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Criminal Victimization, 2021

EMBARGO UNTIL 10:00 A.M. ET Bureau of Justice Statistics
TUESDAY,  SEPTEMBER 20, 2022                  Contact: Sheila Jerusalem
(202) 598-0793
BJS.OJP.GOV Email: [email protected]


WASHINGTON — From 1993 to 2021, the rate of violent victimization in the United States declined from 79.8 to 16.5 victimizations per 1,000 persons age 12 or older, the Bureau of Justice Statistics announced. Violent victimization includes rape or sexual assault, robbery, aggravated assault and simple assault. The overall violent victimization rate did not change between 2020 and 2021.  

The rate of violent victimization reported to police fell from 33.8 victimizations per 1,000 persons in 1993 to 7.5 per 1,000 in 2021. Although the rate of violent victimization reported to police in 2021 (7.5 per 1,000 persons) was similar to the rate in 2020, the percentage of violent victimizations reported to police in 2021 (46%) was higher than in 2020 (40%).  

From 2020 to 2021, the violent victimization rate increased from 19.0 to 24.5 victimizations per 1,000 persons in urban areas while remaining unchanged in suburban or rural areas. Veterans experienced 247,290 violent victimizations (14.4 per 1,000) in 2021, which was not statistically different from 2020. A larger percentage of violent victimizations in 2021 (9%) than in 2020 (6%) resulted in the victim receiving assistance from a victim service provider.  

In 2021, about 0.98% (2.7 million) of persons age 12 or older nationwide experienced at least one violent crime. About 6.25% (8.1 million) of households in the country experienced one or more property victimizations (burglary or trespassing, motor vehicle theft, or other household theft). 

Criminal Victimization, 2021 (NCJ 305101) was written by BJS statisticians Alexandra Thompson and Susannah N. Tapp, Ph.D. The report, related documents and additional information about BJS’s statistical publications and programs are available on the BJS website at bjs.ojp.gov. The NCVS Dashboard (N-DASH), an interactive online data visualization dashboard, is available at ncvs.bjs.ojp.gov. 

The Bureau of Justice Statistics of the U.S. Department of Justice is the principal federal agency responsible for collecting, analyzing and disseminating reliable statistics on crime and criminal justice in the United States. Alexis R. Piquero is the director. 

The Office of Justice Programs provides federal leadership, grants, training, technical assistance and other resources to improve the nation’s capacity to prevent and reduce crime, advance racial equity in the administration of justice, assist victims and enhance the rule of law. More information about OJP and its components can be found at www.ojp.gov.

Date Published: September 20, 2022