20 Most Dangerous Cities in America (2024 Updated)

When considering where to live, work, or travel, it’s crucial to be aware of the most dangerous cities in America.

This article delves into these high-risk areas using the latest crime data to map out the safety landscape of the U.S. today.

Top 20 Most Unsafe US Cities Today

1. Memphis

Memphis

State: Tennessee
Population: 621,056
Crime Rate: 97.64 crimes per 100,000 people
Most Common Crime: Aggravated assault

Memphis has one of the highest violent crime rates in the country (at 24.37 per 1,000 people), with aggravated assault leading the list. The city has been actively addressing these issues through targeted policing and community engagement initiatives.

Despite these efforts, the high rates of crime continue to impact the lives of Memphis residents, influencing everything from economic opportunities to daily safety.

2. St. Louis

State: Missouri
Population: 286,578
Crime Rate: 87.10 crimes per 1,000 people
Most Common Crime: Aggravated assault

St. Louis, Missouri, holds the dubious distinction of being one of the most dangerous cities in America. With a violent crime rate of 14.70 per 1,000 residents, St. Louis experiences a high volume of aggravated assaults, which constitute the majority of violent crimes here.

The city’s crime rate is a significant concern, reflecting broader social and economic hardships contributing to its high crime statistics. Efforts to implement crime reduction strategies and community policing are underway to curb these alarming rates.

3. Little Rock

State: Arkansas
Population: 202,864
Crime Rate: 72.08 crimes per 1,000 people
Most Common Crime: Aggravated assault

Little Rock’s crime landscape is heavily marked by violent crimes, particularly aggravated assaults, which significantly influence the community’s sense of safety. The violent crime rate of Little Rock is 18.25 per 1,000 residents, according to recent statistics.

Despite its modest population size, the city’s crime rate rivals much larger cities. Initiatives focusing on community policing and crime prevention programs are being implemented to address these issues and enhance public safety.

4. Minneapolis

State: Minnesota
Population: 425,096
Crime Rate: 66.28 crimes per 1,000 people
Most Common Crime: Aggravated assault

Minneapolis faces challenges with violent crimes (12.45 per 1,00 people), notably aggravated assaults. In recent years, there has been a rise in these incidents, which has prompted city officials to take a closer look at effective crime reduction strategies.

The city focuses on community-based initiatives that aim to reduce crime and strengthen the relationships between law enforcement and the communities it serves.

5. Detroit

Detroit

State: Michigan
Population: 620,376
Crime Rate: 66.09 crimes per 1,000 people
Most Common Crime: Aggravated assault

Detroit is often cited in discussions about urban decay and crime in America. With a violent crime rate that remains significantly high at 20.59 per 1,000 residents, the city faces challenges, with aggravated assaults and robberies being particularly prevalent.

Economic hardships and population decline have contributed to these high rates. Nonetheless, Detroit has been working toward revitalization and crime reduction through various social programs and community initiatives to curb violence and promote a safer community.

6. Kansas City

State: Missouri
Population: 509,297
Crime Rate: 63.18 crimes per 1,000 people
Most Common Crime: Aggravated assault

Kansas City, Missouri, experiences a significant volume of violent crimes (14.83 per 1,000 people), particularly aggravated assaults. The city’s crime rate is a matter of concern, reflecting challenges that stretch across many urban areas in the U.S.

Efforts to curb these rates include enhanced policing strategies and community outreach programs that engage residents in crime prevention.

7. New Orleans

State: Louisiana
Population: 369,749
Crime Rate: 60.98 crimes per 1,000 people
Most Common Crime: Aggravated assault

New Orleans is renowned for its rich culture and vibrant life; however, it also faces significant challenges with violent crimes, particularly aggravated assaults. The violent crime rate in New Orleans is 14.46 per 1,000 residents, which is much higher than the national average.

Efforts to address crime in the city focus on enhancing community policing and increasing surveillance in high-risk areas. These initiatives aim to reduce the incidence of violent crimes and improve safety for all residents and visitors.

8. Cleveland

State: Ohio
Population: 361,607
Crime Rate: 59.91 crimes per 1,000 people
Most Common Crime: Aggravated assault

Cleveland is marked by high rates of violent crimes (16.27 per 1,000 people), particularly aggravated assaults, which significantly affect the lives of its residents.

The city’s approach to tackling this issue includes comprehensive community engagement and policing efforts. These efforts are designed to address the underlying factors contributing to the high crime rate, striving to improve safety and reduce the victimization of its community members.

9. Birmingham

Birmingham

State: Alabama
Population: 196,910
Crime Rate: 59.78 crimes per 1,000 people
Most Common Crime: Aggravated assault

Birmingham, Alabama, stands out for its high rates of violent crime (16.94 per 1,000 people), particularly aggravated assaults. This large city struggles with economic disparities, which contribute to the crime rate.

As one of the most dangerous cities, Birmingham’s authorities are actively engaged in community efforts and strategic policing to combat the root causes of violence and improve safety for all residents.

10. Houston

State: Texas
Population: 2,302,878
Crime Rate: 57.34 crimes per 100,000 people
Most Common Crime: Aggravated assault

Houston faces a significant challenge with violent crimes, with aggravated assault being the most prevalent. According to the most recent crime statistics, Houston has a violent crime rate of 11.35 per 1,000 residents.

To combat this, the city has implemented multiple strategies, including community policing and targeted interventions in high-crime areas. These initiatives are part of a broader effort to reduce the impact of violent crimes on victims and improve overall community safety.

11. Milwaukee

State: Wisconsin
Population: 563,305
Crime Rate: 51.06 crimes per 1,000 people
Most Common Crime: Aggravated assault

Milwaukee faces ongoing challenges with violent crime, with aggravated assault being the most prevalent. At a violent crime rate of 15.18 per 1,000 residents, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, is one of the most dangerous cities in the United States.

The city’s efforts to combat crime include focusing on high-risk communities and improving the effectiveness of law enforcement strategies. These measures aim to reduce the number of victims and improve overall community resilience against crime.

12. Orlando

Orlando

State: Florida
Population: 316,081
Crime Rate: 48.54 crimes per 1,000 people
Most Common Crime: Property crime

Despite its reputation as a tourist paradise, Orlando has a higher-than-average crime rate, particularly property crimes, such as burglary, motor vehicle theft, and larceny. The city also has a higher-than-average violent crime rate of 8.30 per 1,000 residents.

The city’s vibrant nightlife and large tourist population contribute to these statistics. Efforts are ongoing to improve safety through enhanced surveillance and community policing, ensuring that residents and visitors can enjoy Orlando without fear.

13. Baltimore

State: Maryland
Population: 569,931
Crime Rate: 48.36 crimes per 1,000 people
Most Common Crime: Aggravated assault

Baltimore’s reputation for high violent crime rates (15.55 per 1,000 residents), especially aggravated assaults, reflects ongoing challenges in community safety. Efforts to improve conditions include focused crime analysis and intervention strategies aimed at reducing the rates of sexual assault and other violent crimes.

Baltimore’s multifaceted approach incorporates law enforcement, community engagement, and social programs to address the root causes and improve safety for its populations.

14. Atlanta

State: Georgia
Population: 499,127
Crime Rate: 47.91 crimes per 1,000 people
Most Common Crime: Aggravated assault

Atlanta is another major city grappling with high crime rates, particularly violent crimes (8.64 per 1,000 people), such as aggravated assault, which is the most common crime reported. Despite being a hub of economic activity and cultural life, Atlanta’s crime rate remains a concern for residents and authorities alike.

The city’s approach to handling crime involves a mix of community policing and social programs aimed at addressing the key factors contributing to its status as one of the most dangerous cities in the nation.

15. Stockton

State: California
Population: 321,819
Crime Rate: 41.00 violent crimes per 1,000 people
Most Common Crime: Aggravated assault

In Stockton, California, aggravated assault tops the list of concerns, reflecting a broader issue of violent crime that the city grapples with. It amounts to a violent crime rate of 11.79 per 1,000 residents, according to the latest crime data.

Efforts to mitigate these issues include community-based initiatives and strengthening law enforcement approaches to address the factors contributing to high crime rates. The city continues to focus on reducing crime and safeguarding its communities through various strategic approaches.

16. New York

New York

State: New York
Population: 1,694,251
Crime Rate: 38.22 crimes per 100,000 people
Most Common Crime: Grand larceny

Despite its immense population size, New York City has a relatively moderate violent crime rate compared to other major cities. The violent crime rate in New York City is 8.18 per 1,000 people.

The most common crime, grand larceny, reflects the urban challenges of property crime. The city’s extensive public safety strategies include a significant police presence and community-based crime prevention programs that focus on reducing the impact of crime on its communities.

17. Phoenix

State: Arizona
Population: 1,644,409
Crime Rate: 37.36 crimes per 1,000 people
Most Common Crime: Aggravated assault

Phoenix, the fifth-largest city in the U.S., experiences a variety of challenges related to violent crime, particularly aggravated assaults. The latest crime data suggests a high violent crime rate of 8.23 per 1,000 people in Phoenix.

The city’s approach to tackling these issues involves a combination of law enforcement action and community outreach programs designed to prevent crime and protect victims. These efforts are crucial for maintaining safety and security in such a large metropolitan area.

18. Los Angeles

State: California
Population: 3,822,238
Crime Rate: 35.91 crimes per 100,000 people
Most Common Crime: Aggravated assault

Los Angeles, one of the largest cities in the U.S., grapples with a notable rate of violent crimes, especially aggravated assaults. L.A has a violent crime rate of 8.38 per 1,000 people, according to the latest reports.

Despite these challenges, LA works through law enforcement and community collaborations to reduce crime rates and improve safety. The city’s efforts include increasing police patrols and implementing violence prevention programs to address the root causes of crime.

19. Las Vegas

State: Nevada
Population: 656,274
Crime Rate: 35.41 crimes per 100,000 people
Most Common Crime: Property crimes

Las Vegas, a city famed for its bustling nightlife and casinos, also contends with high crime rates. According to the latest data, the overall violent crime rate is relatively low at 5.18 per 1,000 people, though it is more than the national average.

The city’s law enforcement agencies are heavily focused on crime reduction strategies, including community engagement and visibility in key areas to help safeguard residents and the millions of visitors the city attracts annually.

20. Miami

Miami

State: Florida
Population: 449,514
Crime Rate: 29.79 crimes per 1,000 people
Most Common Crime: Robbery

Miami, known for its vibrant nightlife and bustling tourist scene, also faces challenges with crime, particularly robberies. The city’s diverse population and high tourist numbers contribute to its crime statistics.

Efforts to reduce crime in Miami include increased surveillance, police presence, and community programs aimed at crime prevention and education. As a result, Miami, Florida has a relatively low violent crime rate of 3.88 per 1,000 residents.

Types of Crimes Usually Committed

Violent Crimes

Violent crimes involve force or threat of force and include offenses like murder, rape, and aggravated assault. These crimes often result in severe physical harm or victimization of individuals, drawing significant law enforcement attention and community concern.

Efforts to reduce violent crimes involve a range of strategies, from increased policing to community-based interventions.

Property Crimes

Property crimes involve the theft or destruction of someone else’s property without the use of force against the victim. Common types include burglary, larceny, motor vehicle theft, and arson.

Property crimes are prevalent across various environments, from urban centers to the safest cities, affecting a broad spectrum of communities.

White-collar Crimes

White-collar crimes are typically non-violent and committed for financial gain. These offences include fraud, embezzlement, and money laundering, often perpetrated by individuals in professional settings.

The complexity and subtlety of these crimes can make them difficult to detect and prosecute compared to more overt violent or property crimes.

Cybercrimes

Cybercrimes involve illegal activities conducted over the Internet or through computer technology. These include identity theft, hacking, and cyberstalking.

As technology advances, so does the sophistication of cybercrimes, necessitating equally advanced countermeasures from cybersecurity professionals and law enforcement agencies.

Organized Crimes

Organized crimes are executed by structured groups engaged in continuous criminal activities, such as drug trafficking, human trafficking, and illegal arms sales.

Organized crimes are coordinated and often cross international borders, posing significant challenges to law enforcement agencies worldwide. Efforts to combat organized crime require cooperation between multiple agencies and nations.

FAQs

Which city in the U.S. has the highest crime rate?

St. Louis, Missouri, often ranks as the city with the highest crime rate in the U.S. based on violent crime rates, particularly for aggravated assaults and other violent offenses.

What is the safest city in the U.S.?

According to various safety rankings, cities like Cary, North Carolina, and Fort Mill, South Carolina, are often cited as some of the safest cities in the U.S. due to their low crime rates and proactive community policing efforts.

Which country has the most crime?

Venezuela and South Africa are frequently mentioned among the countries with the highest crime rates globally, including high levels of violent crimes such as murder and robbery.

What city has the worst crime rate in the world?

Caracas, Venezuela, frequently appears at the top of global lists for the worst crime rates, particularly due to the high number of violent crimes reported in the city.

What is the safest state in America?

Maine often ranks as the safest state in America based on low rates of both violent and property crimes, reflecting its overall peaceful and secure environment.

Key Takeaways

Understanding the dynamics of crime can be daunting, but knowing where and what types of crimes are most prevalent can help make informed safety decisions.

If you’ve been affected by crime or live in an area with high crime rates, sharing your story can help others feel less alone and more understood.

We encourage you to share your experiences and insights, as every shared story is a step toward community awareness and a collective approach to safety.

Reference:

  1. https://www.neighborhoodscout.com/ny/new-york

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