Standardizing the Display of IBR Data: Drug Offenses

FBI Tables

In the FBI's preliminary tables using NIBRS, data were used to illustrate NIBRS content and capabilities by providing simple, easy-to-understand tables and charts.  Although no table singles out drug offenses, several tables look at the characteristics of drug offenses in comparison to other offenses.  The following tables have been updated with 2000 NIBRS data.  Since multiple offenses, victims, and offenders can occur in an incident, the totals will not equal the number of incidents reported.  Where multiple offense types occur an incident, each are reported in their respective categories.  Where multiple counts of the same offense occur, only one is counted in the numbers below.  The FBI does not include Negligent Manslaughter and Justifiable Homicide figures in the table.

Number of Incidents, Offenses, Persons Victimized, and Known Offenders, 2000

Offense Type Incidents Offenses Person Victims Offenders
Crimes Against Persons:   676,361   676,361   755,841   779,526
    Murder 1,611 1,611 1,743 2,221
     Assault Offenses: 627,210 627,210 701,976 723,231
         Aggravated Assault 106,391 106,391 123,574 130,458
         Simple Assault 410,934 410,934 460,804 473,434
         Intimidation 109,885 109,885 117,598 119,339
     Kidnaping/abduction 6,711 6,711 7,734 8,571
     Sex Offenses: Forcible 37,876 37,876 41,315 42,250
         Forcible Rape 14,773 14,773 15,254 16,805
         Forcible Sodomy 3,603 3,603 4,062 4,135
         Sex Assault with Object 2,235 2,235 2,439 2,524
         Forcible Fondling 17,265 17,265 19,560 18,786
     Sex Offenses: Non-forcible 2,953 2,953 3,073 3,253
         Incest 451 451 492 492
         Statutory Rape 2,502 2,502 2,581 2,761

Crimes Against Property:

2,145,395 2,145,399 1,528,134 2,380,412
    Arson 11,170 11,170 7,769 13,312
    Bribery 108 108 71 142
    Burglary/Breaking & Entering 269,728 269,728 202,349 303,476
    Counterfeiting/Forgery 53,797 53,798 25,117 62,503
    Destruction/Vandalism 522,589 522,589 434,936 570,578
    Embezzlement 15,537 15,537 2,974 19,508
    Extortion/Blackmail 414 414 416 500
    Fraud Offenses: 60,594 60,595 34,082 69,861
         False Pretenses/Swindle 36,268 36,269 14,990 42,109
         Credit Card/ATM Fraud 16,872 16,872 13,407 19,208
         Impersonation 6,587 6,587 5,153 7,582
         Welfare Fraud 252 252 61 283
         Wire Fraud 615 615 471 679
    Larceny/Theft Offenses: 1,033,766 1,033,768 667,266 1,129,599
         Pocket Picking 3,061 3,061 2,915 3,340
         Purse-snatching 3,825 3,825 3,618 4,133
         Shoplifting 131,613 131,613 2,708** 161,639
         Theft from Building 143,939 143,940 103,865 159,446
         Theft from Coin Machine 6,647 6,647 922 7,436
         Theft from Motor Vehicle 246,260 246,260 228,227 258,765
         Theft of Vehicle Parts 70,305 70,305 57,457 72,810
         All Other Larceny 428,116 428,117 267,554 462,030
    Motor Vehicle Theft 127,692 127,692 105,003 138,859
    Robbery 34,878 34,878 36,733 51,574
    Stolen Property Offenses 15,122 15,122 11,418 20,500

Crimes Against Society:

282,583

282,583 0 381,754
    Drug/Narcotic Offenses: 243,249 243,249

0

330,764
         Drug/Narcotic Violations 186,503 186,503 -- 249,646
         Drug Equipment Violations 56,746 56,746 -- 81,118
   Gambling Offenses: 760 760 0 1,286
         Betting/Wagering 317 317 -- 530
         Operating/Promoting 228 228 -- 433
         Gambling Equipment 212 212 -- 320
         Sports Tampering 3 3 -- 3
    Pornography/Obscene Material 1,003 1,003 -- 1,133
    Prostitution Offenses: 5,030 5,030 0 6,223
         Prostitution 3,703 3,703 -- 4,547
         Assisting/Promoting 1,327 1,327 -- 1,676
    Weapon Law Violations 32,541 32,541 -- 42,348

TOTAL

3,104,339*

3,104,343 2,283,975 3,541,692

NOTE:  We are not able to accurately match offenders with offenses; in this example, all offenders are matched with all offenses occurring in the incident.  As a result, these numbers may be inflated.  For example, two offenders break into an apartment building and steal jewelry.  One of the offenders also assaults a man in the apartment.  The incident would list two offenses and two offenders.  NIBRS does not tell us which offender is responsible for which offense, or even if one offender is only responsible for one offense.
*This figure does not include 188 incidents that were missing offense information.
**It is unlikely that shoplifting offenses have individual victims.  These incidents may be miscoded.

To create this table, the segments without offense information were matched to an offense file that had been aggregated by the agency number.  Frequencies of offenses were then run.  The output of the resulting tables were summed and entered into the table above.  As you can see, very few incidents included multiple types of offenses.  

Download SPSS code to replicate this table (.sps)
The SPSS code provided here produces separate tables showing the frequencies of incidents, offenses, victims, and known offenders.  The information was manually combined into the table presented above.
Note: Please check that the variable names used in this syntax match the variable names in your data file.  If you need assistance, contact JRSA.


The Crime Analysis, Research and Development Unit of the FBI has also produced line graphs depicting drug offenses.  These graphs are another example of the analysis that can be done using NIBRS.  NOTE: This syntax uses the Offense data file.  Please see Reading NIBRS Data into SPSS to create the necessary file.

Three line graphs are presented.  Although the FBI looked at the rates of offenses occurring each month, the following examples present simple counts, which are easily graphed in SPSS.  One SPSS syntax file is available to produce all of the graphs presented below.

In 2000, there were 243,249 drug offenses reported in NIBRS.  Most of these (77%) were drug/narcotic violations.  All of these included the required type of criminal activity entry.  When all offenses are grouped together, possessing/concealing is the most frequently reported type of drug activity.

drug_activity.jpg (34481 bytes)

Since each offense can have more than one reported criminal activity type, the total does not equal the number of offenses.

Graph 1.  User-Related Drug Activity

This graph looks at drug offenses (drug/narcotic violations and drug equipment violations) with the criminal activity coded as either buying/receiving or using/consuming.   Although other criminal activities may apply to users, they do not distinguish users from dealers and are not included in the following table. 

drug_users.jpg (37861 bytes)

As can be seen in this graph, the majority of user-related offenses reported in NIBRS occurred in March, with the fewest reported in December.  These data should be graphed over multiple years to determine whether there is a large increase from December to January or whether user-related offenses continued to decline into 2001.


Graph 2.  Dealer-Related Drug Activity

This graph looks at drug offenses with criminal activity coded as distributing/selling.  Again, other criminal activities may apply to dealers, but they do not distinguish users from dealers and are not included.  

drug_dealer.jpg (43783 bytes)

Similar to the data for users, the greatest number of dealer-related drug offenses reported in NIBRS occurs in March, with a decline in June and July.


Figure 3.  Comparison of User- and Dealer-Related Drug Activity

This graph combines the information from both of the previous graphs.  The trends are similar, with more offenses related to dealing drugs than using drugs reported in NIBRS.

drug_comp.jpg (45672 bytes)

Download SPSS Code to replicate these graphs (.sps)
When using this code, be sure and check that the variable names match the names in your data file.  If you need assistance using this file, please email JRSA.