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FBI Reports Decline in Nation’s Crime Rate

There were more than 600,000 sworn law enforcement officers nationwide in late 2014.

By University Alliance on November 19, 2015
Crime Rate Declines Nationwide, FBI Reports

The nation’s crime rate dropped again in 2014, with decreases across a range of offenses from murder and manslaughter to burglary and auto theft, according to the FBI’s latest crime statistics.

The violent crime rate declined by 1% over the previous year, down to about 365 offenses per 100,000 residents. During the same period, the property crime rate fell by 5% percent to about 2,596 offenses per 100,000.

Similarly, the number of actual crimes decreased in 2014 – by 0.2% for violent offenses and by 4.3% for property crimes.

The findings were included in the FBI’s annual Crime in the United States report, which was released in September 2015. The national statistics are based on data reported by more than 18,000 law enforcement agencies that participate in the bureau’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program.

The report showed there were nearly 1.2 million violent crimes in 2014, with aggravated assaults comprising the majority (64%), followed by robberies (28%). Murders accounted for a little more than 1% of those reported crimes.

Although the number of aggravated assaults was up 2% over 2013, there was a 5.6% decrease in the number of robberies and a 0.5% dip in the number of murder/non-negligent manslaughter cases.

Other findings of the Crime in the United States report:

  • Law enforcement agencies reported 8.3 million burglaries, thefts and auto thefts. Thefts accounted for the largest portion of property crimes (71%), burglaries made up 21% and motor vehicle thefts represented 8%
  • Burglaries were down 10.5% over 2013, while thefts declined by 2.7% and auto thefts by 1.5%.
  • Property crimes resulted in total financial losses to victims of about $14.3 billion compared to $16.6 billion in 2013.
  • Police made 11.2 million arrests in 2014, with drug offenses accounting for 1.6 million arrests and driving under the influence (DUI) cases resulting in 1.1 million arrests.
  • 73% of the individuals arrested were male.

The FBI also compiled employment statistics from more than 12,600 law enforcement agencies. As of late 2014, there were nearly 628,000 sworn officers nationwide, about 88% of them men.

The FBI’s report coincides with the latest findings by the U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics showing the violent crime rate did not change significantly in 2014 and the property crime rate declined slightly. Those findings are based on data from the National Crime Victimization Survey, which is separate from the FBI’s numbers and considered to be another key measure of crime in the United States.

Category: 2015 Headlines