In order to compress the multiple data segments into one flat file, SAS reads each record and defines its structure.   The appropriate data columns for each segment are identified and the seven data segments (Administrative, Offense, Victim, Property, Offender, Arrestee, and Group B Offenses) are created.

The sample spreadsheet above shows, for one incident, a victim segment record, an offender segment record, and an arrestee segment record. Not all cells contain data. There are blank cells at the intersection of B5 and B6, for example, because neither the offender segment nor the arrestee segment contains the data element "victim number". (The data elements in this example are reduced in number for illustration purposes.)

For an example of SAS code showing this process, including narrative text, select this option:

For a refresher on the NIBRS data structure, select this option: