How Did the FBI Miss Over 1 Million Rapes? | The Nation

The estimates are conservative for two reasons. First, in order to consistently analyze the data over time, Yung looked only at cases defined by the FBI’s pre-2012 definition of rape one established in 1927: “carnal knowledge of a female forcibly and against her will.” This definition did not include anal or oral rape, cases involving drugging or alcohol, or the rape of boys and men. The Federal Criminal Code was recently broadened to include these categories. Second, the FBI and crime experts estimate that anywhere from 60 percent to 80 percent of rapes are never reported to the police.Yung’s analysis, which focused on cities with populations of more than 100,000, found that 22 percent of the 210 studied police departments demonstrated “substantial statistical irregularities in their rape data.”“It’s probably true that in all cities there is undercounting,” explains Yung. “However, forty-six outlier cities appear to be undercounting on a consistent, high level, which makes sense because you have to show [improved crime statistics] results year over year, and you get into a trap where you have to improve upon already low numbers.” Even worse, the number of jurisdictions that appear to be undercounting has increased by 61 percent during the period studied.

via How Did the FBI Miss Over 1 Million Rapes? | The Nation.

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