This Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) bulletin features estimates of rates and levels of personal and property victimization for 2007 and describes the substantial fluctuations in the survey measures of the crime rates from 2005 through 2007. These do not appear to be due to changes in the rate of criminal activity during this period but, rather, to variations in the sample design and implementation of the survey. BJS and the Census Bureau are continuing to research the impact of the differences, and readers should focus on the comparisons of the 2005 and 2007 rates until these issues are resolved. A technical report discussing these matters is expected at a later date. The estimates were drawn from the National Crime Victimization Survey, an ongoing household survey that includes the results of interviews conducted of about 73,600 persons in 41,500 households two times in 2007. The report includes data on violent crimes (rape/sexual assault, robbery, aggravated assault, and simple assault), property crimes (burglary, motor vehicle theft, and property theft), and personal theft (pocket picking and purse snatching), along with the characteristics of victims of these crimes.
Specifically, violent crime rates in 2007 (20.7 per 1,000 persons age 12 or older) were not significantly different from those in 2005 (21.1 per 1,000 persons). U.S. residents age 12 and older experienced an estimated 23 million crimes of violence and theft. The violent crime rate was 20.7 victimizations per 1,000 persons age 12 or older; for property crimes it was 146.5 per 1,000 households. The bulletin (NCJ 224.390) can be found at the National Criminal Justice Reference Service’s Web site, http://www.ncjrs.gov.