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Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Data Collection Systems in the States, Final Report

NCJ Number
Date Published
September 1999
254 pages
This document focuses on domestic and sexual violence incident data collection by the States.
The Violence Against Women Act of 1994 specified that a study be conducted on how States collect centralized databases on the incidence of domestic and sexual violence offenses. The systems are divided into two basic types: law enforcement databases and service provider databases. Twelve States were identified that captured either domestic or sexual violence data statewide via an incident-based crime system. A total of 46 of the 54 States and territories surveyed indicated that they have implemented, or are working toward or planning to meet data collection standards. The State case studies were Iowa’s Incident-Based Crime Reporting System, Connecticut’s Family Violence Reporting Program, and Illinois’ InfoNet System. The Iowa system had problems with non-reporting. An advantage of the Connecticut system was its ability to provide consistent data on family violence over a long period of time. The results from individual agencies in Illinois’ InfoNet System were overwhelmingly positive despite the difficulties of learning this new and complex automated system of data collection. Recommendations include using offense and relationship codes that are compatible with the National Incident-Based Crime Reporting System; implementing incident-based service provider systems; and developing guidance on how to identify and report cases of domestic violence and sexual assault. Other recommendations are developing initiatives to analyze and validate data being collected; and developing linkages among the various State data systems that collect information relevant to domestic violence and sexual assault incidents. 14 tables, 3 appendices

Date Published: September 1, 1999