The Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program, of which NIBRS is a part, operates all levels of law enforcement: city, county, state, and federal. The program provides a nationwide view of crime based on the submission of crime information by law enforcement agencies throughout the country. The crime data from local and state jurisdictions are submitted either through a state UCR Program or directly to the national UCR Program, which is administered by the FBI. In Louisiana, data can be submitted directly to the FBI, or through the state program developed and administered by the Louisiana Commission on Law Enforcement (LCLE) and the Louisiana Sheriffs’ Association (LSA). Since the 1930s, the data have been used in law enforcement administration, operation, and management, as well as to indicate the levels and nature of crime in the United States.
Throughout its first 60 years of operation, the UCR Program remained virtually unchanged in terms of the data collected and disseminated – data primarily aggregated in summary format. As time progressed, a broad utility evolved for UCR data, and law enforcement expanded its capabilities to supply crime information. In the late 1970s, the law enforcement community called for a thorough evaluative study of UCR with the objective of recommending an expanded and enhanced UCR Program to meet law enforcement needs into the 21st century. Following a multiyear study, a “Blueprint for the Future of the Uniform Crime Reporting Program” was developed. Using the “Blueprint” and in consultation with local and state law enforcement executives, new guidelines for Uniform Crime Reports were formulated. The National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS) was implemented to meet these guidelines.
NIBRS offers law enforcement more comprehensive data than ever before available for management, training, planning, and research. The implementation of NIBRS will be at a pace commensurate with the resources, abilities, and limitations of the contributing law enforcement agencies. While NIBRS is being fully implemented, the traditional Summary UCR reporting format is still being used extensively. (source National Archive of Criminal Justice Data)