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Surprising Statistics on Convictions from FBI Investigations

Posted by Seth Chazin | Nov 13, 2014 | 0 Comments

Recent data from the Justice Department shows that there have been a total of 10,979 federal criminal convictions during 2014 resulting from cases investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Most of these convictions were drug related, accounting for about a quarter (23.8%) of these offenses. White collar offenses were the next most common offense, resulting in 21.6 percent of all convictions.

Nationally, there was an average of 35 arrests resulting from FBI investigations per every million persons in the population. These numbers varied greatly among the 90 federal districts that make up the fifty states. The District of Columbia was over 7 times the national average, with a total of 255 offenses per million, following Washington D.C.  was South Dakota with 102 per million, and then Montana with 131 per million.

The five districts that had the lowest number of convictions per capita from FBI investigations based on their population size were the District of Wisconsin, the Central District of California, the Northern District of New York, the Southern District of Iowa, and the Western District of Washington.  The Northern District of California has amongst one of the lowest conviction rates, ranked 78th out of 90.

What needs to be understood is the fact that the role of the FBI differs significantly based on the federal district. The District of Columbia, our nation's capital, is the main focus of the FBI and has the highest concentration of FBI activity relative to its population.

When these statistics were compared to previous years, it shows that the numbers are trending downward and fewer offenses are being committed. This past year the total number of convictions went down by 3.9 percent, and was 10.6 percent lower than the figures from ten years ago.

About the Author

Seth Chazin

Seth P. Chazin has aggressively defended clients in thousands of felony and misdemeanor cases for over 30 years. He has extensive experience representing criminal defendants in federal and state court, while handling both state and federal appeals as well.


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“The death penalty is a lie, a misguided mistake born of anger and frustration. Capital punishment has become a perverse monument to inequality, to how some lives matter and others do not. It is a violent example of how we protect and value the rich and abandon and devalue the poor. The death penalty is a grim, disturbing shadow formed by the legacy of racial apartheid and bias against the poor that condemns the disfavored among us, but corrupts us all. It’s the perverse symbol elected officials use to strengthen their ‘tough on crime’ reputations and distract us from confronting the causes of violence. It is finally the enemy of grace, redemption and all of us who recognize that each person is more than their worse act.”
- Bryan Stevenson