Special Report

Metro Areas Where the Larceny-Theft Rate Is Soaring

Of all the most serious crimes tracked by the FBI – known as Part I offenses – larceny is by far the most common. There were 4.6 million cases of larceny-theft reported in the United States in 2020, accounting for nearly 60% of all Part I offenses, which also include murder, assault, robbery, rаpe, vehicle theft, and burglary. 

Larceny is a classification of crime that includes all nonviolent theft, with the exception of motor-vehicle theft. Common examples of larceny include purse snatching, pick pocketing, shoplifting, and bicycle theft. According to the FBI, larceny-thefts result in billions of dollars in losses annually.

Reported incidents of larceny have been declining for years in the United States. Between 2019 and 2020 alone, the number of reported larceny cases fell by 11%, or, adjusting for population, 171 incidents for every 100,000 people. However, some major U.S. metro areas are reporting rising larceny rates, breaking with the broader trend.

Using data from the FBI’s 2020 Uniform Crime Report, 24/7 Wall St. determined the 25 metropolitan areas where the larceny-theft rate is rising fastest. Metro areas are ranked by the change in the number of larcenies reported for every 100,000 people between 2019 and 2020. Among the metro areas on this list, the larceny rate climbed anywhere from about 30 to 327 incidents per 100,000 people. 

Larceny – along with motor vehicle theft and burglary – is one component of the property crime category. Partially due to a rising larceny rate, the overall property crime rate also increased in every metro area on this list with available data. Here is a look at the U.S. towns where property crime is soaring

The metro areas on this list span the country, though Wisconsin alone is home to five, the most of any state. In the majority of metro areas on this list, the larceny-theft rate is higher than the national rate of 1,398 per 100,000 people. Here is a look at the city with the most larceny thefts in every state.

Click here to see the metros where the larceny-theft rate is soaring
Click here to read our detailed methodology

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