Crime Data Sources in the United States

3348 Words Jul 15th, 2018 14 Pages
Crime Data Sources in the United States: The collection of crime data in the United States is carried out through different approaches including Uniform Crime Reports and the National Incident-Based Reporting System, which also act as the two primary sources of crime data for crime reporting. The data obtained from these sources are used for research and documentation of crime status at the county, state, and national levels. Notably, the National Incident-Based Reporting System emerged as an advancement of the conventional summary of Uniform Crime Reports that were used to track crime in the country. In addition, the Congress uses data from these sources together with those from the National Crime Victimization Survey to guide policy …show more content…
The Federal Bureau of Investigations then contracted for a phased review of UCR program through the Bureau of Justice Statistics. These efforts culminated in the development of National Incident-Based Reporting System that was based on recommendations on how to improve UCR. Based on these recommendations, NIBRS was developed as a system that enables law enforcement agencies to use an incident-based method for reporting crime and arrests (James & Council, 2008). Secondly, this system was established to include or implement a quality assurance program since it is a national UCR program. Finally, the system enables some law enforcement agencies to provide incident-based data for all notable crimes and offenses while others provide a more restricted series of incident-based data for some crimes.
Similarities between UCR and NIBRS: As previously mentioned, Uniform Crime Reports and the National Incident-Based Reporting System have certain similarities, which contribute to their use as the primary sources of crime data in the United States. Some of the major similarities between the two crime data sources include …
Differentiation of Crime: Similar to Uniform Crime Reports, the National Incident-Based Reporting System differentiates crime against persons and crimes against property. UCR reporting and NIBRS reporting classify or distinguish crimes against persons and crimes against property in the same way i.e. through a score. The process of distinguishing