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Standards for UCR Reports from NIBRS Data

Connecticut publishes the number of UCR index crimes for each submitting agency each quarter. The state also publishes annual reports of it UCR crime data compiled in the aggregate as well as by contributor. The standards for these reports are nearly identical, though the quarterly is presented as "preliminary" and the annual is presented as complete and accurate at the time it is compiled. Therefore, the NIBRS-based agency contributions must meet a minimal standard of complete and correct records for inclusion in these reports, with the annual report standards being the highest.

The quarterly report requires NIBRS errors of 2% or less for the reporting period. The annual report requires less than 1% of records have uncorrected errors, with zero errors being the goal.

We work with agencies to have them correct all of their errors each month to minimize the number and percent of errors present (and, therefore, records missing from the crime reports) when quarterly reports are prepared. We ask for submission of one month beyond the months required for each quarter to increase the likelihood that all of the data for the quarter are in the database. The annual requires submission of three months' data beyond the year's end, i.e., through March.

Findings

The standard of obtaining the file for a month after the time frame being reported arose with the discovery that some agencies do not necessarily submit all of each month's data in the file for that month. In the interest of obtaining more complete records for each quarterly report we established this standard.

This also provides time to correct errors, which exclude the errant records from inclusion in reports. Setting a baseline of three months of added files for annual reports provides greater assurance of the completeness of the data, both for reasons noted above and for clearances of index crimes.

Download Connecticut's Quarterly Report Standards for NIBRS Agencies Checklist (.doc