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How Has Violent Crime Changed over Time in the United States?

Violent crime rates in the United States are at their lowest in about 40 years, having dropped by more than 50 percent since the early 1990s. Criminologists are baffled, because crime rates tend to increase during economic hardships such as the 2008 recession. Violent crime includes murders, rapes, assaults and robberies.

More facts about violent crime:

  • When considered in terms of homicides, the countries with the highest crime rates include El Salvador, Honduras and Jamaica. The countries with the lowest rates of intentional homicide include Palau, Monaco and Iceland.

  • In New York City, murder rates have dropped from about 2,500 a year in 1990 to less than 600 a year for most of the 2000s.

  • Violent crime rates in the U.S. have dropped across both racial and age divisions, although blacks still experience the highest rates of violent crime.

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