Top 10 Factors Contributing to Violent Crime

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Crime in America.Net

Yesterday we had a student question; “With all the state and local and federal budget cuts, what will law enforcement agencies do to adjust?” Within the research used to answer the question, there was a list of the top ten reasons that contribute to violent crime. Because of continuing reader questions as to “what contributes to crime,” we decided to offer that list as a separate article.

We realize that this issue is usually addressed by criminologists but research strongly suggests that the average citizen sees law enforcement as the critical and credible source for information on crime and prevention.

The Police Executive Research Forum brings together police chiefs from across the country and asks their opinions as to developing issues, thus the list below reflects the perceptions of law enforcement leadership. The document cited is from 2009.

Top 10 Factors Identified as Contributing to Violent Crime.

1. Gangs  82 %

2. Juveniles / youth crime 80 %

3. Economy / poverty / unemployment 74 %

4. Impulsive violence / disrespect issues 74 %

5. Release of offenders from correctional institutions 69 %

6. Drugs-Cocaine 67 %

7. Poor parenting 63 %

8. Increased availability of guns 55 %

9. Reduced cooperation from witnesses / victims (not in top 10 last year) 37 %

10. Educational system-increasing dropout rates (not in top 10 last year) 36 %



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  4. It’s interesting that, if you compare states like Maine and Vermont (where guns are very easy to get and carry) the per capita rate of violent crime is less than 1/10th that of Washington DC (where owning guns is basically outlawed)

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