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Majority sees crime as serious problem in US: Gallup

A majority of respondents see crime as a serious problem in the U.S., according to a poll released Wednesday.

A Gallup survey of American adults showed that 52 percent of respondents believe the U.S. crime problem is “extremely” or “very serious,” a slight increase from 2018’s survey. Last year, 49 percent of respondents described the issue as extremely or very serious, a low not seen since 2015. 

The poll revealed that 48 percent of people think the crime problem is “moderately serious,” “not too serious” or “not serious at all.” 

These numbers are lower than between 2015 and 2017, when respondents perceived crime in the U.S. as extremely or very serious within the range of 59 percent to 60 percent.

Participants in the survey were more likely to say the crime problem in the country is extremely or very serious than the crime in their local area. 

A higher percentage of women than men described the crime problem in the entire country as extremely or very serious, with a 12-point difference between women and men. But there was a 3-point difference between women and men when asked about their local area. 

Seventeen percent of urban residents described crime as extremely or very serious in their area, compared to 8 percent in suburban and 10 percent in rural areas. 

About two-thirds of respondents said there is more crime in the U.S. than a year ago, despite numbers from the Bureau of Justice Statistics indicating crime has decreased since the early 1990s. 

The Gallup poll surveyed 1,526 American adults from all 50 states and Washington, D.C., between Oct. 1 and 13. The margin of error is 3 percentage points.

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