This week is National Crime Victims' Rights Week, a time for promoting awareness about victims' rights and services and honoring crime victims and survivors. This year's theme, established by the U.S. Department of Justice and the National Center for Victims of Crime, is "Extending the Vision: Reaching Every Victim."
Law enforcement and organizations throughout the nation are observing the week, now in its third decade. Some events are planned in our area, including one featuring Victoria Crompton-Tetter, an author and nationally known advocate against teen dating violence. She will give presentations at Fulton-Montgomery Community College on Thursday and also is speaking at high schools throughout the region.
Crime has a far-reaching effect on individuals, families and communities. Data released in the National Crime Victims' Rights Week Resource Guide show the severity of crime in the United States. Among the statistics:
In 2010, U.S. residents age 12 or older experienced an estimated 18.7 million violent and property- crime victimizations, down from 20.1 million in 2009.
A total of 14,748 people were murdered in 2010, a 4.2 percent decline from 2009.
In 2010, where the victim-offender relationship was known, 37.4 percent of homicide victims were killed by an acquaintance, 22.3 percent were killed by a stranger, 18.4 percent were killed by an intimate partner, 15 percent were killed by a family member and 5.5 percent were killed by a friend.
Youths ages 12 to 19 with disabilities experienced violence at nearly twice the rate of those without a disability.
During 2010, 92,865 people older than 65 were victims of violent crime.
In 2010, an estimated 8.1 million adults became victims of identity fraud, down from about 11 million in 2009.