Ray's answer is spot on! One additional suggestion I would make is to take a look at neighborhood blogs - many have a crime blotter type page and you can check posts about recent activity as well as read back through older posts to see what has been going on in that area. Here is a link to a directory of neighborhood blogs: http://seattle.findwell.com/neighborhood-blogs/
Cheers and good luck with your search!
It's also a good idea to ask the cop on the beat. When looking at a particular property I happened to see a cruiser going by slowly. I talked with the officer and learned where the "trouble spots" were in the area. Also speak with any neighbors you can. You will get a general sense block by block.