From the NY Times:
Score one for the broken-windows theory, that largely hypothetical correlation between vandalism and crime. Overall crime in the New York metropolitan area has declined in the past six years. So has the number of broken windows.
Of the five million homes and apartments counted in 2009, windows were reportedly broken in 23,500, compared with 156,900 in the 4.8 million counted six years earlier, the Census Bureau said this week.
The number of boarded-up windows in all housing declined to 16,600 from 54,000, and the number of residences where windows were protected with bars fell to 159,500 from 901,900.
The contrast over six years was even starker among occupied buildings: 9,800 of the 4.5 million residences reported broken windows in 2009, compared with 48,300 of the 4.4 million homes six years earlier.
The survey results were compiled from direct questions asked of residents across the New York metropolitan area. “Boarded-up windows” were defined as having been sealed off to protect against weather or entry. “Broken windows” means at least several broken or missing panes.