Is Mesa, AZ Safe? (Crime Rates And Crime Stats For 2022)


If you are thinking about visiting Mesa and have qualms about the safety of the city, we got you covered. We deep dived into the statistics, crime rates and talked to the residents of the city to give you a better understanding of how safe the safe the city really is.

Is Mesa, AZ safe?

is mesa arizona safe

Although Mesa has a spotty reputation among residents of the Phoenix area, if you just look at the statistics, Mesa is a safe city. In 2021, Mesa had a violent crime rate of 395.51 per 100,000 residents, which is on par with the national average and similar to cities like Austin, San Jose and El Paso. Out of the 100 most populous cities in the United States, Mesa’s had the 29th lowest crime rate.

Here’s a scale to give you some perspective on Mesa’s crime rate

mesa, az crime rate

Mesa Crime Rates And Crime Stats

The most recent, complete set of crime statistics comes from the FBI UCR and cross referenced with the Mesa Police Department and are for 2020 and 2021:

Mesa police reported a total of 11,945 offenses in 2021, compared with 11,745 in 2020, which is a 2% year-over-year increase.

2020

2021

% Change

Homicide

19

24

26%

Rape

240

274

14%

Robbery

378

322

-15%

Aggravated Assaults

1,334

1,395

5%

VIOLENT CRIME TOTALS

1,971

2,015

2%

Burglary

1,599

1,365

-15%

Larceny

7,137

7,471

5%

Motor Vehicle Theft

1,016

1,058

4%

Arson

22

36

64%

PROPERTY CRIME TOTALS

9,774

9,930

2%

TOTAL CRIME

11,745

11,945

2%

Violent Crime Rate

In 2021 Mesa reported 2,015 violent crimes and had a violent crime rate of 395.51 per 100,000 residents. Mesa’s violent crime rate is 1% less than the national average.

Year over year violent crime increased 2%.

You have a 1 in 253 chance of becoming a victim of violent crime in Mesa.

Violent crimes include; homicides, rape, robbery and aggravated assaults.

Here’s a graph showing you how violent crime has trended in Mesa in the last 11 years.

violent crimes in mesa, Arizona

Property Crime Rate

In 2021 Mesa reported 9,930 property crimes and had a property crime rate of 1,949.07 per 100,000 residents. Mesa’s property crime rate is on par with the national average.

Year over year property crime increased 2%.

You have a 1 in 51 chance of becoming a victim of property crime in Mesa.

Property crimes include; burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, and arson.

Murder Rate

In 2021 Mesa reported 24 murders and had a murder rate of 4.71 per 100,000 residents. Mesa’s murder rate is 27% less than the national average.

You have a 1 in 21,228 chance of becoming a victim of property crime in Mesa.

Areas to avoid in Mesa, AZ

The sketchiest part of Mesa is west-Mesa, in the area that is bounded north of the 60, east of the 101, west of the 87 and south of the 202. The area is outlined in red in the map below.

mesa dangerous neighborhoods

Mesa vs Other Cities In Arizona (2020)

Here’s a graph showing you the violent crime rates of the 10 most populous cities in Arizona. Mesa’s violent crime rate ranked 5th highest among all cities

City

Population

Violent Crime Rate

Phoenix

1,608,139

848.56

Tucson

542,629

708.22

Tempe

180,587

609.12

Glendale

248,325

452.23

Mesa

504,258

388.69

Peoria

190,985

246.62

Chandler

275,987

196.75

Scottsdale

241,361

194.73

Surprise

143,148

146.00

Gilbert

267,918

106.00

Mesa’s Crime Rate Comparison

Here’s a list of the top 23 most dangerous cities in the United States ranked by violent crime rates. Mesa had a significantly lower crime rate than all cities listed below.

City

Population

Violent Crime Rate per 100,000 people

Monroe

47,702

2,932.79

Memphis

633,104

2,418.24

Atlantic City

38,497

2,335.25

Saginaw

44,202

2,327.95

Detroit

639,111

2,248.44

St. Louis

301,578

1,995.17

Alexandria

45,275

1,877.42

Pine Bluff

41,253

1,808.35

Little Rock

202,591

1,805.11

Milwaukee

577,222

1,733.13

South Bend

103,453

1,706.09

Cleveland

372,624

1,689.10

Camden

71,791

1,632.52

Birmingham

200,733

1,577.22

Kansas City

508,090

1,558.58

Baltimore

585,708

1,460.11

Albuquerque

564,559

1,406.41

Chattanooga

181,099

1,382.67

San Bernardino

222,101

1,365.59

New Orleans

383,997

1,358.08

Oakland

440,646

1,347.34

Mesa 509,475 395.51

Is Downtown Mesa safe?

is downtown mesa safe

Downtown Mesa used to be a rough area that was just filled with motels that were popular with drug addicts and transients, but it has been going through a revival over the past decade and has seen an influx of investment and attractions including museums, arts centers, theaters, an amphitheater, restaurants, breweries and much more.

It is generally a safe area during the day and at night, as the area is well populated, with everything being in walking distance of each other.

Is the public transportation in Mesa, AZ safe?

The public transportation system in Mesa is handled by the Valley Metro, which offers many routes that interweave throughout the entire city.

The Metro is generally a safe option to use during normal commuting hours (6am – 7pm). Outside these hours, we recommend that you find a different mode of transportation.

Is Mesa, AZ safe at night?

Mesa is generally a safe city at night as long as you avoid the sketchy areas. At night you should always stay in well populated areas and avoid walking through alleys or desolate areas. And as a woman you should also avoid walking far distance by yourself at night.

What do residents of Mesa say about it’s safety?

  1. North West Mesa is sketchy. There are lots of drugs and crime in the area. The light rail makes it worse because transients and trouble makers congregate and spend the day going back and forth on the trains. South West Mesa is on the decline, but not as bad as north-west. Central Mesa is not bad and east Mesa is probably the safest area.
  2. Mesa is a patchwork of neighborhoods that run the gamut from sketchy to safe.
  3. The sketchy neighborhoods in the Mesa is like Mayberry compared to Compton, South Side Chicago and Baltimore.
  4. Relative to other major cities around the country, Mesa is tame. There are pockets of areas that you probably don’t want to be walking around in the middle of the night, but you should have any problems spotting those areas.
  5. Mesa is a nice place. There are some poorer pockets, but not as big and bad as some people make it out to be.
  6. Avoid west Mesa, the area north of the 60 fwy and just east of the 101 fwy. East and North East Mesa is the better part of town.
  7. Mesa is a suburb of Phoenix and some of it is undesirable just like any other city, but is fine for the most part.
  8. Mesa is the ghetto of Phoenix.
  9. Generally speaking, The further east you go, the better it gets. The most ghetto part of Mesa is generally the areas along the 101 between the 202 and the 60. Aside from that, it’s a great place to live.

Tips to stay safe while visiting Mesa, AZ

  • Research the city before you arrive. Figure out what areas are good and which are sketchy and plan your trip with this knowledge
  • Avoid walking through the sketchy areas (west Mesa) at night.
  • Always be aware of your surroundings. Continuously scan the area for any dangers that might be present.
  • Don’t leave valuables in your car. Carry valuables with your or hide it in the trunk.
  • Don’t engage with homeless or erratic people. Don’t make eye contact and keep walking.
  • You do not need to be polite with anyone making you feel uncomfortable. Walk to the other side of the street. Sit in another train car.
  • Trust your intuition. Remove yourself from a situation that makes you feel uncomfortable.

Facts about Mesa, AZ

  • The population of Mesa in 2021 was 509,475.
  • The city covers a land area of 138.79 sq mi.
  • The median age was 32 years old.
  • 89.9% of residents 25 and older is a high school graduate. 28.1% of residents 25 and older has a bachelors degree or higher.
  • The median income for a household in the city was $61,640. The per capita income for the city was $30,903.
  • 13.3% of the population live below the poverty line.
  • The median home value in Mesa is $450K in 2022.
  • In 2022, the average rent for a Mesa 2-bedroom apartment is $1,703.

Mariska Lee

Mariska is a recovering attorney who gave up her professional job to discover new perspectives of life while traveling in a 2009 Ford Transit. She has been living the van life for 3 years and has not looked back since.

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