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UCR System

The Uniform Crime Reports (UCR) contains official data on crime that is reported to law enforcement agencies across the country that then provide the data to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). UCR focuses on index crimes, which include murder and non-negligent manslaughter, robbery, forcible rape, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny/theft, motor vehicle theft, and arson. UCR is a summary-based reporting system, with data aggregated to the city, county, state, and other geographic levels. Crime statistics are compiled from UCR data and published annually by the FBI in the Crime in the United States series.

Reasons behind the passive participation of the victims:- First of all, the reporting of the victims is not made mandatory but voluntary. Hence, it is not obvious or required for any victim to make it a point to report the crime. Sometimes, the victim is held responsible for the crime by his friends and family. Thus, this guilt or shame may give rise to him not reporting the crime. Critics of the UCR note they do not accurately reflect crime rates in that they can only list crimes reported to law enforcement agencies. Also, should a number of crimes be connected, they only list the most serious one.

For instance, if someone were murdered during a car theft, they would only list murder. Lastly, the list is biased in the reporting of rape. The UCR defines forcible rape as, “the carnal knowledge of a female forcibly and against her will. ” It does not list rapes against men, nor does it list same-sex rape. The UCR does not include simple assaults in part 1 and minor assaults, verbal assaults and other such crimes, which can account for between 50% and 90% of violent crimes in other countries, are not recorded. The UCR Survey collects information only on those crimes that come to the attention of the police.

The UCR data, therefore, do not contain a count of all crimes: some crimes are never detected and, of those that are, some are never brought to the attention of the police. Thus, these are some of the reasons which lead to a declined victim participation rate. Crime, victims, and the police:- It is important to note that why the police might not choose to register the crime, even when informed officially. Besides the internal problems like, corruption, reluctance, racial issues, the fault lies somewhere in the UCR system itself.

The parameter or reporting a crime officially is quite narrow; hence, the Police are actually embedded in the system with little effort of their own to solve the scenario.

References:-

• Federal Bureau of Investigation – Uniform Crime Reports http://www. fbi. gov/ucr/ucrquest. htm • Uniform Crime Reporting Survey (UCR), Statistics Canada http://www. statcan. ca/cgi- bin/imdb/p2SV. pl? Function=getSurvey&SDDS=3302&lang=en&db=IMDB&dbg=f&adm=8&dis=2 • The Disaster Center http://disastercenter. com/crime/index. html • George L. Kelling’s article http://www. city-journal. org/article01. php? aid=1544

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