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NYPD reports 30% crime surge in April due to robberies, grand larcenies and assaults

An NYPD officer tapes off the scene.
Photo by Dean Moses

Crime made some major spikes in New York City last month, statistics from the NYPD revealed.

Overall, crime rates throughout the five boroughs increased 30.4% year-over-year in April 2021. With the exception of burglaries, which saw a 26% decrease with 855 crimes compared to April 2020’s 1,155 crimes, each area of major crimes saw increases last month.

“The NYPD is relentless in its mission to maintain public safety for all New Yorkers,” said Police Commissioner Dermot Shea. “The selfless work our officers carry out – day after day, night after night – is one important part of the entire criminal justice system’s process, a process where all pieces must work together to be wholly effective.”

One major difference in the crime figures is due in part to the state of the city between April 2020 — in which most New Yorkers stayed home due to the height of the COVID-19 pandemic — and this past April, which saw continued increases in social activity. 

According to the statistics, the overall spike was primarily driven by the number of grand larcenies, which saw a 66.1% jump from 1,601 crimes in April 2020 to 2,659 crimes in April 2021. The next driver of the spike was the felony assault count, which increased from 1,202 crimes in April 2020 to 1,630 in April 2021, a 35.6% spike year-over-year.

Incidents of auto theft increased from 558 in April 2020 to 749 in April 2021, a 34.2% increase, while robberies saw a 28.6% increase compared to April 2020 (885 last month compared to 688 in 2020). The number of rape cases increased from 72 last year to 110 in April 2021, a 52.8% increase — however, the NYPD acknowledges that rape continues to be underreported.

The number of murders last month increased year-over-over from 38 in April 2020 to 44, a 15.8% change. Despite this, the number of shooting incidents saw a huge uptick last month with 149 compared to 56 in April 2020, a 166.1% increase year-over-year.

From the start of January 2021 to May 2, the NYPD has tallied 180 hate crimes, a 73% increase compared to that same time period last year. The majority of those crimes were directed towards Asian American New Yorkers with 80 logged crimes — compared to 16 this time last year, this marks a 400% increase in hate crimes against this community. 

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