Special Report

Missouri Has a Near Nation-Leading Violent Crime Rate, According to FBI

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The FBI recently released its annual Uniform Crime Report, offering a statistical documentation of crime in the United States in 2021. Historically, the UCR has provided a comprehensive snapshot of crime in each of the 50 states, but this year, the picture is incomplete.

Due to a change in reporting systems – from the legacy Summary Reporting System to the new National Incident-Based Reporting System – many police departments across the country did not submit cime data to the FBI. As a result, nine states were excluded from this year’s UCR: Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, and Pennsylvania.

Whether or not 2021 crime estimates for these places will eventually be released remains to be seen – but for the states with available data, the latest UCR offers some useful insight into 2021 violent crime trends.

Violent crime is a broad category that consists of four types of the most serious offenses: robbery, rape, aggravated assault, and homicide. In Missouri, there were 26,200 violent crimes reported in 2021, or 425 for every 100,000 people, the sixth highest violent crime rate among the 41 states with available data. Meanwhile, the national violent crime rate (based on the incomplete data) stands at 334 incidents per 100,000 people.

While it is not always the case, violent crime is often more common in economically disadvantaged areas with high poverty rates and lower levels of social integration. According to the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2021 American Community Survey, the poverty rate across Missouri stands at 12.7%, compared to the 12.8% national poverty rate.

 

Rank State Violent crimes per 100,000 people, 2021 Poverty rate (%)
1 Louisiana 564 19.6
2 Arkansas 556 16.3
3 Alabama 518 16.1
4 Tennessee 498 13.6
5 Alaska 451 10.5
6 Missouri 425 12.7
7 Michigan 416 13.1
8 Colorado 404 9.7
9 South Carolina 404 14.6
10 Oklahoma 393 15.6
11 Texas 391 14.2
12 Montana 389 11.9
13 Nevada 377 14.1
14 South Dakota 357 12.3
15 Kansas 346 11.7
16 North Carolina 323 13.4
17 Delaware 322 11.6
18 Oregon 321 12.2
19 West Virginia 316 16.8
20 Georgia 306 14.0
21 Washington 296 9.9
22 Ohio 288 13.4
23 Wisconsin 282 10.8
24 Minnesota 278 9.3
25 Iowa 275 11.1
26 Indiana 272 12.2
27 Massachusetts 270 10.4
28 North Dakota 246 11.1
29 Kentucky 240 16.5
30 Utah 226 8.6
31 Arizona 218 12.8
32 Nebraska 217 10.8
33 Wyoming 215 11.4
34 Idaho 212 11.0
35 Mississippi 202 19.4
36 Virginia 194 10.2
37 Rhode Island 184 11.4
38 Vermont 170 10.3
39 Connecticut 150 10.1
40 New Hampshire 127 7.2
41 Maine 108 11.5

 

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