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The FBI has just released their official tally of the 2011 crime statistics. And surprise surprise, the numbers are dropping again. Violent crime and property crime is down across the United States, despite the increased numbers of people carrying guns. Did I say “despite?” I meant “because.” But feel free to form your own opinions. Make the jump for the press release or click here for the full stats.

[Press Release from the FBI:]

According to the figures released today by the FBI, the estimated number of violent crimes in 2011 declined for the fifth consecutive year. Property crimes also decreased, marking the ninth straight year that the collective estimates for these offenses declined.

The 2011 statistics show that the estimated volumes of violent and property crimes declined 3.8 percent and 0.5 percent, respectively, when compared with the 2010 estimates. The violent crime rate for the year was 386.3 offenses per 100,000 inhabitants (a 4.5 percent decrease from the 2010 rate), and the property crime rate was 2,908.7 offenses per 100,000 persons (a 1.3 percent decrease from the 2010 figure).

These and additional data are presented in the 2011 edition of the FBI’s annual report Crime in the United States. This publication is a statistical compilation of offense and arrest data reported by law enforcement agencies voluntarily participating in the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program.

The UCR Program collects information on crimes reported by law enforcement agencies regarding the violent crimes of murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault, as well as the property crimes of burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, and arson. (Although the FBI classifies arson as a property crime, it does not estimate arson data because of variations in the level of participation by the reporting agencies. Consequently, arson is not included in the property crime estimate.) The program also collects arrest data for the offenses listed above plus 20 additional offenses that include all other crimes except traffic violations.

In 2011, there were 18,233 city, county, university and college, state, tribal, and federal agencies that participated in the UCR Program. A summary of the statistics reported by these agencies, which are included in Crime in the United States, 2011, follows:

  • Nationwide in 2011, there were an estimated 1,203,564 violent crimes.
  • Each of the four violent crime offense estimates decreased when compared with the 2010 estimates. Robbery had the largest decrease at 4.0 percent, followed by aggravated assault with a 3.9 percent decline, forcible rape with a 2.5 percent decline, and murder and nonnegligent manslaughter with a 0.7 percent decrease.
  • Nationwide in 2011, there were an estimated 9,063,173 property crimes.
  • There was a 3.3 percent decline in motor vehicle theft and a 0.7 percent decline in larceny-theft offenses. Estimated burglary offenses increased by 0.9 percent when compared with the 2010 estimate.
  • Collectively, victims of property crimes (excluding arson) lost an estimated $15.6 billion in 2011.
  • The FBI estimated that in 2011, agencies nationwide made about 12.4 million arrests, excluding traffic violations.
  • The 2011 arrest rate for violent crimes was 172.3 per 100,000 inhabitants; for property crime, the rate was 531.3 per 100,000 inhabitants.
  • By violent crime offense, the arrest rate for murder and nonnegligent manslaughter was 3.5; forcible rape, 6.3; robbery, 34.5; and aggravated assault was 128.0 arrests per 100,000 inhabitants.
  • By property crime offense, the arrest rate for burglary was 95.6; larceny-theft, 410.6; and motor vehicle theft, 21.4 per 100,000 inhabitants. The arrest rate for arson was 3.8 per 100,000 inhabitants.
  • In 2011, there were 14,633 law enforcement agencies that reported their staffing levels to the FBI. These agencies reported that, as of October 31, 2011, they collectively employed 698,460 sworn officers and 303,524 civilians, a rate of 3.4 employees for each 1,000 inhabitants.

Caution against ranking: Each year when Crime in the United States is published, some entities use the figures to compile rankings of cities and counties. These rough rankings provide no insight into the numerous variables that mold crime in a particular town, city, county, state, tribal area, or region. Consequently, they lead to simplistic and/or incomplete analyses that often create misleading perceptions adversely affecting communities and their residents. Valid assessments are possible only with careful study and analysis of the range of unique conditions affecting each local law enforcement jurisdiction. The data user is, therefore, cautioned against comparing statistical data of individual reporting units from cities, metropolitan areas, states, or colleges or universities solely on the basis of their population coverage or student enrollment.

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  1. These numbers are GREAT. They show how much we “DO NOT”
    need firearms anymore. Just keep in mind, you are not allowed to
    correlate any of these numbers to the increase in CCW permits
    or gun sales.

  2. Good. Increased firearm ownership and CC are doing their part to help reduce crime. Obviously there are additional factors for the decrease in violent crime. One of which is, imho, low-income and/or single unskilled women having access to abortions. Don’t get me wrong; I really am morally disgusted by abortions yet I still believe that an unwanted child(ren), raised by a single parent ie mother, in a lower income environment is a recipe for producing future criminals. I feel like the Greek King Odysseus returning from the Trojan War sailing between a whirlpool and a monster.

  3. Of course not. Them we might actually be able to prove that more gun control laws are not needed.
    All that is needed is more legally armed citizens and the crime and property rates will continue to decline.
    Not what the anti’s want to hear but….”The Truth Hurts”.
    Cue MikeyB’s unsubstantiated version in 3…..2…..1…..

  4. Opinions? We all know about opinions. But these are facts from the FBI. And the facts are that having a legally armed populace hasn’t resulted in more crime, quite the opposite.

    Now, if you want the real truth about the effects on crime that strict gun control laws have check out Chicago. Or DC. Or Oakland. Or L.A.

    And before anybody brings up that dead horse, for beating of course, of comparing us to places like England or any other country. We aren’t England. It’s not a valid comparison.

  5. You’re too optimistic. I think it’s the calming “Barack” effect, and not those damn gun people with their damn guns.

    • Isn’t the “Barack” effect the fact that everyone and their cousin Willie bought a new AR15 or AK47 when he was elected?

  6. In an alternate universe……..

    “Today the FBI released its national crime statistics, which suggest despite pro-criminal gun legislation in Chicago, California, D.C. and other states crime actually went down this year.The Justice Department is considering legal action against states which violate the Bill of Rights.The Attorney General’s office released a statement claiming that ‘illegal gun laws cost the taxpayer millions of dollars and create sancuary cities for criminals and gang bangers.We intend to safeguard Americans by ensuring their right to defend themselves is treated with the same respect as their right to speak freely.’ The Mayor of New York could not be reached for comment.

    In related news, a college freshman was arrested today for not carrying a legally concealed weapon to class.Campus police transported the suspect to the campus Mental Health office, where he’s said to be on the road to recovery from hoplophobia. “

  7. Don’t conflate correlation with causation. In 2012, the crime rate around here went up significantly, in large measure due to a federal court order that California prison overcrowding be eliminated, and that 35000 prisoners either be released or otherwise accomodated. A lot have been released in my town, and many of them are low level drug users, more specidfically, meth heads who commit a wide variety of property crimes (burglary, robbery, car theft, and so forth) to support their bad habits. Unlike Chicago, where I was raised, most people I know have firearms. Add to that, it’s harvest season, so there have been a few shootings related to that, and increased gang activity related to the meth. This notwithstanding the fact that this is a hunting community with a large number of guns and CCWs (for California), as our sheriff believes that self defense is sufficient good cause for issuance..

    • I think the point of the post is that the Gun grabbers have long been claiming that increased gun ownership causes increased crime.

      We now have evidence that shows that, far from there being a positive causative link between Gun ownership and crime, there is a negative correlation between the two.

      While it is possible that there could be confounding factors which could cause a negative correlation in spite of a positive causative link, I can’t think of any likely candidates, and the gun grabbers haven’t made any suggestions.

    • Incidentally, is a county resident’s concealed carry permit valid statewide in California?

  8. Might have something to do with the ever increasing number of career criminals getting a slight case of the “deads” by the good people of this nation.

  9. Yes, and if it weren’t for gun availability which is higher and higher, thanks to you guys, the decrease would have been twice or three times greater.

    • I am genuinely interested in what evidence supports this since everything I’ve seen, including academic analyses, suggests there is somewhere between zero and a positive effect on crime due to legitimate gun ownership (and that socio-economics is THE predictive factor for crime rates.) You can provide citations only, I’ll pull the papers or the reports myself.


  10. The real reason crime has gone down is that Obama and Holder sent all the guns down to Mexico. Gore invented the internet. Everything bad that happened in America in the last 4 years is because of Pres. Bush not a corrupt congress and socialist obama and his boot lickers. The real reason is American’s are taking their rights back.

  11. Not only is gun ownership up…. but unemployment is up and so is poverty… so according to the Anti’s we should be engulfed in a sea of person to person violent acts involving guns as people look to “alternative measures” to get by.

    Huh… wonder why that didn’t happen?

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