SAHRA 2023 Crime Update

We closed out 2023 with mixed results. We experienced a 30% decrease in auto theft but a 37% increase in house break and enter. The table below summarizes the data for our area in comparison to the City of Toronto overall.

 Auto Theft 26 – down 24% 12,143 – up 24%
Break and Enter – Houses11 – up 37%2,110 – up 58%
Break and Enter – Commercial – Avenue Road23 – up 228%3,089 – up 20%

Auto Theft: 

Although we saw a decline in auto theft in 2023, we are still well above 2021 levels. The chart below provides a snapshot of our history in auto theft since 2014.  In 2022, we saw a 183% increase in auto theft over 2021. We are hopeful that the downward trend will continue in 2024. Over the past two years, we have been of the opinion that we will not see significant decline in auto theft unless the Federal Government starts working with the provinces and municipalities. The ports are playing a large role in the shipment of autos to foreign countries. Until that loophole is closed, we do not believe we will see progress. On January 22nd, federal Public Safety Minister LeBlanc announced that he will be holding a Summit on auto theft on February 8th. (This article is being written as the forum approaches.) It is a start but action is what is needed.

During the month of December, we experienced zero auto thefts with our year-end total at 26. The chart below shows the incidents by month with May being the highest with 5 incidents. Sixteen of the incidents occurred during the first half of the year.

We will continue to communicate any updates we receive including information from the Community Police Liaison Committee meetings with 32 Division.

Break and Enter – House

The increase in house break and enters is of concern. Relative to our area’s size, the number of incidents is high.  We ended 2023 with 11 house break and enters with one occurring in December. The chart below illustrates our history of house break and enters since 2014. We continue to be concerned about the nature of the house B&E with residents being home. It is estimated that 50% of the break and enters are related to auto theft. These incidents are also being investigated by the provincial Organized Crime Towing and Auto Theft Team. 

During December we experienced one house break and enter bringing our year-end total to 11.  The chart below illustrates the month by month incidents through 2023. 

Break and Enter – Commercial

Commercial break and enters continue to be a concern on Avenue Road as illustrated by distance between the blue line and the orange line in the chart above. Retailers are very concerned. Most break and enters occur through the front glass doors of the store – thieves take cash registers and debit machines on most occasions. 

During 2023, Avenue Road experienced two break and enters in December bringing the year-end total to 19 with a significant increase occurring in the period August to December. On the west side of Avenue Road, there was a similar pattern in time line increase in house break and enters. We do not know what caused the change. We inquired about this at the Community Police Liaison Committee meeting on January 17th. Police could not provide any explanation.

CTV news covered the theft of debit/credit devices on a recent newscast. The YouTube video below  will provide a good overview outlining why thieves want the devices. We plan on sharing this with retailers on Avenue Road including the Toronto Police Service Point-of-Sale prevention leaflet.

City of Toronto Auto Theft

The chart speaks for itself. Auto theft is a serious problem in Toronto and the country. Each year we think the numbers just can’t keep going up however each year proves us wrong. With the announcement that the Federal Government has finally decided to get involved, we are slightly optimistic that we will see improvement in 2024.