Wondering if there are areas on the island with less crime than others? Are there good neighborhoods and bad neighborhoods or is it pretty much the same all over?
my bad :$)
There are some neighborhoods that are "bad" compared to others - BUT crime happens everywhere to seemingly everyone... everyone is effected (at least in my experience)
people put up safe-guards such as gated communities and fences around their homes - but what happens when you go out for a night on the town!?
It helps to be aware of your surroundings and maintain street-smarts.
Thanks CAtoSTX. So If you go out at night- I understand that you need to stay safe- but are there better areas than others? Is there anywhere that a husband and wife could safely go for dinner and drinks and walk home if you lived close to the restaurant / bar?
Are the gated neighborhoods safe?
Public housing communities tend to have higher crime. Gated communities tend to have lower crime. Ask the neighbors in your prospective neighborhood about the frequency of burglaries. Set up a neighborhood watch. Build layers of protection into your home, like fence, lights, dog, cameras, alarm.
Don't leave your valuables unattended on the beach or in your car. Don't go to remote beaches or areas alone. Go with a group of 4 or more, and you'll be much safer. Stick to the popular beaches and roads and generally you'll be fine, even when alone. Avoid walking alone if nobody else is on the streets. Those are the rules I follow and recommend. Read the papers so you're aware of the current trouble spots and trends. Eg: Be aware of rashes of restaurant robberies, or muggings in a particular area.
We've lived here for almost 7 years, north shore area, in a rented house -- no gates, few neighbors. We've not had any problems and like the island well enough to have been here for almost 7 years.
But island life isn't for everyone. Come down for a visit and rent a villa or condo instead of going to a hotel. Drive around the island and see what areas you like. Ask questions at bars and restaurants -- Crucians love to give advice!!! Go to the grocery, look at our shopping choices (such as they are).
I will say that, with one exception, I've never felt personally unsafe. But I am aware of my surroundings, don't go out late at might, and don't wander around after drinking.
Thieves frequently take things from cars here, even in popular areas, sometimes even in gated areas. Don't leave anything valuable in your car, ever. I normally leave the doors unlocked so the thief is less likely to break a window, but I leave the windows up to keep out rain. If you have to leave valuables in the car, put them out of sight in the trunk, lock up, set the alarm, and stay as close to your car as possible.
Thieves have rummaged through my car, once they pulled the back seat forward to try to get to the trunk (the seat back is still slightly bent), and I once saw a would-be thief routinely looking into each car at a beach parking lot, not even concerned that people were nearby and could see him doing it. If you make a habit of leaving valuables in your car, I can almost guarantee that they will be taken.
And you don’t have to live in fear of crime here. Once you know how the criminals operate, you can avoid them.
If you keep locking your car, you might want to budget for auto glass especially if you like going to the more remote beaches. I've had the glass taken out of my truck 3 times in the last coupla years and that stuff is expensive! When I left the windows down and the truck empty, the SOB's popped my hood and stole my battery. I stopped going to some of my favorite beaches because $400 for an afternoon at the beach is more than I'm willing to pay.
Don't forget to leave cookies! 🙂
We must be blessed because it 2 years our vehicles have never been hit during trips to the beach. I do try to be vigilant and leave nothing of value in sight but I'm pretty sure the Mrs. has been less so when she goes out with her friends for their weekly beach swims.
We've never been accosted on the streets or had our home vandalized either (of course it's a gate community which helps.) We don't hang out anywhere at night which helps tremendously but that's not always an option for others.
I'm feeling much better about the crime situation. I don't think the problem there is anything we can't handle. Although I am now re-thinking shipping our brand new vehicles there and may choose to get an older vehicle that won't matter so much if it gets broken into or vandalized. Thanks everyone for all your input!!
I've been here 6 years and I haven't been a victim of crime yet. I do (or did before the baby) go out late at night and go to many popular beaches where I lock my car and haven't had a problem. Most of my friends haven't been a victim either, although there have been some incidences. Nothing more than what I'm used to in DC, or even Salisbury Maryland when I lived there though.
To those who have, I'm sorry that it happened to you. I'm sure it will happen to me again at some point, maybe in the VI, or maybe somewhere else in the US. It may be slightly worse here but its not like if you live here you have to live in constant fear of being robbed or anything like that, at least not much more than in any major city.
Here ya go swans 🙂
Yes, of course, there are some neighborhoods that are much better than others, as to crime, same as anywhere.
There are a few (very few) places where you could go out for dinner and walk home. That's not because of crime so much as simply location. There aren't too many restaurants in residential areas. There are numerous condos with restaurants attached or very close and a few other places, but most people drive.
I agree with mark22. STXBob (almost) scared me, and I've lived here 15 years and never been a victim. Knock on wood!!!! LOL. All good, common sense, advice, though.