The Church of Scientology Tampa Hails the 44% Drop in Ybor City Crime a Result of Neighborhoodwide Collaboration With Police

TAMPA, Fla., March 16, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The City of Tampa announced this week that their overall crime rate has dropped by 24 percent in the past year.  But the break-out news from that announcement is that Ybor City, Tampa’s cigar-manufacturing and nightlife district, once known as a crime haven, has gotten safer by a whopping 44 percent in the past year alone.  Less than a decade ago, news reports declared Ybor City as one of the neighborhoods of Tampa to avoid because of the high crime rate.  Now Ybor City’s crime rate has dropped further than any other Tampa neighborhood while tourism and nightlife continue to boom.

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at

While many factors can be seen to contribute to this, one factor is a clear indicator – the involvement of the residents and businesses working in tandem with police.  One such organization, The Church of Scientology Tampa, opened on March 13th 2011, in the middle of Ybor City and amidst reports of high property and violent crime.  Ybor Square, an icon to the cigar manufacturing district and intricately woven into Tampa-Cuban history, was renovated by the Church of Scientology into its Tampa headquarters. 

“We were concerned about the crime reports in Ybor City when we first considered our Church being here,” said Mimi Kintzel, the Director of Public Affairs for the Church of Scientology Tampa. “But working with the police, our security force is on guard day and night, not just looking out for our own property but keeping an eye on our neighbors’ properties as well.  Now the police know they can come to us to help with any suspicious activity and to provide the extra security that backs up their actions.”

Kintzel also said that Church staff and volunteers have distributed thousands of educational materials on The Truth About Drugs and The Way to Happiness, a common sense moral guide, to youth and adults throughout Tampa neighborhoods as well as in schools, youth organizations and door-to-door in Tampa.  Church volunteers are also seen regularly at community events and speak to community groups on The Way to Happiness, a book written by L. Ron Hubbard and which is available in 112 languages, with some 115 million copies distributed in 186 nations. The campaign to distribute the book has been embraced by more than 257,000 groups and individuals worldwide. It holds the Guinness World Record as the single most-translated nonreligious book. Like Tampa, communities around the world have seen significant drops in crime coincident with the distribution and adoption of The Way to Happiness.  Examples include:

  • The National Police of Colombia adopted The Way to Happiness and undertook nationwide distribution, reaching 20 percent of the population.  Coincidentally, the nation’s crime rates plummeted.
  • In Los Angeles communities beset by violence, rival motorcycle gangs distributing The Way to Happiness achieved crime drops of between 15 and 30 percent after every “Peace Ride.” 
  • Police in an eastern Slovakian community attributed a 40 percent reduction in the crime rate to widespread distribution of The Way to Happiness.

The Church of Scientology Tampa is open from 10 am to 10 pm daily.  Its Information Center contains exhibits featuring over 400 audio-visual properties including ones on the successes of The Way to Happiness around the world.  Call 813-872-0722 for more information.

CONTACT: For more information
Contact:  Mimi Kintzel