marcos oliveira
From Criminal Spheres of Familiarity to Crime Networks


We have never lived in a safer world. After peaking around 1985, both violent crime (homicide, robbery, assault and rape) and property crimes (burglary, larceny and vehicle theft) are on a downward trend; from 1993 and 2012 crime activity has dropped by more than 40% (total number of crimes). Despite the good news, crime is still prevalent in most large cities. FBI reports that in 2013 there were about 3,098 crimes per 100,000 habitants in the USA, with 2,730 of them being property crimes and 367 violent. What most people can agree is that one preventable crime is one crime that should not have taken place. The unveiling of the structure of criminal activity can lead to a better understanding of crime as a whole which in turn can help us provide better protection to our citizens. We demonstrate in this paper that crime follows a very interesting spatial community pattern regardless of the type of crime, criminal activity aggregates in communities of well defined sizes. We believe the results of this paper is a first step towards a theory of crime modeling using network science.

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