Revista Brasileira de Epidemiologia
Print version ISSN 1415-790X
CRUZ, Suélen Henriques da; AZEVEDO, Mario Renato and GONCALVES, Helen. Urban violence victimization in a medium size town in south Brazil. Rev. bras. epidemiol. [online]. 2011, vol.14, n.1, pp. 15-26. ISSN 1415-790X. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1415-790X2011000100002.
Urban violence affects individuals' lives, and therefore it is a complex problem of public health and security. To evaluate the occurrence of violence in a medium size city, a population-based cross-sectional study was carried out to investigate: prevalence of urban violence victimization (theft, robbery, aggression, and burglary) in the period of five years and twelve months before the interview; victims' profile and prevalence of crime reporting. A score was constructed to measure global urban violence victimization, which means at least one type of violence in each period. The Wald test for heterogeneity and linear trend was used in crude analysis, to measure violence victimization and independent variables. Poisson Regression was used in multivariate analysis. The sample included 2.912 individuals (> 20 years of age) and 16.6% of them had experienced urban violence in the past year and 28.0% in the past five years. Prevalence of burglary was 9.7% and theft 6.0% in the past year. Most urban violence victims were men and youth. More than half of the victims had not reported the crime, and the reason for that was distrust in the police. These findings sustain the importance of victimization surveys in smaller cities. The debate about urban violence should include the need to develop, execute or create health and security policies in different contexts, without comprising countryside.
Keywords : Violence; Victimization; Criminology; Crime; Victims.