COVID-19: How Has It Affected Crime rates?

The COVID-19 pandemic has left its impacts on almost all sectors of life. It has affected the Rich and Poor alike in regards to social and behavioral changes. The global lockdown parameters have forced everyone inside their homes. While industrial trade and economic sectors have suffered the most due to this pandemic, there has been quite a drastic impact on the behavior and general thought process of the people. 

Although COVID-19 has reduced the levels of organized activities of the street and targeted crimes, various other forms of incentives are merging among the criminals as well. A drastic change in the global law-enforcement landscape has been observed during these past few months. Domestic and hate crimes have been reported to increase during pandemic situations. 

Understanding the crime situation:

With the current lockdown situation, everyone is bound to follow the essential protocols of isolation and quarantine. Staying at home and minimalizing human contact is the priority of every person now. Crimes have generally been related to mobility and targets. With the possibility of movement being as low as possible during the pandemic, these targeted crimes have shown a decline in their trends. 

Traditionally these crimes involve a target, which can be any person, building or an item, and the criminal in pursuit of that target. COVID-19 has confined people to their homes so the decline in these crimes is quite understandable. Moreover, increased security our neighborhoods have sealed off the prospect of escape paths for these criminals to adopt.

Almost every crime is driven by the desire of the prosecutor wanting to have some valuables through the use of force. But these necessities have changed completely during this pandemic. People are more inclined towards basic survival items rather than jewelry or watches. While it has reduced the street crimes directed towards the expensive items, the basic needs of the people still push them into having these survival items by committing a crime. Many reports have surfaced depicting the incidents where a person stole protective masks or toilet papers from a store. 

With people remaining indoors now, the security systems of many homes have been upgraded by their owners. In this crisis, these security systems are the only thing that provides surety and sustainably in the lives of pandemic affected people. Moreover, many platforms are now providing these security systems online and even educating the masses about their home security and what actions to take to insure it.

Circumstantial incentives for criminals:

While many people are cooped up inside their homes during this pandemic, the criminals still remain at large. The larger organizations have been constantly digging up ideas for crimes they can commit even during these difficult situations. It has given new incentives to criminals to devise new ways to commit crimes. Cybercrimes have been known to increase due to this very reason. With many people using the internet for the larger part of the day, these cybercrimes are indeed increasing.

People have also been using the pandemic as a weapon. Spreading fear and hatred towards others is one way to look at this. Not following the quarantine rules is one thing, but people are starting to create chaos and intentionally harm others during this crisis. It has given rise to hate crimes.

Domestic violence has also been reported to increase as anxiety and depression take the better of some people and can trigger these incidents. Also, greater alcohol consumption causes small feud to develop into big problems and can give rise to domestic abuse.

The bright side is that it has also given incentives to the policymakers and law enforcement agencies to act and respond appropriately to these emerging crimes by upgrading their systems and forces.

Adam Richards

About Adam Richards

Adam Richards is a semi-retired business professional originally from Bangor, Maine. He spent the majority of his career in sales and marketing where he rose to the marketing lead of a Fortune 1000 company. He then moved on to helping people as a career counselor that specifically helped bring families to self-sufficiency through finding them rewarding careers. He has now returned to Bangor for his retirement and spends his free time writing. This blog will be about everything he learned throughout his career. He'll write on career, workplace, education and technology issues as well as on trends, changes, and advice for the Maine job market and its employers.