Crimes against the jewelry industry fell 8.1 percent in the last year, according to the Jewelers’ Security Alliance.
The organization’s 2013 Annual Crime Report represents a typical mixed bag, says president John J. Kennedy. The overall industry is safer, he says, thanks to greater law enforcement attention and sharing of information. But jewelers still have to be aware and vigilant.
Among the report’s highlights:
– Total dollar losses rose from $60.2 million in 2012 to $66.5 million last year. This was due to an increase in multimillion dollar crimes, Kennedy says. On an inflation adjusted basis, 2013’s $66.5 million in losses represents a 60.3 percent decline since 2003.
– Off-premises losses numbered 40 in 2013, down from 68 in 2012. That’s the lowest in 30 years. Kennedy attributes this partly to a decrease in salesmen on the road.
– Rooftop burglaries are on the rise, going from 18 in 2012 to 34 in 2013—an increase of 89 percent.
– Last year brought six homicides of jewelers, compared with two in 2012. But Kennedy cautions reading too much into that: “It’s way too small a number to be statistically significant. Some of these are oddball occurrences.” He adds that from 1995 to 2000, jewelry homicides averaged 12 per year. In the early 1990s, some years saw as many as 37.