MANHATTAN — Greenwich Village may have some of the city's most desirable real estate and be one of its top date destinations, but the neighborhood has one of the highest crime rates in the city, according to a new report by DNAinfo.com.
The "Crime & Safety Report," which pairs 2010 NYPD CompStat data with 2010 U.S. Census data to calculate per capita crime, ranks Greenwich Village 68th out of 69 neighborhoods citywide for overall crime, which includes murder, rape, robbery, felony assault, burglary, grand larceny and auto theft.
The neighborhood also ranked among the least safe in the city for property crimes, coming in 68th place.
For violent crimes, the Village fared better — at 32nd place — which is safer than the East Village and Chelsea. But the neighborhood is less safe than the Upper East Side or Midtown East, which saw the fewest violent crimes per capita in 2010.
Brad Hoylman, chair of Community Board 2, which covers the Village, said he was surprised to see how low the neighborhood ranked.
"It does remind members of the community that we have to be vigilant and have to work with our local precinct to eradicate crime at every level," he said.
Hoylman said "brazen assaults" on Christopher Street and in the nightlife-rich Meatpacking District are of particular concern. Those areas have been high on Hoylman's list of priorities in conversations with 6th Precinct Commanding Officer Brandon del Pozo, who joined the precinct this summer
"I think most Villagers feel safe in their neighborhood, but we have to work harder to make sure everyone feels safe," Hoylman said.
"We do have a really hard-core criminal element down here," said Terri Howell, vice president of the Christopher Street Patrol, whose volunteers have walked Christopher Street and Pier 45 for more than 20 years.
Howell said she also frequently sees quality-of-life crimes like excessive noise and public drinking, which do not factor into the rankings.
However, Eric Einstein, the owner of Pieces Bar on Christopher Street near Sixth Avenue, said few incidents of crime touch his corner of the neighborhood.
"It's really quiet here," he said.
The good news for the Village and the Meatpacking District is that most crimes in the 6th Precinct dropped from 2009 to 2010. Burglaries fell by 24 percent, felony assaults dropped 11 percent, and grand larcenies fell by 4 percent.
The murder rate remained steady, at one murder in both 2009 and 2010.
The number of rapes rose from 9 to 13, robberies rose slightly, and auto thefts rose from 38 to 45 incidents.