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Note: The Criminal Justice Statistics Center has been transfered to the Department of Public Safety (DPS). These webpages and datbases are maintained on the Dept. of Administration server for historic purposes, and because replacement services have not been implemented at the DPS. The databases on this site are not being updated and contact information for individuals and offices is likely inaccurate.

Reported crimes, 1985 - 2000

Reported crime data for Minnesota is available on state, county and law enforcement levels. Additional information is provided on terms and important caveats necessary for accurately interpreting the data. Instructions for downloading the database are also given. 

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Source: Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, Department of Public Safety 

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Source: Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, Department of Public Safety 

 Terms

Below are definitions specific to Minnesota reported crime data. 

Aggravated assault The attempted or actual use of force, through the use of a weapon or physical attack, intended to inflict severe bodily injury upon another person. This category does not include assaults committed with intent to rape or rob, simple assaults or assault and battery. 

Apprehension The taking into custody of a person under age 18 by a law enforcement agency with the intention of seeking charges for a specific offense. 

Arrest The taking into custody of a person age 18 or older by a law enforcement agency with the intention of seeking charges for a specific offense. 

Arson Willful or malicious burning — whether attempted or actually completed — of any entity, including a dwelling, building, motor vehicle, ship, aircraft, personal property of another, crops, grain, trees, fences, marshes and meadows. Deaths resulting from arson are classified as murder and personal injuries as assault. 

Burglary The unlawful or forcible entry of any structure such as a public building, factory, apartment, house, trailer, ship or warehouse to commit a felony or theft. Attempts at forcible entry also are included. If theft occurs as a result of the unlawful or forced entry, only a burglary is recorded. Any behavior aimed at unlawful entry of a locked structure is considered forcible. 

Curfew and loitering Violations of local curfew or loitering ordinances for which juveniles but not adults can be apprehended. Adults arrested for loitering are counted under the offense of vagrancy. 

Disorderly conduct Breach of the peace including unlawful assembly, use of obscene language, desecration of the flag or refusal to assist an officer. Attempts to commit any of these actions also are included. 

Driving under the influence Driving or operating any vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or narcotic drugs. 

Eighth Judicial District One of 10 regions defined by Minnesota Statutes, section 2.722 that includes the western counties of Big Stone, Chippewa, Grant, Kandiyohi, Lac Qui Parle, Meeker, Pope, Renville, Stevens, Swift, Traverse, Wilkin and Yellow Medicine. 

Embezzlement The misappropriation or misapplication of money or property entrusted to one’s care, custody or control. 

Fifth Judicial District One of 10 regions defined by Minnesota Statutes, section 2.722 that includes the southwestern counties of Blue Earth, Brown, Cottonwood, Faribault, Jackson, Lincoln, Lyon, Martin, Murray, Nicollet, Nobles, Pipestone, Redwood, Rock and Watonwan. 

First Judicial District One of 10 regions defined by Minnesota Statutes, section 2.722 that includes the southern Twin Cities metropolitan area counties of Carver, Dakota, Goodhue, Le Sueur, McLeod, Scott and Sibley. 

Forgery and counterfeiting Making, altering, uttering or possessing anything false in place of the authentic item with intent to defraud. This category includes illegally making, altering or forging public records, coins, plates or banknotes; signing the name of another or fictitious person; and all attempts to commit these acts. 

Fourth Judicial District One of 10 regions defined by Minnesota Statutes, section 2.722. It includes Hennepin County. 

Fraud The fraudulent conversion and acquisition of money under false pretenses. Includes such acts as writing bad checks, conducting confidence games, withdrawing money from an automatic teller machine without authorization and any attempts to commit these acts. 

Gambling offenses Promoting, permitting or engaging in illegal gambling. 

Judicial district As established by the constitution and defined by statute, Minnesota`s trial courts are organized into 10 districts for administrative purposes. 

Juvenile offenses Acts for which adults cannot be arrested, including loitering, violating curfew and running away. These incidents are not required to be included in the total of reported offenses; if they resulted in an apprehension, however, they are included in arrest and apprehension data. 

Larceny The attempted or unlawful taking of property belonging to another person, including such acts as pocket-picking, purse snatching, shoplifting, theft from an automobile or building, and bicycle theft. Motor vehicle theft and thefts resulting from robbery or breaking and entering are not considered larceny. 

Liquor laws Violation of any state or local liquor laws, such as maintaining an unlawful drinking establishment or furnishing liquor to a minor. Federal violations are excluded. 

Motor vehicle theft The attempted or actual theft of a motor vehicle; includes all vehicles that can be registered as a motor vehicle in Minnesota. 

Murder The willful, premeditated killing of another person; also includes nonnegligent manslaughter, which is willful but not premeditated. Attempts to kill are classified as aggravated assaults. Justifiable homicides, suicides and accidental deaths are excluded. 

Narcotics offenses Violations of any state or local laws relating to the unlawful possession, sale, use, growing, manufacturing or making of narcotic drugs. 

Negligent manslaughter Death that occurs as a result of nonwillful, gross negligence by some person other than the victim. This category does not include traffic fatalities. 

Ninth Judicial District One of 10 regions defined by Minnesota Statutes, section 2.722 that includes the northwestern counties of Aitkin, Beltrami, Cass, Clearwater, Crow Wing, Hubbard, Itasca, Kittson, Koochiching, Lake of the Woods, Mahnomen, Marshall, Norman, Pennington, Polk, Red Lake and Roseau. 

Offenses against family or children Desertion, abandonment, nonsupport, neglect or abuse of a child or family member, or nonpayment of alimony. 

Other assaults Attempted or actual assault that is minor in nature. These incidents do not involve weapons and do not result in serious bodily injury to the victim. 

Other offenses (except traffic) Violations of any state or local laws not defined in this document, excluding traffic violations and the juvenile offenses of running away, loitering and violating curfew. 

Other sex offenses Violations of common decency or morals and such acts as adultery, incest, indecent exposure, sodomy and all attempts to commit these acts. This category does not include forcible rape or prostitution. 

Part I crimes As defined by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, murder, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny, motor vehicle theft and arson. 

Part II crimes As defined by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, other assaults; forgery and counterfeiting; fraud; embezzlement; buying, receiving or possessing stolen property; vandalism or destruction of property; violating weapons laws; prostitution and commercialized vice; sex offenses; narcotics offenses; liquor law violations; gambling violations; offenses against family and children; driving under the influence; disorderly conduct; vagrancy; and all other offenses (all offenses other than Part I crimes, juvenile offenses and traffic violations). 

Property crimes The Part I offenses of burglary, larceny, motor vehicle theft and arson. 

Prostitution Sex offenses of a commercialized nature such as prostitution, keeping a house of ill repute or procuring, transporting or detaining males and females for immoral purposes. Attempts to commit any of these acts also are included. 

Second Judicial District One of 10 regions defined by Minnesota Statutes, section 2.722. It includes Ramsey County. 

Seventh Judicial District One of 10 regions defined by Minnesota Statutes, section 2.722 that includes the west central counties of Becker, Benton, Clay, Douglas, Mille Lacs, Morrison, Otter Tail, Stearns, Todd and Wadena. 

Sixth Judicial District One of 10 regions defined by Minnesota Statutes, section 2.722 that includes the northeastern counties of Carlton, Cook, Lake and St. Louis. 

Rape Carnal knowledge of a female or male forcibly and against her or his will, including assaults and attempts to rape. This category excludes statutory rape — cases in which no force is used and the victim is under the age of consent — and other sex offenses. 

Robbery The threatened, attempted or actual taking of other people’s property against their will by using force or putting them in fear. 

Runaways Juveniles taken into protective custody under provisions of state statutes. 

Stolen property Buying, receiving, possessing or concealing stolen property, including attempts to commit these acts. 

Tenth Judicial District One of 10 regions defined by Minnesota Statutes, section 2.722 that includes the northern Twin Cities metropolitan area counties of Anoka, Chisago, Isanti, Kanabec, Pine, Sherburne, Washington and Wright. 

Third Judicial District One of 10 regions defined by Minnesota Statutes, section 2.722 that includes the southeastern counties of Dodge, Fillmore, Freeborn, Houston, Mower, Olmsted, Rice, Steele, Wabasha, Waseca and Winona. 

Vandalism Willful or malicious destruction, injury, disfigurement or defacement of any public or private property, real or personal, without consent of the owner or persons having custody or control by cutting, tearing, breaking, marking, painting, drawing, covering with filth or any other such means as may be specified by law. 

Violent crimes The Part I offenses of murder, rape, robbery and aggravated assault. 

Weapon offenses Violations of laws governing the manufacture, sale or possession of deadly weapons or silencers; carrying deadly weapons, concealed or openly; furnishing deadly weapons to minors; the possession of deadly weapons by aliens; and all attempts to commit any of these acts. 

 Caveats

The Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Uniform Crime Reporting program collects standardized aggregate data on known offenses and individuals arrested. Data is voluntarily submitted by law enforcement agencies nationwide. The program seeks to generate reliable statistics for use by law enforcement agencies and for examination of crime levels in the United States. Uniform Crime Report information includes number and types of criminal acts, number of crimes cleared by an arrest, demographics of people arrested, law enforcement disposition of juveniles and law enforcement employee information. In Minnesota, the agency responsible for coordinating the collection and maintenance of the state’s Uniform Crime Report data is the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension at the Department of Public Safety. 

Under the Uniform Crime Reporting program, certain crimes were grouped for reporting and consistent definitions adopted so that crime statistics could be compiled in a single classification system. Eight offenses comprise the Part I or “serious” crimes, while 21 make up Part II crimes. Not all law enforcement agencies in Minnesota report to the program, and the number submitting information may vary from year to year. In addition, some agencies may miss the yearly deadline for submitting complete data. All reporting agencies, however, relay offense and arrest data for both Part I and Part II crimes, with the exception of the St. Paul Police Department, which provides reported offense data only for the Part II crime of  “other assaults.” 

Offenses become known to law enforcement through complaints made by victims, witnesses or other sources, or through discovery by officers in the course of duty. They are recorded whether or not someone is arrested. Complaints determined to be unfounded by subsequent investigation are eliminated from the recorded total. One criminal incident may involve several crimes, several offenders and several victims. Under Uniform Crime Reporting program guidelines, however, if an incident involves more than one offense, only the most serious is counted. 

While reported crimes relate to events, arrests and apprehensions relate to people. As noted above, one criminal incident may involve multiple crimes and multiple offenders. One individual may be arrested for the same or different offenses in a given year and would be counted each time. Multiple offenders involved in the commission of one offense each would be recorded as well. Therefore, the data reflects the number of instances in which people are taken into custody for an offense and not the number of individuals. Juveniles are counted in arrests and apprehensions when they commit an offense for which, if it had been committed by an adult, an arrest would be made. Many times youthful offenders are handled informally and therefore are not included in the count of arrests. 

Information provided through the Uniform Crime Reporting program is distinct and cannot be linked to data contained in other types of data sets or tracked from the incident through subsequent activity in the criminal justice system. In some cases, totals recorded for various offense categories do not match those published in the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension’s annual report, Minnesota Crime Information. These differences are primarily attributed to errors in calculation of totals contained in BCA tables. Data for the offense of vagrancy was obtained from the BCA, but was incomplete; therefore, this information is not provided. The BCA did not start publishing data for this offense until 1996 and only provides statewide totals. If there are no reported offense counts for a county, the law enforcement agencies in that county either did not report any offenses or did not submit Uniform Crime Reports to the BCA. 

The total crime picture is influenced by many variables. Valid assessments are only possible through focused attention on the unique conditions affecting each law enforcement jurisdiction. Levels and severity of crime can be shaped by a number of factors, such as: 

  • Undercounting of offenses when only the most serious is charged or counted 
  • Legislative changes defining criminal offenses 
  • Population density and size, and degree of urbanization 
  • Stability of the population, including commuters, seasonal residents and other transient types 
  • Composition of the population in terms of age, sex and race 
  • Regional educational, familial, economic, recreational and religious characteristics 
  • Climatic conditions, including seasonal weather variations 
  • Administrative and investigative efficiency of local law enforcement, including the degree of adherence to crime reporting standards 
  • Policies of local law enforcement agencies, prosecuting officials and the courts 
  • Modifications to records procedures, incomplete reporting or changes in a jurisdiction’s boundaries 
  • Public attitudes toward crime, reporting of crime — especially minor offenses — and law enforcement 
  • Lack of crime reporting due to the perception that law enforcement will be of little help or fear of embarrassment, threat, blackmail or retaliation for participating in an offense considered against societal norms 

The Minnesota State Patrol is not connected to one specific county but rather regions of Minnesota. The State Patrol is made up of 12 regional offices and Capitol Security, which generally patrols buildings on the state Capitol grounds and the Governor’s mansion. A State Patrol officer generally reports any offense which occurs in the district to which that officer is assigned; however, an officer traveling outside the assigned district may respond to and record an offense which occurred in the unassigned district as a statistic with the officer’s assigned regional office.

The Minnesota State Patrol Central office, located in St. Paul, usually includes data collected from the Minneapolis and St. Paul metro area.

The East and West Twin Cities metropolitan area is patrolled by the Central, Golden Valley and Eagan (which was relocated to Oakdale) State Patrol offices. Depending on the year of collection, data for the East and West Twin Cities metropolitan area may be aggregated by the State Patrol Central office counts.

1999 arrest and apprehension data may have under or over count errors, due to year 2000 computer and software compatibility issues.

Minnesota law enforcement agencies, such as a police department, sheriff’s office and State Patrol office, are required by Minnesota Statutes to report all arrests and apprehensions, and Part I reported crimes to the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension at the Department of Public Safety.

Some law enforcement agencies may show a total of zero arrests and apprehensions, reported crimes or both. There are various reasons this may occur. The agency:

  • did not exist in that year or the agency may have been eliminated
  • did not report some or all of its data to the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension
  • did not have any arrests and apprehensions, reported crimes or both in that year

Data may show declines or increases for any of the previous reasons as well as the following two:

  • If a law enforcement agency disbands, its patrol area is then patrolled by another agency and any crime statistics are sent in by the new agency.
  • Newly created law enforcement agencies report crime that previously was recorded by another agency.

Any law enforcement agency with inconsistent data from year-to-year should be contacted for possible reasons for the inconsistency.

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 Downloading Instructions

Files have been compressed into self-extracting executable dBase IV (.dbf) or Lotus 1-2-3 (.wk1) formats to decrease size. To download, click on the desired file name and designate a location for saving. Once complete, double click on the file name to automatically extract the compressed database file. If you encounter problems downloading the file, click the right mouse button and select the save option. 

Data disclaimer
Data files are provided in their present condition. Opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations based upon the data in these files are those of the user and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Criminal Justice Statistics Center or Minnesota Planning. The accompanying readme file with the download has additional information on relevant definitions and caveats.  Questions may be directed to the Criminal Justice Statistics Center at 651-296-4852 or via fax at 651-296-6398. You also may contact the data source agency the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension at 651-642-0610. 

Download reported crime data: dbase files with statewide, county- and law enforcement-level offenses.  

Additional Information

For more information on Minnesota reported crime data or the Uniform Crime Reporting program, contact: 

Bureau of Criminal Apprehension 
Minnesota Department of Public Safety 
1246 University Ave. 
St. Paul, MN 55104-4197 
651-642-0610 
http://www.dps.state.mn.us/bca/bca.html

Federal Bureau of Investigation 
935 Pennsylvania Ave. N.W. 
Washington, DC 20535-0001 
202-324-3000 
http://www.fbi.gov/
Federal Bureau of Investigation. Uniform Crime Reporting Handbook. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Justice, 1984. 

Technical problems? Contact: demography.helpline@state.mn.us