Burglary Rate Sees An Uptick, Crime Still Declining
According to the 2011 edition of the FBI’s annual report Crime in the United States, part of the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) program, that was released in Oct. 2012, the estimated number of property crimes in 2011 declined for the fifth consecutive year. Violent crimes also decreased, marking the ninth straight year that the collective estimates for these offenses declined.
While property crime, which includes burglary, larceny-theft and motor vehicle theft, decreased by 0.5 percent, the FBI found that estimated burglary offenses increased by 0.9 percent when compared with the 2010 estimate. This increase, however slight, marked the first year that burglary rates did not decrease since 2008. Burglary made up 24.1 percent of the estimated 9,063,173 property crimes committed in 2011. Both larceny-theft and motor vehicle theft declined.
These burglaries represent an estimated $4.8 billion in property losses suffered by their victims. The FBI estimated that the average dollar loss per burglary offense was $2,185.
The majority of reported burglaries involved forcible entry (60.6 percent) while 33.1 percent were unlawful entries (without force). Only 6.3 percent were failed forcible entry attempts. Without a marked change from 2010, residential burglaries accounted for 74.5 percent of all burglary offenses.
One of the noticeable changes in the nature of residential burglaries was that the number of burglaries that took place during the day increased by 4 percent (see chart below) while the number of nighttime residential burglaries decreased. A similar trend is observable in non-residential burglaries, with a marked decrease in nighttime burglaries.
In 2011, there were 18,233 city, county, university and college, state, tribal, and federal agencies that participated in the UCR Program. An interesting thing to note related the issue of law enforcement non-response to alarms is that the 14,633 law enforcement agencies that shared their staffing levels with the FBI reported that, as of Oct. 31, 2011, they collectively employed 698,460 sworn officers and 303,524 civilians, a rate of 3.4 employees for each 1,000 inhabitants. Their arrest rate for burglary was 95.6 per 100,000 inhabitants.