DC Crime Plummets During Snowpocalypse

by Borderstan.com February 9, 2010 at 7:40 am 2,166 8 Comments

The joy of last weekend’s snowstorm may be gone, but there is one positive aspect to the city’s near immobilization: crime was down dramatically in DC for the February 4-7 period when compared to the previous two years. This trend included the DupontLogan area.

For the entire city, there were 157 crimes for the Feb. 4-7, 2010, period; this compares to 350 in the same time frame in 2009 and 351 during Feb. 4-7, 2008. This is a 55% drop from 2009 to 2010.

In Dupont-Logan, there were 11 reported crimes in the two Police Service Areas (PSAs) that cover Dupont Circle (PSA 208) and Logan Circle (PSA 307) neighborhoods for the February 4-7 period. This compares to 48 crimes for the same period of 2009 and 36 crimes in 2008. The huge drop was in both violent and property crimes, especially thefts and thefts from autos.

Crime is also down substantially when compared to the same three days of the previous week, January 28 to 31. There were 219 total crimes in DC for the January 28-31 period compared to 157 for February 4-7–a 28% drop.

Assistant Chief of Police Diane Groomes said that the snowstorm has definitely impacted crime all over DC: it is lower. However, the type of situations that officers must deal with changes when there is a major snowstorm.

“We can definitely say that snow has had an impact on our crime–all districts have had major reductions. But, calls for service, for traffic complaints, assists and  accidents are higher during this time than others,” Groomes said.

MPD 3rd District Commander Jacob Kishter said, “For 3D, we generally have had an increase in calls for service for alarms, family disturbances, and disorderly conduct.” Matthew Klein, 2nd District Commander, said his district was experiencing the same situation in terms of both crimes and calls for help.

  • Total Crimes in PSAs 208 & 307, Feb. 4-7
    • 2008: 36
    • 2009: 48
    • 2010: 11
  • Violent Crimes in PSAs 208 & 307, Feb. 4-7
    • 2008: 1
    • 2009: 7
    • 2010: 2 (1 robbery and 1 assault, both in Dupont area)
  • Property Crimes in PSAs 208 and 307, Feb. 4-7
    • 2008: 35
    • 2009: 41
    • 2010: 9 (thefts from autos, or “smash and grabs,” went from 15 in 2009 to 0 this year)

  • Missy

    Especially in inclement weather, “You know it’s hard out here for a pimp When he tryin to get this money for the rent and gas money spent…” >>Artist: djay f/ shug

  • Julie

    Crime being down is a good thing, so I’m happy whenever it happens. Of course, this particular circumstance just reinforces my belief that criminals are, for the most part, lazy. For example, theft from auto is a crime of opportunity, but if you have to dig the car out from under 2 feet of snow before breaking into it, that’s a lot of work and therefore the best deterrent imaginable. Maybe our crime abatement efforts should include atmospheric strategies!

  • Chen

    Hum…. Seems like a big trade-off: Snowpocolypse or higher crime rate?!

    Neither are desirable…..

    Is it because everyone’s in line at Safeway or Whole Foods waiting to buy snow provisions?

    Is it because the snow walls that the city’s plows left are keeping the criminals from getting out?

    Is there something in-between the two extreme choices?

  • Avi

    It makes perfect sense. My senses is that a significant portion of the criminals that plague our city likely come from outside our city. If you can’t get here, you can’t steal from here.

  • marwan

    Unfortunately, our friend got his car broken into during the snowy weekend, window smashed for $2 in quarters!! Funny thing is, the law does not consider the act a theft.

  • local

    is this supposed to be surprising?

    • Just interesting to see how MUCH it declined, which is why I posted it.

  • Kevin Robb

    If only Washington could be covered in snow permanently. Then the international crime rate would plummet. Because the city that loves to make trouble, start criminal wars and drop bombs on other people’s cities would have to mind its own business instead of trying to dominate the planet through military force.

    I can see the headlines:
    Washington buried under blizzard – no small countries mugged by Pentagon this week.


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