safest for all crime
90th/94th precinct / population 173,083
First came the hipsters, then came the strollers. As the uber-cool neighborhood of Williamsburg has rapidly reinvented itself over the past two decades, violent crime has plummeted 71 percent from 1993 to 2010 in the 90th and 94th Precincts, which cover this north Brooklyn neighborhood.
But the area's major crime rate ticked up by 5 percent in 2010, and stubbornly high property crime rates left the hipster haven at a disappointing 47th safest for per capita crime in DNAinfo.com's Crime & Safety Report ranking of 69 neighborhoods citywide.
In the late 1990s violent crime plunged, with murders declining by a remarkable 91 percent in the 90th Precinct from 1993 to 2010. This improvement has held steady, and Williamsburg ranked 10th safest for murder in 2010, with just two murders in the 90th precinct and none in the 94th. Williamsburg ranks 35th safest for violent crimes, with 46 instances per 10,000 residents.
Luxury condo developments have brought young families and prosperous professionals into Williamsburg, while rising rents sent struggling creative types fleeing farther afield, mainly to neighboring Bushwick and nearby Bed-Stuy.
Still, the area remains a hot spot for burglaries, car thefts and other property crimes. Robberies shot up 14 percent and car thefts rocketed by 20 percent in 2010.
Grand larceny was also up in 2010, by 3 percent; and it had declined by only 11 percent from 1993 to 2010, perhaps indicating that criminals were being lured by the neighborhood's newfound wealth. There were 46 grand larcenies per 10,000 residents in 2010.
Williamsburg is ranked a problematic 54th for property crimes, with 106 of these crimes — burglary, grand larceny and grand larceny auto — per 10,000 residents.
Rise in reported rapes, 2009 to 2010
Drop in murders, 2009 to 2010
Photo: Getty/NY Daily News Archive
Four armed Muslim revolutionaries entered John and Al's Sporting Goods shop on Broadway, at Melrose Street, on Jan. 19, 1973. The plan had been to steal weapons from the shop, but when cops arrived, the men barricaded themselves inside, along with 12 hostages. Rifle-toting ringleader Shu'aib Raheem spotted cops as they positioned themselves around the building. Shortly thereafter the siege began, and NYPD Patrolman Stephen Gilroy was shot and killed. As the standoff approached day three, Raheem and his gang surrendered without incident and the hostages escaped unharmed. It was never determined who fired the bullet that killed Gilroy. All four men were tried and convicted of murder. Raheem made headlines again in July 2010, when he was paroled from prison after serving 37 years of a maximum life sentence.
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