Crime Classification

Victimizations and incidents are classified based upon detailed characteristics of the event provided by the respondent.

Neither victims nor interviewers classify crimes at the time of interview. During data processing, a computer program classifies each event into one type of crime, based upon the entries on a number of items on the survey questionnaire. This ensures that similar events will be classified using a standard procedure.

The glossary definition for each crime indicates the major characteristics required to be so classified. If an event can be classified as more than one type of crime, a hierarchy is used which classifies the crime according to the most serious event that occurred. The hierarchy is: rape, sexual assault, robbery, assault, burglary, motor vehicle theft, theft.