Over the years researchers have been able to find a direct correlation of crime patterns fluctuating around seasonal changes, hours of daylight and temperature changes. A study by the U.S. Department of Justice identified certain criminal activities that increase during summer months. Household larceny, burglary victimization rates, aggravated assault rates, rape, sexual assault, and domestic violence were all found to be highest during the summer when compared to spring, fall, and winter.
A study by psychology professor Craig A. Anderson found that 2.6 percent more assaults and murders were reported during summer months. He found a direct connection between the increase in heat and aggressive behavior. Feelings of hostility increase as the temperature gets warmer and this can be a catalyst for violent behavior for some individuals. Criminal defense attorney Mark S. Treyz has found that a pattern of violent behavior will typically snowball into domestic violence situations. Couples that have found themselves in a pattern leading towards violence may find that heat aggression can dramatically impact the situation.
It seems that even in locations that do not experience extreme changes in temperature throughout the year still report an increase in crime as an issue during the summer. The Summer Night Lights program in Los Angeles has been able to have huge success by increasing volunteers and activities provided at a local park where criminal activity was rampant during the summer.
Another factor that seems to contribute to increased crime is a change in your regular schedule during the summer. It is very common for people to have more time off, go on vacation, and stay out later when they have more daylight to enjoy. This makes it easier for criminals to break into homes where they can burglarize victims. More people out in public will also increases the chance of assault rates since it is easier for perpetrators to strike when you are off your guard than when you are safe at home.
One other key theory is that more crime is committed when people gather together. People with criminal tendencies, or troubled youth, may have more opportunity to spend time together in the summer. This has been shown to increase crime rates since they may be influenced by each other, and sometimes can be pushed towards violent behavior that they might not commit when they are alone or busy in school.
It is important to understand the key factors of increased criminal activity during summer months so that you can take the proper precautions to protect yourself. Do not make it public knowledge when you will be leaving your home for extended periods of time. This could alert potential criminals of an empty household that will be easy to rob. You should also make some time for stress reducing activities such as relaxing in the shade or by a pool, yoga, meditation, and anything that would keep your aggression under control. Staying hydrated and being sure to cool down frequently can also impact your level of hostility. These tips should keep you and your loved ones safe during the hottest few months of the year.