The Crime Of Measuring Crime

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Measuring crime remains a difficult challenge despite years of research and reportable crime data. To say this problem has stumped policymakers and law enforcement professionals is an understatement. Each year statistics and crime data are collected using numerous means for study and released in public reports. The merits behind these collections are numerous as are the potential uses for the data. Of particular consideration are the Uniform Crime Reports and the National Incident-Based Reporting System. While both reports aim to measure the different aspects of crime, much is often lost in translation when presented to the general population.
First we will examine the Uniform Crime Reports (UCR) and some of the key characteristics that differentiate it from other reporting methods. The UCR is a crime measurement system that was established in 1929 by the International Association of Chiefs of Police in order to provide information at the national level on serious crimes reported to law enforcement from the state level and lower. This system was originally published in a guide entitled Crime Reporting: A Complete Manual for Police. The intent of this manual was to establish reporting criteria and categories of offenses.
To meet the criteria for this type of reporting the crime must be of a serious offense and be considered highly likely to be reported to the police. All data reported to this system is voluntary. Originally, these specific crime types were referred to as

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