The Rates of Criminal Victimization Among Blacks and Whites by the Race of the Offender

Walter R. Gove, Vanderbilt University
Gabrielle L. Chapman, Vanderbilt Univ./TN Dept. of Correction

It has long been recognized that the criminal victimization tends to be intraracial. Whites are typically victimized by White offenders and Blacks are typically victimized by Black offenders, especially with regard to violent crime. In this study we revisit this postulation and examine the rates of criminal victimization among Blacks and Whites using the National Victimization Survey 1992-2000. As expected, these data consistently show that Blacks are more likely to be the victims of crime and that this is particularly true for violent offenses, especially robbery. We then examine the racial characteristics of the offender. Interestingly, these data indicate that the crimes committed by Blacks are more likely than those of Whites to be interracial and this is particularly true for robbery. The limitations of the data and the implications of the relationships observed are discussed.

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Updated 05/20/2006