Why Crime Rates are Higher in the Summer, and How You Can Stay Safe

For many people, summer is the best time of the year—the sun is shining, the kids are out of school, and there are fun things to do every weekend. And if you live in the Wilmington, Cape Fear, or Outer Banks region, it’s even better, because the beach is right down the road!

Unfortunately, there is one major drawback to summer: the crime rate is much higher. In today’s blog we’ll discuss why that is, and what you can do to protect yourself and your property during the season.

Is crime really higher in the summer?

First things first: Is the crime rate really higher in the summer, or is that just a vague feeling we have? Nope—data consistently shows that crime really does rise during this season. A study released by the US Dept. of Justice, for example, showed that:

  • Burglary is 11% higher in summer.
  • Household larceny is 8% higher.
  • Reported sexual assaults are 10% higher.
  • Reported domestic violence assaults are 11.5% higher.
  • Other assaults are 4-7% higher.

Another study found that some cities see as much as a 35% increase in major crime types. Therefore, it’s not just in your head—you really need to be more alert for crime during this season.

Reasons Why Crime Rates Spike in Summer

Law enforcement experts and psychologists have offered several explanations for this unusual phenomenon.

  1. Kids and teenagers are out of school. While some crime experts disagree, others insist there is a definite connection between summer vacation and juvenile crime.  
  2. People travel more in the summer. Empty houses which aren’t protected by a fence or gate are a more attractive target to criminals.
  3. People leave the windows open. During the hot weather, people are more likely to open up the house at night to enjoy the warm air (and save on A.C. bills).
  4. Heat exacerbates hot tempers. There is significant evidence indicating high temperatures increase irritability and aggression. For example, during a 2012 heat wave in Chicago, 20 people were shot and 3 killed during a three-day period.
  5. More alcohol. Summer means more parties, backyard BBQs, beach trips, and outdoor events, which all mean more opportunities for alcohol and less application of good judgement.

Stay Safe in the Summer with Cape Fear Fence

With crime on the rise, it’s important to protect yourself and your property. The best way to do that is adding a security fence around the perimeter of your property. A custom metal, wooden or vinyl fence can keep thieves and trespassers away, so you can relax and fully enjoy your outings and vacations! If you would like to schedule a fence installation in Wilmington, Leland, or the surrounding areas, call today for a free estimate.