Danforth-area crime falls despite residents’ fears

54 Division ranks 16th on most dangerous neighbourhoods list

Statue of Alexander the Great at the Danforth
Residents' fears of Danforth violence may spring from the 2018 shootings on the street. Enrique Domingo Montrull/Toronto Observer

Although some Danforth-area residents say they still don’t feel safe in the neighbourhood, fewer major crimes have occurred along Danforth Drive recently.

Last year saw 500 fewer major crimes in 54 Division than in 2018, according to Toronto police records.

The most-reported crime is assaults. In the division, 107 have been reported since the beginning of this year, 66 of which took in the Danforth area.

However, some residents say they still feel the neighbourhood is unsafe.

“In order to bring down the crime index in Danforth, crime needs to decrease in the entire city of Toronto,” said local resident Terrell, who didn’t want to give his last name. “Decreasing crime in one neighbourhood is not going to change anything.”

Fifty-four Division was ranked the 16th most dangerous neighbourhoods in Toronto with a total crime count of 957 reported crimes in 2018, according to the magazine Narcity.

The event that changed the residents’ feeling safety was the Danforth shootings in 2018. “Every resident in this neighbourhood has felt some level of insecurity after the shooting,” Terrell said.

Even though the city of Toronto was ranked as the fourth safest major city in the world, Toronto police have recorded nine homicides so far this year, 76 homicides in 2019 and 96 homicides in 2018, the bloodiest year in the history of the city.

“It’s not only dangerous for residents of the area, but it’s also dangerous for students, and people that have their businesses in this area,” the Danforth resident said.

Despite the resident’s insecurity, Toronto has been scoring crime levels below national rates, but crimes such as gun violence keep increasing in the city, rising by more than 40 per cent between 2014 and 2018 due to gang activity, regardless of Major John Tory’s handgun ban.

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Posted: Mar 6 2020 9:48 am
Filed under: News