skip to main content

Crime and Personal Safety

Explore Gallup's research.

77% of Americans who have interacted with police in the past 12 months say the experience was positive overall, but those who do not report positive experiences in police encounters have lower wellbeing and feel less safe.

Americans now divide evenly on whether juveniles who commit violent crimes should be treated the same as adults or receive more lenient treatment.

Being the victim of a scam is one of the most prevalent crimes U.S. households experience, and also one that causes anxiety for a majority of Americans.

Forty percent of Americans are afraid to walk alone at night near their home, the most since 1993. This coincides with elevated public concern about being mugged, murdered, carjacked or having their car stolen or broken into.

A majority of Americans again say the U.S. criminal justice system is not tough enough. Far fewer now than in 2003 believe the criminal justice system is fair.

A new high of 63% of U.S. adults say the crime problem in the U.S. is extremely or very serious.

A majority of Americans say the U.S. is losing ground in coping with the illegal drug problem, while 24% say it is making progress, the lowest in Gallup's trend.

A record-low 47% of Americans think the death penalty is fairly applied in the U.S., while a slim 53% majority continue to favor its use for convicted murderers.

Fifty-six percent of U.S. adults want gun laws to be stricter, consistent with most Gallup polling over the past 30 years.

Attitudes toward local policing among Black adults differ by gender, with Black women having less-positive perceptions than Black men.

Social & Policy Issues

Black Americans continue to report less favorable attitudes than White adults toward policing, and interest in major police reform has also been steadily higher among Black adults.

Thirty-eight percent of U.S. parents of K-12 children fear for their child's physical safety at school. While down slightly from last year, the reading still ranks among the highest in the past two decades.

Of 16 U.S. cities, Americans are most likely to consider Dallas and Boston as safe to live in or visit and are least likely to say Detroit and Chicago are safe.

Look back at public opinion in the aftermath of the Newtown, Connecticut, school shootings in 2012 and the evolution of Americans' views of gun control since then.

Men and women in the U.S. differ starkly in their propensity to own a gun and their preferences for the nation's gun laws.

The 57% of U.S. adults who think laws covering the sale of firearms should be made more strict is down nine points since June but remains above the 52% measured in 2021.

Crime became an issue in the recent midterm elections, underscoring the importance of understanding what lies behind Americans' views of the issue.

While 55% of Americans support the death penalty, a sharp partisan divide remains. More than twice as many Republicans as Democrats favor it.

Registered voters rate the economy as the most important factor influencing their vote this midterm election cycle, but abortion and crime are close behind.

A record-high 56% of U.S. adults say there is more local crime than last year, while 78% -- tied for the highest since 1993 -- perceive more national crime.