Crime Factors
The amount and rate of crime for a particular community can sometimes be quite deceiving unless several factors are taken into consideration. Some of the factors which are known to affect the volume and type of crime occurring from place to place are:
  • Population density and degree of urbanization with size of locality and its surrounding area.
  • Variations in composition of the population, particularly youth concentration.
  • Stability of population with respect to residents' mobility, commuting patterns, and transient factors.
  • Modes of transportation and highway system.
  • Economic conditions, including median income, poverty level, and job availability.
  • Cultural factors and educational, recreational, and religious characteristics.
  • Family conditions with respect to divorce and family cohesiveness.
  • Climate.
  • Effective strength of law enforcement agencies.
  • Administrative and investigative emphases of law enforcement.
  • Policies of other components of the criminal justice system (i.e., prosecutorial, judicial and correctional).
  • Citizens' attitudes toward crime.
  • Crime reporting practices of the citizenry.

The Uniform Crime Reports give a statewide view of crime based on statistics contributed by law enforcement agencies. Population size is the only correlate of crime utilized in this publication. While the other factors listed above are of equal concern, no attempt is made to relate them to the data presented. The reader is, therefore, cautioned against comparing statistical data of individual reporting units from cities, counties, metropolitan areas, or colleges and universities solely on the basis of their population coverage or student enrollment.2 

2Crime in the United States - 1997, United States Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Investigation