Are you thinking about moving to Akron? You likely have many questions and concerns including, is Akron, Ohio safe? While Akron crime is higher than the Ohio and national average, remember that the Akron, Ohio crime rate does not tell the whole story.
There are many safe places to live in Akron, but several neighborhoods with high crime rates and violent crime. Here is everything you need to know about Akron, Ohio crime including statistics on Akron, Ohio murders and shootings, violent crime rates, safe neighborhoods, and the most dangerous areas to avoid.
Understanding the Akron Ohio Crime Rate
A good place to start to understand Akron, Ohio crime is the city’s crime rates. Crime rates are based on FBI crime data which is reported by city police departments.
The FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) program calculates crime rates for the county, states, metro areas, and cities to help you understand your risk of being a victim of crime. While crime rates are a useful tool to compare crime between cities, the FBI cautions against using them for this reason as they can be misleading and do not offer insight into the variables that cause crime or how localized crime may be.
UCR crime rates are calculated based on eight Part I or index crimes. These are well-tracked among law enforcement agencies and considered the most serious. Only arrest data is collected for Part II offenses. Here is a guide to Part I vs Part II crimes.
What Is the Akron Crime Rate?
The Akron Ohio crime rate is:
- 4,220 total crimes per 100,000 people
- 901 violent crimes per 100,000 people
- 3,319 property crimes per 100,000 people
You have a 1 in 24 chance of being the victim of crime.
Akron crime is 80% higher than the Ohio crime rate and 70% higher than the national average.
The national crime rate is 2,896 total crimes per 100,000 with 2,441 property crimes and 455 violent crimes per 100,000.
The Ohio crime rate is 2,159 total crimes per 100,000 with 1,850 property crimes and 309 violent crimes per 100,000.
Akron is close to the top of the list of Ohio most dangerous cities. Here’s how the Akron crime rate compares.
- Columbus has 13.5% less crime
- Cincinnati has 8% more crime than Akron but 2% less violent crime
- Toledo has 7.8% less crime
- Cleveland has 30% more crime than Akron and 58% more violent crime
Violent Crime in Akron
The Akron violent crime rate is 910 violent crimes per 100,000. That’s 204% higher than the state average and 180% higher than the national violent crime rate of 367/100,000. There were 1,797 violent crimes in 2020, listed below compared to 2019 Akron crime reports.
- 1,267 aggravated assaults (1,246 in 2019)
- 268 robberies (328 in 2019)
- 215 rapes (181 in 2019)
- 47 murders (27 in 2019)
You have a 1 in 111 chance of being the victim of violent crime.
Akron crime spiked during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic and lockdowns, a trend seen across the country. The U.S. homicide rate reached the highest level in decades in 2020, climbing 30% from 2019 to 2020. In 2020, Akron had one of the highest homicide rates in the country.
The Akron murder rate is 23.8 homicides per 100,000. That’s up 45% from 14 homicides/100,000 in 2019. That was 204% higher than the Ohio murder rate of 4.6 homicides per 100,000 and higher than the national average of 5 murders/100,000.
During 2020 and early 2021, there was more than one killing in Akron Ohio per week on average. The vast majority of murders in Akron Ohio involved shootings.
While Akron was hit hard by the rising violent crime in 2020, Akron police have worked to bring the crime rate down by targeting illegal guns. Police seized 1,205 illegal guns in 2021, up from 941 in 2020 and 752 in 2019.
2021 began similarly to 2020 with record-breaking Akron shooting and murder incidents, but murders and shootings in Akron Ohio decreased every month for the last seven months of 2021. Akron went the last three months of 2021 with no homicides.
There were 843 Akron shootings and murders in 2020 which dropped to 665 in 2021. However, that’s still much higher than the 473 pre-pandemic Akron shooting and homicide incidents in 2019.
Tremendous improvement was also made in other forms of Akron crime. Between 2020 and 2021, aggravated assault dropped 18%, robberies declined 16%, and rapes were down 7%.
Property Crime in Akron
The Akron property crime rate is 3,531 property crimes per 100,000. That’s up from 3,391 crimes/100,000 people in 2019 which was 61.5% higher than the Ohio average and 57% higher than the national property crime rate of 2,110/100,000.
There were 6,568 property crimes in 2019, listed below with a comparison to 2019 crime reports.
- 4,855 thefts (4,305 in 2019)
- 1,288 burglaries (1,686 in 2019)
- 828 car thefts (577 in 2019)
- 65 arsons
You have a 1 in 30 chance of being the victim of property crime.
Theft, particularly car theft, increased dramatically from 2019 to 2020 while burglaries went down.
Car theft increased 27% from 2019 to 2020 and another 7.5% between January and July 2021. Between January and April 2021 alone, there were 2,059 car thefts – almost three times the total number in 2020. Most car thefts during this 4-month period occurred in the following neighborhoods:
- East Akron and Kenmore (255 car thefts each)
- Ellet, South Akron, Goodyear Heights, and West Akron (150 to 163 car thefts each)
- University Park (90 auto thefts)
- Downtown Akron (41 car thefts)
Between 2020 and 2021, however, Akron crime began to drop to pre-pandemic levels. Burglaries dropped 21% and and arsons declined 28%.
Akron Police Reports, Statistics & Crime Map
There are many resources that help you dig further into crime in the city. The Akron Police Department Transparency Hub is an excellent resource that lets you search Akron police reports, crime statistics, and information on police personnel.
Here are some of the most important resources:
- Akron police reports lookup tool lets you see reports by area or type of crime
- Akron, Ohio crime map through CommunityCrimeMap.com lets you see hot spots for crime, crime by offense type, crime by neighborhood, and more
- 2021 vs 2022 reported crimes report shows the total number of reported crimes between fiscal year 2021 and 2022, use of force statistics, firearm incidents, and calls for service.
Worst Neighborhoods in Akron Ohio for Crime
Is Akron, Ohio dangerous? It depends on where you live. Many neighborhoods have crime up to 55% higher than the Akron crime rate and account for most violent crime in the city.
Here are the most dangerous neighborhoods in Akron. Just keep in mind that the type of crime depends on the city and crime rates do not tell the whole story. Many of these neighborhoods are still quite safe for residents.
- University Park (pop 9,000) is anchored by the University of Ohio Akron. Over 90% of the population is under 45. There were 50 firearm offenses in University Park out of 1,655 citywide during a 17-month period that happened on campus and in student housing and residential areas.
- Middlebury (pop. 5,800) is immediately east of the university and one of Akron’s most diverse neighborhoods. The violent crime rate is 1,304 violent crimes/100,000 with 43% more crime than Akron.
- Downtown (pop. 5,000) has a violent crime rate of 1,239 violent crimes per 100,000 residents. Common crimes in downtown include robbery, shootings, and theft.
- Lane-Wooster or Sherbondy Hill (pop. 7,600) is just west of downtown and home to the Akron Zoo. A single area of the neighborhood accounted for 58 Akron shootings and gun offenses in a 19-month period. The community has one of the lowest median household incomes in Akron and highest poverty rates.
- Summit Lake (pop. 4,100) is south of Lane-Wooster and downtown. The neighborhood is one of several low-income Akron neighborhoods on this list.
- South Akron (pop. 6,100) is south of downtown and University Park and bound by I-77 and I-76. It has 1,180 violent crimes per 100,000, 204% higher than the national average, with 30% more crime than Akron.
- East Akron (pop. 12,000) is east of South Akron and south of University Park. It’s one of the two largest hot spots for car theft in the city. The neighborhood also had the highest number of gun offenses in Akron. Lower East Akron has a high rate of gun violence with three census tracts here recording 48 to 56 gun offenses each in a 19-month period.
- Kenmore (pop. 16,700) is west of South Akron and Summit Lake. Kenmore is a hot spot for auto theft. The neighborhood also followed East Akron for gun offenses with 60 out of 446 city-wide firearm offenses in the first half of 2021.
Safest Neighborhoods in Akron, Ohio
Is Akron, Ohio a safe place to live? Despite the handful of high-crime neighborhoods, you’ll find many safe places to live in Akron. As a general rule, the Northwest area of the city has the lowest crime rates as well as communities on the outskirts of western Akron.
Here are some of the best neighborhoods in Akron, Ohio with low crime and a great quality of life.
- Merriman Valley is a large community that extends from North Akron to Cuyahoga Falls. One of the safest places to live, it includes the popular Cascade Valley Metro Park.
- Wallhaven is minutes from downtown with great amenities for families. Centered around the large Westlake Manor Park, it’s home to the landmark Swensons Drive-In.
- Fairlawn Heights is on the west side and known for its great schools, the Fairlawn Swim & Tennis Club, and Fairlawn Country Club. You’ll find a variety of home styles but this affluent neighborhood is one of the most expensive places to live in Akron with a median home price of $310,000.
- Goodyear Heights is one of the best places to live in Akron, Ohio for families and outdoor enthusiasts thanks to Goodyear Heights Metro Park, one of the best parks in Akron and Summit County. It’s one of the most affordable neighborhoods on this list.
- Highland Square is a fun, urban neighborhood that has typical crime for a dense urban neighborhood. This artsy neighborhood is popular with young professionals thanks to its short commute to downtown.
Akron Crime Prevention Tips
- Car theft is on the rise but usually preventable. Akron police say most cars are stolen when the keys are left inside or the car is left running unattended.
- University Park is one of the top high-crime areas in Akron. The University of Akron Police Department handles law enforcement and safety programs on campus. Students can use free campus police escort services between campus locations 24/7. Theft is a top concern on campus. Campus police recommend not leaving your laptop at a table when you walk away in the library, always locking your door in the residential hall, and keeping your car locked without any valuables inside.
- Reduce your risk of burglary by investing in exterior lighting. Make sure all exterior doors are locked and deadbolted, windows are locked, and sliding doors have security bars.
Akron Police Department
- Chief of Police: Stephen L. Mylett
- Officers: 451 sworn officers
- Non-emergency number: (330) 375-2552
- Address: Akron Police Department, 217 S High St, Akron, OH 44308
The Akron Police Department serves the City of Akron with a Uniform Subdivision and Services Subdivision and several special units. The city is divided into four Akron police zones with separate Neighborhood Response Teams and 12 districts. Over the next two years, the Akron Police Department hopes to hire 50 new officers with its academy relaunched in 2019.
Akron Ohio Crime Rate FAQ
What is the Akron Ohio crime rate?
The Akron crime rate is 4,220 crimes per 100,000 with 3,319 property crimes and 901 violent crimes. The national crime rate is 2,896 crimes per 100,000 with 2,441 property and 455 violent crimes.
Is Akron Ohio safe?
Akron crime is higher than the national average, but it is far safer than neighboring Cleveland. There are many safe neighborhoods with violent crime concentrated in a handful of areas.
How many murders in Akron Ohio happen each year?
The Akron murder rate was 23.8 homicides/100,000 in 2020. There were 47 Akron murders in 2020, up 45% from 27 murders in Akron, Ohio in 2019.
Is Cleveland or Akron safer?
Less than 40 miles apart, Cleveland and Akron have very different levels of crime. There is 30% more crime in Cleveland vs Akron and 58% more violent crime! Cleveland is the most dangerous city in Ohio.
What are the safest cities to live in Ohio?
The top three safest Ohio cities and townships are Chester Township (Geauga Co), Olmsted Township (Cuyahoga Co), and Sagamore Hills (Summit Co).
Are you ready to make your move to Akron? While the crime rate is higher than average, you’ll see there are many excellent neighborhoods in Akron and surrounding suburbs with low crime, great amenities, and a low cost of living. Once you’ve narrowed down your options, give us a call at Summit Moving & Storage to discuss your relocation and request a free, personalized moving estimate!