Do higher temperatures lead to higher crime? Phoenix crime attorney disagrees

- As the Valley of the Sun remain in the middle of an extreme heat warning, some believe when the temperature goes up, so does the crime rate. A Valley attorney, however, says that may not always be the case, at least in Phoenix.

Some studies indicate when the temperatures go up and people become more uncomfortable, they are more likely to blow their tops and lose control. An unscientific observations from crime attorney Burges McCowan, however, disputes that in the Valley.

McCowan says because the hot temperatures chase so many people indoors or out of the Valley completely, the crime rate doesn't spike as much as some think it would.

"The rest of the country, they go out in the summer so there's more people out, theres crime," said McCowan. "In Arizona, it's the exact opposite. Everyone is staying in."

McCowan says when people stay in, they don't engage with each other, and there are fewer people on the roadways, which makes for easier commutes. McCowan says he thinks that means less friction and fewer issues, and lower crime during the summer months in the Valley.

"We also have most of our tourism in the spring and winter, and in the summer, everyone finds a reason to get out of town," said McCowan.

Sergeant Jaime Rothschild with Phoenix Police Silent Witness says no matter the season or the temperature, everyone can can take measures to avoid becoming a crime victim.

"Regardless of the season, knowing your neighbors is a powerful tool for crime prevention. Knowing who lives there, knowing what vehicles belong and having that communication with neighbors that you trust about when you'll be there, when you won't be there and how to reach there, that can be a great deterrent," said Sgt. Rothschild.

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