According to the Safe Cities Index 2021 published by The Economist, Toronto ranks second, surpassed only by Copenhagen. The overall index cited by the report was calculated based on several security aspects, including digital security, infrastructure security, and other rankings. Toronto secured 8th place, demonstrating a strong correlation between the city’s ranking of personal security and the Human Development Index.
However, crime rates in Toronto for 2022 are on the rise, as shown by the Major Crime Indicators statistics compiled by the Toronto Police Service. With more than 28,000 occurrences this year, the total crime rate in Toronto shows an 18.9% increase, with several months still left in the year.
Top 10 Offences in Toronto
This year, Toronto demonstrated an increased crime rate for all types of offences, with the exception of homicide, which is down by 16.7%.
According to the year-to-date report by the Toronto Police Service, the top 10 offences in the city are:
- assault – 9,354 incidents, 11.0% increase for all types of assault,
- theft of motor vehicle — 5,720 incidents, 47.8% increase,
- breaking and entering — 3,343 incidents, 5.2% increase,
- assault with a weapon — 2,600 incidents*,
- sexual assault — 1,603 incidents*,
- assault with bodily harm — 519 incidents*,
- theft over $5.000 — 515 incidents, 33.4% increase
- robbery (business) — 473 incidents*,
- assault of a peace officer — 461 incidents*,
- breaking and entering with intent — 461 incidents*
Note: figure for change is not available where indicated by *.
Homicide Rates in Toronto
Toronto had a violent start to 2022, with five homicides in the first three days after the New Year. While the total homicide count for Toronto is decreasing, current figures demonstrate a worrying tendency of an increasing number of homicides involving firearms compared to the previous years.
Meanwhile, the Toronto Homicide Unit reports an 82% homicide clearance rate.
After a series of violent incidents on TTC subway trains in 2022, the Toronto Transit Commission initiated new measures to ensure the safety of riders. In a report compiled for the board, the Commission noted the increase in both the Customer Injury Incident Rate and the number of offences against customers and TTC employees.
The report also demonstrated a 22% increase in violent incidents against TTC staff in the first three months of 2022 compared to data for the previous quarter, while the number of offences against riders increased by 10.9% in the same period. The TTC has reacted by deploying additional constables across its stations.
Toronto Crime Rates by Neighbourhood
Toronto is home to several neighbourhoods with historically higher crime rates, commonly referred to as low-income neighbourhoods, demonstrating a correlation between socioeconomic development and crime count. According to the Major Crime Indicator’s Report carried out by the Toronto Police Service:
- The Annex. Located next to the University of Toronto’s St. George Campus, the Annex has been known to have the highest property incidents in Toronto. In 2022, The Annex demonstrated a 14.1% increase in crime rates (462 incidents), a 144.4% increase in auto theft (44 cases), a 38.1% increase in sexual violations (29 incidents) and a 31.6% growth in theft over $5,000 count.
- The Beaches. Located east of Queen Street, this neighbourhood has a similar reputation for higher crime rates. In 2022, the Beaches has demonstrated a 35% increase in total crime count (185 incidents), including a 29.4% increase in assault count (88 incidents), 70% increase in auto theft (total of 34 incidents), and 33.3% growth in breaking and entering count (32 incidents).
- Moss Park. Historically, Moss Park has had one of the highest crime rates in Toronto, with 613 incidents in the area as of August, 2022. Meanwhile, the neighbourhood shows a 10.4% decrease in its overall crime count, with a 50% increase for auto theft (42 cases) and a 100% increase for homicides (2 incidents).
- Regent Park. Regent Park, another high-crime neighbourhood in Toronto, has shown a 23.1% decrease in its overall crime count. The neighbourhood remains one of the most dangerous places in the city, with a total of 133 crime incidents in the first eight months of 2022 and a 44.4% growth in sexual assault (13 incidents).
How Many Murders Take Place in Canada Each Year?
Canada’s central statistical office, Statistics Canada, has updated its data on the number of people killed in Canada with statistics for 2021, making additional corrections to the previous year’s figures. According to the updated report, the annual murder rates in Canada and Toronto include:
- 2021 – 788 victims in Canada (117 in Toronto)
- 2020 – 759 victims (105 in Toronto)
- 2019 – 689 victims (130 in Toronto)
- 2018 – 662 victims (145 in Toronto)
- 2017 – 667 victims (93 in Toronto)
Our criminal lawyers at Vilkhov Law in Toronto are knowledgeable about Canadian law, and are dedicated to keeping up to date with the latest information made available each year.