A pro­fessor says the heat index and the crime rate can connect.

Lifestyle dif­fer­ences exist between cold weather and warm weather,” says James Alan Fox, a pro­fessor of Crim­i­nology, Law and Public Policy at North­eastern Uni­ver­sity in Boston.

Fox has con­ducted research on the pos­sible con­nec­tion between tem­per­a­ture and crime. His find­ings illus­trate how these lifestyle dif­fer­ences can con­tribute to varying levels of vio­lent crime.

In cold weather, par­tic­u­larly in bliz­zards, people stay indoors, and the vio­lent crime rate is lower. When the weather is warm, people are inter­acting more with others, be they friends, family, or strangers, so there are increased oppor­tu­ni­ties for con­flict,” Fox says.

Fox says this trend con­tinues except when it gets incred­ibly hot, so unbear­able that even crim­i­nals become lethargic.

When it gets to be in the high 90s, espe­cially over 100 degrees, people just go indoors and look for air con­di­tioning,” Fox said.

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