December 12, 2016

2015 NIBRS Crime Data Released

Report Contains More Detail on Criminal Offenses 

Today, the FBI released details on more than 5.6 million criminal offenses reported by law enforcement to the National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS) in 2015. This latest Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program’s report, National Incident-Based Reporting System 2015, offers a wide range of information about victims, known offenders, and relationships between the two for 23 categories comprised of 49 offenses.

The NIBRS is slated to replace the traditional Summary Reporting System by January 1, 2021, establishing it as the national standard for crime reporting. The move is backed by a host of criminal justice leaders, including the Criminal Justice Information Services Division’s Advisory Board Policy Board (a multi-agency group), the International Association of Chiefs of Police, the Major Cities Chiefs Association, the Major County Sheriffs’ Association, and the National Sheriffs’ Association.

Why NIBRS? When used to its full potential, the system will identify with precision when and where crime takes place, what form it takes, and the characteristics of victims and perpetrators. Armed with that information, law enforcement can better identify the resources it needs have the ability to use those resources more efficiently and effectively. More on the benefits of NIBRS participation.


This latest NIBRS report includes a message from FBI Director James Comey about the importance of the new reporting system and of the National Use of Force Data Collection. He said, “We need more transparency and accountability in law enforcement. We also need better, more informed conversations about crime and policing in this country. To get there, we are improving the way this nation collects, analyzes, and uses crime statistics and data about law enforcement’s use of force.”

Director Comey also expressed his appreciation to law enforcement agencies around the country who submitted NIBRS data during 2015. “By providing this data,” he said, “they are playing a critical role in helping us to better understand what is happening in our nation.”

Participation via NIBRS did increase during 2015 by 128 agencies, for a total of 6,648 agencies representing coverage of more than 96 million people. But while the number of agencies participating in NIBRS increases each year, the 2015 coverage representing just 36.1 percent of all law enforcement agencies that participate in the UCR Program shows that there is still some work to be done.

“We need more transparency and accountability in law enforcement. We also need better, more informed conversations about crime and policing in this country. ”

FBI Director James Comey

The FBI continues working to expand NIBRS participation. Most recently:

Here are some highlights from the new NIBRS report:

  • NIBRS agencies reported 4,902,177 incidents that involved 5,668,103 offenses, 5,979,330 victims, and 4,607,928 known offenders.
  • Of the report offenses, 62.9 percent involved crimes against property, 23.2 percent involves crimes against persons, and 14 percent included crimes against society (like gambling and prostitution).
  • Of the 4,158,264 individual victims, 23.8 percent were between 21 and 30 years of age; a little more than half (50.9 percent) were female; and the majority of victims (72.0 percent) were white, while the next largest percent (20.8) were black or African-American.
  • Of the known offenders, more than 44 percent were between the ages of 16 and 30, and most offenders (63.3 percent) were male.

More details on the data in NIBRS 2015 can be found on our interactive NIBRS map and the agency-level offense tables, which present statistics for each that reported 12 months of NIBRS data in 2015.

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