Crime in New York City is continuing to rise by astonishing numbers as we head further into 2022.
According to NYPD statistics, major felonies in New York City rose by 58.7%, rising from 5,759 reported crimes in February 2021 to 9,138 reported crimes this past February. Every crime category saw an increase last month, with the exception of citywide shooting incidents decreasing 1.3%.
That followed a January which saw major crimes spike by more than 38% year-over-year. Though murders were down in January 2022, homicides rose slightly, by 10.3%, during February, with 32 reported murders compared to 29 in February 2021.
Robberies increased from 818 in 2021 to 1,276, (a 56% increase), while burglaries also rose 43.9% percent (1,186 in 2022 compared to 824 in 2021). Felony assaults rose 22.3%, rising from 1,361 in 2021 to 1,665 in 2022, and grand larceny rose from 2,099 crimes in 2021 to 3,762 (a whopping 79.2% increase). Auto thefts saw another huge rise last month with 1,083 reported crimes — compared to 529 in 2021, this marks a 104.7% increase year over year.
Hate crimes saw some staggering increases throughout February 2022 — overall, hate crimes rose 189%, with 107 reported cases compared to 37 in February 2021. One of the biggest spikes was the number of reported anti-Semitic crimes increasing 409%, with 56 reported cases compared to 11 at the same time last year.
Anti-Asian hate crimes rose 125%, with 9 crimes reported last month compared to 4 in February 2021, and anti-Black crimes rising 100% with 16 crimes reported compared to 8 in 2021.
The number of rape crimes reported increased with 134 incidents reported compared to 99 in 2021 (a 35.4% increase), but the NYPD acknowledged that rape continues to be underreported.
The increases come during the first two months of the administrations of Mayor Eric Adams and Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell, both of whom have made fighting crime a top priority as they seek to reverse rising crime trends experienced during former Mayor Bill de Blasio’s final term in office.
As gun crimes increased throughout the city, both Adams and Sewell have sought assistance in getting illegal guns off the streets. In February, President Joe Biden pledged federal funding toward that effort.
Adams also unveiled a comprehensive subway safety plan that increased police presence underground, hoping to turn around violent crime and instill a sense of security as the city continues to rebound from the COVID-19 pandemic. He also met with state lawmakers last month in an effort to seek changes to the bail reform laws that would close loopholes allowing violent offenders to be returned to the streets quickly.
“The men and women of the New York City Police Department are proactively addressing the deep-rooted causes of criminal behavior,” said Sewell. “The NYPD will never relent, and the department has made far too much progress over the decades – and invested far too much in the communities it serves – to fall back by any measure. New Yorkers deserve better.”
With reporting by Robert Pozarycki