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 peopleWilmington/100k peopleDelaware/100k peopleNational/100k people
Total crime3,230n/a (estimate)4,5732,3482,324
Violent crime848n/a (estimate)1,201384370
Vehicle theft398n/a563.5169.9282.7
Property crime2,382n/a (estimate)3,3731,9641,954

An Overview of Crime Rates in Wilmington, DE

Crime can be categorized into two primary types: violent and property crimes. Violent crimes encompass offenses such as murder, rape, robbery, and assault, whereas property crimes involve acts like burglary, theft, and vehicle theft. The overall crime rate in Wilmington is 96.8% higher than the national average. Specifically, there were 848 violent crimes reported in Wilmington, equivalent to 1201 per 100,000 residents, which is higher than the national average by 224.7%. Additionally, Wilmington recorded 2382 property crimes, amounting to 3373 per 100,000 people, higher than the national average by 72.6%.

In Wilmington, the crime rate stands at 4573 per 100,000 residents, surpassing the national average by 96.78%. This places the city among those with some of the highest total crime rates nationwide. However, it's important to recognize that this doesn't imply that the entire city is unsafe. As with any urban area, there are neighborhoods in Wilmington that exhibit varying levels of safety, emphasizing the need for localized crime prevention efforts and community involvement to create a safe environment across the entire city.

Wilmington has gained notoriety as one of the most dangerous cities in the United States, given its alarming violent crime rate of 1201 crimes per 100,000 people. In fact, Wilmington falls within the lowest 10% among cities reporting violent crimes last year, resulting in a concerning 1 in 84 likelihood of experiencing a violent crime. It's important to note that safety levels may vary across different areas within the city, and this statistic doesn't necessarily reflect the entire city's situation regarding violent crime.

While murder rates in the United States have generally declined since 1990, recent years have seen an unfortunate uptick. Wilmington stands out with one of the nation's highest murder rates among cities reporting crime data. In Wilmington, a total of 18 murders were reported, equating to 25 murders per 100,000 residents. This statistic underscores the challenges facing the area in terms of severe violent crime and the importance of ongoing efforts to enhance safety and security within the community.

The occurrence of vehicle thefts has been increasing nationwide, and Wilmington faces one of the highest vehicle theft rates in the United States. In the latest reported crime year, there were a reported 398 vehicle thefts, translating to 564 stolen vehicles per 100,000 residents. This places Wilmington 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 178.

What Do the Locals Say About Crime in Wilmington?

AreaVibes surveyed 93 local residents in Wilmington to gauge the safety of the area. Based on the results, 17% of people answered that there was very little crime in Wilmington and that they felt very comfortable walking alone at night. Another 83% of people responded that there was far too much crime and they would be hesitant to walk the streets alone at night. Keep in mind that the opinions of residents may vary depending on which area they live in.

Is Wilmington a Safe Place to Live?

Is Wilmington 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, Wilmington has a crime rate that is higher than the national average by 97%. Breaking this down on a daily basis, it translates to 8.85 daily incidents, encompassing 2.32 violent crimes and 6.53 property crimes. Evaluating these statistics can aid in forming a more informed perspective on the safety of Wilmington as a potential place to call home.

Has Crime in Wilmington Increased Since Last Year?

In the most recent crime report, year-over-year crime rates in Wilmington has decreased by 9.2%. Examining the change in crime rates from one year to the next provides valuable insights into the evolving safety landscape of Wilmington, aiding residents in assessing whether it is becoming a safer or more dangerous place to live. These crime rates are categorized into two primary groups: violent and property crimes. Year-over-year, violent crime has decreased by 15.5%, while property crime has decreased by 6.8%. This comprehensive analysis offers potential residents essential information for making informed decisions about whether or not Wilmington is a safe place to live.

Potential Causes for Crime in Wilmington

In Wilmington, the poverty rate currently stands at 24.9%, which contrasts with the national average of 15.1%. It's essential to recognize that the economic status of a city's inhabitants could be a pivotal factor influencing crime stats. Communities grappling with high poverty rates and income inequality are often susceptible to elevated crime levels, as some individuals may turn to unlawful activities to fulfill their essential needs. While lower poverty rates could lead to a reduction in Wilmington crime rates.

In Wilmington, 79.2% of residents have successfully graduated from high school, whereas the national average stands at 83%. The educational makeup of any city can exert a significant influence on crime rates. Typically, higher levels of educational attainment are associated with reduced crime rates, as they furnish individuals with improved employment prospects and viable alternatives to engaging in criminal activities. Conversely, communities characterized by lower educational achievement often grapple with higher crime rates, as limited opportunities may drive individuals towards criminal behavior.

Escalating cost of living expenses, encompassing exorbitant housing costs, grocery and healthcare expenditures, can induce financial strain on individuals and families, particularly those with limited financial resources. Such economic stress may propel individuals towards criminal activities, including theft or burglary, as a means of addressing their financial hardships. Conversely, cities characterized by a lower cost of living may alleviate economic pressures, potentially resulting in a reduced crime rate. In Wilmington, the cost of living is 3.39% higher than the national average, reflecting a more affordable economic environment that could contribute to a decrease in crime levels.

Wilmington crime map

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

      • Wilmington crime rates are 97% higher than the national average
      • Violent crimes in Wilmington are 225% higher than the national average
      • In Wilmington you have a 1 in 22 chance of becoming a victim of crime
      • Wilmington is safer than 2% of the cities in the United States
      • Year over year crime in Wilmington has decreased by 10%

      Wilmington, DE Crime Quiz


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        Daily Crime In Wilmington (per 100,000 people)

        The bar chart above reveals the rate of daily crimes in Wilmington for every 100,000 residents. The Wilmington total amount of daily crime is 1.95 times more than the Delaware average and 1.97 times more than than that of the nation. As for violent crimes, the daily average in Wilmington, is 3.13 times more than the Delaware average, and it is 3.25 times more than the national average. The statistics for property crimes show that Wilmington has a daily crime average that is 1.72 times more than the Delaware average and 1.73 times more than the daily national rate.

        How Safe is Wilmington (higher is better)

        Compared to the other cities in Delaware and all other cities across the US, is Wilmington safe? From the gauges displayed above, you will notice that Wilmington is safer than 11% of other cities in the state of Delaware. In addition, Wilmington is safer than 2% of cities in the entire United States. To achieve these results, all Delaware and United States cities were analyzed to determine how many locations had a lower crime rate than Wilmington. By studying this data, it was possible to determine that Wilmington is below average in safety when compared with other United States cities.

        Chance of Being A Victim of Crime in Wilmington

        The chance of being a victim of violent crime in Wilmington is 1 in 84
        The chance of being a victim of property crime in Wilmington is 1 in 30
        The chance of being a victim of crime in Wilmington is 1 in 22
        Wondering what the chances are that you fall victim to a crime in Wilmington? In Wilmington, DE you have a 1 in 84 chance of becoming a victim of violent crime. Violent crimes include murder, rape, robbery and assault. With regards to property crime, you have a 1 in 30 chance of becoming a victim. Property crimes include burglary, theft and motor vehicle theft. Overall, you have a 1 in 22 chance of becoming a victim of crime in Wilmington.

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

        Determining whether Wilmington is becoming less or more safe for its residents (per 100,000) is most easily done by comparing year-over-year crime rates. Wilmington violent crime rates have decreased by 16%. At the same time, property crime has decreased by 7% year over year. Total crimes for Wilmington has decreased by 10% in the same time frame.

        Wilmington police department

        Item Wilmington Delaware National
        Law enforcement employees (officers & civilians)368962558,732
        Police officers & civilians /1000 residents5.15.43.3
        There are a total of 368 Wilmington police officers. This results in 5.1 police officers per 1,000 residents which is 4.8% less than the Delaware average and 57% greater than the National average.

        Sex offenders in Delaware

        State Total offenders Delaware /100K National /100K
        There are a total of 4,039 sex offenders in Delaware. This yields a total of 505 sex offenders in Delaware per 100,000 residents which is 90% greater than the national average.

        Nearby Cities With Low Crime Rates

        City Population Violent crime/100k people Property crime/100k people Total crime/100k people
        Greenville, DE2,44860308368
        Chester Heights, PA2,65465341406
        Toughkenamon, PA1,05373388462
        Lima, PA2,05179417496
        Swarthmore, PA6,33991482573
        Avondale, PA1,34892488581
        Greenwich, NJ2,74773511584
        Wilmington, DE70,6551,2013,3734,573

        Cities with similar population

        City Population Violent crime/100k people Property crime/100k people Total crime/100k people
        St. Charles, MO70,6502121,7471,960
        North Richland Hills, TX70,5852271,9872,214
        Casas Adobes, AZ70,5164672,2252,692
        Canton, OH70,8631,1805,5476,728
        Weston, FL70,965119720839
        Wilmington, DE70,6551,2013,3734,573
        Source: The Wilmington, DE 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.