It's a small town, and it felt safe, but there was a bit of an edge to it for such a small place. I guess it's that seediness that beach towns sometimes attract. Nothing major. There was the old pharmacist tut-tutting at the scruffy kid buying plastic cups for his drug addiction. There were the two ancient drunks stumbling out of the street leading to Parnu's oldest building, the woman with a huge black eye, and the man streaming yellow vomit into the gutter. Then there were the two teenagers hustling into a pawn shop with bundles tucked nervously under their arms. Probably nothing.
I also came upon a crazy article about Parnu, written by an irate Englishman, who claimed that the entire Estonian police force, the local Russian mafia, the British embassy, a British tour group, an Estonian financial services company, a real estate agent, the Swedish secret service, and the Nazis were all in cahoots in order to plot his death and steal his Parnu property. I'm not sure that I could take him seriously, though!
Actually, i didn't feel threatened at all in Parnu. I walked around by myself and had no problems. Parnu is a restort like town...so there are many sorts of people there...tourists, but it didn't strike me as a typical tourist place where you have to watch out for your purses and pockets. it was nice, that's for sure....being able to enjoy the surrounding without keeping an eagle eye out for pickpocketers or thieves.