Ucr vs Ncvs

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Uniform Crime Report vs. National Crime Victimization Survey Point of views over crime statistics have existed ever since governments began counting criminal activity. The Uniform Crime Report (UCR) and the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) are two methods in which the government collects data, and monitors criminal activity in the United States. The Uniform Crime Reports and the National Crime Victimization Survey have both positive and negative attributes that have influenced different aspects of society. The Uniform Crime Reports are an annually published statistical summary. These statistics are a reflection ofcrim.es reported to the FBI by local, state and federal law enforcement agencies. These reports are sponsored by the United States Department of Justice, and the Federal Bureau of Investigations. Crimes are divided into twenty-nine types of offenses. Eight of which are major crimes, These crimes include homicide, forcible rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny, motor vehicle theft, and arson. These crimes are also known as "index offenses". Information, or data collected on the index offenses, are more complete than the other twenty-one types of crimes. They are generally less serious, and would never come to the attention of the police unless an arrest was made. Some important factors used when collecting data are age, race, sex, geographic locations, etc. The Uniform Crime Reports have both positive and negative aspects. The Uniformed Crime Reports are crucial to the determination of the amounts of crimes solved. This is important because it can help determine social tendencies pertaining to crime. These crime tendencies can lead to theories about crimes that are on the rise, or -2-

crimes that are declining. In addition, the Uniformed Crime Reports can provide information about people that have been charged or arrested, law enforcement officers killed or assaulted, and the characteristics of homicide victims. The value or importance of the Uniform Crime Reports has been questioned throughout the years. One problem is that many victims of offenses do not contact the police to make an official report. Some people may fear that the police cannot, or will not do anything about the offense. Other crimes that rarely make it into the official statistics are embezzlement, computer crimes and corporate misdeeds. The data collected in the Uniform Crime Reports entail crimes that have "actually" been reported to the police. Since submission of such data is voluntary, how can the Uniform Crime Reports be accurate? How are we able to determine whether there is a trend among crimes? However the Uniform Crime Reports have limitations. They can, and are still used as c\ powerful tool in decision making on crimes in America. National Crime Surveys are a large series of interview programs. These surveys are conducted by the Department of Justice and the Bureau of Justice Statistics. National Crime Surveys are used to determine the extent and nature of crimes and the effect it has on its victims. The National Crime Victimization Survey cover all of the index offenses covered by the Uniform Crime Reports, except for homicide and arson. Unlike the Uniform Crime Reports, the National Crime Victimization Surveys collects data and obtains details from the victim's point of view. In order to determine whether an individual is a "victim," a series of questions are asked. Once the individual is classified as a "victim," more detailed questions are asked in order to collect as much data as possible to determine trends among those crimes. -3-

The National Crime Victimization Survey helps to prove theories about the nature of a crime. Like the Uniform Crime Reports, these surveys provide detailed information about the victim's age, race, sex, and geographic location. They also provide us with details about crimes (times and places of occurrence) whether reported to the police or not. One problem with the...
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