Grants fund crime-reporting systems

Office of Justice Programs

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The Justice Department has awarded $13 million in grants to replace the 70-year-old systems used to report crime.

The FBI and the Bureau of Justice Statistics announced the initial award of more than $12 million in grants to 24 states with an additional $1.4 million to two states coming in weeks.

The funds will be used to implement the National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS), which will improve the states' abilities to measure crime and report crime information at a national level, Justice officials said.

The NIBRS grants will assist states in converting crime statistics from simple summary counts of eight types of crime to a new and more sophisticated system of incident-based data.

The current system classifies crimes into the following categories: murder, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny, motor vehicle theft and the recently added arson offenses.

NIBRS will replace the crime counts in those categories with information on up to 46 offenses, Justice officials said. It will also include information about the victim and offender, details of the offense and the consequences of the crime for the victim.

The current national system, called the Uniform Crime Reporting Program, dates back to the 1930s. It was a joint effort of the FBI and the International Association of Chiefs of Police.

About the Author

Christopher J. Dorobek is the co-anchor of Federal News Radio’s afternoon drive program, The Daily Debrief with Chris Dorobek and Amy Morris, and the founder, publisher and editor of the DorobekInsider.com, a leading blog for the Federal IT community.

Dorobek joined Federal News Radio in 2008 with 16 years of experience covering government issues with an emphasis on government information technology. Prior to joining Federal News Radio, Dorobek was editor-in-chief of Federal Computer Week, the leading news magazine for government IT decision-makers and the flagship of the 1105 Government Information Group portfolio of publications. As editor-in-chief, Dorobek served as a member of the senior leadership team at 1105 Government Information Group, providing daily editorial direction and management for FCW magazine, FCW.com, Government Health IT and its other editorial products.

Dorobek joined FCW in 2001 as a senior reporter and assumed increasing responsibilities, becoming managing editor and executive editor before being named editor-in-chief in 2006. Prior to joining FCW, Dorobek was a technology reporter at PlanetGov.com, one of the first online community centers for current and former government employees. He also spent five years at Government Computer News, another leading industry publication, covering a variety of federal IT-related issues.

Dorobek is a frequent speaker on issues involving the government IT industry, and has appeared as a frequent contributor to NewsChannel 8’s Federal News Today program. He began his career as a reporter at the Foster’s Daily Democrat, a daily newspaper in Dover, N.H. He is a graduate of the University of Southern California. He lives in Washington, DC.


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