Read the extracts below and then answer the following questions.
Annual government surveys from the Bureau of Justice Statistics show no recent increase in the
U.S. violent crime rate.
In 2021, the most recent year with available data, there were 16.5 violent crimes for every 1,000 Americans
ages 12 and older. That was statistically unchanged from the year before, below pre-pandemic levels and far
below the rates recorded in the 1990s, according to the National Crime Victimization Survey.
For each of the four violent crime types tracked in the survey – simple assault, aggravated assault, robbery
and rape/sexual assault – there was no statistically significant increase either in 2020 or 2021.
The National Crime Victimization Survey is fielded each year among approximately 240,000 Americans ages
12 and older and asks them to describe any recent experiences they have had with crime. The survey counts
threatened, attempted and completed crimes, whether or not they were reported to police. Notably, it
does not track the most serious form of violent crime, murder, because it is based on interviews with surviving
While the total U.S. violent crime rate does not
appear to have increased recently, the most
serious form of violent crime – murder – has
risen significantly during the pandemic
Both the FBI and the Centers for Disease Control
and Prevention (CDC) reported a roughly 30%
increase in the U.S. murder rate between 2019 and
2020, marking one of the largest year-over-year
increases ever recorded. The FBI’s latest data, as
well as provisional data from the CDC, suggest that
murders continued to rise in 2021.