to know which region of the country has
the lowest crime rate? What percentage
of those arrested are women? How many cars
were reported stolen in 2002? What percentage
of murders are solved? The latest crime
rate in your state?
out in the FBI's just-released annual report,
Crime in the United States, 2002. The Bureau
has been compiling these national crime
statistics, which serve as a barometer
of lawlessness, since 1930.
did the data come from? From over 17,000
city, county, and state law enforcement
agencies that represent 93% of the U.S.
population. All their local data on murders,
forcible rapes, robberies, aggravated assaults,
burglaries, larceny-thefts, and motor vehicle
thefts in 2002.
uses it? Lots of people. Law enforcement
agencies, to formulate their budgets and
assess the operation of their police forces.
Sociologists and criminal justice researchers,
to study the nature, cause, and movement
of crime over time. Legislators, to help
them write anti-crime measures. Chambers
of commerce and tourism agencies, to promote
low-crime areas to businesses and tourists.
And, importantly for you the reader, the
news media -- to make sure you
know about the state of crime in your neighborhood.
Director Mueller's words, "We're pleased
to cooperate with law enforcement agencies
around the country to provide timely and
relevant data that we can all use to more
effectively fight criminal and terrorist
the big picture of crime in 2002? The total
number of serious crimes (11.9 million)
was slightly higher -- by less than one-tenth
of one percent -- than in 2001... but 16%
lower than ten years ago, in 1993.
crime (murder, rape, robbery, and aggravated
assault) in 2002 was down nearly 1% from
2001 -- and almost 26% lower than in 1993.
· Property crimes (burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft) increased
one-tenth of one percent from 2001 -- down 14.5% compared with 1993.
year's report also includes statistics
on hate crimes and special studies on sniper
attacks and bank robberies.
the answers to the questions above?
1. The American Northeast had the lowest crime rate, with 2,889 serious
crimes per 100,000 people. The South, the
highest: 4,722 crimes per 100,000 people.
2. Women accounted for 23% of those arrested in 2002.
3. About 1.2 million vehicles were reported stolen in 2002.
4. 64% of murders were solved -- the highest clearance rate of all serious
To find out data in your state, please
go to the report's Index
Snapshot of Crime in 2002:
increase/decrease from 2001