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Report: Top 100 Most Dangerous Cities in the U.S.

Police car and crime scene tape on a city street

NeighborhoodScout, a web-based platform that, among other things, tracks crime statistics, released its annual list of the Top 100 Most Dangerous Cities in the U.S. for 2018.  

According to a press release, the list is based on a comparison of the safety of cities with 25,000 or more people nationwide, "based on the number of violent crimes (murder, rape, armed robbery, and aggravated assault) reported to the FBI to have occurred in each city, and the population of each city, divided by 1,000." The calculation reveals the rate of violent crimes per 1,000 residents.

The most dangerous city in American, according to the report, is Monroe, Louisiana, followed by Bessemer, Ala., and East St. Louis, Illinois. Rounding out the top ten are Camden, N.J., Detroit, Mich., St. Louis, Mo., Wilmington, Del., Alexandria, La., Memphis, Tenn., and W. Memphis, Ark.

NeighborhoodScout's study is based on the FBI's most recent "Final, Non-Preliminary" data. Because there is a lag in FBI reporting, the 2018 list is based on the 2016 data that was released in September 2017. "The 2017 year total crime data is not complete," the report notes. "The FBI is still working through data issues and reporting issues before that data can be considered Final, and Non-Preliminary."

"Preliminary statistics show declines in the number of both violent crimes and property crimes reported for the first half of 2017 when compared with the first half of 2016," according to the FBI report. "The report includes data from more than 13,000 law enforcement agencies nationwide that submitted crime data to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program."

(Image via FBI.gov)

According to the FBI, overall violent crime in the U.S. "decreased 0.8 percent in the first six months of 2017 compared with the same time frame in 2016, though the number of murders and non-negligent manslaughters reported increased by 1.5 percent. Additionally, the number of rapes (revised definition) decreased 2.4 percent, robberies decreased 2.2 percent, and aggravated assaults were down 0.1 percent."

Percent change by population group. Click to enlarge. (Image via FBI)

Overall property crime dropped 2.9 percent in the first half of 2017 as did burglaries (6.1 percent), and larceny-thefts (3 percent). Motor vehicle thefts increased 4.1 percent, however.

The safest cities amongst those considered by NeighborhoodScout are Cincinnati, Ohio, Lauderhill, Fla., Schenectady, N.Y., Sanford, Fla., Huntsville, Ala., Eureka, Calif., Richmond, Calif., Jackson, Tenn., New Haven, Conn., and Tacoma, Washington.

"We continue to see a number of smaller, industrial-satellite communities struggle with crime," observed Dr. Andrew Schiller, CEO and founder of Location, Inc. and NeighborhoodScout. "Limited economic opportunity plays a role in such communities and highlights the divide between the safe bedroom communities within large metro areas near major urban centers like Boston, Chicago, and New York, and the high-crime industrial-satellite communities."