COVID-19 and Crime in U.S. Cities

The COVID-19 pandemic has had an immense impact on all aspects of society, including crime. Here you will find up-to-date criminal justice data from 28 major cities. By overlaying this with data about the pandemic, users can learn how big the impact has been in their city, and across the nation.

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Click the dropdown menus below to choose which data to plot for all cities where it is available. Choose one category to display 2020 data relative to that from the previous 5 years. Choose multiple categories to compare how different types of crime were affected by the pandemic. Drag a box over the graph to zoom in, and double click to zoom back out.

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The displayed data is collected from open data sources and data requests sent to specific cities. Data has been cleaned but may still contain errors. Certain reports have been dropped that are not related to the crime categories presented above. Data has also been restricted for categorical consistency across years. When necessary, crime incidents and arrests have been classified manually on that basis of “crime description”, “weapon”, “victim”, and “premises” fields. Finally, many cities release data that is subsequently audited and updated. This means that very recent data may not be accurate. Below are data definitions.

Data on this site comes from research led by David Abrams, with assistance from Priyanka Goonetilleke and Elizabeth Holmdahl. Please cite this URL when using figures or data. Site designed and built by Kathy Qian.