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Theft crimes are serious widespread problems

The Federal Bureau of Investigation keeps track of crime rates based on types of crimes committed through the Uniform Crime Reporting Program. One of the crimes that is tracked is larceny, or theft. The data from the program shows some interesting points about how these crimes affect the nation as a whole. For people who are facing charges for these crimes, defense is crucial. It is important to know that these statistics don't include information about arrests or convictions. They only provide information about crime reports.

Victims of larceny or theft nationwide lost an estimated total of $5.5 billion. When factoring in the number of these crimes that occurred, it averages out to $941 per offense in 2014. Larceny and thefts accounted for an overwhelming majority, 70.8 percent, of property crimes that year. For the purpose of this data, crimes like check fraud, embezzlement and similar crimes weren't included.

Thefts that occurred from motor vehicles that didn't include accessories accounted for just under 23 percent of larceny-thefts in 2014, and motor vehicle accessory thefts accounted for 7 percent of these crimes. Shoplifting accounted for 21.5 percent. Interesting, purse snatching and pick-pocketing accounted for less than 1 percent of these crimes when they were combined.

Despite the shocking figures associated with larceny-thefts that were shown in this data, the rate of these crimes was actually down when comparing the 2013 data with the 2014 data. Overall, larceny-thefts declined 2.7 percent. If you compare the 2014 data to 2010 data, these crimes decreased 5.6 percent. If you go back to 2005, the decrease is 13.6 percent.

Source: Federal Bureau of Investigation, "Larceny-Theft," accessed April 08, 2016

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