It might look nice, but the Village can turn mean, apparently: DNA Info reports that, contrary to stereotype, the neighborhood (lumped in with the meatpacking district) is actually more crime-ridden than Northern Manhattan. The study also shows that, citywide, murder, robbery, and rape are up 14 percent — the latter crime undergoing a particularly sharp spike in Harlem. Meanwhile, Inwood and Washington Heights, in fact, are the third- and fourth-safest neighborhoods in the borough, thanks to "dramatic drops" in crime per capita of late. Rounding out the top five: the Upper West Side, Upper East Side, and Kips Bay.
Meanwhile, thanks largely to the high theft rates and general drunken misbehavior in the tony 'hood, the Village comes in next-to-last out of 69 total precincts in Manhattan. The stats are absolutely believable; this characterization less so:
"We do have a really hard core criminal element down there," said Terri Howell, vice president of the Christopher Street Patrol.
Look, I have been to the West Village. Maybe you have, too? I am sorry, but no matter how much property theft and disorderly conduct and even occasional violent crime there might be, there are also way too many chi-chi gelato emporiums per capita for someone to imply with a straight face that it's a truly frightening place to roam — unless you're afraid of Tory Burch ballet slippers, perhaps*.
(*Which I am.)