U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

NCJRS Virtual Library

The Virtual Library houses over 235,000 criminal justice resources, including all known OJP works.
Click here to search the NCJRS Virtual Library

Homicide in California, 2007

NCJ Number
Date Published
December 2008
95 pages
This report on homicide in California for 2007 contains information on this crime and its victims, as well as demographic data on persons arrested for homicide, information on the death penalty, and data on the number of peace officers killed in the line of duty and justifiable-homicide cases.
Data on homicides reported to police indicate that from 2006 to 2007, the rate of homicide crimes per 100,000 population decreased 9.1 percent (6.6 to 6.0); and from 1998 to 2007, the homicide rate decreased 7.7 percent (6.5 to 6.0). Females were more likely to be killed in their residences, and males were more likely to be killed on streets/sidewalks. A greater percentage of White victims were female compared to Hispanic or Black victims; White victims tended to be older than Hispanic and Black victims. In 2007, 42.1 percent of victims were killed by friends or acquaintances in the cases where the victim-offender relationship was known. Firearms were used in 72.4 percent of homicides in 2007. In 2007, the highest average daily number of homicides occurred on weekends. Where the contributing circumstance was known, 41.8 percent of homicides resulted from an argument, and 32.7 percent were gang-related. From 2006 to 2007, the rate of homicide arrests per 100,000 population at risk increased 1.5 percent (6.7 to 6.8). From 1998 to 2007, the overwhelming majority of homicide arrestees and victims were male, and the largest percentage of homicide arrestees and victims were Hispanic. Regarding death penalty sentences, by the end of 2007, there were 673 persons under a death sentence in the State (17 were sentenced in 2007). In 2007, four peace officers were feloniously killed in the line of duty. In 2007, justifiable homicides by peace officers most often resulted from attacks on officers. 43 tables; 55 figures; and appended data characteristics and known limitations, computational formulas, and criminal justice glossary