The Mile High City is a lively, progressive metropolis with much to offer in the way of art, food, culture, (and legal substances), and as a result, the flood of new residents continues to swell with every passing year. While it can be exhilarating to live and work in a city that remains in a constant state of flux, growth and change also come with unfortunate consequences. Although we live in a fairly safe city, the increase in population has also resulted in an increase in crime. Based on the number of offenses and crime density per square mile, here are the eight most dangerous neighborhoods in Denver.
1. Lincoln Park
Lincoln Park is not only one of Denver's oldest neighborhoods, but it also has a crime rate and poverty rate that exceeds city and national averages. By May of 2015, Lincoln Park already had a reported 548 offenses and a crime density of 430 per square mile, and you can bet that statistic had more than doubled by year's end.
2. Cheesman Park
While the actual park is one of the safest locations in the neighborhood, due to the number of drug and alcohol related crimes that occur around Colfax Avenue, Cheesman Park makes the list, albeit on the lower end. There were 1,006 offenses in 2015, for a crime density of 1,909 per square mile.
3. Civic Center
Ironically, what began as part of Mayor Robert W. Speer's City Beautiful civic improvement campaign in the early 1900s, is now one of the seediest locales in the Mile High City. While it remains a stunning cultural epicenter, it's also the widely known chosen location for the city's homeless population, drug and alcohol users, thieves, vagrants, and the like. There were a reported 1,444 offenses in 2015 and a crime density of 4,750 per square mile.
4. Lower Downtown
Another Mile High mecca for tourists, drifters, drinkers, and cool kids is the ever hip area known as LoDo. Unfortunately, the large number of people roaming the streets of Denver's transportation hub also means an extensive number of crimes. In 2015, there were 1,575 offenses reported, with a crime density of 3,588 per square mile.
5. East Colfax
If you live in the Mile High City, chances are you've heard that Playboy magazine once called Colfax "the longest, wickedest street in America," and if you've ever passed through the East section at night, you know that statement to be true. East Colfax is regarded as one of the city's up and coming neighborhoods, but it's also known for drugs and prostitution. There were 1,827 offenses reported in 2015, with a crime density of 1,709 per square mile.
6. Capitol Hill
Cap Hill is most certainly one of Denver's hippest, trendiest areas to live, and there are an infinite number of cool bars, shops, restaurants and other places to see and be seen. But not surprisingly, that also makes it a hot spot for crime. In 2015, there were 2,232 reported offenses and a crime density of 3,302 per square mile.
7. Five Points
Five Points is another of our city's newly revitalized, hippest parts of town to live and hang and apparently get into trouble. It's no longer known as an area to avoid, but with a crime density of 2,167 per square mile and 3,810 offenses in 2015, it's most definitely a place to exercise caution.
8. Central Business District
With a crime density of 7,007 per square mile and 3,020 offenses in 2015, Denver's CBD sadly ranks as the number one most dangerous area in the Mile High City. And unless you live under a rock, you've heard all about the recent goings on at 16th Street Mall, which like Civic Center, attracts hoards of both tourists and vagrants, which don't seem to mix. In the words of the honorable Edward Abbey, "When the biggest, richest, glassiest buildings in town are the banks, you know that town's in trouble."