National Insurance Crime Bureau Releases 2014 Theft Report

Troy Siahaan
by Troy Siahaan

The National Insurance Crime Bureau recently released its 2014 Theft and Recovery report, which tracks motorcycle thefts and recoveries for 2014 and 2015 (through 6/30/2015) in the United States and District of Columbia. Overall, the report is somewhat positive; there were 42,856 motorcycle thefts recorded in 2014, which is a 6% decrease from the year prior. Considering motorcycle sales have increased 4% from 2013 (465,783) to 2014 (483,526), this is an encouraging sign. More good news is a sign of steady decrease in motorcycle thefts since 2011, with 8% fewer thefts in 2014 compared to three years prior.

The overall report shouldn’t be too surprising to anyone, as the summer months saw the highest number of thefts (August and July being the top two months) and the winter months the lowest. Unsurprisingly, California was the state with the highest theft count (6,355), but the District of Columbia saw the highest percentage increase (54%) in thefts from 2013 to 2014. And despite California having the most thefts, the city with the highest theft rate was Las Vegas, Nevada (1,163), with 29% more stolen motorcycles compared to the year prior.

Honda owners should be the most cautious, as it was the manufacturer stolen the most, followed by Yamaha, Suzuki and Kawasaki. The Jonway Group of Chinese motorcycles and scooters saw the biggest percentage increase (53%) from 2013 to 2014.

Of the 42,856 thefts in 2014, 17,757, or 41% of motorcycles were recovered.

Some other interesting tidbits from the report:

  • 2014 experienced fewer thefts per month than the year prior, except in December.
  • The top three states for motorcycle theft last year were California (6,355), Florida (3,981), and Texas (3,274).
  • Conversely, the state with the fewest thefts was Wyoming, with a total of 23 last year.
  • In Q2 alone, California experienced more thefts (1,586) than fifth ranked New York did all year (1,544).
  • Of the Top 10 states for theft, Indiana experienced the largest percentage drop, 31%, which also ranks as the second largest percentage drop overall, behind Wyoming at 43%. Mississippi was third with a 29% drop.
  • There are 16 states that saw an increase in the number of motorcycle thefts in 2014 compared to 2013, with DC having the highest increase (54%). There are 35 states that saw a decrease in the number of motorcycle thefts in 2014 compared to 2013, with Wyoming having the highest decrease (-43%).
  • Of the 1,973 counties identified as having a motorcycle theft in 2014, 304 of those counties had zero thefts the year prior.
  • When measuring the rate of thefts per 10,000 people, Fairfax City, Virgina ranked highest, with 41.3 thefts per 10K, down from 62.1 the year before.
  • At number 25 is Henry, Montana, who jumped 1,100% with 0.45 thefts per 10,000 in 2013, to 5.44 in 2014.

Read the full report here.

Troy Siahaan
Troy Siahaan

Troy's been riding motorcycles and writing about them since 2006, getting his start at Rider Magazine. From there, he moved to Sport Rider Magazine before finally landing at in 2011. A lifelong gearhead who didn't fully immerse himself in motorcycles until his teenage years, Troy's interests have always been in technology, performance, and going fast. Naturally, racing was the perfect avenue to combine all three. Troy has been racing nearly as long as he's been riding and has competed at the AMA national level. He's also won multiple club races throughout the country, culminating in a Utah Sport Bike Association championship in 2011. He has been invited as a guest instructor for the Yamaha Champions Riding School, and when he's not out riding, he's either wrenching on bikes or watching MotoGP.

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