Misdemeanor Arrest Trends in the City of Durham, North Carolina, 2007-2016

This report was produced through the Research Network on Misdemeanor Justice (the “Research Network”), a project of the Data Collaborative for Justice. The Research Network is comprised of researcher-practitioner partnerships in seven jurisdictions committed to producing data, research and scholarly work on misdemeanor enforcement trends. The goal of the Network is to inform policy at the local and state levels as well as a national discourse on the role of misdemeanor enforcement in supporting public safety, trust and confidence in the criminal justice system, and racial equity.

This report provides information on misdemeanor arrest trends in Durham, N.C. and covers the years 2007-2016. Specifically, this report: 1) describes trends in arrests and charging for misdemeanor offenses, and 2) examines these trends by age, gender, and race/ethnicity.

Key Findings:

  • The vast majority of arrests and charges in Durham between 2007 and 2016 were for misdemeanor level offenses although there was a marked decrease in misdemeanor arrests over the study period.
  • The oldest age group (ages 35 and over) had the lowest rate of misdemeanor arrests for all years of the study.
  • Blacks were arrested for misdemeanors at a greater rate than any other race/ethnicity and accounted for the majority of those arrested for misdemeanors across every category and demographic breakdown in every year of the study.
  • Simple assault, larceny, and drug violations were the most common offenses for which arrests were made.

Related Press and Media

New Study Examines Misdemeanor Arrest Trends in Durham (Spectrum)
Study: Durham misdemeanors down but blacks arrested more than whites, Latinos combined (The News and Observer)