If you were to become a victim of burglary, what are the chances that police could catch the criminal? Considering the fact that property crimes are notoriously hard to solve in the United States—and that the data varies from state to state—it may not be likely.
Still, some burglaries do result in arrests. Our data analyst looked at FBI crime reports for each state to compare the total number of reported burglaries to the number of burglary arrests. Read on to find your state’s ranking and learn what you can do to help police catch these criminals now and in the future.
Top 10 states with the highest burglary arrest rates
|Rank||State||Total burglaries||Total arrests||Percent of arrests|
|State||Total burglaries||Total arrests||Percent of arrests|
Top 10 states with the lowest burglary arrest rates
|Rank||State||Total burglaries||Total |
|Percent of arrests|
|Percent of arrests|
Delaware has the highest rate of burglary arrests
Delaware topped our list with the highest rate of burglary arrests: 950 arrests out of 3,970 total burglaries, coming out at 24%.1 Connecticut and California were next on the list, both at 22%.
Nebraska has the lowest percentage of burglary arrests
Meanwhile, Nebraska ranked lowest, closely followed by Illinois and New Mexico. Nebraska made only 53 burglary arrests, which totals a mere 1% of the 6,472 burglaries that happened that year.
Burglary cases are rarely solved
In 2017, burglaries cost Americans roughly $3.4 billion in property loss, an average of $2,416 per burglary. Of those reported burglary cases, only 13% were cleared.
The East Coast has a higher rate of burglary arrests
Of the top 10 states with the highest rate of burglary arrests, seven of them—Delaware, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Maine, Rhode Island, and New Jersey—are on the East Coast.
How to improve the chances of a burglary being solved
Having your house burgled can be a trying experience. But there are steps you can take after your house has been broken into to raise the chances of the criminal being caught.
What to do when your house has been broken into
If your house has been broken into, it’s important to first file a report with the police and go over everything that was stolen or damaged. This is a situation where having a security camera comes in handy: it may capture footage of the break-in. You should also take pictures and make detailed notes about anything that’s missing or broken.
Afterward, file a police report. A police report will help increase the chances that they’ll catch the thief and that you’ll recover your stolen items.
Then, file an insurance claim. You can recoup a lot of your losses with homeowners or renters insurance. Be sure to use a copy of your police report to file your claim.
How to lower the chances of being burglarized
You can lower the chance of your home being burgled by being proactive when it comes to the security and safety of your home and personal information.
Consider a home security system
Home security systems can be a great deterrent to potential thieves: In a 2013 study on the habits and motivations of burglars, 83% of convicted burglars said they would try to determine if an alarm was present before attempting a burglary. And 60% said they would abandon a home if there was an alarm on site.2
Install a security camera
Not only can security cameras catch a criminal in the act but they can also make a criminal think twice before casing the joint. In a survey of 86 convicted burglars, most said that security cameras were a major deterrent.3
Keep yourself safe from potential identity theft
Cash and valuables aren’t the only items burglars like to steal—there’s also a good chance they’ll take personal information they can later use to drain your bank account and hurt your credit.
With identity theft protection, you can get alerts of any suspicious activity with your accounts in the weeks following the robbery. Identity theft plans can also monitor your Social Security number and alert you if someone takes out a new line of credit.
For each state, we gathered the total number of burglaries and total number of burglary-related arrests in 2017 per state from the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting program. The states were then ranked from highest to lowest percentage of burglary arrests.
Wondering where your state ranked? Take a look at our full list below.
- Rhode Island
- South Dakota
- New Jersey
- New York
- New Hampshire
- North Carolina
- North Dakota
- South Carolina
- West Virginia
- New Mexico