The FBI has released 2019 National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS) Crime Data that ranks Austin 11th safest in crimes against persons, 12th safest in crimes against society, and 9th safest in crimes against property for U.S. cities with a population of 400,000 or greater. It is vital to note that a significant number of U.S. municipalities are still making the transition from Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) to NIBRS and are not included in this report. As a result, Austin is one of only 22 cities contained in the data set. In future years, there will be additional large cities against which to compare crime rates.
*Results not reported by the FBI due to data issues
There are significant differences in the way crime is calculated between UCR and NIBRS. The result is that UCR and NIBRS data and rankings associated with each are not comparable. Under UCR, only the most serious offenses are reported to the FBI, while NIBRS includes all offenses committed during an incident. Additionally, UCR data is divided into Part I and Part II Index Offenses, whereas NIBRS categorizes offenses by Crimes Against Persons (crimes in which victims are always individuals), Crimes Against Society (offenses representing society’s prohibition against engaging in certain types of activity), and Crimes Against Property (offenses in which there is an attempt to obtain money, property or some other benefit). These definitions come from the NIBRS User Manual.
In 2018, the Austin Police Department (APD) began transitioning from UCR summary to NIBRS in accordance with the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) January 1, 2021 implementation deadline. APD officially began submitting NIBRS data two years ahead of schedule on January 1, 2019.
A recent APD presentation to the City’s Public Safety Commission about NIBRS data is available to watch online. The 2019, and much of the 2020 NIBRS data, is available in the APD Chief’s Monthly Reports.