Fact-checking Dunbar: Has Anchorage been safer since 2016, when he joined Assembly?


Real property crimes are on the decline, claims the new ad for Forrest Dunbar, who wants Anchorage residents to vote for him for mayor in order to have a safe Anchorage. Dunbar has been on the Anchorage Assembly since 2016, and his current term ends in 2022. He is running in the May 11 runoff against Dave Bronson, and his ad appears to be giving him credit for a drop in crime.

Dunbar’s claim isn’t born out by the data, unless he is cherry-pick the numbers of 2020, when Anchorage residents were ordered to stay in their homes. City-Data says that Anchorage is safer than just 3 percent of all cities in America.

  • 2018 – the Anchorage crime rate was 1,309 per 100,000, an 8.84 percent increase over 2017.
  • 2017 – the Anchorage crime rate was 1,203 per 100, a 5.17 percent increase from 2016.
  • 2016 – the Anchorage crime rate was 1,144 per 100,000, a 6.84 percent increase from 2015.
  • All years that Dunbar has been in office, crime has increased year over year, according to MacroTrends.net.

CityScout says Anchorage is one of the least safe cities in America:

Then there’s the “lockdown effect” of 2020: The crime rate for 2020 was an anomaly because the mayor of Anchorage ordered people to stay in their homes due to the Covid-19 pandemic. He closed businesses, especially bars and restaurants, and ordered those who could to work from home. That led to a drop in property crime and just 18 homicides, which was half of the number of homicides committed in 2019.

It’s a phenomenon seen nationwide.

According to CNBC, “Chicago’s crime declined 10% after the pandemic struck, a trend playing out globally as cities report stunning crime drops in the weeks since measures were put into place to slow the spread of the virus. Even among regions that have the highest levels of violence outside a war zone, fewer people are being killed and fewer robberies are taking place.” In other words, if you lock people in their homes, they won’t go commit robberies.

“The U.S. virus epicenter in New York saw major crimes — murder, rape, robbery, burglary, assault, grand larceny and car theft — decrease by 12% from February to March. In Los Angeles, 2020 key crimes statistics were consistent with last year’s figures until the week of March 15, when they dropped by 30%, CNBC reported.

“There’s a lot fewer opportunities for criminals to take advantage of,” said Joe Giacalone, a former New York Police Department sergeant and instructor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. “Most burglars, they wait for you to leave the house.”


  1. Dunbar is like any other leftist — only pick data that fits their narrative and not look in totality. Even with the drop in crime during the unconstitutional mandate, crime as a whole is up in Anchorage. So the bottom line is the data does not support the leftist Assembly view.

  2. Forrest is again running away from the truth of the matter. “Run, Forrest, Run…away from Alaska, please!”

  3. Wait…
    A politician cherry picked data to make them look good????
    What are the odds????
    This is my surprised face.

  4. How about figures for smash and dash robbery of vehicle contents at trailheads, shoplifting (why has Walmart and other stores put in one way exit blocking turnstiles)? Car thefts!!

  5. There is more crime that doesn’t even get recorded by APD and is not counted as a “crime” in any databases. The car vandalism/thefts along with hit & run where no one was injured is so far down on the APD’s priority list, good luck at getting even a police report filed. I know, I tried to get one police report for a hit and run on my 1-year old vehicle while I was out walking my dog at a local park. I was the only one that witnessed the actual hit and run incident and had a description of the car. The dispatcher said no officer would be coming to the scene and no police report will be filed since no personal injuries had occurred. West Tank Farm?

    My personal auto insurance company was amazed that no police report was available since the APD declined to even create one. For the record. the body damage was 3,965 dollars (less my deductible) for my 1 year old vehicle. It was repaired by the body shop, but it was never the same.

  6. I’m not for either one. One promises such things as the Knik arm bridge and a lot of other way expensive infrastructure… with what fire hose of $$? The other is trying to make the opponent into a uninvestigated criminal… screw his negative BS.

  7. I suppose it depends who you ask. The homeless and criminal elements have never been safer.

    Average residents and property tax payers? That’s another matter entirely.

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