Robbery & Aggravated Assault
126 robberies and 238 aggravated assaults per 100,000 residents (2014)
Robbery is the taking or attempted taking of anything of value from the care, custody, or control of others by force, threat of force, or by putting the victim in fear. Aggravated assault is an unlawful attack by one person upon another for the purpose of inflicting severe or aggravated bodily injury, usually by the use of a weapon or by means likely to produce death or great bodily harm. The number of reported robbery crimes represents incidents, while the number of reported aggravated assault crimes represents victims. These pages present an in-depth analysis of over 2.5 million robberies and 4 million aggravated assaults reported between 1982 and 2014 throughout the state. Robbery and aggravated assault rates published here may differ slightly from rates reported in prior California Department of Justice publications due to differences in how population figures were estimated.
How have robbery and aggravated assault crime rates change over time?
Since 1982, both robbery and aggravated assault rates have followed the pattern of general crime rates, increasing through the 1980s and peaking in 1992. Since 1992, both crime rates again followed the overall crime trend and steadily declined. From 1992 to 2014, the robbery rate was down 70% and aggravated assault 63%, both reaching a 32-year low rate of 126 and 238, respectively.
California's Robbery & Aggravated Assault Crime Rates per 100,000 Residents, 1982-2014
With what weapons were robberies committed?
In 2014, over half of the reported robberies (53%) were committed with the use of physical force only (strong-arm), 28% used firearms, 9% used knives or cutting instruments, and 10% used other dangerous weapons. From 1982 through 2014, firearms and strong-arm were the most common means.
Robbery Crimes by Weapon Used, 2014
Robbery Crimes by Weapon Used, 1982-2014
With what weapons were aggravated assaults committed?
In 2014, firearms were used in 17% of aggravated assaults, knives/cutting instruments 16%, other dangerous weapons 35%, and personal weapons 31%. From 1982 through 2014, personal weapons (hands/fist/feet) and other dangerous weapons were the most common means of aggravated assaults.
Aggravated Assault Crimes by Weapon Used, 2014
Aggravated Assault Crimes by Weapon Used, 1982-2014
How did California's robbery and aggravated assault crime rates compare to rates in other states and national data?
Since the 1960s, California's robbery and aggravated assault crime rates have consistently been higher than the national rate. However, the large differences that occurred in the early to middle 1990s have been closing in recent years and since 2009, California's aggravated assault rates have become closer to the national rate. California is also the most populous state in the nation. Compared to the next three most populous states--Florida, New York, and Texas, California had similar robbery and aggravated assault crime rates.