SAGE Journal Articles

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Journal Article 1: Steffensmeier, D., Zhong, H., Ackerman, J., Schwartz, J., & Agha, S. (2006). Gender gap trends for violent crimes, 1980 to 2003: A UCR-NCVS comparison. Feminist Criminology, 1, 72-98.

Abstract: The authors examine 1980 to 2003 trends in female-to-male interpersonal violence reported in Uniform Crime Reports (UCR) arrest statistics and National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) victimization data. Augmented Dickey-Fuller time-series techniques and intuitive plot displays show much overlap yet differences in each source’s portrayal of trends in female violence levels and the gender gap. Both sources show little or no change in the gender gap for homicide and rape/sexual assault, whereas UCR police counts show a sharp rise in female-to-male arrests for criminal assault during the past one to two decades--but that rise is not borne out in NCVS counts. Net-widening policy shifts have apparently escalated the arrest proneness of females for “criminal assault” (e.g., policing physical attacks/threats of marginal seriousness that women in relative terms are more likely to commit); rather than women having become any more violent, official data increasingly mask differences in violent offending by men and women.

Journal Article 2: Lynch, J. P., & Jarvis, J. P. (2008). Missing data and imputation in the uniform crime reports and the effects on national estimates. Journal of Contemporary Criminal Justice, 24, 69-85.

Abstract: The Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) program has been a major source of data on crime since 1929. These data were long considered authoritative, but lately, questions have arisen about their accuracy. Maltz has documented the magnitude of missing data in the series and demonstrated their import for research on policy issues. Maltz’s work focuses on agency-level estimates for specific months, but the UCR program was never meant to provide estimates for this unit or time period. So, although Maltz’s work is important, it has not addressed the consequences of missing data for the principal purpose of the UCR program--providing annual national estimates of the level and change in crimes known to the police. This article complements Maltz’s work by assessing the magnitude and distribution of missing data nationally and their effect on national-level and change estimates. It also examines the effects of the FBI’s imputation practices on these estimates.