Total crime NAT. AVG.
Violent crime NAT. AVG.
Property crime NAT. AVG.
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Date & Last Updated: This data reflects the 2022 calendar year and was released from the FBI in September, 2023; this is the most current data available.
StatisticReportedincidents/100k peopleCouncil Bluffs/100k peopleIowa/100k peopleNational/100k people
Total crime2,129n/a (estimate)3,4231,6182,324
Violent crime262n/a (estimate)421287370
Vehicle theft318n/a511.2147.4282.7
Property crime1,867n/a (estimate)3,0011,3321,954

An Overview of Crime Rates in Council Bluffs, IA

Crime is typically categorized into two main types: violent and property crimes. Violent crimes encompass offenses such as murder, rape, robbery, and assault, while property crimes include burglary, theft, and vehicle theft. Based on the most recent report, the Council Bluffs crime rate is higher than the national average by 47.3%. Specifically, there were 262 violent crimes in Council Bluffs, equivalent to 421 per 100,000 individuals, higher than the national average by 13.9%. Furthermore, Council Bluffs recorded 1867 property crimes, amounting to 3001 per 100,000 residents, which was higher than the average by 53.6%.

Council Bluffs exhibits a violent crime rate that closely echoes the national average reported by all cities, with 421 incidents per 100,000 people, in line with the nationwide figure of 370. This uniformity underscores Council Bluffs as a community where safety standards align seamlessly with the broader national context, delivering residents a steadfast and dependable sense of security.

The occurrence of vehicle thefts has been increasing nationwide, and Council Bluffs faces one of the highest vehicle theft rates in the United States. In the latest reported crime year, there were a reported 318 vehicle thefts, translating to 511 stolen vehicles per 100,000 residents. This places Council Bluffs in the bottom 10% among all cities, signifying that 90% of cities have less stolen vehicles. The likelihood of experiencing a vehicle theft is 1 in 196.

What Do the Locals Say About Crime in Council Bluffs?

AreaVibes conducted surveys inquiring about the safety perception of Council Bluffs residents. Out of the respondents (68 in total), 24% expressed a strong sense of security, believing that crime rates in Council Bluffs were low, and they felt comfortable walking alone at night. Conversely, 76% held a contrasting viewpoint, expressing concerns about safety in the area and feeling uncomfortable walking alone during the nighttime hours.

Is Council Bluffs a Safe Place to Live?

Before you decide to relocate, it’s always good to ask yourself “Is Council Bluffs a safe place to live?” Although the answer might not be that simple, as some areas are safer than others, getting a good feel for the overall rate of crime can definitely be helpful. Overall, the Council Bluffs crime rate is 47% higher than the national average. If we break that down daily, that translates into 5.83 crimes per day - 0.72 violent crimes and 5.12 property crimes.

Has Crime in Council Bluffs Increased Since Last Year?

Year-over-year crime data allows us to analyze short-term trends in crime activity. By comparing crime rates from one year to the next, we can identify patterns and shifts in Council Bluffs crime rates. This information can be invaluable for residents looking to make informed decisions on where to live. When comparing the most recent year to the previous year, total crime in Council Bluffs has decreased by 9.4% year over year. Violent crime has increased by 17% and property crime has decreased by 12.2%.

Potential Causes for Crime in Council Bluffs

In Council Bluffs, the current unemployment rate stands at 3.2%, diverging from the national average of 4.7%. The availability of job opportunities is a pivotal factor influencing unemployment and underemployment rates. Communities where individuals contend with limited employment prospects or a preponderance of low-wage positions may witness elevated rates of joblessness and income inadequacy, which can contribute to heightened crime levels driven by financial insecurity. Conversely, areas characterized by robust employment rates often experience a reduction in overall Council Bluffs crime rates.

Council Bluffs has a population density of 1451.9 people per square mile, contrasting with the national average of 90.6 people per square mile. High population density cities are often large urban hubs teeming with diverse economic opportunities. Within these environments, income disparities can become pronounced, leading to higher poverty levels. This economic divide may contribute to an uptick in property crimes and, occasionally, violent crimes. In contrast, areas characterized by low population density typically exhibit lower Council Bluffs crime rates.

Elevated rental costs can generate economic strain for both individuals and families, particularly those with restricted financial means. When a substantial proportion of one's income is allocated to housing costs, it often leaves limited resources for fulfilling other crucial necessities such as groceries, healthcare and education. This financial pressure can fuel desperation, potentially prompting individuals to resort to criminal actions, including theft or fraud, as a means of coping with their financial hardships. In Council Bluffs, the average monthly rent stands at $860, while the national average is $949 per month.

Council Bluffs crime map

The Council Bluffs crime map provides a detailed overview of all crimes in Council Bluffs as reported by the local law enforcement agencies. Based on the color coded legend above, the crime map outlines the areas with lower crime compared to the areas with higher crime. The Council Bluffs crime heat map offers insight into the total crimes on a block group level. Please note that the red areas on the Council Bluffs crime map does not always indicate that it is a dangerous area for its residents. Areas on the heat map could be inflated if they are located in high traffic areas like airports, sports centers or large parks. Other areas on the heat map could see increased crime rates if they are located in major tourist areas like the downtown core.
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Compare Council Bluffs, IA Crime


      Crime Quick Facts

      • Council Bluffs crime rates are 47% higher than the national average
      • Violent crimes in Council Bluffs are 14% higher than the national average
      • In Council Bluffs you have a 1 in 30 chance of becoming a victim of crime
      • Council Bluffs is safer than 18% of the cities in the United States
      • Year over year crime in Council Bluffs has decreased by 9%

      Council Bluffs, IA Crime Quiz


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        Daily Crime In Council Bluffs (per 100,000 people)

        The graph above looks at the comparison of crimes committed in Council Bluffs on a daily basis (per 100,000 people) to crimes committed throughout the state of Iowa and the USA. According to the latest crime statistics, daily crimes in Council Bluffs (which include property crimes as well as violent crimes), when compared to Iowa, are 2.12 times more than the state average and 1.47 times more than than national average. Violent crimes committed in Council Bluffs on a daily basis are 1.47 times more than than Iowa average and 1.14 times more than the average nationwide. Daily property crime rates in Council Bluffs are 2.25 times more than the daily state average and 1.54 times more than the daily national numbers.

        How Safe is Council Bluffs (higher is better)

        What are the odds that you'll be safer in Council Bluffs, Iowa compared to other areas of Iowa, as well as the rest of America? When it comes down to it, is Council Bluffs safe? In the graphs above, it shows that Council Bluffs is safer than 18% of Iowa cities, and 18% compared to all other cities across America. These statistics are calculated by taking a closer look at each city's crime rate in Iowa, as well as the rest of the US. It is then determined which cities see less crime than Council Bluffs. At this time, Council Bluffs sees a below average rate of crime in comparison to other United States cities.

        Chance of Being A Victim of Crime in Council Bluffs

        The chance of being a victim of violent crime in Council Bluffs is 1 in 238
        The chance of being a victim of property crime in Council Bluffs is 1 in 34
        The chance of being a victim of crime in Council Bluffs is 1 in 30
        Are you worried about becoming a crime victim? In Council Bluffs, your chance of becoming a victim of a violent crime is 1 in 238. Types of violent crimes may include assault, robbery, rape, or murder. You also have a 1 in 34 chance of being the victim of a property crime such as vehicle theft, personal property theft, and burglary. Your overall risk of becoming a crime victim in Council Bluffs is 1 in 30.

        Year Over Year Crime In Council Bluffs (per 100,000 people)

        The year over year crime rate per 100,000 people for Council Bluffs is an accurate tool for tracking the rise and fall of crime, and in determining if living in Council Bluffs has become safer or more dangerous. The year over year data displayed in the graph shows that violent crimes have increased by 17% in Council Bluffs, while property crimes in Council Bluffs have decreased by 12%. Total crime has decreased by 9% year over year.

        Council Bluffs police department

        Item Council Bluffs Iowa National
        Law enforcement employees (officers & civilians)1313,827558,732
        Police officers & civilians /1000 residents2.11.83.3
        There are a total of 131 Council Bluffs police officers. This results in 2.1 police officers per 1,000 residents which is 15.9% greater than the Iowa average and 35.8% less than the National average.

        Sex offenders in Iowa

        State Total offenders Iowa /100K National /100K
        There are a total of 6,040 sex offenders in Iowa. This yields a total of 205 sex offenders in Iowa per 100,000 residents which is 23% less than the national average.

        Nearby Cities With Low Crime Rates

        City Population Violent crime/100k people Property crime/100k people Total crime/100k people
        Springfield, NE1,58299663763
        Bentley, IA158171796967
        Cedar Creek, NE3961561,0411,197
        Glenwood, IA5,3253468851,232
        Papillion, NE24,310921,1441,236
        Treynor, IA9422411,1231,364
        Underwood, IA9552411,1231,364
        Council Bluffs, IA62,3764213,0013,423

        Cities with similar population

        City Population Violent crime/100k people Property crime/100k people Total crime/100k people
        Doral, FL62,3671601,7171,876
        Idaho Falls, ID62,4173481,3721,719
        North Miami, FL62,4687492,8343,583
        Pico Rivera, CA62,5074922,3892,881
        Grand Junction, CO62,2185083,1413,649
        Council Bluffs, IA62,3764213,0013,423
        Source: The Council Bluffs, IA crime data displayed above is derived from the FBI's uniform crime reports for the year of 2022. The crime report encompasses more than 18,000 city and state law enforcement agencies reporting data on property and violent crimes. The uniform crime reports program represents approximately 309 million American residents, which results in 98% coverage of metropolitan statistical areas.