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7 Most Popular Items Taken During A Burglary

Dec 29, 2007
The most common threat to our home is burglary. According to the FBI, a burglary occurs somewhere in the United States every 15.4 seconds. Burglary is defined by Florida statute "as entering a building or conveyance with the intent of committing an act therein". The statute goes on to say that burglaries are usually committed when the dwelling is unoccupied, but should the residents be present, the statute carries a more serious charge and much stiffer criminal punishment guidelines.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in itsī most recently released Uniform Crime Report contains data collected for FY 2006 regarding not only the national statistics on the number of burglaries for both residential and businesses, but also on the times these crimes usually occur. Why is this data important regarding home security?

Table 23 of the Uniform Crime report reveals the following:

In 2006, there were an estimated 2,183,746 burglary offenses Burglary accounted for 21.9 percent of the estimated number of property crimes committed in 2006. (Based on Table 1.)

In 2006, burglary offenses cost victims an estimated $4 billion in lost property. (Based on Tables 1 and 23.)

The average dollar loss per burglary offense in 2006 was $1,834.Of the burglary offenses in 2006, 66.2 percent were of residential structures. (See Table 23.)

Of the burglaries for which the time of occurrence was known, 63.1 percent of residential burglaries took place during the day. Among burglaries of nonresidential structures (businesses) when time of occurrence was known, 56.7 percent occurred at night. (Based on Table 23.)

The majority of home burglaries (63.1%) occurred during the day when people are at work or school. The intruders know that most people are out of their homes during this time. Most nonresidential burglaries (56.7%), businesses, occur during the night since this is when most businesses are closed.

Who commits most Burglaries

We can look at this data and project when burglaries typically occur and then define who the perpetrator might be. Statistics gathered by many police agencies tells us that burglaries also increase in the summer months as well. This can be attributed to kids being out of school and therefore have more opportunity, and in many cases, little supervision. Other characteristics of burglars include that most are young males that are looking for small expensive items that are easily concealed and can be converted to cash easily. The most popular items taken are jewelry, watches, guns, laptop computers, DVD players, and other small appliances.

Where Burglars Enter a House

A survey conducted at Temple University in Pennsylvania showed that 81% of residential burglaries occurred on the first floor of the building. Thirty-four percent (34%) of the intruders entered through the front door; 23% through a first floor window; 22% through the back door; 9% through the garage; 4% through the basement; 4% through an unlocked entrance; 2% through a storage area; and only 2% entered anywhere on the second floor.

A second study conducted in Connecticut showed that 12% of burglaries occurred through an unlocked door and that 41% of alarmed homes that were burglarized, the security system was not on.

Security Systems Reduce Burglaries

After studying these results, it is clear that there is an obvious need for the individual home owner or business owner to take even more responsibility for their safety and security as law enforcement agencies cannot do the job alone. It is a concerted effort by all that makes for improved safety in our homes and workplace. Is there any available data to support the correlation regarding home security systems and the prevention of crimes such as burglary?

Homes without security systems are about 3 times more likely to be broken into than homes with security systems. (Actual statistic ranges from 2.2 times to 3.1 times, depending on the value of the home.) Businesses without alarm systems are 4.5 times more likely to be burglarized than commercial locations with electronic security in place. Losses due to burglary average $400 less in residences with security systems than for a residence without security systems.

What about the potential dangers of a burglary occurring when the occupants are present? This situation in itself presents a very dangerous threat to the homeowner or business owner. Recent data under study indicates that an increased number of burglaries are occurring when the residents are present, and in some cases physically threatened by the intruder. But once again, those dwellings equipped with Home Security Camera Systems deterred the intruder even though the attempt was made and the potential threat was avoided.
About the Author
Steve Strong's is an employee with SunSecurity.com which is an innovative and growth oriented company who uses a fresh and new approach to meet the security needs of millions of consumers throughout North America. Sun Security Specializes in Home Security Cameras .
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