Detroit & Little Rock are Most Dangerous Cities in the U.S., Irvine is Still the Safest

LAW STREET NARROW
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

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Chelsey D. Goff
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DETROIT & LITTLE ROCK ARE THE MOST DANGEROUS U.S. CITIES;
NEWARK, KANSAS CITY ENTER THE TOP 10;
IRVINE, CALIFORNIA IS STILL THE SAFEST CITY 

NEW YORK and WASHINGTON, November 10, 2014. Detroit, Michigan is America’s Most Dangerous City for the second year in a row, and Little Rock, Arkansas is America’s Most Dangerous City under 200,000 in population, according to rankings by Law Street Media based on FBI data, both released today.

Full Crime in America 2015 coverage available at Law Street Media

Today’s rankings constitute the first tabulation of the FBI’s latest data for calendar year 2013–the most recent year for which FBI data is available. The Crime in America 2015 rankings revealed some important year-over-year trends: Among the Top 10 Most Dangerous U.S. Cities with populations over 200,000, violent crime rates decreased in seven out of the ten cities, matching national trends. Cleveland (#5), Milwaukee (#7), and Newark (#9) were the only cities in this category to experience violent crime growth. Newark and Kansas City (#10) appeared in the Top 10 for the first time, ranking #19 and #12 last year, respectively.

A majority of the Top 10 Most Dangerous Cities with populations under 200,000 defied national trends, with seven out of the Top 10 cities showing an increase in violent crime rates. Springfield, Missouri (#14), Lansing, Michigan (#8), and Beaumont, Texas (#9) all appeared on this list for the first time, ranking #14, #21, and #11 last year, respectively. Little Rock, the Most Dangerous City with a population under 200,000, jumped to this position from #5 last year after its violent crime rate grew by nearly seven percent in 2013. Flint, Michigan, the #1 Most Dangerous City in this category last year is noticeably absent from the list as its population according to the FBI fell just below the 100,000 threshold required to be included in these rankings.

Nearly all of the Top 10 Safest Cities posted declines in violent crime rates this year, with the exception of Plano (#6) and Scottsdale (#7), where violent crime rates increased slightly by 7.88 and 1.48 percent, respectively. Santa Clarita, California and Chandler, Arizona appeared in the Top 10 for the first time, ranking #4 and #10, respectively.

Law Street used the FBI’s four major violent crime categories – murders, aggravated assaults, robberies, and forcible rapes – to create a standard measure of violent-crimes-per-100,000 people among all cities reporting crime data to the FBI. This allows year-to-year and city-to-city comparisons.  To derive the ratio, the total number of violent crimes reported to the FBI  is divided by the city’s population, with  the result then multiplied by 100,000. The formula for this calculation is shown below:

Violent Crime Rate = (Total Violent Crime in a City/City Population) x 100,000

Crime ratings were further broken down by population, with 200,000 used as the dividing point.

Please contact us if you wish to interview Law Street’s Crime in America team.

Law Street is an open-access web-based media platform covering law and public policy. Read the press release about Law Street’s launch here, and see the Publishers Weekly story about our company here. Law Street’s Founder and CEO is journalist and author John A. Jenkins, formerly President and Publisher of CQ Press. Read more about John and the rest of the Law Street team here.

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