Violent Crime

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Violent crime is composed of four offenses:  murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault.  Violent crimes are defined in the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program as those offenses which involve force or threat of force.

Data collection

The data presented in Crime in the United States reflect the Hierarchy Rule, which requires that only the most serious offense in a multiple-offense criminal incident be counted.  The descending order of UCR violent crimes are:   murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault.


  • An estimated 1,417,745 violent crimes occurred nationwide in 2006.
  • There were an estimated 473.5 violent crimes per 100,000 inhabitants.
  • When data for 2006 to 2005 were compared, the estimated volume of violent crime increased 1.9 percent.  The 5-year trend (2006 compared with 2002) indicated that violent crime decreased 0.4 percent.  For the 10-year trend (2006 compared with 1997) violent crime fell 13.3 percent.
  • Aggravated assault accounted for the majority of violent crimes, 60.7 percent. Robbery accounted for 31.6 percent and forcible rape accounted for 6.5 percent.  Murder, the least committed violent offense, made up 1.2 percent of violent crimes in 2006.  (Based on Table 1.)
  • In 2006, firearms were used in 67.9 percent of the Nations murders, in 42.2 percent of the robbery offenses, and in 21.9 percent of the aggravated assaults.  (Weapon data are not collected for forcible rape offenses.)  (Based on Table 19 and Expanded Homicide Data Table 7.)
Violent Crime in 2006 Chart

What you won't find on this page

Clearance and arrest data for violent crime.