Aggravated Assault

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Definition

The Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program defines aggravated assault as an unlawful attack by one person upon another for the purpose of inflicting severe or aggravated bodily injury. The Program further specifies that this type of assault is usually accompanied by the use of a weapon or by other means likely to produce death or great bodily harm. Attempted aggravated assault that involves the display of—or threat to use—a gun, knife, or other weapon is included in this crime category because serious personal injury would likely result if the assault were completed. When aggravated assault and larceny-theft occur together, the offense falls under the category of robbery.

Overview

  • Nationwide, there were an estimated 860,853 aggravated assaults during 2006.
  • The 2- and 10-year trends indicate that the estimated number of aggravated assaults in 2006 declined less than 1 percent (-0.2) when compared with the offense estimates from 2005 and declined 15.9 percent from the 1997 estimate.
  • In 2006, the rate of aggravated assaults in the Nation was estimated at 287.5 offenses per 100,000 inhabitants.
  • An examination of the 10-year trend data for the rate of aggravated assaults revealed that the rate in 2006 declined 24.8 percent when compared with the rate for 1997. (See Tables 1 and 1A.)
  • In 2006, 21.9 percent of the aggravated assaults for which law enforcement agencies provided expanded data involved a firearm. (Based on Table 19.)
  • The use of firearms during aggravated assaults increased 2.8 percent when 2006 data were compared with data for 2005. (See Table 15.)

Expanded aggravated assault data

Expanded offense data are the details of the various offenses that the Program collects beyond the count of how many crimes law enforcement agencies report.  These details may include the type of weapons used in a crime, type or value of items stolen, and so forth.  In addition, expanded data include trends (for example, 2-year comparisons) and rates per 100,000 inhabitants.

Expanded information regarding aggravated assault is available in the following tables:
Trends (2-year): Tables 12, 13, 14, and 15
Rates (per 100,000 inhabitants): Tables 16, 17, 18, and 19
Weapons: Tables 15, 19, and 22
Aggravated Assault Table, "Aggravated Assault, Types of Weapons Used, Percent Distribution by Region, 2006"

What you won't find on this page

  • Information on simple assaults. Assaults that do not involve the use of a firearm, knife, cutting instrument, or other dangerous weapon and in which the victim did not sustain serious or aggravated injuries are reported as Other Assaults–Simple, Not Aggravated. These data are not included in the Aggravated Assault statistics. See arrests for information on other assaults.
  • Clearance and arrest data for aggravated assault.