The State of Crime in Dallas

2018 in crime


3d map of crime incidents in Dallas in 2018

Crime & Dallas have an interesting relationship. From ‘Who Shot J.R.?’ to JFK, 7/7, the documentary The Thin Blue Line (which is largely credited with being the first modern documentary) there is a lot of strange crime narratives in Dallas. Robocop was filmed here. Many of the shows SWAT and The First 48 are filmed here. Few shows are filmed here, but the ones that are seem to be all about crime…The Good Guys was a recent one starring Colin Hanks and Bradley Whitford. Apparently there’s a show called Police Women of Dallas. Queen of the South revolves around the drug trade and then of course, the perfect show, Walker, Texas Ranger, was filmed here. I’m probably cherry picking (given I think there’s an NCIS:{every city in the U.S. other than Dallas} these days), but still seems weird to me.

Crime Data

If you look at the Dallas open data portal, it won’t take you long to see that most of the data listed there is crime data. We capture TONS of data for each incident, but we don’t capture as many incidents as other cities (which is partly because we have a pretty good crime rate). According to every cop show I’ve ever seen doing paperwork is the worst part of the job, but it does give us nerds some very valuable data to work with.

Here are the different offense types the city captures:

You can read here about the importance of data in crime reduction:

On any given day, Dallas County incarcerates about 5,100 people in county jail. About 71% of these inmates are “pretrial,” which means they are awaiting trial for the charges against them. If they are in jail as a pretrial defendant, it generally means they cannot afford bail, or they are held without bail.
Is the crime serious enough to do time? Not always. On average, Dallas County jail has about 400 pretrial defendants who are incarcerated for misdemeanor charges. They are in jail because they cannot afford bail. And their incarceration alone costs Dallas County taxpayers about $24,000 per day.

Crime Rate

Dallas is quite safe despite its large size. We have the 4th largest population on this list, but are 38th on the list in total crimes committed.

Here is a fantastic tool to look up murder rates for major cities all the way back to 1985:

Dallas murder rate drop (1985, 2000, 2017)

This follows a national trend, just exponentially so in Dallas:

from TheTrace

Here is another fantastic tool that lets you poke around for crime data (and written about here).

Dallas Murders

By Month:

By Zip Code:

By Type:

Dallas is a very, very safe city in comparison to many of its much smaller to cover (geographically) peers. So, finally, huge thanks to the Dallas Police Department for their fine work in keeping us safe every day.

And that’s the 411 on Dallas Crime in 2018.