As part of the duty of care a landlord owes you as a tenant, your landlord should take the appropriate steps to make the property you rent reasonably secure from criminal activity. If a landlord is negligent in providing security, it could expose you to assault or robbery, which can result in physical injury and emotional trauma, or perhaps even death.
A landlord is responsible for a criminal assault against a tenant if the landlord knew the assault could have taken place and refused to implement steps to prevent it. As FindLaw explains, landlords do have common sense options available to minimize the chances their tenants will suffer loss or injury from criminals.
Maintaining door locks
If you live in an apartment, you should feel confident that a criminal will not have easy access to it. Landlords should make sure that tenants have a way to lock their abodes, usually with a deadbolt and a door handle with a pin lock. In fact, many communities require their apartments to have these features.
Researching local crime statistics
A landlord should be aware of the local crime rate. If the crime stats near an apartment complex are high, the landlord should take additional measures to protect the property. A landlord may put in outdoor lights for night hours to deny a criminal a place to hide. Additional measures may include cutting down tall plants to remove another potential hiding spot. Some landlords put up security fences and gates to secure their properties.
Evicting criminal tenants
Sometimes criminals are also tenants. A landlord may discover that one of their renters is also engaged in drug dealing. Many landlords have conditions in their leases stating that tenants cannot commit illegal activities. Therefore, a landlord may evict a tenant on the basis of criminal activity. A failure to do so could cause the criminal tenant to victimize an innocent renter in the future, which can result in liability for the landlord for not acting sooner.