Special Report

Cities Where Crime Is Soaring in Every State

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11. Hawaii: Kahului-Wailuku-Lahaina
> 5-yr. Change in crime rate: +3.9% (metro area) +4.8% (state)
> 2017 violent crimes per 100,000 people: 269 (metro area) 251 (state)
> 2017 murders: 2 (metro area) 39 (state)
> 2017 unemployment: 2.5% (metro area) 2.4% (state)

Kahului-Wailuku-Lahaina is the only metro area in Hawaii with comparable crime data from 2012 and 2017. Over that period, there was a 3.9% uptick in the incidence of violence in the metro area, roughly inline with the 4.8% increase across the state as a whole. The increase in Kahului-Wailuku-Lahaina was driven by spikes in the rates of rape and aggravated assault. Across Hawaii as a whole, aggravated assault was the only category of violent crime to decrease in the last five years.

Both Kahului-Wailuku-Lahaina’s violent crime rate of 269 per 100,000 and Hawaii’s rate of 251 per 100,000 fall well below the national rate of 383 per 100,000.

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12. Idaho: Idaho Falls
> 5-yr. Change in crime rate: +45.5% (metro area) +8.9% (state)
> 2017 violent crimes per 100,000 people: 239 (metro area) 226 (state)
> 2017 murders: 2 (metro area) 32 (state)
> 2017 unemployment: 2.6% (metro area) 3.2% (state)

Violent crime in Idaho Falls surged by 45.5% in the last five years. The 64.5% increase in the aggravated assault rate accounted for much of the overall surge.

In stark contrast to the rapid increase in violent crime, the property crime rate in Idaho Falls has fallen precipitously. Property crimes are non-violent offenses that include burglary, larceny, and motor vehicle theft, and over the last five years, the incidence rate of those types of offenses plunged by 31.7%, the sharpest decline of any metro area in the state.

Source: Daniel Schwen / Wikimedia Commons

13. Illinois: Danville
> 5-yr. Change in crime rate: +61.8% (metro area) +5.8% (state)
> 2017 violent crimes per 100,000 people: 901 (metro area) 439 (state)
> 2017 murders: 10 (metro area) 997 (state)
> 2017 unemployment: 6.3% (metro area) 5% (state)

Over the last five years, the number of people living in Danville, Illinois, fell by 4.9%. Despite a shrinking population, the number of violent crimes committed in the metro area climbed from 454 to 699. Adjusted for population, Danville’s violent crime rate climbed by 61.8% between 2012 and 2017, by far the largest increase of any metro area in the state. Due in part to the surge in crime, Danville now ranks as the most dangerous metro area in the state. Danville’s violent crime rate of 901 incidents per 100,000 is among the highest of any U.S. metro area and well above the state violent crime rate of 439 incidents per 100,000 people.

Source: davidwilson1949 / Flickr

14. Indiana: Kokomo
> 5-yr. Change in crime rate: +122.8% (metro area) +15.4% (state)
> 2017 violent crimes per 100,000 people: 593 (metro area) 399 (state)
> 2017 murders: 6 (metro area) 397 (state)
> 2017 unemployment: 3.8% (metro area) 3.5% (state)

The violent crime rate on Kokomo, Indiana, soared by 122.8% between 2012 and 2017 — the largest increase of any metro area in both the state and the nation. The increase was driven by a surge in the aggravated assault rate, which was nearly three times higher in 2017 than it was five years prior. The climbing incidence of violence in Kokomo contributed to a 15.4% increase in violent crime across Indiana as a whole over the same period.

Due to the increase, Kokomo’s violent crime rate of 593 incidents per 100,000 people is now the second highest in the state, trailing only Indianapolis, where there were 695 incidents per 100,000.

Source: dustin77a / Getty Images

15. Iowa: Sioux City
> 5-yr. Change in crime rate: +37.0% (metro area) +11.2% (state)
> 2017 violent crimes per 100,000 people: 291 (metro area) 293 (state)
> 2017 murders: 3 (metro area) 104 (state)
> 2017 unemployment: 3.2% (metro area) 3.1% (state)

There were a total of 492 reported incidents of violent crime in Sioux City in 2017, up from 361 incidents five years prior. The number of crimes increased even as the metro area population shrunk by 0.5% over that period. As a result, the violent crime rate climbed by 37.0% between 2012 and 2017, faster than any other metro area in Iowa.

Despite the rapidly rising crime rate, Sioux City remains relatively safe. There were 291 violent crimes for every 100,000 metro area residents in 2017, well below the national violent crime rate of 383 per 100,000 and in line with the statewide rate of 293 per 100,000.