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The Two measures of Crime

Department of Justice

The U.S. Department of Justice administers two statistical programs to measure the magnitude, nature, and impact of crime in the Nation: the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program and the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS). Each program produces valuable information about aspects of the Nation’s crime problem.

Because the UCR and NCVS programs are conducted for different purposes, use different methods, and focus on somewhat different aspects of crime, the information they produce together provides a more comprehensive panorama of the Nation’s crime problem than either could produce alone.


See Nation’s Two crime Measures.

Violent Crime


  • Rape – Forced sexual intercourse,  including both psychological coercion as well as physical force. Forced sexual intercourse mean vaginal, anal or oral penetration by offender(s). The category also includes incidents where the penetration is from foreign object, such as bottle. Includes attempted rapes, male as well as female victims, and and both heterosexual and same sex rape. Attempted rape includes verbal threats of rape.
  • Robbery – Completed or attempted theft, directly from a person, of property or cash, by force or threat of force, with or without weapon, and with or without injury.


  • Aggravated assault –  Attack or attempted attack with weapon, regardless of the whether or not an injury occurred and attack without a weapon when serious injury resulted.
  • Simple assault – Attack without a weapon resulting either in no injury, minor injury (for example, bruises, black eyes, cuts, scratches or swelling) or an undetermined injury requiring less than 2 days of hospitalization. also includes attempted assault without a weapon.
  • Purse Snatching and pocket picking – Theft or attempted theft of property or cash directly from visctim by stealth, without force or threat of force.

Property Crime


Unlawful or forcible entry or attempted entry of a residence. This crime usually but not always, involves theft. The illegal entry may by force, such as breaking a window or slashing a screen or may be without force by entering has no legal right to be present in the structure a burglary  has occurred. furthermore , the structure need not to be the house itself for a burglary to take place; illegal entry of a garage, shed or any other structure on the premises constitutes house-hold burglary. If breaking and entering occurs in a hotel or vacation residence, it is classified as a burglary for the household whose member or members were staying there at the time the entry occurred.


Completed or attempted theft of property or cash without personal contact. Incidents involving theft of the property from within the sample household would classify as theft if the offender has legal right to be in the house (such as a maid, delivery person, or guest). If the offender has legal right to be in the house, the incident would be classified as a burglary, motor vehicle theft – stealing or unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, including attempted thefts.



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