21 and 30 years of age.
- A little more than half (50.9 percent) were female, 48.3 percent were male, and the gender of 0.8 percent of victims was unknown.
- Most victims (71.5 percent) were white, 21.0 percent were black or African-American,1.5 percent were Asian, 0.6 percent were American Indian or Alaska Native, and less than 0.1 percent were Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander. The race of 5.3 percent of victims was unknown.
In 2017, law enforcement identified and reported information on 5,266,175 known offenders, meaning some aspect of the suspect—such as age, gender, or race—was known.
- Of these offenders, 41.9 percent were between 16 and 30 years of age.
- By gender, most offenders (62.4 percent) were male, 25.5 percent were female, and gender for 12.1 percent was unknown.
- By race, more than half (55.7 percent) of known offenders were white, 27.1 percent were black or African-American, and 1.9 percent were of other races. The race was unknown for 15.3 percent of reported known offenders.
Concerning the relationship of victims to known offenders, there were 1,448,833 victims of crimes against persons (e.g., murders, sex offenses, assault offenses) and robbery offenses from the crimes against property category.
- More than half (52.2 percent) of the victims knew their offenders (or at least one offender when more than one was present) but did not have a familial relationship to them.
- Nearly one quarter (24.4 percent) of the victims were related to their offenders (or at least one offender when more than one was present).
Law enforcement agencies submitted data to the UCR Program through incident reports and arrest reports for 3,361,416 arrestees.
- Of these arrestees, 33.2 percent were 21 to 30 years of age.
- By gender, 71.6 percent were male, and 28.4 percent were female.
- By race, most arrestees (70.7 percent) were white, 24.5 percent were black or African-American, and 2.7 percent were of other races. The race was unknown for 2.1 percent of arrestees.
A brief look at data collected through NIBRS for 874,003 drug/narcotic offenses shows the more expansive data NIBRS offers, particularly offender data, and the types of connections available through NIBRS.
- Law enforcement counted at least one drug/narcotic offense in 16.3 percent of all criminal incidents reported through NIBRS in 2017.
- Of the 5,266,175 known offenders, 21.3 percent were connected to drug/narcotic offenses.
- Of the 3,361,416 arrestees reported through NIBRS, 16.1 percent were arrested for drug/narcotic offenses.
Agency-level NIBRS data for the reporting year is available through the interactive NIBRS map found on the home page of the publication, as well as in offense tables which present statistics for each agency reporting 12 months of NIBRS data.
NIBRS in CDE
In addition to the annual NIBRS report, the FBI is making NIBRS data available through the UCR Program’s Crime Data Explorer (CDE), the FBI’s digital front door to crime data. Users can access the CDE to build customized tables and to view Summary Reporting System (SRS) data for 2017 (and some previous years) by state. As development on the CDE progresses, users will be able to download national and state-level data and view various facets of incidents, including offenses, victims, offenders, arrestees, and property.
Countdown to NIBRS 2021
With the collection of the more detailed data of NIBRS set to become the national data standard by January 1, 2021, law enforcement agencies across the nation are making the transition from the traditional SRS to NIBRS. The momentum of the transition has grown with the increased support of the Criminal Justice Information Services Advisory Policy Board, the International Association of Chiefs of Police, Major Cities Chiefs Association, Major County Sheriffs of America, the National Sheriffs’ Association, the Executive Branch of our government, the Association of State Criminal Investigative Agencies, and the Association of State UCR Programs. In addition, some states have enacted legislation compelling their agencies to submit crime data via NIBRS, and, in general, more agencies are committing to transition to NIBRS by January 1, 2021.