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Thu Jan 10, 2013, 05:30 PM

US vs UK Violent crime rates

I'm going to start a new thread about this because I'm hoping to hear some smart folks interpret these data.

I had read on the internet that the UK had a higher violent crime rate than the US. I looked on Google and I think that statistic comes from this:
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-25671/Violent-crime-worse-Britain-US.html

From that article:
"According to the figures released yesterday, 3.6 per cent of the population of England and Wales were victims of violent crime in 1999 - second only to Australia, where the figure was 4.1 per cent.

Scotland had a slightly lower rate of violence, at 3.4 per cent.

In the U.S., only 2 per cent of the population suffered an assault or robbery."


So that is almost double.

On this forum is a post (http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022168853) that shows a recent report from WHO that compares international death rates in terms of Health Data. From this chart-

http://sites.nationalacademies.org/DBASSE/CPOP/DBASSE_080393#violence

It shows that the US death rate from violence was a little over 6.47 per 100,000. In the UK the death rate from violence is 1.14 per 100,000. So that is about 5/6 times higher.

So, assuming that both of these reports are based on sound methodology - and there has to be a lot of error in these data, but assuming both are fairly accurate - and remembering that this are descriptive data, no inferences being drawn here, does one conclude:

Individuals are more likely to experience violent crime in the UK, but fatalities from violent crime are much higher in the US?

ETA and also, the first set of data are from 1999, the second from 2008, so there is a decade difference also.

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Arrow 7 replies Author Time Post
Reply US vs UK Violent crime rates (Original post)
d_r Jan 2013 OP
upaloopa Jan 2013 #1
d_r Jan 2013 #2
d_r Jan 2013 #3
Recursion Jan 2013 #4
d_r Jan 2013 #6
DanTex Jan 2013 #5
d_r Jan 2013 #7

Response to d_r (Original post)

Thu Jan 10, 2013, 05:36 PM

1. I think you have to look at more than the numbers.

You need to know what the words represent also.

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Response to upaloopa (Reply #1)

Thu Jan 10, 2013, 05:37 PM

2. good point

differences in measurement

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Response to upaloopa (Reply #1)

Thu Jan 10, 2013, 05:39 PM

3. another is

maybe people are more likely to report the crime in other countries

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Response to d_r (Original post)

Thu Jan 10, 2013, 05:41 PM

4. That would point to the US having more attacks among a smaller percent of the population

That is, our violence is more frequent, and also more concentrated in a specific subset of the population.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #4)

Thu Jan 10, 2013, 05:46 PM

6. I'm trying to think that through

OK I got it.

Yes, fewer people involved, more fatalities.

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Response to d_r (Original post)

Thu Jan 10, 2013, 05:45 PM

5. One thing to keep in mind.

The definition of what counts as violent crime differs across different countries, so it is not always an apples-to-apples comparison. On the other hand, homicide has a pretty clear definition, so that comparison should be more reliable.

Broadly speaking, violent crime rates in the US are similar to those in Western Europe, but our homicide is a lot larger. A big reason for this is that we have a lot more guns, and crimes committed with guns are much more likely to result in homicide.

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Response to DanTex (Reply #5)

Thu Jan 10, 2013, 05:47 PM

7. more lethal in the US

I wonder if our definition of violent crime is more narrow.

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