The Crime Research Group is available to assist the public, researchers, policymakers, and the media regarding crime and criminal justice. CRG researchers can use several different data sets to answer questions of interest including:
Law enforcement incident data submitted to the National Incident Based Reporting System (NIBRS) captures information on a broad array of offenses as well as demographic information (e.g., age, race, sex) about the victims, offenders, and arrestees. NIBRS also captures other pertinent information about each incident like whether weapons were involved and the type of weapon. A question that could be answered using this data is, “How many people were arrested for drug possession in the last 5 years?”
Department of Corrections public use file contains the Department’s administrative information about formerly and currently incarcerated individuals. Information captured about incarcerated individuals includes demographics (e.g., age, race, sex), their probation officer or caseworker, charge status and description, bond amount, date released, and more. This data can answer questions like, “How many people are serving a life sentence?” and “What are the demographic characteristics of those incarcerated for burglary over the last 10 years?”
Criminal Court data is developed from CRG’s Adjudication Database which contains sentencing information on all felony and misdemeanor charges prosecuted in Vermont District Courts. Example questions that can be answered using this data include: “What is the typical sentence for DUI2 with a fatality?” and “How many people are represented by a public defender?”
Due to staff availability and work schedules, requests should be made at least ONE WEEK prior to when the information is needed.
Information to Include
While completing the Data Request Form, please be as detailed as possible when describing the information you are requesting. Key information to provide with your request includes:
- Question(s) of interest
- Any specific variables of interest (e.g., age, sex, race)
- Number of years to be included in the query
When requesting sentencing information, it is important to also provide specific details regarding the offense of interest, such as:
- Offense Statute number, including subsection(s).
- Offense Level (Felony / Misdemeanor) where appropriate.
- Example: Sentences for Assault and Robbery (13-VSA 608(a)), Sentences for Assault & Robbery, Armed (13-VSA 608(b)), and Sentences for Assault & Robbery, with Injury (13-VSA 608(c)) for the last 5 years.