Why Crime Rates Rise in the Summer

Hazy Summer Day in the CityMany people say that summer is their favorite time of year, and there are good reasons for that. Even if you work year-round, summer evokes fond memories of breaks from school and lazy days spent with friends. Families take vacations during the summer, and people spend more time outside, getting together with neighbors and extended community. Unfortunately, for all of summer’s pleasures, the season also has its downsides, and the most concerning of these is the rise in crime.


Though some think that seasonal changes in crime patterns are an urban legend, as it turns out a study conducted by the U.S. Department of Justice found that the rates of certain crimes definitely go up during the summer months. These crimes include burglary, household larceny, aggravated assault, rape and sexual assault, and domestic violence.  Another study found a 2.6 percent increase in the number of assaults and murders committed during the season and attributes this change to higher temperatures, which can lead to shorter tempers and people being quicker to act on their anger.


Though many attribute the shift to the heat, that explanation does not explain the increases in crime that occur in areas where temperatures are more constant. Criminal law experts believe that the issue is less about climate then it is about the fact that people have looser schedules and that there are more daylight hours in which people can get into trouble. There are also more apparent opportunities for criminal activity: as people go on vacation, it seems to present an invitation for burglary, and when people gather together with nothing better to do, there seems to be a higher likelihood that those with criminal tendencies will end up getting themselves into trouble with the law. This is particularly true of young people who have the summer off from their regular school schedule, and who may be bored or under less supervision.


If someone you love has been accused of breaking the law, whether it happens during the summer or at any other time of year, you need an experienced criminal law attorney who can provide them with a vigorous defense. To learn how our lawyers can help, contact our office today to set up a time to come in for a meeting to discuss your case.