FBI: Houston had most burglaries in US in 2011

HOUSTON - Recently released data from the FBI reveals Houston had more burglaries in 2011 than any other city in the country.

In 2011, Houston police reported 27,459 burglaries of homes and businesses, beating out Chicago, Dallas, Phoenix and even New York City, which reported 18,159.

The numbers do not include car break-ins.

It's a staggering number, but Houston police said those statistics don't tell the whole story.
An HPD representative provided numbers that show home and business burglaries in Houston have dropped every year since 2009.

  • 2009: 29,279
  • 2010: 27,924
  • 2011: 27,459
  • 2012 (through end of November): 24,368

KPRC Local 2 wanted to talk with someone from the FBI about the numbers, but a representative said it doesn't encourage ranking or analyzing the crime statistics. Instead, that representative directed the station to a page on its website about why it discourages rankings.

"These rankings, however, are merely a quick choice made by the data user; they provide no insight into the many variables that mold the crime in a particular town, city, county, state, region, or other jurisdiction.  Consequently, these rankings lead to simplistic and/or incomplete analyses that often create misleading perceptions adversely affecting cities and counties, along with their residents," the page stated.

The FBI said some factors that are known to affect the volume and type of crime occurring from place to place are:

  • Population density and degree of urbanization
  • Variations in composition of the population, particularly youth concentration
  • Stability of the population with respect to residents' mobility, commuting patterns, and transient factors
  • Modes of transportation and highway system
  • Economic conditions, including median income, poverty level, and job availability
  • Cultural factors and educational, recreational, and religious characteristics
  • Family conditions with respect to divorce and family cohesiveness
  • Climate
  • Effective strength of law enforcement agencies
  • Administrative and investigative emphases of law enforcement
  • Policies of other components of the criminal justice system (i.e., prosecutorial, judicial, correctional, and probational)
  • Citizens' attitudes toward crime
  • Crime reporting practices of the citizenry

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