The United States has become a far safer country in recent decades. The last time the violent crime rate was higher than five years prior was 1994, when there were 714 violent crimes for every 100,000 people. Over the following five years, the violent crime rate plummeted by 26.7%, the largest five-year decrease since at least 1960.
As of 2017, there were 383 violent crimes for every 100,000 people in the U.S., a 1.3% decrease from five years before. The broad trend, while encouraging, does not reflect the reality on the ground in many cities across the country. In the vast majority of states, there is at least one metro area that is more dangerous now than it was five years ago. In some cases, the incidence of violent crime has more than doubled since 2012.
24/7 Wall St. reviewed five-year changes in violent crime rates in 283 U.S. metro areas that have comparable data to identify, in every state, the city where crime is climbing fastest.
The violent crime rate is a measure of the number of murders, robberies, rapes, and aggravated assaults for every 100,000 people in a given year. Nationwide, aggravated assault is by far the most common violent offense, and in most cities on this list, climbing rates of aggravated assault drove the overall increase in violence.
Just because a city ranks on this list does not mean it is particularly dangerous. Often, these cities are safer than the U.S. as a whole, despite reporting a state-leading surge in violent crime.