Mathematical Patterns May Help Forecast Future Crimes

Mathematicians are helping police find the locations where future crime is most likely to occur.



Inside Science Buzzwords:

  1. Supercritical crime hotspots: Areas that are generated by small increases in crime. As these crime waves have potential to grow, sending police into these areas may tend to move the crime into other areas, research indicates.
  2. Subcritical crime hotspots: Areas that are generated by large increases in crime. Since these high crime levels are usually hard for criminals to keep up for long periods of time, researchers think this type of crime hotspot might be suppressed by a police presence and prevented from flaring up again.