Is Brooklyn safe for visitors? This is one of the questions asked by intending travelers seeking to visit Brooklyn
Choosing the right place to visit depends on many factors, but your safety is the paramount determining factor. Thus, it is important to research or do a background check on the safety of your desired destination before considering all other aspects.
Brooklyn is the most populous among the five boroughs in New York City:
- Staten Island
This can be attributed to its history as far back as the 17th century. Over the years, Brooklyn has built a dazzling reputation by being home to New York’s most famous attractions.
These attractions include Coney Island, the Brooklyn Bridge, and Prospect Park.
Brooklyn also stands out as one of the best places to stay in New York due to its many bars, restaurants, coffee shops, and parks that visitors can explore
The city is the hometown of some of the world’s celebrities like Christopher Wallace, Larry David, Woody Allen, Jay Z, Michael Jordan, Barbara Streisand, Judge Judy, Eddie Murphy, Nas, Spike Lee, Al Capone, and Adam Sandler.
All these fantastic features attract tourists from around the world to this place yearly
Is Brooklyn Safe for Visitors?
Late hip-hop artist (Notorious Biggie Smalls) describes Brooklyn as a place for the hustlers, drug dealers, and a lot of criminal activities, but is the gangster rapper, right about all that? Or is Brooklyn safe for visitors?
The Jamaican, Mr. Edwards, was the first person who lived in Brooklyn to sell crack (the smokable derivative of cocaine) in the Bedford-Stuyvesant area in the 1980s (1985, to be more specific).
And basically, what makes a place unsafe for a living are activities like drug dealing, an increase in the rate of alcoholism, prostitution, and other criminal-related activities; back then, in Brooklyn, all of these activities were on the rise.
But what about today? Is Brooklyn Dangerous for travelers?
Well, Brooklyn, today can be considered safe for visitors, but some odd rankings might make you reconsider visiting the city.
Brooklyn ranks in the 15th percentile for safety – meaning that 85% of the city is safe, while the other 15% of cities are quite dangerous to visit. Relating to the general statistics of the city of New York, Brooklyn has a crime rate higher than 91% of the state’s cities and towns of all sizes.
And compared to the other New York boroughs, Brooklyn has the highest count, with the Bronx coming second in a list of most dangerous neighborhoods to stay in New York.
However, this should not frighten you, as some safe neighborhoods in Brooklyn exist.
10 Safest Neighborhoods in Brooklyn
Below is a list of the ten safest neighborhoods to visit in Brooklyn:
- Borough Park
- Sheepshead Bay
- Park Slope
- Bay Ridge
- Sunset Park
- Carroll Gardens
These can be further broken down in the table as shown below:
|Neighborhoods||Population||Violent Crimes per 100k||Property Crime per 100k|
This is one of the most diverse neighborhoods in the Brooklyn metropolitan area.
The neighborhood steadily attracts families consistently priced out of their homes in expensive areas such as Park Slope and Windsor Terrace.
Recent studies by the Brick Underground real estate consumer group rank Kensington as one of the safest neighborhoods to live in the city of Brooklyn.
The report was conducted by taking statistics from the New York Police Department (NYPD), focusing on the more non-violent crimes such as burglary, car theft, and grand larceny.
This is because these are the more common criminal activities in the city rather than crimes such as assault, rape, murder, and robbery.
The study shows Kensington recording just about 5.26 non-violent crime activities for every one of its 1,000 residents.
The most recent crime reports from the 66th Precinct that covers Kensington show that the seven (7) most indexed criminal activities (assault, murder, rape, felony, burglary, robbery, grand theft, and grand larceny auto) ranked, on an average, down the least 11.26% over the last year.
The name, Borough Park, is often shortened to Boro Park by residents in the community.
This is one of the safest neighborhoods in Brooklyn for college students mainly due to its quiet and isolated environment.
The neighborhood records an average of 66 major criminal activities for every 10,000 residents in the community.
Rates of burglary activities in the community dropped by about 77% in 2010, while that of robbery plunged by 76% that same year.
In recent years, the rate of criminal activities in Borough park has dropped even further, plunging by about 7% with the existence of cops and Jewish neighborhood patrols (Shomrim) who are steadily staying out, keeping a close eye on the streets.
The neighborhood of Bensonhurst is also considered the Little Italy of Brooklyn. This is a result of its many Italian-American populations.
Bensonhurst recorded just about 5.6 severe criminal activities for every one of its 1,000 residents in 2019. This accounts for nearly half of that of New York City as a whole.
According to the FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigation), these numbers are about 55%, much lower than the average national crime rate in the city.
The neighborhood of Sheepshead Bay was named after a bay that divides the mainland of Brooklyn from the eastern Coney Island portion.
Sheepshead Bay recorded just about 22 non-fatal assault criminal activities for every one of its 100,000 residents in 2018.
That same year, the neighborhood recorded just about one (1) murder case and 17 rape cases.
The total crime rate in Bensonhurst plunged by a healthy 15% between 2009 and 2010, following a 20% drop in burglary and robbery activities individually, as well as a 21% drop in felony assaults.
Flatlands recorded just about 46 non-fatal assault criminal activities for every one of its 100,000 residents in 2018.
The neighborhood has a total of 304 violent criminal activities and 973 property crime activities for every one of its 100,000 residents.
Its incarceration rate is about 380 per 100,000 residents, which is relatively lower than that of the entire city of Brooklyn as a whole.
The NYPD’s 63rd Precinct steadily patrols the neighborhood.
Flatlands also offers residents some of the cheapest places to live in Brooklyn in terms of low housing costs and lots more.
Crime rates in Park Slope have reduced drastically, plunging 76% from 1993 to 2010. This includes an 86% drop in murder rates, an 83% drop in felony assaults, and an 85% plunge in robbery activities.
The neighborhood recorded just a single murder case in 2009 and another in 2010, with only about 29 instances of violent criminal activities for every one of its 10,000 residents.
Park Slope records just about 207 violent criminal activities per 100,000 residents and approximately 1,205 property crime activities per 100,000 residents.
Still, the neighborhood of Park Slope remains one of the most developed communities in the city of Brooklyn.
Even as criminal activities in other neighborhoods of Brooklyn have inched up, the cops in the Bay Ridge area have done an excellent job of keeping things down in the community.
The overall crime rate in the neighborhood of Bay Ridge dropped by 8% between 2009 and 2010.
In total, Bay Ridge records about 276 violent criminal activities such as robbery and assault per 100,000 residents and about 1,214 property crime activities per 100,000 residents.
The neighborhood comprises mainly immigrants from Latin American countries. It is located in the Southwestern part of Brooklyn.
There are only about 480 violent criminal activities recorded here for every one of its 100,000 residents, with property crimes being one of the most common.
Property criminal activities in Sunset Park account for about 1,090 per 100,000 residents.
This is one of the few communities in the city of Brooklyn that never succumbed to the massive waves of violence that ravaged the city in the 1980s and 90s.
The total rate of criminal activities in the neighborhood has dropped by three-quarters (3/4) from 1993 to 2010.
Robbery activities dropped by 10% between 2009 and 2010, while its total crime rate plunged by 6%.
In total, Canarsie records about 417 violent criminal activities per 100,000 residents and about 1,232 property crime activities per 100,000 residents.
It’s hard not to be ravished by such a loving and charming neighborhood as Carroll Gardens. To this day, the area falls among one of the safest neighborhoods in Brooklyn.
In 2010, criminal activities in the neighborhood fell back a noticeable 5%, with burglary activities plunging by 8% that same year.
Murder cases dropped by 60% between 2008 and 2010.
Carroll Gardens records just about 270 violent crime activities per 100,000 residents and about 1,687 property crime activities per 100,000 residents.
3 Bad Neighborhoods in Brooklyn
There are still a few dangerous neighborhoods in Brooklyn apart from the listed three. However, these three are the least recommended places to live in Brooklyn:
- East New York
The neighborhood of Brownsville, Brooklyn, is well known for violent criminal activities, drugs, assaults, shootings, misdemeanors, and lots more.
The neighborhood is also regarded as the murder capital of NYC.
While rape cases and some major criminal activities have steadily declined in the community, the high rate of killings and murder cases continues to rise.
East New York
While the city’s total rate of criminal activities has seen a massive decline since the 1990s, we can’t say the same for the neighborhood of East New York.
The neighborhood recorded a total of 113 non-fatal assault activities per 100,000 residents, with an incarceration rate of 1,065 for every one of its 100,000 residents.
In 2018, East New York recorded seven (7) murder cases, 70 rapes, 441 burglary activities, 603 robbery cases, 940 acts of felony assaults, 1,030 grand robberies, and about 207 grand larcenies auto cases.
Bedford-Stuyvesant is also one of the historically violent neighborhoods in Brooklyn. It was one of the most violent and largest ghetto spots in the United States in the 60s.
While its violent crime rates continue to decline, residents still consider Bedford-Stuyvesant as one of the unsafe neighborhoods to live in Brooklyn, specifically Myrtle Avenue.
Sometimes due to the high population, crime rates may grow taller in a place, even in areas that could have been considered safe.
This is because crime usually happens where people are dense, whether they live there or not.
Before you write off an area as unsafe, look at both the crime rate and total crime maps, then consider nearby destinations that people may be visiting within that area.