New York City, a vibrant metropolis visited and inhabited by millions, offers an array of exciting experiences for both tourists and residents. However, like any urban landscape, it’s important for you to remain vigilant about your safety, as certain areas within the city may pose a higher risk for criminal activity.
As a visitor or a local searching for housing, arming yourself with information about these neighborhoods is essential to navigating New York City securely.
In this article, you’ll get acquainted with the ten most dangerous neighborhoods in New York City, spanning across various boroughs such as Queens and precincts like Broadway.
We’ll provide you with data on criminal activity, homelessness, and other factors contributing to their per capita reputation, allowing you to make informed decisions about where to establish your home or plan your big-city adventures.
So, whether you’re a seasoned New Yorker or a first-time tourist, let’s dive into what you need to know to stay safe in the Big Apple.
10 Most Dangerous Neighborhoods in NYC
In New York City, please be cautious in these high-risk areas:
- Hunts Point
- Mott Haven
- East Harlem
These neighborhoods report the highest crime rates, violent crimes, and property crime statistics. Always prioritize your safety and remain vigilant.
1. Hunts Point
Hunts Point, situated in the Bronx, holds the unfortunate title of being the most dangerous neighborhood in New York City. This area grapples with severe issues related to prostitution and drug abuse. It’s crucial for those visiting or residing in the city to exercise caution while in Hunts Point, as there’s a 1 in 22 chance of becoming a crime victim.
Worryingly, sexual assault cases have increased, contributing to Hunts Point’s reputation for violence. The neighborhood’s violent crime rate stands at approximately 1,944 per 100,000 individuals, while the overall crime rate reaches around 4,557 per 100,000 people. Whenever possible, it’s advisable to steer clear of this neighborhood during your time in New York City for safety reasons.
Brownsville stands out as one of the most dangerous neighborhoods in NYC. This area has long been associated with high rates of homicides, drug-related deaths, and murder, making it a place best avoided if prudence prevails. With a murder rate nearly four times the New York average, the potential dangers are difficult to ignore.
In Brownsville, your chances of falling victim to a crime are about 1 in 36. The violent crime rate stands at 1,264 per 100,000 people, while the overall crime rate is approximately 2,810 per 100,000 individuals. With these statistics in mind, the probability of becoming a victim is relatively high. Given its location in Brooklyn, the neighborhood leaves much to be desired in terms of safety, so it’s advisable to avoid it whenever possible.
3. Mott Haven
Mott Haven, a neighborhood in New York City, has a concerning reputation regarding safety. With a crime rate nearly four times the national average, it is wise to exercise caution, especially during nighttime hours. If possible, avoid passing through Mott Haven and opt for alternative routes.
In this neighborhood, you have a 1 in 32 chance of becoming a crime victim. The violent crime rate stands at approximately 2,039 per 100,000 residents, while the overall crime rate is about 5,181 per 100,000 inhabitants. This covers a range of offenses, such as rape, murder, assault, and robbery. To ensure your safety in Mott Haven, always remain vigilant and alert, whether it’s day or night.
Located in Brooklyn, Bedford-Stuyvesant is a neighborhood that has had a history of crime. Though it has improved since its more notorious past, crime rates have been rising in recent years. Be cautious, as robberies and altercations with violent individuals are common incidents in the area.
In Bedford-Stuyvesant, the chances of becoming a victim are roughly 1 in 35. The neighborhood experiences a violent crime rate of about 1,065 per 100,000 people, and an average crime rate of approximately 2,902 per 100,000 people. As you navigate New York City, it’s wise to be mindful of the risks and consider avoiding this area, particularly if you’re a visitor or contemplating an extended stay in the city.
Midtown may not be perceived as a particularly dangerous part of New York City; however, crime has increased recently, partially attributed to the growing homelessness issue. In 2020 and 2021, several high-profile incidents involving homeless individuals attacking and stabbing passersby in Midtown occurred. While violent crime rates remain lower than in other areas, theft remains a significant problem. The crowded atmosphere of Times Square and Central Park creates opportunities for criminals to snatch personal belongings.
With a property crime rate of about 7,400 per 100,000 people and a violent crime rate of approximately 1,200 per 100,000 people, you’re more likely to experience pickpocketing than assault. Nonetheless, it’s crucial to remain vigilant, even when the busy tourist scene makes it feel safe.
6. East Harlem
East Harlem, a vibrant and diverse neighborhood in Manhattan, is regrettably one of the areas with the highest crime rates in New York City. While the majority of crimes reported are property-related, the violent crime rate is almost twice the national average.
As a resident or visitor, you face around a 1 in 22 chance of becoming a victim in East Harlem. The average violent crime rate stands at 1,616 per 100,000 people, and the overall crime rate is approximately 4,554 per 100,000 people. With increased law enforcement presence, these numbers may show improvement in the near future.
Fordham, a neighborhood located in the Bronx, has a worrisome safety reputation despite being partially home to Fordham University’s campus. Its assault rate is almost five times higher than the national average, which raises safety concerns for residents and students alike.
In this area, your chances of becoming a victim are around 1 in 29. Fordham has an average violent crime rate of 1,251 per 100,000 people and an overall crime rate of 3,604 per 100,000 people. As such, it is wise to avoid walking alone in this neighborhood, especially at night.
Unfortunately, there hasn’t been significant improvement in Fordham’s crime rates over time. With separate police forces patrolling the North and South sides of the area, it remains to be seen how the situation may change for this college town in the future.
Highbridge, situated in the Bronx, has a fascinating appeal with its bustling coffee shops and remarkable movie filming locations. Despite its charm, the neighborhood poses safety concerns due to prevalent street and drug crimes. Remember to stay cautious and vigilant while navigating through this area.
In Highbridge, your probability of becoming a crime victim is 1 in 29. The neighborhood experiences approximately 1,149 violent crimes per 100,000 people, while the general crime rate stands at around 3,564 per 100,000 people. Though the area may seem inviting, make sure to stay aware of your surroundings and maintain a keen sense of situational awareness.
Bushwick, situated in Brooklyn, has had its existence since the 1800s. Over time, the neighborhood has transformed, attracting a younger population due to its relatively affordable cost of living. Although it may be the least hazardous area among the neighborhoods discussed in this article, it still experiences high crime rates.
In Bushwick, the likelihood of becoming a victim is approximately 1 in 40, with an average violent crime rate of 727 per 100,000 residents. The overall crime rate stands at about 2,511 per 100,000 people. While the prevalence of violent crime might not be as significant, petty theft and robbery persist as common occurrences. However, the situation is gradually improving, and Bushwick may see a decrease in crime rates in the near future.
Tremont, situated in the Bronx, is notorious for being a low-income neighborhood with crime rates nearly 200% higher than the national average. Due to its high crime rates, two separate police precincts have been established to address the issue.
As you navigate through Tremont, be aware that your risk of falling victim to crime is approximately 1 in 35. The neighborhood experiences an average violent crime rate of 1,223 per 100,000 residents, while the general crime rate stands at 2,898 per 100,000 residents. To ensure your safety, it is crucial to remain vigilant, whether it is day or night, while visiting or passing through this area.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the high-risk areas in the Bronx?
In the Bronx, some areas with higher crime rates include:
- Mott Haven
- Hunts Point
Keep in mind that crime can happen anywhere, and these are just a few neighborhoods experiencing higher incidents based on statistics.
Which neighborhoods in Queens are known to be unsafe?
Queens generally has a lower crime rate compared to other boroughs. However, some neighborhoods with higher crime rates in Queens include:
- Far Rockaway
Again, take note that this is based on available data, and crime can occur in any neighborhood.
Where are the most dangerous areas in Brooklyn?
Some areas in Brooklyn with higher crime rates are:
- East New York
These neighborhoods have seen more cases of violence and theft over the years. However, it’s essential to exercise caution, no matter where you are in the city.
Which part of NYC has the highest crime rate?
Based on crime statistics, neighborhoods such as Hunts Point in the Bronx and Brownsville in Brooklyn consistently rank as having higher crime rates. However, crime rates vary within neighborhoods and are subject to change over time.
What factors contribute to a neighborhood being considered dangerous?
Multiple factors can contribute to a neighborhood being labeled as dangerous. Some of these factors include:
- High crime rates, especially violent crimes
- Prostitution and drug issues
- Economic inequality and poverty
- High unemployment rates
- Poorly maintained public spaces and housing
That being said, many communities and initiatives actively work on improving these conditions in neighborhoods across NYC.