Research of Church related crime based on the FBI’s National Incident Based Recording System
This study was undertaken in the effort to use verified quantitative data to research the rate of church crimes in the U.S.. It is the first such analysis of Church violent crimes derived from the FBI’s National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS). The study covers the years 1991-2016 and focuses on crimes of a violent or forceful nature against persons. The results are derived from research conducted on actual FBI data and not internet searches or news articles.
Since 2009, one of our ongoing research projects is to analyze data from various Church Crime databases and other sources. One database of particular interest is the FBI's ICPSR National Incident-Bated Reporting System (NIBRS) https://ucr.fbi.gov/nibrs-overview,
which contains summary reports and databases of individual crime incidents reported to the FBI. The latest available for research are those for 2016.
Disclaimer – NIBRS is an ongoing effort by the Federal Government to track crime in the U.S.. Not all states report equally. There are exceptions to which states are included in the data available. However, it is the best quantitative data available. Some states report in Summary files, whereas other states report the Detailed Incident records. In the Detail Incident records, we extracted those records that indicate a location code of – Church / Synagogue /Temple /Mosque. Some 97 million incidents are included in the total national archives. The FBI data is available for 1991-2016, over 25 years.
V-Crimes - Data collection models differ in how they collect their data and which data they choose to count as what type of crime. This study focuses on crimes of force or violence against persons. V-Crimes include those crimes against persons coded as: Aggravated Assault, Assault, Murder/Non-negligent Manslaughter, Negligent Manslaughter, Kidnaping/Abduction, Robbery, Forcible Rape, Forcible Sodomy, Sexual Assault with an Object, Forcible Fondling.
Possible study observations:
- Is church crime on the rise over the past 26 years of the study?
- What is the number and percentage of violent incidents in Churches/Synagogues/Temples?
- What percentage used weapons and what type?
- What percentage were Forced Sex crimes?
- What areas of the U.S. have the most incidents?
We have answers to question 1 & 2 and they may not be what you think….