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I am trying to find any of the following counted by some small geographical unit like census tract or block:

--number of arrests per year (maybe by crime type?) within each area

--number of convicted felons living within each area

I don't believe such data is collected through the American Community Survey. I could probably get arrest records by police precinct, but # of felons who have either completed their sentence or are on probation is what I'm really looking for. Any advice?

Note that this is for the USA. Thank you!

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For your first request, I would guess that the FBI's Crime Statistics would be your best source: https://www.fbi.gov/stats-services/crimestats lots of great data, but not necessarily neatly divided into geographical units.

As far as convicted felons who have completed their sentences, I would guess that any data you can get on this topic would be extremely suspect, as once they have completed their sentences, they are not required to tell anyone about their status, and have a strong incentive to not do so.

One exception to this would be sex offenders, who are required to register with local law enforcement. You can access some of that data via the National Sex Offender Public Website: http://www.nsopw.gov/ You should definitely look at the TOS for that site before digging in too deeply, as there are restrictions on how the data can be used.

  • Thanks for answering! Yeah, that was my suspicion. I'm not going to use the registry as I was really hoping to use it as a proxy for felon disenfranchisement locally and that would be only a small portion, but I appreciate the tip. I will just have to look at crime rates instead. Thanks – garson Jul 6 '15 at 21:27
  • Good luck! Interesting question. – i_am_Halloran Jul 6 '15 at 22:12
  • It's worth checking the assertion that the FBI UCR crime statistics are "lots of great data." Reporting is voluntary, and there is little to ensure consistent practices between reporting bodies. It is probably the best you'll get, but it's important to temper any inferences or claims made from the data, especially if you're trying to do something across agencies. – Joe Germuska Jul 16 '15 at 15:29

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