Last Updated on: 31st July 2023, 10:01 am

Salinas, CA, is a city in Monterey County and the name Salinas is Spanish for “Salt Flats”. When it comes to the official motto of Salinas, it’s the following: “Rich in land, rich in values”. This beautiful city of Salinas is also known for a couple of different attractions, like the National Steinbeck Center, Salinas Sports Complex, Salinas Aquatic Center, and the Monterey County Jail (historic building).

We will be going more in-depth with the Salinas crime rate throughout this article, but rest assured knowing that Salinas is a small and family-friendly farming community that is kid-friendly and provides one-of-a-kind experiences.

Understanding the Salinas Crime Rate | How Crime Rates Are Calculated

When it comes to crime rates, it’s essential to note and consider where the crime data comes from, how they get calculated, and analyze the different factors. For example, most crime rates come from the FBI after they collect and analyze the crimes reported by law enforcement agencies throughout the United States.

After the data is analyzed, it will then get put into different categories, like the total crime rate, property crime rate, and violent crime rate. These rates can change each year based on the information provided by the local law enforcement agencies and different reasons and causes, so keep that in mind. The most frequent are:

  • Only the index crimes are included, so crime rates can be confusing and even misleading because they don’t include all of the offenses
  • The FBI actually doesn’t count shootings as offenses. While some law enforcement agencies include these in their stats, most do not, so to keep it consistent, the FBI doesn’t include these on the reports
  • Sadly, police departments don’t always report crimes like sexual assault and domestic violence
  • There isn’t a uniform definition across all of the cities and states for crimes
  • To consider if a city or town is a safe place to live, the crime statistics need to have context
    Crimes can be very targeted, meaning the two people (victim and assailant) know each other, and the crime is not random

CNN wrote an interesting article talking about how crime stats can be misleading. Even the FBI discourages using crime rates and statistics to determine if a place to live is safe. While these tools can help see if a town or city is safe, it’s not the only way to determine if a city or neighborhood is safe. Use it as a starting point to compare the crime between different cities and states, but don’t use it as the sole determining factor.

In 2021, the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting System (UCRS) was phased out and later replaced with the National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS).

The NIBRS helps to collect the necessary data on more than 20 index crime categories and requires local law enforcement agencies to submit a more in-depth report. With more crime being reported, this can show an increase in the total crime rate, even if nothing has changed from the previous year.

What Is the Salinas California Crime Rate?

Whether you’re moving to a new city or on the other side of the United States, you’re probably curious about the crime rate. In addition to doing your own research, utilizing the crime stats can be a good starting point. Here’s a breakdown of the crime rate in Salinas, CA.

  • Salinas total crime rate: 2,787 total crimes per 100k people (1 in 36 chance of being a victim of a crime)
  • Salinas property crime rate: 2,232 property crimes per 100k people
  • Salinas violent crime rate: 555 violent crimes per 100k people

Here’s a breakdown comparing the national crime rate and California crime rate:

  • Total Crime Rate Compared To the National Average: 18.8% higher than the rest of the country
  • Property Crime Rate Compared To National Average: 14% higher than the rest of the country
  • Violent Crime Rate Compared To National Average: 43.1% higher than the rest of the country


  • Total Crime Rate Compared To State: 8% higher than the state of California
  • Property Crime Rate Compared To State: 4.4% higher than the state of California
  • Violent Crime Rate Compared To State: 25.6% higher than the state of California

While Salinas has a higher crime rate than the national average and also the state of California, that doesn’t mean there aren’t safe areas and neighborhoods in the beautiful city of Salinas. Each state, city, and town has crime, but there are plenty of safe, family-friendly, and secure places in Salinas to settle down and call home.

Salinas Crime Map & Crime Report

When it comes to crime maps, they help you get a better sense of the crime in that area before you move. A few of the most common places to explore crime maps and local crime rates are websites like NeighborhoodScout, Areavibes, and City-Data.

While there isn’t a crime map on the Salinas Police Department website, there is an interactive annual report that is put out each year and goes over the crime analytics from the previous year.

Violent Crime in Salinas

While there are some areas you may want to avoid in Salinas, which is common throughout the United States, there are still plenty of safe cities. While not the whole category, parts of the violent crimes in Salinas are lower than in the state of California. Here’s a breakdown of the violent crime categories:

  • Salinas murder rate per 100k people: 5 per 100k people, which is 23.6% lower than the national average and 10.7% lower than the state average
  • Salinas total number of homicides for the year: 8
  • Salinas total number of rape crimes for the year: 69
  • Salinas total number of robberies for the year: 233
  • Salinas total number of aggravated assaults for the year: 556
  • Salinas violent crime rate per 100k people: 555
  • Chance of becoming a victim of violent crime in Salinas: 1 in 180 residents

When you compare Salinas to other big cities throughout the United States, the city is well below the violent crime rate of those areas. For example, Colorado Springs violent crime rate is 597 per 100k people, which is 54% HIGHER than the national average. Another example is Baton Rouge, which has a violent crime rate of 952 per 100k people, which is 145.5% HIGHER than the national average.

In Salinas, the violent crime rate is 555 per 100k people, which is 43.1% higher than the national average. In addition, the murder rate is 5 per 100k people, which is 23.6% lower than the national average. When you look at these stats and compare them to other big cities throughout the USA, Salinas is a great place to call home. Plus, this comparison shows that while a number might seem high, all cities have crime, and Salinas is still a safe place to live and settle down.

Property Crime in Salinas

When it comes to crime, the majority of the crimes in Salinas, CA, have to do with property, and the Salinas Police Department is working hard to see a decrease in the city’s overall crime rate.

  • Salinas property crime rate per 100k people: 2,232 per 100k people, which is 14% higher than the national average and 4.4% higher than the state average
  • Salinas total property crimes: 3,481: 790 for burglary, 1,779 for larceny (theft), 912 for motor vehicle theft, and 38 for arson
  • Chance of becoming a victim of property crime in Salinas: 1 in 45

High Crime Areas Of Salinas

Salinas has plenty of safe areas to live in and move to, but just like any city or community, there are some areas you’ll want to avoid. Mainly, the east side of the city is the area to avoid the most because that’s where the majority of the crimes take place. You’ll also want to avoid certain streets, like Sanborn, E Market, Garner Ave, and Williams St, because these are the dangerous areas of Salinas.

There are 150 sworn officers and a total of 200 law enforcement employees in the Salinas Police Department that work hard to protect and serve the community of Salinas. That makes one sworn officer per 1,000 people in the city of Salinas.

Safest Neighborhoods In Salinas

The city of Salinas is a fun, family-friendly, and safe city in the beautiful state of California. The safest neighborhoods in Salinas include:

Harden Ranch

There are around 10k people that call Harden Ranch home, and while it’s not a walkable neighborhood, its biking score is decently high. This family-friendly community has plenty of fun activities for people of all ages. Some of the most common attractions in and near the neighborhood of Harden Ranch include McKinnon Community Park, Sherwood Park, Natividad Creek Park, and Tatum’s Garden.


Creekbridge has around 18k residents, and if you enjoy working out, Creekbridge Fitness is the largest gym in this Creekbridge neighborhood. This Salinas neighborhood is perfect for young adults, young families, and retirees.

The Bluffs

As an early developing neighborhood, The Bluffs is a gated community on the outer territory of Salinas.

Salinas Safety Tips | How To Avoid Crime In Salinas

Regardless if you’re a current resident of California, planning on moving to Salinas from another state, or relocating from another California city, it’s essential to take the necessary steps to ensure your safety, especially as you get to know Salinas. Here are some of the top things to consider to help avoid becoming a victim of a crime:

  • Keep your doors locked (even during the daylight)
  • Add or increase lighting inside and outside your home
  • Don’t go out alone after dark and avoid high crime areas
  • Set up or update your security system
  • Add video surveillance
  • Carry pepper spray with you
  • Always travel in groups

We always recommend implementing these into your new neighborhood, regardless of the neighborhood location, because it helps keep you aware, and it’s a good practice to live by in this day and age. Of course, you need to decide what makes you feel comfortable and safe in your new home, so add to this list or take away items – whatever gives you peace of mind.

Salinas Police Department

There are quite a lot of departments within the Salinas Police Department, here are some of the main ones that handle specific needs for the community:

  • Administration: The administration division works closely with the records division and helps to provide you the necessary information and guide you which division can help the best for your specific needs
  • Investigations: This division investigates the different crimes throughout the city of Salinas, and it’s broken into different categories like detectives and the gang unit.
  • Victim Advocate: The victim advocate division helps to counsel victims of crimes (domestic violence and sex crimes, for example), support them, and guide them throughout this process
  • Special Operations: A few of the special operations here at the Salinas Police Department include: SWAT, K-9, and the Homeless Outreach Team

The Chief of Police for the Salinas Police Department is Roberto Filice. If you’re looking to obtain Salinas police reports, anyone has the ability to request one online. You can also look at the daily patrol log online, which keeps a record of the crimes reported on patrol over the last seven days and the officer involved.

According to the Salinas Police Department website, their mission statement is, “Working in partnership with the people of Salinas to enhance the quality of life through the delivery of professional, superior, and compassionate police service to the community”.

The Salinas Police Department works hard to protect this community and provide the best service. There’s a total of 200 law enforcement employees, and 150 of those are sworn officers – that’s one officer per 1,000 residents.

Salinas Police Department Address & Contact

Salinas Crime Rate FAQ

Is Salinas, CA Safe?

While the total Salinas crime rates might be higher than the national average, overall, Salinas is a safe place to settle down. Yes, there are places to avoid, just like in any city, but there are still safe, fun, family-friendly neighborhoods.

What Are The Safest Neighborhoods In Salinas, CA?

The safest neighborhoods in Salinas, CA, include North Salinas, Creekbridge, and The Bluffs.

Where Can I Find The Salinas Police Reports?

You can request a Salinas Police report here.

Are you thinking about moving to Salinas, CA? Southbay Moving is here to help you with this transition. With our professional, hardworking, trustworthy, and reliable team of Salina movers, we will help make your relocation seamless, giving you peace of mind. Call us at (831) 786-5537 for a free estimate!