BJS Report: Homicides Drop in the United States


Murders across the United States dropped by almost half between 1992 and 2011, according to new report released by the Bureau of Justice Statistics, detailing homicides known by law enforcement. Large cities experienced a larger decline in homicides than rural areas, and most people were killed by firearms. Other highlights of the report included:

  • From 2002 to 2011, the average homicide rate for males was 3.6 times higher than the rate for females. The average homicide rate for blacks was 6.3 times higher than the rate for whites.
  • From 2002 to 2011, young adults ages 18 to 24 had the highest homicide rate of any age group and experienced the greatest rate decline (down 22%) over the 10-year period, from 15.2 per 100,000 in 2002 to 11.9 in 2011.
  • The rate of homicides involving a firearm decreased by 49% from 1992 to 2011, while the percentage of homicide victims killed by a firearm (67%) remained stable.
  • From 2002 to 2011, the majority (95%) of homicide incidents involved a single victim. In 2011, 66% of homicides with a single victim involved a firearm, compared to 79% of homicide incidents with multiple victims.

Access the report here.

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