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Homicide in California, 2006

NCJ Number
Date Published
August 2006
95 pages
This report presents data on homicide and its victims in California in 2006, as well as demographic data on persons arrested for homicide, the use of the death penalty for convicted homicide offenders, the number of peace officers killed in the line of duty, and justifiable homicide cases.
From 1997 to 2006, the homicide crime rate decreased 15.4 percent (7.8 to 6.6 percent per 100,000 population). For homicide victims who were White, a greater percentage were female when compared to Hispanic or Black victims. The White victims tended to be older than Hispanic and Black victims. In 2006, of the known victim-offender relationships, 43.2 percent of the victims were killed by friends or acquaintances. Of the 35 counties for which 2006 homicide rates were calculated, Tulare County had the highest rate per 100,000 population. The highest average daily number of homicides occurred on weekends in 2006. For cases in which contributing circumstances were known, 38.7 percent of homicides resulted from arguments in 2006. From 1997 to 2006, the homicide arrest rate decreased 22.1 percent (8.6 to 6.7 percent of known cases). From 2005 to 2006, homicide arrest rates decreased 1.5 percent per 100,000 population at risk (6.8 to 6.7). From 1997 to 2006, the overwhelming majority of homicide arrestees and victims were male. From 1997 to 2006, the largest percentage of homicide arrestees and victims were Hispanic. From 1997 to 2006, the largest percentage of homicide arrestees and victims were in the age range of 18-29. By the end of 2006, there were 665 persons under the death sentence in California. Between 1997 and 2006, 50 police officers were feloniously killed in the line of duty. Justifiable homicides by peace officers in 2006 resulted most often from attacks by felons (91.1 percent). 43 tables and appended computational formulas and criminal justice glossary