Winston-Salem has one of the highest crime rates in America. Crime in Winston has continued to surge with violent crime rates increasing by 18% in the past 5 years.
Crime data suggests that the city is more dangerous than 98% of cities in the United States.
Research indicates that crime is strongly related to inflation.
New York Times author German Lopez analyzes inflation as a major factor that leads to the increase in recent national crime:
“Thefts and robberies in major cities increased by around 20 percent in the first half of 2022, after falling or plateauing the previous two years.[…] Several factors explain the increases, experts said. A big one is inflation.”
**Crime data is sourced in Greensboro, UNC Greensboro, Winston-Salem, Winston-Salem State University, Wake Forest University and High Point** (Inflation data, Crime Data)
American criminologist Richard Rosenfeld explains this relationship in his dissertation on Crime and Inflation in U.S. Cities. Rosenfeld has similar findings:
“Prior studies have reported a significant relationship between inflation and crime rates in the United States… Inflation increases robbery, burglary, and other crimes committed for monetary gain by bolstering consumer demand for cheap stolen goods.”
Furthermore, Rosenfeld argues that rising prices increase the incentive for theft and the underground market supply of stolen goods to thrive. By this logic, curbing high inflation will lower aggregate crime rates.As national inflation and cost of living continue to rise nationally, it leads crime ridden areas like Winston-Salem with more projected crime.