safest for all crime

bay ridge

68th precinct / population 124,491

For generations, Bay Ridge has earned its reputation as a place where New Yorkers can enjoy the fruits of their labors. Sitting in the shadow of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, the neighborhood boasts well-kept apartment buildings and townhouses that sparkle every holiday season with elaborate Christmas-light displays. Serious crime has never been a huge problem on the tree-lined streets, but it's even less so these days.

The neighborhood came in No. 7 in per capita crimes on DNAinfo.com's ranking of 69 neighborhoods, with 73 crimes per 10,000 residents. There was just one murder in 2010 in the 68th Precinct, which covers Bay Ridge, and rape remained steady with six reported incidents in both 2009 and 2010. All major crimes were down by 80 percent in the period 1993 to 2010, outstripping citywide averages. Robberies dropped a remarkable 81 percent, and car theft, a major concern in a community where most families own vehicles, dropped by an eye-popping 92 percent in this period. In most major crime categories, Bay Ridge ranks among the top 10 safest for the entire city and is among the safest neighborhoods in Brooklyn.

Once populated by Italian and Norwegian immigrants, the neighborhood in more recent decades has received an influx of newly prosperous Russian and Middle Eastern families in search of good schools and safe streets. Signs in Arabic and Cyrillic letters now mix with ristorante billboards, but the hard-earned sense of community has never left.

Even as crime has inched up in other Brooklyn neighborhoods, cops have kept it down in Bay Ridge, with the overall crime rate from 2009 to 2010 dropping another 8 percent. Still, felony assaults jumped by 25 percent last year, to 99, while burglaries rose 9 percent, from 219 to 239.