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 peopleSeattle/100k peopleWashington/100k peopleNational/100k people
Total crime47,860n/a (estimate)6,5593,7322,324
Violent crime6,115n/a (estimate)838376370
Vehicle theft6,942n/a951.4639.3282.7
Property crime41,745n/a (estimate)5,7213,3561,954

An Overview of Crime Rates in Seattle, WA

The Seattle crime rates are 182.2% higher than the national average. There are two main categories of crime - violent crime and property crime. Violent crime consists of murder, rape, robbery and assault, while property crimes include burglary, theft and vehicle theft. There were a total of 6115 violent crimes in Seattle (838 per 100,000 people), which is 126.6% higher than the national average and there were a total of 41745 property crimes (5721 per 100,000 residents) which is 192.7% higher than average.

With a total of 6559 crimes per 100,000 people, the Seattle crime rates stand at 182.2 higher than the national average. Consequently, the area grapples with one of the nation's highest total crime rates. Addressing this challenge is crucial for enhancing the safety and livability in Seattle, making it a priority to reduce crime through community engagement, effective law enforcement, and collaborative efforts to secure a better future for residents and prospective residents.

Seattle ranks among the bottom 10% of all U.S. cities reporting violent crime, earning its reputation as one of the nation's most dangerous areas. With a violent crime rate of 838 per 100,000 people, Seattle is considered one of the most unsafe cities in America. This statistic translates to a 1 in 120 chance of becoming a victim of violent crime in Seattle, underscoring the need for increased safety measures and community engagement to improve the city's security.

Seattle has some of the highest property crime rates in the country with 5721 crimes per 100,000 people - this ranks in the bottom 10% of all American cities that reported crime. Your chance of being a victim of property crime in Seattle is 1 in 18, which is far higher than the national average.

The surge in vehicle thefts is a concerning trend across the United States, and Seattle is no exception, experiencing one of the nation's highest vehicle theft rates. Last year, Seattle reported a total of 6942 vehicle thefts, resulting in 951 stolen vehicles per 100,000 people. This places the city in the lowest 10% tier among all cities, indicating that 90% of cities have less stolen vehicles. The probability of a vehicle being stolen stands at 1 in 106, underscoring the need for heightened vigilance and security measures.

What Do the Locals Say About Crime in Seattle?

What is the prevailing sentiment among Seattle residents regarding the state of crime? A comprehensive survey conducted by AreaVibes, involving 469 respondents, sheds light on this matter. The results were as follows: 39% of Seattle residents expressed a notable sense of security, asserting that crime was virtually non-existent in their community, and they felt at ease strolling the streets after dark. While, 61% of those surveyed held a contrasting viewpoint, perceiving a higher incidence of crime, leading them to feel apprehensive about walking alone at night.

Is Seattle a Safe Place to Live?

Is Seattle a safe place to live? While the answer may not be straightforward due to variations in safety levels across the city, gaining an understanding of the overall crime rate can prove to be advantageous. In general, Seattle has a crime rate that is higher than the national average by 182%. Breaking this down on a daily basis, it translates to 131.12 daily incidents, encompassing 16.75 violent crimes and 114.37 property crimes. Evaluating these statistics can aid in forming a more informed perspective on the safety of Seattle as a potential place to call home.

Has Crime in Seattle Increased Since Last Year?

Examining year-over-year crime data provides insights into short-term trends with regards to the crime activity in Seattle. This analysis involves comparing crime rates from one year to the next, enabling the identification of patterns and fluctuations in crime. Such information proves invaluable to residents seeking to make well-informed decisions about their choice of residence. In the most recent year, compared to the previous one, total crime in Seattle has increased by 3.9%. Specifically, violent crime has increased by 4.2%, while property crime has increased by 3.9%. This data empowers individuals with a clearer understanding of the evolving safety landscape in Seattle.

Seattle Neighborhood Crime Rates

Typically, densely populated areas in close proximity to the city center tend to experience higher crime rates compared to neighborhoods that are situated on the city's periphery. Seattle, an expansive urban metropolis, has more than 78 distinct neighborhoods, each bearing its unique crime rate characteristics. The prevalence of criminal activity varies significantly among these neighborhoods. Noteworthy among safest neighborhoods in Seattle are areas such as Hawthorne Hills, Broadmoor and Blue Ridge, which provide residents with enhanced security and peace of mind. Conversely, neighborhoods like Sand Point, First Hill and South Lake Union are marked by a higher incidence of reported crimes, warranting prudent consideration for those seeking to avoid areas with potentially elevated safety concerns.

Potential Causes for Crime in Seattle

Seattle reports an unemployment rate of 3%, contrasting with the national average of 4.7%. Constrained employment opportunities or a prevalence of low-paying positions can contribute to elevated rates of unemployment and underemployment. Areas where individuals contend with joblessness or insufficient wages may display heightened susceptibility to an increase in criminal activities attributed to economic insecurity. Conversely, regions characterized by robust employment rates often witness a decrease in overall Seattle crime rates.

The impact of law enforcement and community policing efforts plays a crucial role in shaping crime rates in any city. A robust and cooperative bond between law enforcement and the community can serve as a deterrent to criminal activities, enhancing overall safety. In Seattle, the ratio of police officers and civilians per 1,000 residents stands at 2.87, differing from the national average of 3.25. Effective law enforcement hinges not solely on officer numbers but also on the manner in which they interact and collaborate with the community. Building trust and cooperation are central tenets of community policing, amplifying its influence on crime prevention.

Seattle has an average rental rate of $1,702 per month, compared to the national average of $949. In areas with high rental costs, some individuals and families may be forced to live in overcrowded or substandard housing conditions. Overcrowding can lead to increased stress and tension, which may contribute to domestic disputes and related property or violent crimes. Addressing affordable housing and economic mobility can be important strategies for reducing crime in such areas.

Seattle crime map

The Seattle crime map provides a detailed overview of all crimes in Seattle 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 Seattle crime heat map offers insight into the total crimes on a block group level. Please note that the red areas on the Seattle 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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      Crime Quick Facts

      • Seattle crime rates are 182% higher than the national average
      • Violent crimes in Seattle are 127% higher than the national average
      • In Seattle you have a 1 in 16 chance of becoming a victim of crime
      • Seattle is safer than 3% of the cities in the United States
      • Year over year crime in Seattle has increased by 12%

      Seattle, WA Crime Quiz


        Safest Places to Live in and Around Seattle

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        Daily Crime In Seattle (per 100,000 people)

        The above illustration depicts the number of crimes committed daily in Seattle, per 100,000 residents. In Seattle, the total number of daily crimes is 1.76 times more than the Washington average and 2.82 times more than the national average. Violent daily crime statistics in Seattle are 2.23 times more than the Washington average and 2.27 times more than the national average. For property crime, Seattle has a daily crime rate that is 1.70 times more than the Washington average and 2.93 times more than the daily national average.

        How Safe is Seattle (higher is better)

        Are people any safer living in Seattle in comparison to other Washington communities and all other areas throughout the United States? When we look at all cities across America, is Seattle safe? The evidence provided by these graphs show Seattle being safer than 2% of cities in Washington and 3% of cities across the United States. This is evident by tracking Washington cities as well as all US cities over a one year period to contrast crime statistics as they relate to Seattle. In conclusion, Seattle ranks below average compared to the rest of the United States.

        Chance of Being A Victim of Crime in Seattle

        The chance of being a victim of violent crime in Seattle is 1 in 120
        The chance of being a victim of property crime in Seattle is 1 in 18
        The chance of being a victim of crime in Seattle is 1 in 16
        Are you worried about becoming a crime victim? In Seattle, your chance of becoming a victim of a violent crime is 1 in 120. Types of violent crimes may include assault, robbery, rape, or murder. You also have a 1 in 18 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 Seattle is 1 in 16.

        Year Over Year Crime In Seattle (per 100,000 people)

        Determining whether Seattle is becoming less or more safe for its residents (per 100,000) is most easily done by comparing year-over-year crime rates. Seattle violent crime rates have increased by 12%. At the same time, property crime has increased by 12% year over year. Total crimes for Seattle has increased by 12% in the same time frame.

        Seattle police department

        Item Seattle Washington National
        Law enforcement employees (officers & civilians)1,8018,169558,732
        Police officers & civilians /1000 residents2.92.23.3
        There are a total of 1,801 Seattle police officers. This results in 2.9 police officers per 1,000 residents which is 32.5% greater than the Washington average and 11.6% less than the National average.

        Sex offenders in Washington

        State Total offenders Washington /100K National /100K
        There are a total of 6,688 sex offenders in Washington. This yields a total of 107 sex offenders in Washington per 100,000 residents which is 60% 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
        Yarrow Point, WA1,35353471524
        Clyde Hill, WA3,36072639711
        Clearview, WA3,84782734816
        Sammamish, WA65,26559917977
        Meadowdale, WA3,1621049261,030
        Maple Heights-Lake Desire, WA3,5441049281,032
        Brier, WA6,8991559771,132
        Seattle, WA741,2518385,7216,559

        Cities with similar population

        City Population Violent crime/100k people Property crime/100k people Total crime/100k people
        Denver, CO715,8781,0706,4287,498
        Washington, DC701,9747453,4844,229
        Boston, MA689,3266191,8022,421
        El Paso, TX679,8793131,3791,692
        Detroit, MI672,3512,0284,4786,506
        Seattle, WA741,2518385,7216,559
        Source: The Seattle, WA 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.