“Burglaries are difficult crimes to solve because there are usually no witnesses,” police say. Fewer than half of burglaries are reported to police and only 10% of those cases are solved. Your home security system is your first line of defense – and a home security camera may provide the only clues police have about the burglar’s identity.
The Crime Rate Is Higher Than We Think
A 2015 crime study in Maine found that only 20% of crimes were reported to police. That’s a stunning statistic and not unique to Maine. Surveys in other areas of the country show similar results. Nationwide, as many as 50% of burglaries go unreported.
One reason for that could be that up to two-thirds of burglaries are committed by someone the victim knows, so there’s peer or family pressure to not turn them in to police. In other cases, the burglar knows you and is watching you, often on social media:
During a 10-day crime spree last summer, two men burglarized five homes in a suburb of Birmingham, Alabama, stealing thousands of dollars’ worth of property. They chose their victims simply by logging on to Facebook; the pair were either friends or friends of friends with one resident of all the houses. In fact, in every single case, a person had posted information revealing that the occupants of the house would be away on vacation.
Social media is a burglar’s best friend; don’t let it be your worst enemy.
Many Crimes Go Unreported
The list of crimes least likely to be reported to police includes:
- Burglary: 50% unreported
- Sexual assault: 65% unreported
- Stalking: 80% unreported
- Identity theft: 80% unreported
- Car theft: 25% unreported
These statistics show that crimes where a police report is required for insurance (burglary and car theft) are the most likely to be reported. That doesn’t mean they’re likely to be solved. The FBI estimates that only about 10% of burglary cases are solved and cleared.
Burglars Know How To Avoid Detection
Burglars are most likely to strike during the day, when most people are at work or school. They look for houses and/or apartment complexes where they can blend in – and where they can enter the property unnoticed. And they use every tool they can to find the best targets: social media posts, casing the property while disguised as a maintenance worker, door-to-door salesman, etc.
There are a number of ways to prevent a burglary. However, if you do have a break in, a home security camera is one of the best ways to help police catch the thief. Just last month, a man in New England watched from his office as two burglars broke into his home at 8am. He watched the police arrest them too!
GetSafe’s pet-friendly motion detector camera sends you a real-time video feed that you can save and give to police as evidence. A security system helps deter burglars; your home security camera may help police catch them.
Many victims think that reporting crime isn’t worth the hassle, but they’re wrong. Crime statistics matter because they help residents and police understand what’s going on in the community. Crime reports help police identify patterns (burglary rings, serial rapists, etc.) and zero in on areas that need more police presence and enforcement.
Reporting crimes takes time, but it helps make your community safer.