The second phase of this learning activity requires you to respond to TWO (2) of your classmates’ original posts by Sunday at 5:00 p.m. (EDT). Each response (each supports 25% of your grade for this assignment) needs to include at least 200 words of discussion that are meaningfully supported by scholarly sources. Your responses will be rejected if they are NOT supported by scholarly sources and/or offer content falling below the 200 words minimum limit.
Please remember that for every statement that you make offering a claim of fact/truth that you did not witness or can present as common knowledge information NEEDS to be supported (in-text citation, a narrative reference to your consulted source) with scholarly resources. Offering an in-text citation as part of the closing sentence of a paragraph does not cover your validation requirement (if applicable) for any of the preceding sentences emanating from what you borrowed from your applied scholarly sources.
Crime is measured in the United States by utilizing the Uniform Crime Reporting (URC) Program and the Bureau of Justice Statistic’s National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS). This is administered by the U.S Department of Justice to measure the magnitude, nature and impact of crime within the nation. The purpose of measuring crime constitutes to seek and assessed the risk of various social groups with regards to their potential on becoming offenders or victims.
The challenges that appear to affect the validity of crime reporting in the United States is unreported crime, because the data collection relies on the collected information from the number of offenses known to law enforcement on a yearly basis, however not all crime that occurs are known to the police in such instances victims and witnesses to a crime may not report the incident to the authorities, thus if the crime is not being reported to law enforcement then the Uniform Crime Reporting (URC) Program and the Bureau of Justice Statistic’s National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) will undercount the actual amount of crime that occurred to which it will not provide an accurate reflection of the data.(James,2008)
Another challenge remains the reporting practices of police officers, and this can specifically affect the Uniform Crime Reporting (URC) Program because law enforcement may manipulate the crime reports to decrease the amount of reported crimes due to the pressure they might face from external political pressure to lower the crime rate. Additionally, there are the issues with regards to the limited offense data to which the Uniform Crime Reporting (URC) Program collects offenses data on a limited number of crimes, thus the offense data collected are exclusively available for a small number of all crimes committed in the United States and the data is not being collected on crimes that are at a greater frequency. Uniform Crime Reporting (URC) Program does not collect data on crimes that routinely occur and have been covered by the media such as kidnapping, bribery and child pornography. (James,2008)
Moreover, there is the case of missing data as it currently stands the federal law does not have need of local law enforcement agencies to submit offense data to the Uniform Crime Reporting (URC) Program while it has been indicated that the participation within Uniform Crime Reporting (URC) Program is above 90%, however not all law enforcement agencies within the country submit the Uniform Crime Reporting (URC) Program data which can hamper the quality of information acquired. There are, moreover, the imputation procedures which can cause challenges because if a law enforcement agency does not report Uniform Crime Reporting (URC) Program data to the FBI for the continuous year, then the FBI would utilize imputation techniques to estimate the law enforcement agency’s number of reported crimes for the continuous year but it has been noted that this method can require questionable assumptions and this procedure cold either over-estimate or underestimate the jurisdiction’s annual crime rate.(James,2008)
Then there is the sampling and non-sampling error that can occur because the Bureau of Justice Statistic’s National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) estimates national crime rates by interviewing a sample household across the country, this method is subject to both sampling and non-sampling error, which entails that the estimated victimization rate might not accurately reflect the true victimization rate and whenever samples are used to represent an entire population, then there can be discrepancy between the sample estimate and the true value of what the sample may be trying to estimate.
There is, in addition, the challenge of sampling bias, because the Bureau of Justice Statistic’s National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) relies completely on interviews with household members to collect its data it is more than likely those people, who are sampled, will not complete the survey and if it differs between non-responders from responders the estimated national victimization rate might be either higher or lower that the true victimization rate. Lastly, there are also the limitations on the scope of crimes covered because the Bureau of Justice Statistic’s National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) collects data only on crime that support a victim and data on victimless crimes such as drugs and prostitution cannot be collected by this method, by which the data on this model only make up a small part of all criminal offenses committed in the United States.(James,2008)
The Bureau of Justice Statistic’s National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) provides us a look at what criminal activities happen outside of the police reports that get filed and because many victims choose not to approach law enforcement for support in these circumstances for many reasons. The Bureau of Justice Statistic’s National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) creates a comprehensive range of victimization variables to examine which provides an excellent opportunity to discover the specific criminal trends that might be happening in society and as well as being able to achieve a higher response rate which allows more access to a reliable date that can be used toward making better policing decisions.
However, the Bureau of Justice Statistic’s National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) is designed to provide national estimates but what is not possible with this data collection method is the ability to estimate crime in a local, county and state levels and also it does not track crime that impacts youth that is due largely to the fact that the data does not include victimization incidents that may occur to individuals under the age of 18 which means finding from information obtained cannot be generalized within specific group categories. The response rate for the Bureau of Justice Statistic’s National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) is steadily declining which results to less information is being gathered which can result to not having a true reflection of what is currently happening in the United States.
The Uniform Crime Reporting (URC) Program provides specific details about crime and arrest in the communities which makes it easier to identify potential offenders, secure possible victims and reduce crime. Additionally, the Uniform Crime Reporting (URC) Program collects information about a specific crime in several distinct categories which allows it to track violent classifications, curfew offenses and even loitering. The information for the Uniform Crime Reporting (URC) Program can be extracted by anyone and does not require specific permission. As well, the Uniform Crime Reporting (URC) Program provides a resource that reviews hate crime statistics in the United States. However, the Uniform Crime Reporting (URC) Program represent a system of reporting that relies on voluntary data, it also relies on crime discovery to remain an accurate tool and it maintains a system of hierarchy for reporting criminal activity.
To conclude both data collection methods separately harbors unique traits and qualities that are useful for obtaining viable resources and information, however I do believe that a combined method of both data collection should be sought after to eliminate the gaps that both data collection methods seems to possessed. Furthermore, incorporating federal laws and compliance to entail that there is a follow up and follow through procedure to ensure not only the quality of data is being collected but as well as securing evolving policies that are not easily compromised which can address the pressing and growing issues within the United States.
James, N. (2008, September 1). How Crime in the United States Is Measured. Nova Science Publishers.
Levitt, S. D. (1998). The Relationship Between Crime Reporting and Police: Implications for the Use of Uniform Crime Reports. Journal of Quantitative Criminology, 14(1), 61–81. http://www.jstor.org/stable/41954178
SKOGAN, W. G. (1974). THE VALIDITY OF OFFICIAL CRIME STATISTICS: AN EMPIRICAL INVESTIGATION. Social Science Quarterly, 55(1), 25–38. http://www.jstor.org/stable/42859308
The Uniform Crime Report (UCR), the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS), and reports published by the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) are the three most used ways for analyzing the amount of criminal activity in the United States. The United States adheres to the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) system, which is a set of guidelines for collecting and exchanging information about criminal activities. Federal Bureau of Investigation maintains an up-to-date Uniform Crime Report (FBI). The Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) system collects information on seven major forms of criminal activity, including rape, burglary, larceny-theft, violent assault, homicide and non-negligent manslaughter, and auto theft. In addition, the UCR collects information on “vandalism” and “simple assault,” two offenses deemed to be less serious. The UCR system classifies each of the following into two distinct categories: violent offenses and property infractions. A violent crime involves the use of physical force or the threat of physical force in the commission of a crime. The definition of property crimes is any criminal act involving the unlawful taking of another person’s property. The UCR system assigns points to each offense based on the gravity of the offense. Each violation results in a specific number of point deductions. After then, the total number of points accrued for all crimes committed during a given year is utilized to determine the crime rate for that year.
The National Crime Victimization Study (NCVS) is a nationwide study that collects data on crime victims from a nationally representative sample of residences. In the survey, respondents are asked about their personal experiences with criminal behavior and whether or not they informed the police. In general, the NCVS is regarded as a more complete measure of crime than the UCR. The Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) of the Department of Justice collects data from more than 18,000 local, state, and federal criminal justice agencies, as well as municipal and county law enforcement agencies. In addition to collecting statistics on criminals and the consequences of their illegal activity, the Bureau of Justice Statistics compiles data on the many types and characteristics of criminal victimization.
The problem of underreporting crimes appears to be one of the challenges affecting the accuracy of crime statistics in the United States. Some estimates indicate that the majority of crimes are never reported to the authorities. This suggests that the UCR’s data do not provide a complete picture of crime in the United States. Incorrect categorization is an additional challenge to overcome. This can occur if the police report exaggerates the severity of a crime compared to the actual level of the offense. As an example, a trespassing report could be made for a break-in. Due to this, it can be difficult to have an accurate understanding of the exact degree of crime in the United States.
The National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) collects data exclusively on police-reported crimes. Given that many illegal activities go unreported, this means that the NCVS likely provides an incorrect estimate of the true incidence of crime. Second, the NCVS does not collect data on crimes that occur in other locations, such as workplaces or schools, because it exclusively collects information on home-based offenses. This means that it does not include sexual or violent offenses. Thirdly, the NCVS relies on self-reported data, which indicates that participants may not be truthful about their experiences or may not precisely recall them. This renders the NCVS susceptible to inaccuracy. Fourth, the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) only collects information on a limited number of different types of crimes, making it inapplicable to the study of rarer crimes. Since the NCVS does not collect information on the victimization of businesses or other organizations, it cannot be utilized for studies on white-collar or corporate crime.
Lurigio, A. J., & Staton, M. D. (2020). The measurement and prevalence of violent crime in the United States: persons, places, and times. Journal of cribcime and justice, 43(3), 282-306.