The Cost of Crime

posted Apr 13, 2011, 7:24 PM by Ronnie V
Continuing our informational series for National Crime Victims Rights Week.

The Cost of Crime

--In 2007, for crimes both reported and not reported, the total economic loss to victims was $2 billion for violent crime and $16 billion for property crime.

--In 2007, 15 percent of violent crimes and 94 percent of property crimes resulted in economic losses from theft or damage.

--In 2009, an estimated $508 million worth of property was stolen during robberies reported to the police. The average dollar value of property stolen per robbery offense was $1,244.

--Two-thirds of property crimes reported to police in 2009 were larceny-thefts, with the value of stolen property averaging $864 per offense. The total value of stolen property was an estimated $5.5 billion.

--In 2009, the average dollar loss due to arson was $17,411 per offense.

--An estimated 26,500 fires were intentionally set to structures in 2009, a decrease of 13 percent from 2008. These fires resulted in 170 civilian deaths and $684 million in property loss (a decrease of 21 percent from 2008).

--Approximately 15,000 fires were intentionally set to vehicles in 2009, resulting in $108 million in property damage, a 22 percent decrease from 2008.

--In 2009, the average dollar loss per burglary offense reported to the police was $2,096. The total amount lost to burglaries was an estimated $4.6 billion.

--Victim compensation programs distributed $478 million in 2009. This amount is an increase over the $453 million paid in 2007 and $444 million paid in 2006.

--Victim compensation programs paid $32 million in 2009 and $29 million for forensic sexual assault exams in 2008, a 28 percent increase from 2007.

--Victims of child abuse constituted 20 percent of the recipients of crime victim compensation in 2009.

--In 2009, domestic violence victims made up 25 percent of all adult victims compensated by victim compensation programs; 40 percent of all assault claims were paid to domestic violence victims.

--In 2009, medical expenses constituted 54 percent of all victim compensation payments; economic support for lost wages for injured victims and for lost support in homicides made up 15 percent of the total; 11 percent of total payments were for funeral bills; and 9 percent went toward mental health counseling for crime victims.

--In 2009, the total amount of money lost from all cases of Internet fraud referred to law enforcement for investigation was $559.7 million, with a median dollar loss of $575 per complaint. This amount is up from a total loss of $264.6 million reported in 2008.

--In 2007, the two most common types of telemarketing fraud were fake check scams (average loss of $3,855) and false prizes or sweepstakes (average loss of $6,601), together accounting for 72 percent of telemarketing fraud complaints.

--Fake check scams were also the most common type of Internet fraud in 2007, constituting 29 percent of complaints, with an average loss of $3,311. The second most common type of Internet fraud was non-auction general merchandise sales (goods misrepresented or never delivered).

--In 2009, consumers reporting fraud to the Federal Trade Commission lost a total of more than $1.7 billion dollars.

--In 2007, the United States (at federal, state, and local levels) spent $228 billion for police protection, corrections, and judicial and legal activities.

--The direct cost of child abuse and neglect in the United States totals more than $33 billion annually. When factoring in indirect costs, the figure rises to more than $104 billion annually.