Bitter cold, snow, and ice. It's a recipe for a nasty winter, but it also may be the perfect remedy for crime.
"Cold weather and bad weather historically have played a role in crime," said Lansing Police Lt. Mike Yankowski.
And this year is no exception in Lansing. Burglaries were down 23%. Felonious assaults -- 36%. Larceny fell off by 37%, and motor vehicle theft? Down an eye-popping 61%. It's all contributed to overall crime shrinking by 28%. The reason is simple. The average temperature this year over last -- down 11 degrees.
"There's not as many people out and about. People lock their doors, close their windows. They don't have their car or vehicle windows open all the time."
And then there's the snow. More than 55 inches have already fallen this year. Helping to cover car windows and cut out crimes of opportunity.
"If you make it easy for them they probably will. If not, they won't."
Despite the bitter cold temperatures we've seen most of this winter, the mercury is actually starting to rise. Throughout the next week we could see temperatures in the upper 40s, but police warn that could be increased crime as well.
"You'll see when the spring starts the transformation that you see."
Yankowski says they'll rely on police patrols and neighborhood watch organizations to help keep this year's crime rate intact even as the weather warms. As for how you can help?
"Lock your doors. Roll up your windows.