New online maps reveal crime trends

June 2, 2011 6:02:46 PM PDT
John Dimick doesn't have to look at a website to know his neighborhood at Sixth and Mission Streets is filled with crime, but if you're moving to San Francisco, you might have no idea.

"When you go to an open house, it's highly unlikely that you know on all the neighbors' doors and ask them what it's like to live there," Dimick said.

Ken Shuman's company,, created a new online crime map to help show people what it's really like in San Francisco when it comes to crime -- right down to the very block where a person might be thinking of renting or buying a home.

Colors on the crime maps show trends over the past year; Black blobs on the map represent crime that occurred in the past few weeks. When a user clicks on a blob to find out what kind of crime took place, they can see comments from neighbors.

"Nothing's been done like this," said Shuman. "All this information is available in different places, but no one's brought it together, displayed it the way we've displayed it, and made it easily digestible."

There's even a list on the website of the five worst blocks in the city. The list includes spots like 16th and Mission where a police chase started last November, and the Market Street corridor where a stabbing took place on Muni's 14th Line.

Ground Zero on the map is at the corner of Golden Gate and Octavia in the western addition of the city, but neighbors tell us the type of crime that occurs in that location isn't the kind they lose sleep over.

"Most of the crimes is car break ins," said one neighbor. "Back in the day, it used to be the 'shoot 'em up, bang bang.' No more of that."

Neighbors say if you're looking for violent crime, look no further than's number two hotspot: 6th and Mission, a home to attempted murders, fist fights and vandalized bikes.

"I might be bragging when I tell other people I live in the baddest part of San Francisco," said Dimick, "but if you talk to everybody in the Tenderloin and right here south fo Market, they say the same thing."

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