Dateline July 5, 2011 … On April 13, 2010, The Crime Report headlined an article in the Baltimore Sun that noted “Baltimore Home-Invasion Robberies Up 34 Percent.”
In reporting that home-invasion robberies were increasing in Baltimore at that time, the Sun said, “It’s an area that police are trying to get a handle on as other types of crimes are falling. Residential robberies were up 34 percent through April 3, compared with the same period a year ago. Reported homicides, rapes and overall robberies are down by double-digit percentages.”
Those early April “home invasion robbery” statistics from Baltimore were out of step with national robbery statistics for the first six months of 2010, as released in December last year by the FBI.
The FBI statistics show a decline in all eight categories of crime included in the report during the first six months of 2010, compared to the same period in 2009: murder (-7.1%); forcible rape (-6.2%); robbery (-10.7%); aggravated assault (-3.9%); burglary (-1.4%); larceny-theft (-2.3%); motor vehicle theft (-9.7%); arson (-14.6%). In terms of home invasion, the near 11% drop in robbery nationally differed sharply from Baltimore’s reported 34% increase in robbery.
Home Invasion News is anxious to nail down an accepted use of the term “home invasion.” We took special note of the official’s use of the term “home invasion robbery,” which implies that the robbery took place inside the victim’s residence (one of our six criteria for distinguishing a classic home invasion). Police Maj. Johnny Delgado’s comment that, in several cases, attackers entered homes with the intention of burglarizing but encountered residents, as opposed to forcing their way in with the intention of confronting the victim, also gels with our interpretation that classic home invasion includes the intention to confront victims, as opposed to an attempt to enter the home undetected.
Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi reportedly said that Commissioner Frederick Bealefeld III noticed the uptick and asked the Baltimore Criminal Investigations Division to examine whether there is “nexus between home invasions and drug crimes.” At the time of the report, the research had not uncovered any links or underlying factors.
An independent and non-partisan news and multimedia information and networking resource, The Crime Report is a collaborative effort by two national organizations — The Center on Media, Crime and Justice, and Criminal Justice Journalists.