Fort Lauderdale Crime Rates: 1999-2018 Analysis

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Did you know that Fort Lauderdale has one of the highest crime rates in Florida? With a population of over 180,000 people, this city is known for its beautiful beaches and vibrant nightlife. Unfortunately, it also has a reputation for high levels of crime.

Discussing crime in Fort Lauderdale is crucial because it affects the safety and well-being of both residents and visitors. The Fort Lauderdale Police Department works tirelessly to combat crime, but their efforts can only go so far without community involvement.

We will explore the types of crimes that are most prevalent in the area, examine statistics from reliable sources such as the FBI, and discuss what steps can be taken to make our city safer.

So why is it important to talk about crime in Fort Lauderdale? Because by understanding the problem, we can work together to find solutions and create a safer community for everyone.

Historical Overview of Crime Rates in Fort Lauderdale from 1999-2018 (Macrotrends)

Fort Lauderdale has seen a significant decrease in crime rates over the past two decades. According to Macrotrends, the overall crime rate in Fort Lauderdale decreased by 50% between 1999 and 2018. In 1999, there were 11,824 total crimes reported, while in 2018, there were only 5,882.

Comparison with national crime rates

While Fort Lauderdale’s crime rate has decreased over the years, it is still higher than the national average. In 2018, the national average for violent crimes was 369 per every 100,000 people. In comparison, Fort Lauderdale had a violent crime rate of 1,106 per every 100,000 people. However,Fort Lauderdale’s rate is lower than the national average.

Notable events affecting crime rates

There have been several notable events that have affected crime rates in Fort Lauderdale over the years. For example:

  • Hurricane Wilma: In October of 2005, Hurricane Wilma hit South Florida causing widespread damage and power outages. During this time, looting became a major issue in Fort Lauderdale and surrounding areas.
  • Spring Break: For many years during March and April each year thousands of college students would flock to Fort Lauderdale for Spring Break leading to an increase in alcohol-related incidents.
  • Economic downturn: The economic recession from around late-2007 through mid-2009 resulted in an increase in unemployment which led to an uptick in property crimes like burglaries.
  • Recent data on crime rates

According to recent data from NeighborhoodScout.com (2021), Fort Lauderdale has a total crime rate of approximately 38 per one thousand residents which is higher than both Florida’s and the national average. The website also ranks Fort Lauderdale as being safer than only 4% of US cities.

Population and crime rates

It is important to note that population growth can have an impact on crime rates. From 1999 to 2018, Fort Lauderdale’s population increased from approximately 152,000 to over 180,000 residents. While the overall crime rate decreased during this time period, it is possible that the decrease in crime rate could be attributed to a larger police force or other factors besides a decrease in actual crimes committed.

Totals for different types of crimes

According to NeighborhoodScout.com (2021), the most common types of crimes reported in Fort Lauderdale are property crimes such as thefts and burglaries. In fact, property crimes account for approximately 85% of all reported crimes in the city. Violent crimes like assault and robbery make up the remaining 15%.

Current Crime Rates and Statistics in Fort Lauderdale

Latest statistics on different types of crimes

Fort Lauderdale, located in Florida, has been experiencing a significant increase in crime rates over the past few years. According to the latest crime statistics released by the FBI, there were 5,582 reported incidents of violent crime and 25,787 cases of property crime in Fort Lauderdale in 2019. This translates to a total crime rate of 6,103 per 100,000 residents.

The most common types of violent crimes reported include aggravated assault (3,197), robbery (1,014), rape (326), and murder (45). Property crimes such as theft (19,616) and burglary (4,109) make up the majority of non-violent offenses.

Comparison with previous years’ data

When compared to data from previous years, it is evident that there has been an increase in both violent and property crimes. In 2018, there were 5,385 reported incidents of violent crime and 25,086 cases of property crime. The total number of crimes increased by almost 4% between these two years.

Looking back even further to five years ago in 2015 when there were only about half as many murders at just over twenty-two percent lower than current numbers today. While some categories have decreased slightly since then such as burglaries which are now down by around ten percent from their peak year during this period according to official police reports.

Ranking among other cities in Florida

In terms of ranking among other cities within Florida for overall crime rates per capita population size – Fort Lauderdale ranks at #33 out of all cities statewide which is concerning considering its relatively small size compared against larger metropolitan areas like Miami or Orlando where one might expect higher levels given their larger populations.

When looking at specific types such as assaults or robberies however we see that while still above average for these particular categories Fort Lauderdale does not rank nearly as high as some other cities in Florida like Miami or Tampa which have much higher rates for these particular crimes.

The Safest Places to Visit in Fort Lauderdale

List of Safest Neighborhoods/Areas

When planning a trip to Fort Lauderdale, safety is one of the top concerns for tourists. While crime can happen anywhere, there are certain neighborhoods and areas that have lower crime rates than others. Here are some of the safest places to visit in Fort Lauderdale:

  1. Coral Ridge: This neighborhood is located on the east side of Fort Lauderdale and is known for its upscale homes and quiet streets. It’s also home to many parks and recreational areas, making it an ideal place for families.
  2. Las Olas Isles: Located just off Las Olas Boulevard, this area features luxurious waterfront homes and a peaceful atmosphere. Visitors can take a stroll along the canals or enjoy a meal at one of the many restaurants in the area.
  3. Rio Vista: This historic neighborhood is located south of downtown Fort Lauderdale and is known for its tree-lined streets and charming homes. It’s also close to many popular attractions, such as the Museum of Discovery and Science.
  4. Southwest Ranches: While not technically part of Fort Lauderdale, this neighboring town boasts one of the lowest crime rates in all of Florida. It’s a great place to stay if you want to be close to Fort Lauderdale without sacrificing safety.

Reasons Why They Are Considered Safe

So why are these neighborhoods considered safe? For starters, they tend to have lower crime rates than other parts of Fort Lauderdale. They often have more police presence due to their affluent residents.

Another factor that contributes to their safety is their location. Many of these neighborhoods are situated away from major highways or busy commercial areas, which can attract more criminal activity.

Finally, these neighborhoods tend to be well-maintained by their residents and local government officials. This means that there are fewer abandoned buildings or overgrown lots that could attract criminal activity.

Now that you know where the safest places to visit in Fort Lauderdale are, what should you do when you get there? Here are a few recommendations:

  1. Visit Hugh Taylor Birch State Park: Located in the heart of Fort Lauderdale, this park offers hiking trails, picnic areas, and even a beach. It’s a great place to spend a day with family or friends.
  2. Take a walk down Las Olas Boulevard: This iconic street is home to some of the city’s best restaurants, shops, and galleries. It’s also a great place to people-watch and soak up the local culture.
  3. Go on an airboat tour of the Everglades: While not technically in Fort Lauderdale, the Everglades are just a short drive away. Visitors can take an airboat tour through the wetlands and see alligators, birds, and other wildlife up close.
  4. Relax on Fort Lauderdale Beach: Of course, no trip to Fort Lauderdale would be complete without spending some time on its famous beaches. With soft sand and clear waters, it’s the perfect place to unwind and soak up some sun.

The Most Dangerous Areas to Avoid in Fort Lauderdale

List of dangerous neighborhoods/areas

Fort Lauderdale is a beautiful city with many attractions, but like any other big city, it has its share of crime. Visitors should be aware of the areas that are more prone to criminal activity and avoid them if possible. Here are some of the most dangerous neighborhoods/areas in Fort Lauderdale:

  • Sistrunk Boulevard: This area is known for drug trafficking and gang activity.
  • Northwest 27th Avenue: This area has a high rate of violent crimes, including assault and robbery.
  • South Middle River: This neighborhood has been known for burglaries and thefts.
  • Durrs: This area has been known for shootings, stabbings, and robberies.

Types of crimes commonly reported

The types of crimes reported in Fort Lauderdale vary from petty theft to violent crimes such as murder. The most common types of crimes reported include:

  • Burglary: Burglary is a common crime in Fort Lauderdale, especially in residential areas.
  • Robbery: Robberies occur frequently in convenience stores and gas stations.
  • Assault: Assaults can happen anywhere, but they are more prevalent in high-crime areas such as Sistrunk Boulevard and Northwest 27th Avenue.
  • Car Theft: Car theft is also common in Fort Lauderdale.

Safety precautions for visitors

Visitors to Fort Lauderdale should take certain safety precautions to ensure their safety while visiting the city. Here are some tips to consider:

  • Avoid walking alone at night or in poorly lit areas.
  • Stay alert and aware of your surroundings at all times.
  • Do not leave valuables visible inside your car when parked on the street or parking lot.
  • Use only licensed taxis or ride-sharing services when traveling around the city.
  • Be cautious when withdrawing money from ATMs located outside banks or shopping centers.

Factors Contributing to Crime in Fort Lauderdale

Socioeconomic Factors Influencing Crime Rates

Fort Lauderdale is a city with a diverse population, and like any other city, it has its share of crime. One of the factors contributing to crime in Fort Lauderdale is socioeconomic status. Poverty, unemployment, and lack of education are some of the leading causes that can drive individuals towards criminal activities.

Poverty is one of the significant factors that contribute to crime rates in Fort Lauderdale. According to recent statistics, 16% of the city’s population lives below the poverty line. Individuals living in poverty often resort to criminal activities as they struggle to meet their basic needs such as food, shelter, and clothing.

Unemployment is another factor that contributes significantly to crime rates in Fort Lauderdale. The unemployment rate in Fort Lauderdale was 6.5% before the pandemic hit; however, it has increased since then due to job losses caused by COVID-19. When individuals cannot find employment opportunities or lose their jobs, they may turn to illegal means of making money.

Lack of education is also a contributing factor to crime rates in Fort Lauderdale. Education plays a crucial role in shaping an individual’s future and providing them with better job opportunities. However, many individuals drop out of school due to various reasons such as financial constraints or family issues. This lack of education can lead them towards criminal activities as they may not have any other viable options for earning a livelihood.

Demographic Factors Affecting Crime Patterns

The demographic makeup of an area can also influence crime patterns within that region. In Fort Lauderdale, certain demographics are more likely than others to be involved in criminal activities.

Young adults between the ages of 18-24 are more likely than any other age group to commit crimes in Fort Lauderdale. This demographic group accounts for over 40% of all arrests made by local law enforcement agencies.

Males are more likely than females to be involved in criminal activities. According to recent statistics, males account for over 70% of all arrests made in Fort Lauderdale.

Impact of Drug Trafficking and Gang Activity

Drug trafficking and gang activity are significant contributors to crime rates in Fort Lauderdale. The city’s location makes it an ideal spot for drug trafficking due to its proximity to major highways and airports. Drug trafficking organizations use these routes to transport drugs into the city, which then fuels the local drug trade.

Gang activity is also prevalent in Fort Lauderdale, with several street gangs operating within the city limits. These gangs engage in various criminal activities such as drug trafficking, robbery, and murder. The presence of these gangs can lead to increased violence and crime rates within the city.

Initiatives Taken by the Local Government to Reduce Crime

Overview of programs aimed at reducing crime

Fort Lauderdale has been making strides in reducing crime rates in recent years. The city has implemented several initiatives designed to tackle specific crimes and improve community safety. One such initiative is the “Neighborhood Enhancement Action Team” (NEAT), which targets neighborhoods with higher crime rates and works to improve their safety through increased police presence, code enforcement, and community engagement.

Another program that has proven successful is the “Real Time Crime Center” (RTCC), which uses advanced technology to provide law enforcement agencies with real-time access to crime data. This allows police officers to quickly respond to incidents as they occur and analyze crime patterns in order to prevent future incidents.

Success rate and impact on community safety

The efforts of the Fort Lauderdale government have had a significant impact on community safety. According to recent crime reports, violent crime rates have decreased by 8% over the past year, while property crimes have decreased by 6%. The success of these initiatives can be attributed not only to increased law enforcement efforts but also to improved relationships between police officers and local communities.

Future plans for improving public safety

Despite these successes, there is still more work that needs to be done in order to further reduce crime rates in Fort Lauderdale. One area that the city is focusing on is vehicle theft prevention. The Fort Lauderdale Police Department has partnered with local businesses and residents in an effort to reduce the number of vehicles stolen each year.

The city’s Crime Analysis Unit is constantly analyzing crime data in order to identify trends and develop strategies for preventing specific crimes. By using this data-driven approach, law enforcement agencies can better allocate resources and target their efforts where they are most needed.

Chance of Being a Victim of Crime in Fort Lauderdale

Probability statistics based on demographics

Fort Lauderdale is a popular tourist destination located in Florida, United States. The city has an estimated population of 182,437 people and covers an area of 38.6 square miles. Based on the latest crime data available, the chance of becoming a victim of any crime in Fort Lauderdale is 1 in 22. This means that residents and visitors to the city have a higher likelihood of experiencing crime compared to other cities in the state.

The probability statistics vary depending on demographics such as age, gender, and race. According to the data from NeighborhoodScout, men are more likely than women to become victims of violent crimes such as robbery and aggravated assault. Young adults aged between 20-29 years have a higher risk of being victims compared to other age groups.

Analysis based on location and time

The probability statistics also depend on the location within Fort Lauderdale and time of day. For instance, the chances of being a victim are higher in areas like Fort Lauderdale Beach compared to other neighborhoods within the city. This can be attributed to several factors such as high foot traffic by tourists making it easy for criminals to blend in or target unsuspecting visitors.

Furthermore, crimes are more likely to occur during certain times of day such as late at night or early morning hours when there are fewer people around. It’s advisable for residents and visitors alike always to be vigilant regardless of where they are within the city.

Comparison with national average

Compared with other cities across America, Fort Lauderdale has a higher crime rate than most cities but falls below some major metropolitan areas like Miami-Dade County. However, this does not mean that residents should let their guard down since crimes still occur frequently within various parts of the city.

It’s essential always to take precautions such as avoiding walking alone at night or leaving valuables visible in cars. Reporting any suspicious activity to the police can help prevent crimes from happening.

Is Fort Lauderdale Safe Compared to Other Cities in Florida?

Safety Ranking Compared to Other Cities

Fort Lauderdale is a popular tourist destination located in the state of Florida. With its beautiful beaches, vibrant nightlife, and warm weather, it attracts millions of visitors every year. However,Many people wonder if Fort Lauderdale is a safe place to visit or live.

According to recent data from NeighborhoodScout, Fort Lauderdale has a crime rate higher than 70% of other cities in the United States. However, this does not necessarily mean that Fort Lauderdale is an unsafe city. In fact, compared to other cities in Florida such as Miami and Orlando, Fort Lauderdale ranks relatively low on the list of the most dangerous cities.

NeighborhoodScout also provides a safety index for each city based on various factors such as violent and property crime rates. The safety index for Fort Lauderdale is 18 out of 100, which means that it is safer than only 18% of other cities in the US.

Crime Rate Comparison with Similar-Sized Cities

When comparing crime rates between different cities, it’s important to consider their size and population. According to City-Data.com, Fort Lauderdale has a population of approximately 180,000 people. When compared to other similarly sized cities in Florida such as Tallahassee and Gainesville, Fort Lauderdale’s crime rate is slightly higher.

However, it’s important to note that crime rates can vary greatly within different neighborhoods and areas within the city. Tourist areas such as Las Olas Boulevard and Beach Place have lower crime rates compared to residential areas like Sunrise or Wilton Manors.

Differences Between Tourist Areas and Residential Areas

As mentioned earlier, there are differences between tourist areas and residential areas. Tourist areas tend to have more police presence due to the high number of visitors they receive. This makes them relatively safe compared to other areas in the city.

On the other hand, residential areas are more susceptible to property crimes such as theft and burglary. However, this does not mean that residential areas are unsafe. Fort Lauderdale has a strong police force that works tirelessly to ensure the safety and security of its residents.

Understanding Crime in Fort Lauderdale

In conclusion, crime rates in Fort Lauderdale have fluctuated over the years, with a decrease in recent times. However, it is important to note that there are still areas of the city that are considered dangerous and should be avoided. The local government has taken initiatives to reduce crime, but visitors should take necessary precautions to ensure their safety.


Q: What are some of the safest places to visit in Fort Lauderdale?

A: Some of the safest places to visit in Fort Lauderdale include Wilton Manors, Coral Ridge Isles, and Imperial Point.

Q: What are some of the most dangerous areas in Fort Lauderdale?

A: Some of the most dangerous areas in Fort Lauderdale include Sistrunk Boulevard, Northwest 27th Avenue, and Northwest 22nd Road.

Q: What factors contribute to crime in Fort Lauderdale?

A: Factors contributing to crime in Fort Lauderdale include poverty, drug use, gang activity, and a high number of tourists.

Q: Is it safe to walk around downtown Fort Lauderdale at night?

A: While downtown Fort Lauderdale is generally safe during the day, it is recommended that visitors exercise caution when walking around at night.

Q: How does the crime rate in Fort Lauderdale compare to other cities in Florida?

A: The crime rate in Fort Lauderdale is higher than many other cities in Florida such as Orlando and Tampa. However, it is lower than Miami’s crime rate.

Q: Should I avoid visiting Fort Lauderdale because of its crime rates?

A: No. While there are certain areas that should be avoided or visited with caution, overall Fort Lauderdale remains a popular tourist destination with plenty of attractions and activities for visitors. Just be sure to take necessary precautions for your safety.

Q: What can I do to stay safe while visiting Fort Lauderdale?

A: To stay safe while visiting Fort Lauderdale, make sure you stay aware of your surroundings, avoid walking alone at night, keep your valuables secure, and follow any local safety guidelines or recommendations.



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