About 2 Million People Attacked or Threatened In the Workplace Every Year

    WASHINGTON, July 26 /PRNewswire/ -- About 2 million people a year were
victims of violent crime or threatened violent crime in the workplace from
1992 through 1996, the Justice Department's Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS)
announced today.  An estimated 1.5 million of such incidents (75 percent) were
simple assaults.  Of the occupations examined, law enforcement officers,
private security guards and taxicab drivers were victimized at the highest
    During this same 1992-1996 period, an average of about 330,000 retail
employees were victimized annually, and about 84,000 employees were robbed in
the workplace.
    Between 1994 and 1996 violent victimizations in the workplace decreased by
21 percent, paralleling a 17 percent decline in overall violent crime during
that period.
    BJS Director Jan Chaiken said: "About 37 percent of the victims of
workplace violence said they knew their offenders, but very few -- only about
1 percent -- were victimized by a current or former spouse, boyfriend or
girlfriend in contrast to other violent incidents.  Nationwide, 21 percent of
all violence against women and 2 percent of violence against men is committed
by intimates."
    Among all workplace victims of violent crimes or threats of violence, 67
percent were male and 33 percent were female.  About 12 percent of the
victimizations resulted in injuries, about half of which received medical
    The estimated annual victimizations for the years 1992 through 1996 for
workplace crimes counted in BJS's National Crime Victimization Survey and by
the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) were as follows:

    Simple assaults              1.5 million
    Aggravated assaults              396,000
    Robberies                         84,000
    Rapes and sexual assaults         51,000
    Homicides                          1,000

    The rate of violence per 1,000 workers during the five-year period for
selected occupations was as follows:

    Law enforcement officer            306
    Private security guard             218
    Taxi driver                        184
    Prison or jail guard               117
    Bartender                           91
    Mental health professional          80
    Gas station attendant               79
    Convenience or liquor store clerk   68
    Mental health custodial worker      63
    Junior high/middle school teacher   57
    Bus driver                          45
    Special education teacher           41
    High school teacher                 29
    Elementary school teacher           16
    College or university teacher        3

    The occupations examined included those that prior studies have deemed to
be more vulnerable to criminal victimizations.  Fewer than half of all
nonfatal workplace crimes are reported to police.
    BLS data showed that homicide was the second leading cause of death in the
workplace, following highway fatalities, during the five-year study period.
The workplace murders accounted for one of every six fatal occupational
    Firearms were used to commit more than 80 percent of the workplace
homicides.  About 20 percent were the result of bombings, stabbings or
beatings.  This figure includes employees among the 168 deaths from the 1995
bombing of the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City.
    The report, "Workplace Violence, 1992-96" (NCJ-168634) was written by BJS
statistician Greg Warchol.  Single  copies may be obtained from the BJS fax-
on-demand system by dialing 301-519-5550, listening to the menu, and selecting
document number 118 or by calling the BJS Clearinghouse at 1-800-732-3277.
The BJS Internet site is:
    Additional criminal justice materials can be obtained from the Office of
Justice Programs Internet homepage at:
    Office of Justice Programs and its component agencies' press releases are
available for use without restriction.

SOURCE  Office of Justice Programs