While there are all sorts of crimes and all types of criminals that are convicted and sentenced each and every day, to a very large extent, the overwhelming amount of people that are convicted of crimes, are essentially convicted for being either poor, dumb, hopeless, self-destructive, or all of the above. In point of fact, when you own nothing, or when you are ill educated, or when there are no real job opportunities that pay a living wage within your community, and when your decision making is typically suspect, the chances that you will commit a crime, and subsequently thereby be convicted of a crime, are pretty high.
Quite frankly, the real reason that there is so much crime in America, has everything to do with the fact that a huge swath of America, has been forsaken; and because so many of these people have no realistic or practical way to get out from under their rather dire circumstances, not too surprisingly, they resort to those criminal activities or frown upon methods to get their daily bread.
It is only fair to recognize that America is the richest nation in the world, with the assets of such indicating a truly unbelievable prosperity, but that outsized wealth, is primarily in the hands of the very few; so that, in America, the three richest Americans have about the same amount of wealth in aggregate as the bottom 50% of all Americans. Clearly then, the superrich are not going to commit the type of common crimes that so many criminals are locked up for, because they have no need to do so, as whatever material things that they require is already completely theirs. On the other hand, those that struggle daily in their existence, more often than not, are going to do things such as thieving, drug dealing, counterfeiting, street extortion, robbery, prostitution, and things of this sort, in order to get money that they need in order to survive; those activities makes them criminals, and therefore they get locked up.
The thing is, though, the circumstances that created the environment for this sort of low level crime to exist in America and to replicate, time and time again is not dealt with by this country in any comprehensive or meaningful way. Which is why, despite locking up an unprecedented amount of its citizens over the last two generations, there is still no lack of criminal activity that occurs, because of the fact that hopeless people that have no legitimate future, are more often than not, going to commit crimes, mainly because that is their way of legitimately protesting against the system which essentially has convicted them by being birthed into the wrong households, the wrong addresses, the wrong school systems, the wrong color, and the wrong justice system.
If America truly wants to reduce its crime levels so as to clearly reflect that this country actually does represent the faithful belief that all of us are created with unalienable rights, than it needs to create the actual infrastructure that demonstrates that very belief in every community that this country has. If America does that, street level crime will plummet.