Rates of Victimization

In 2006, 16 million criminal victimizations befell individuals over age 12 in urban and suburban areas in the United States, according to the National Crime Victimization Survey. In these areas, approximately 76 percent of victimizations involved property and 23 percent were violent. Nearly 1 percent were purse snatching and pocket picking. Males and females were equally likely to be victimized by an offender they previously knew. [1, 2]

As a group, adolescents are most likely to be victimized. Individuals who have been victimized previously are at increased risk to be victimized again. Researchers in Great Britain found that just 4 percent of victims suffered more than 44 percent of victimizations. [3]

See NIJ's Web page on Child Abuse and Maltreatment for more findings about the long-term effects of victimization for adolescents.

Notes

[1], [2]  Based on findings from the Bureau of Justice Statistics' National Crime Victimization Survey of 2003: 54 percent of violence against males was conducted by strangers, while 64 percent of violence against females was conducted by nonstrangers. Catalano, S.M. Criminal Victimization, 2003 : Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, 2004, NCJ 205455.

[2] National Association of Crime Victim Compensation Boards. Compensation to Victims Continues to Increase Exit Notice. Accessed March 14, 2007.

[3] Farrell, G., and K. Pease. Once Bitten, Twice Bitten: Repeat Victimization and Its Implications for Crime Prevention. Crime Prevention Unit Paper 46. London, England: Police Research Group, 1993.

Date Modified: May 19, 2010