Hate Crimes and NIBRS

James J. Nolan III, West Virginia University

The National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS) is an incident-level crime reporting program for local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies. Within each criminal incident, NIBRS captures information on offenses, victims, offenders, property, and persons arrested. The ability to link and analyze this detailed information is a significant improvement to the existing Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program. NIBRS is rich with information about bias crimes reported to the police. However, NIBRS is a very large and complex dataset, a fact that has become an impediment to its full utilization. In this paper the author presents a comprehensive analysis of the bias crimes reported through NIBRS between 1995 and 2000. He also provides instructions to other researchers who are interested in accessing and analyzing this complex data set.

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Updated 05/20/2006