PORTLAND – Crime directly impacted one out of every three adults in the state of Maine in 2021, accordingly to the 2022 Maine Crime Victimization Report released by the University of Southern Maine’s Survey Research Center and Maine Statistical Analysis Center (SAC). The report also found that persons of color in Maine were more likely to be the victim of every type of crime except identity crime, and this remained true even after controlling for differences in income.
The Maine Crime Victimization Survey (MCVS) is periodically conducted to raise awareness of crime victimization trends in Maine among Maine policymakers, practitioners, advocacy organizations, and the public. The current report is the fourth iteration, with previous studies conducted in 2006, 2010, and 2014. While state and local agencies also collect data, George Shaler, co-author and Director of USM’s Maine SAC, explains why the findings of this survey are unique. “Unlike data reported by agencies at the state or local level,” he states, “the MCVS findings reflect both reported and unreported crimes as well as characteristics of victims.”
According to the report’s findings, the majority of crimes in Maine do go unreported, and the majority of victims do not seek assistance from Maine’s victim services organizations. While this study did not explore the reasons why victims of crime do not report crimes or seek assistance, the reasons likely vary depending on the type of crime. In some instances, such as when the crime was committed by a domestic partner, the victim may avoid reporting crimes to protect the perpetrator.
The 2022 MCVS was sponsored by the Maine Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Child and Family Services and the Maine Coalition Against Sexual Assault (MECASA).
Read the more detailed explanation of the MCVS’s findings.