Does More Crime Happen In NJ When It Is Hot Out?
An interesting concept....does the number of crimes committed increase when it is hotter or colder outside?
Well the answer is....sort of.
Overall, yes the number of crimes committed in New Jersey does increase when it is hot outside. And even though no one knows exactly why, a few experts weigh in with some educated guesses.
"It could be simply because more crime happens when more people are out on the streets, people have shorter tempers when the weather gets hot, or because police officers are less likely to make stops during inclement weather," said former prosecutor and current executive director for Rutgers Institute Secure Communities, Elie Honig
However, when you break it down crime by crime, there does seem to be data that supports the idea that the trend depends on the crime. Let's check out the stats from 2013 - 2017.
Average Assaults in February: 734
Average Assaults in June: 1,069
*This could be the prime example that more people come out and about so therefore, there is more of a possibility for havoc to strike.
Approximate Number of Arrests in Newark on June 27 (75 degrees), June 22nd (74 degrees), July 3rd (94 degrees) : 40
**This could depend how many cops were on duty and how public of a place the crimes were committed at so not too much help.
Average Homicides in June: 134
Average Homicides in July: 190
**On average there is a 6 degree increase so this piece of information may be a prime example of how heat may lead to more crimes being committed.
Average Burglaries in January: 2480
Average Burglaries in February: 1985
Average Burglaries In August: 2501
**This one is a tad trickier. Inexplicably, the number of burglaries shot up in January and completely goes against the curve. Could it have anything to do with the holiday season? But otherwise, more burglaries during the Summer make sense -- easier weather to cope with when being outside on the run.
Average Robberies in January: 835
Average Robberies in February: 650
Average Robberies in October: 919
** Robberies follow a very similar trend as burglaries with a random spurt in January. I am not sure why that random frigid month makes people want to steal but at least now you know.
Motor Vehicle Thefts
Average Auto Thefts in January: 1035
Average Auto Thefts in July: 1110
Average Auto Thefts in August: 1105
**Yet another similar trend with January having a random spurt of crimes committed but otherwise, the peak months are the hottest. Also kind of makes sense. Would you really want to try and steal a car with snow and ice on the ground?
So I am clearly thinking based on our data that overall, the heat does elicit a higher number of crimes to be committed but it all depends on the crime.
So, what do YOU think?
Check out all of the original data at NJ.com.
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