The stay-at-home restrictions to control the spread of COVID-19 led to unparalleled sudden change in daily life, but it is unclear how they affected urban crime globally. We collected data on daily counts of crime in 27 cities across 23 countries in the Americas, Europe, the Middle East and Asia. We conducted interrupted time series analyses to assess the impact of stay-at-home restrictions on different types of crime in each city. Our findings show that the stay-at-home policies were associated with a considerable drop in urban crime, but with substantial variation across cities and types of crime. Meta-regression results showed that more stringent restrictions over movement in public space were predictive of larger declines in crime.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The authors thank M. Ryn for assistance with coordinating data collection, and S. Castello for assistance with organization and coordination between collaborators. The research in this paper is financially supported by the Utrecht University Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences COVID-19 Fund. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish or preparation of the manuscript.
© 2021, The Author(s).