Crime & Violence

Understand how family structure and religious practice can impact juvenile delinquency, incarceration, and domestic violence.

Crime & Violence Charts

  • Child victimization rate The child victimization rate has declined The child victimization rate, which includes instances of assault, sexual assault, and abuse, has declined by 25 percent since 1990.
  • Youth violent behavior Youth behaviors that contribute to violence have generally declined One in six high school students carried a weapon at least one day in the last month, a 36 percent decrease since 1991. Also, a smaller percentage of youths are carrying guns, involved in physical altercations, and reporting being injured in a fight.
  • Serious violent crime among youths The rate of serious violent crimes committed by youths has declined Since 1980, the rate of serious violent crime by youths has declined by nearly 66 percent. In 2010, the rate was 9.5 crimes per 1,000 youths. However, the percentage of all serious violent crimes with youths as perpetrators has been more stable.
  • Juvenile arrest rate Juvenile arrest rates have generally declined after peaking in the mid-1990s In the past decade, arrest rates have remained relatively stable for girls but have decreased among boys and white teens. Rates among African American teens increased but then fell in 2009.
  • Property crime rate Property crimes today are less common Since 1973, the property crime rate—the number of crimes per 1,000 households—has declined by 77 percent.
  • Prison population, by gender and race African American males are more likely than others to be incarcerated The incarceration rate—the number of prisoners per 100,000 residents—is more than six times higher for black males than for white males. The rate for Hispanic males is more than double that of white males. Black and Hispanic women also have higher rates than white women.
  • Correctional population The correctional population has soared Since 1980, the U.S. correctional population has nearly quadrupled. The prison population is up nearly five-fold, and the jail population is up more than four-fold.
  • Intimate-partner victimization rate Women are four times more likely to experience intimate-partner violence Since the early-1990s, the overall rate of intimate-partner violence has dropped by three-fifths. For female victims the rate declined by two-thirds and for male victims by more than two-fifths.
  • Violent crime rate Violent crime has declined The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) use different methods to measure violent crime, but both agencies show a steady decline over the past 20 years. Since 1989, according to the FBI, violent crime has dropped 36 percent. Data from the BJS show a 61-percent decline.
  • Violent crime rate, by gender and race The rate of violent crime victimization has declined Since the 1970s, the violent crime victimization rate has declined significantly. For men the rate dropped by one-third and for women, one-half. Among whites and African-Americans it is down by nearly three-quarters.