The 7 Worst Crime Cities In The U.S. Revealed

Choosing a safe home is crucial for families, especially with rising school shootings and alarming crime rates in the U.S.

Statistics Show Alarming Numbers

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The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) recorded an estimated 1,203,808 violent crimes in 2019 alone, and while that statistic is a minor decrease from the year prior, the number itself is staggering.

In 2022, the number of recorded mass shootings (647) was almost double that in 2018, which is a harrowing reminder of the dangers around the country and one to note when relocating.

So which are the cities to avoid? And, contrarily, where should a family set down roots?

Worst Crime Cities Ranked


Using the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and their most recent crime statistics, MoneyGeek has revealed the most dangerous cities in America.

They claim that “the analysis pairs reported crime statistics with academic research on the societal costs of different types of crimes to estimate the cost of crime for each city.”

In short, they have recorded the cities where crime will affect the average civilian the most.

Limited To Cities With More Than 100K Population

homeless man on streets

Some crimes, for example, minor retail robbery or public indecency, may not contribute so profoundly to an individual’s feeling of safety.

MoneyGeek has taken this into account, so even if a city may rank highly in such crimes, it will not necessarily be listed as one of the 7 worst crime cities.

It is important to note that as per the FBI’s statistics, only cities with a population exceeding 100,000 have been included in the report.

1. St. Louis, Missouri

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With the worst rating, St. Louis has a population of just under 300,000 (as of 2022).

They also have a crime rate that is approximately 3.7 times higher than that of the U.S. average.

Currently, 2,553 residents are registered sex offenders, while CrimeGrade.Org states that a crime occurs every three minutes in the area.

2. Birmingham, Alabama

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The same city that endured the Baptist Street Church Bombing in 1963, Birmingham has a crime rate of 77 per one thousand residents, making it one of the most dangerous crime cities in America.

Out of every 13 people, statistically, one will become a victim of either property or violent crime. Neighborhood Scout reported that Birmingham’s annual violent and property crimes totaled over fifteen thousand.

3. Baltimore, Maryland

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Considered an affordable city to live in, Baltimore is geographically a beautiful spot; however, the crime rates put a dampener on things.

With a population of over half a million, it is accepted that crime statistics would be marginally higher than in a smaller city in a similar location.

Unfortunately, in 2019, the FBI recorded 4,718 violent crimes under the Baltimore County Police Department, over 20,000 counts of property crime, and 16,114 counts of larceny-theft.

4. Memphis, Tennessee

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Shutterstock//Sean Pavone

While there have been government moves to decrease the crime rates in Memphis, the fact remains that it is one of the highest crime cities in America.

The FBI statistics for 2019 declare that the combined number of violent crime, property crime, and larceny-theft in Memphis was 80,208.

Though the population is large, with over 650,000 inhabitants, the crime rate was still a disturbing 898 in 2020, which is 3.5 times greater than the U.S. average and higher than 99.5 percent of other US cities.

5. Detroit, Michigan

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An equally large city with a population of 632,464, Detroit is colloquially known as the ‘automobile capital of the world.’

While it may appear a thriving metropolitan to live in, the fast-increasing levels of crime cannot be ignored, with a 23.07 crime rate per every 1,000 residents.

In 2019 alone, the city recorded almost 84,000 crimes, and Detroit authorities still struggle with violent crime, aggravated assault, property crime, and various types of burglary and theft.

6. Cleveland, Ohio

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A smaller city in comparison to others on the list, Cleveland has a crime rate of 56 per one thousand residents and records its highest numbers under property crime.

In July, it was reported that the number of homicides was up 30 percent in comparison to the year prior.

By July 8, it had been recorded that 3,480 cars had been stolen in the city, almost a 99 percent increase from the previous year.

7. New Orleans, Louisiana


In July, it was reported that according to the Metropolitan Crime Commission, “the city of New Orlean’s homicide rate is 111 percent higher today compared to what it was in 2019.”

Neighborhood Scout analysis on FBI data tells us that the chance of becoming a victim of a violent crime in New Orleans is one in 72.

In 2019, the FBI recorded the highest amount of crime as property crime

The Five Safest Cities

Everyone Is or Everyone Are

If those are the cities to avoid when establishing a home ground, which cities are deemed ‘safest’ by the same report?

1. Naperville, Illinois

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A western suburb of Chicago, Naperville’s history is that it was used as a 19th-century pioneer outpost.

Neighborhood Scout considers Naperville to be safer than 83 percent of US neighborhoods, with a violent crime rate of only 0.61 per thousand residents.

2. Sunnyvale, California

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Shutterstock / Sundry Photography

With a name like Sunnyvale, it’s no surprise that Money Geek considers this city in the Santa Clara Valley as one of their preferred.

Chances of being in a violent crime while in Sunnyvale is one in 659.

With great schools and warm weather, what’s not to love?

3. Carmel, Indiana

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Shutterstock / Ted Alexander Somerville

Though housing prices are relatively high, the cost of living in Carmel is recorded as being less than the US average.

If you move to Carmel, expect to see a lot of roundabouts (more than any other city in America!) and a minimal amount of crime disturbance.

In 2021, Carmel was ranked the number one Safest Midsize City in America. 

4. Glendale, Arizona

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If you’re into the NFL, you might be aware that Glendale was home to not one but three Super Bowls in the past decades.

A mid-sized city with about 250,000 inhabitants, it is located northwest of Phoenix.

While the crime rate is not as low as others on the list, with the rate at 35 per thousand residents, it has a $210 cost of crime per capita, which is considerably less than other American cities.

5. Meridian, Idaho

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While the stats prove promising, Merdian recorded only 177 violent crimes during the year 2019.

According to Neighborhood Scout, the chances of becoming a victim of a violent crime are one in 580

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Irrespective of where a family may choose to settle down, it is imperative that safety measures are always heeded.

U.S. News reports that home security systems are incredibly effective, while other tips, like locking up tools to deter burglaries or even befriending neighbors, can be helpful when keeping your address protected.

This article was produced by TPR Teaching. Source.

Caitriona Maria is an education writer and founder of TPR Teaching, crafting inspiring pieces that promote the importance of developing new skills. For 7 years, she has been committed to providing students with the best learning opportunities possible, both domestically and abroad. Dedicated to unlocking students' potential, Caitriona has taught English in several countries and continues to explore new cultures through her travels.

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