Report Ranks America’s 15 Safest (And Most Dangerous) Cities For 2023 (2023)

Although data shows that violent crime rates dropped in cities across the United States last year, crime is an increasing concern among many Americans—whose fears are only likely to grow with incidents like the recent spike in mass shootings. As of January 31, 2023, there have been 52 mass shootings, according to Gun Violence Archive—a massive increase over the same time period in 2022 when there were 34 shootings.

For the third year in a row, MoneyGeek—a personal finance technology company—has issued a list of the most dangerous cities in the US, as well as the safest cities in America. It’s a helpful report to consider, whether you’re traveling or just a concerned citizen.

“The report allows us to see what factors may connect safe and dangerous cities to each other. Readers can also learn a bit of what to expect from visiting or living in different cities,” says Doug Milnes, MoneyGeek’s chief of data analytics. “Being aware of the facts—rather than simply the reputations of different cities—is paramount before a big move or vacationing.”

MoneyGeek came up with this year’s list by analyzing the FBI’s crime statistics for 2021 (the most recent year of available data), including violent crimes such as murder, rape and aggravated assault, as well as property crimes such as home burglary and motor vehicle theft. The company looked at 263 cities with populations greater than 100,000.

MoneyGeek paired these statistics with academic research on the societal costs of different types of crimes to come up the cost of crime for each city. According to MoneyGeek, the cost of crime per capita in US cities was $1,836—a 6% increase over 2020.

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The Economic Impact of Crime

So why should people care about the cost of crime?

“The cost of crime per capita is not only a data point about how much crime happens in a given population, but it also demonstrates the severity of the crimes happening,” says Milnes. “For example, murders and high-level assaults have higher costs than larceny or simple theft. By aggregating each crime into an easily readable stat based on population, we can make broad comparisons about which are the most dangerous cities in the country.”

The economic impact also paints a clearer picture of the dangers in a certain place than just looking at crime rates, which suffer from a grouping problem—since the overall crime rate treats property and violent crime the same. “The cost of crime methodology we’ve utilized takes a cost by each type of crime so that when we report the one number (cost of crime) on a per capita basis, it provides a weighting backed up by academic research on these different crimes,” explains Milnes.

In other words, if MoneyGeek had simply used crime rates, it’s likely they would have arrived at different results due to these differences in weight between the crime rates that the methodology solves for. For instance, the academic research MoneyGeek relied upon uses a cost of crime of about $9 million for murder while larceny is estimated to be around $3,500. “People can disagree on the exact value of a life, but the important part here is to understand the proportionality from this research: murder is 2,571 times worse than larceny,” says Milnes.

(Video) TOP 10 MOST DANGEROUS CITIES in AMERICA!

Depending on the total budgets of each local area, Milnes says that understanding the cost of crime is important in both how well each state or municipality is managing their crime-stopping efforts.

Another result: “Aside from the imminent danger of crime, people living in higher crime areas see depressed home values and pay higher prices for crucial needs, including home insurance, renters insurance and auto insurance,” says Deb Gordon, a writer for MoneyGeek.

The Most Dangerous Cities in the US

Last year, St. Louis, Missouri was named the most dangerous city in America. This year it was once again named the most dangerous city in the US, with the highest per-capita crime cost on the list—$8,457.

“St. Louis ranks high above the national average in both the cost of violent crimes and property-related crimes locally,” says Milnes. “On the travel side of things, while there are no 100% certain ways of avoiding danger, there are certainly areas that are safer than others. From what we’ve seen from local experts, there are certain areas in the north part of the city that are much more problematic than others.”

Coming in second on the list of the most dangerous cities in America was Mobile, Alabama, followed by Birmingham, Alabama. “Mobile has been consistently ranked as one of the most dangerous cities in the country. The property crime rate and violent crime rate there is the highest in the country, only ranking below St. Louis for most dangerous (due to Mobile having less high-cost crimes like murder),” says Milnes. “Mobile and Birmingham both have higher than average crime rates and relatively lower standards of living.”

In its report, MoneyGeek also looked at mass shootings. “Mass shootings are a particular scourge on American life,” says Gordon. “The emotional impact of mass shootings is incalculable, traumatizing families and entire communities.”

(Video) 10 Most Dangerous Cities In The United States for 2023

Mass shootings also have an economic impact. MoneyGeek calculated the total cost of mass shootings in 2021 to be $8 billion—which is a 33% increase in costs over 2020. According to MoneyGeek’s report, Boulder, Colorado was the worst city in the US for mass shootings, followed by San Jose, California and Indianapolis, Indiana.

The biggest surprise in the report? The lack of big cities on the lists of dangerous places, says Milnes. “The surprises are that from everything you might hear about larger cities on the coasts being quite dangerous, cities like New York and Boston are not as dangerous as their reputations would make you think,” he says.

The Safest Cities in the US

In its report, MoneyGeek also ranked the safest large cities in America with populations over 300,000. This year, Honolulu was named the safest large city, with the lowest per-capita crime cost in the country—$528.

“Hawaii in general is extremely safe relative to other states with major metro areas,” says Milnes. “A number of factors can lead to any city being safe or dangerous, and while we didn’t look into the exact hows or whys of each city’s situation, Honolulu may be uniquely positioned due to its isolation from other major cities, and is among states with the strictest gun laws in the nation.”

Another thing going for Honolulu that it happens to share with the other safest cities: a high cost of living and a high standard of living. “Cities that have higher costs and standards of living tend to also have lower levels of violent crime,” says Milnes. “Overall what we’re seeing is that the cities that have both a higher cost of living and a more suburban-feel than our major metro areas tend to be safer. This is likely to be even more true for specific neighborhoods or sections of cities.”

MoneyGeek’s report also ranked the safest cities in America with populations over 100,000. The safest city on this list was Naperville, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. This city has an overall crime cost per capita of $156. Next on the list was Sunnyvale, California, followed by West Covina, California. In total, there were six California locations on the safest cities list, as well as three California locations on the list of safest cities with a population over 300,000.

(Video) Top 10 Dangerous Cities in the U.S. (2023) | Most Dangerous Cities

Read on for the lists of the most dangerous and safest cities in America.

15 Most Dangerous Cities in the US

  1. St. Louis, Missouri
  2. Mobile, Alabama
  3. Birmingham, Alabama
  4. Baltimore, Maryland
  5. Memphis, Tennessee
  6. Detroit, Michigan
  7. Cleveland, Ohio
  8. New Orleans, Louisiana
  9. Shreveport, Louisiana
  10. Baton Rouge, Louisiana
  11. Little Rock, Arkansas
  12. Oakland, California
  13. Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  14. Kansas City, Missouri
  15. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

5 Worst Cities for Mass Shootings in the US

  1. Boulder, Colorado
  2. San Jose, California
  3. Indianapolis, Indiana
  4. Atlanta, Georgia
  5. Colorado Springs, Colorado

15 Safest Large Cities in the US (with a population over 300,000)

  1. Honolulu, Hawaii
  2. Virginia Beach, Virginia
  3. Henderson, Nevada
  4. El Paso, Texas
  5. New York City
  6. San Diego, California
  7. Mesa, Arizona
  8. Charlotte, North Carolina
  9. San Jose, California
  10. Boston, Massachusetts
  11. Raleigh, North Carolina
  12. Arlington, Texas
  13. Santa Ana, California
  14. Omaha, Nebraska
  15. Austin, Texas

15 Safest Cities in the US (with a population over 100,000)

  1. Naperville, Illinois
  2. Sunnyvale, California
  3. West Covina, California
  4. Carmel, Indiana
  5. Glendale, Arizona
  6. Meridian, Idaho
  7. Provo, Utah
  8. Joliet, Illinois
  9. Jurupa Valley, California
  10. Sugar Land, Texas
  11. McAllen, Texas
  12. El Monte, California
  13. Rancho Cucamonga, California
  14. Glendale, California
  15. Pearland, Texas

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FAQs

Report Ranks America’s 15 Safest (And Most Dangerous) Cities For 2023? ›

As of the knowledge cutoff in 2023, some of the most dangerous cities included St. Louis, Missouri; Detroit, Michigan; Baltimore, Maryland; Memphis, Tennessee; and Kansas City, Missouri. Keep in mind that crime rates and city rankings can change over time, so it's important to consult the most recent data.

Which city has the highest crime rate 2023? ›

As of the knowledge cutoff in 2023, some of the most dangerous cities included St. Louis, Missouri; Detroit, Michigan; Baltimore, Maryland; Memphis, Tennessee; and Kansas City, Missouri. Keep in mind that crime rates and city rankings can change over time, so it's important to consult the most recent data.

What is the safest city in the US 2023? ›

Frisco, Texas

Frisco, Texas, part of the Dallas–Fort Worth metroplex has been ranked the number 1 safest city to live in the U.S. It boasts the fourth-lowest violent crime rate and the sixth-lowest property crime rate.

Which state has the highest crime rate 2023? ›

According to the FBI's Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) program, the 5 most hazardous states in the U.S. in 2023 are:
  • Louisiana: Violent crime rate of 537.5/100,000 people, making it the most dangerous.
  • Mississippi: 413.2 violent crimes/100,000 people.
Apr 28, 2023

What is the 15th safest city? ›

The 15 Safest Cities in America
CityCrime Cost per Capita
12.El Monte, CA$277
13.Rancho Cucamonga, CA$283
14.Glendale, CA$299
15.Pearland, TX$302
11 more rows
May 1, 2023

What is the safest state to live in 2023? ›

Based on the number of homicides, the ten safest states in America are New Hampshire, Vermont, Wyoming, Maine, Rhode Island, North Dakota, South Dakota, Hawaii, Idaho, and Alaska. New Hampshire is the safest state in the US, with just 20 reported homicide incidents.

What are the top 10 safest cities to live in America? ›

Safest Cities In America
  • Glens Falls, New York. The Glens Falls MSA includes Warren and Washington counties. ...
  • Midland, Michigan. ...
  • State College, Pennsylvania. ...
  • The Villages, Florida. ...
  • 5. Logan, Utah. ...
  • Wausau, Wisconsin. ...
  • Cambridge, Massachusetts. ...
  • Elizabethtown, Kentucky.

What city in US has lowest crime rate? ›

The Safest Cities in the US

This year, Honolulu was named the safest large city, with the lowest per-capita crime cost in the country—$528.

What city has the worst crime? ›

Memphis, Tennessee

The most dangerous city in America is Memphis, Tennessee. With a population of 628,127, Memphis has a crime rate that is 237% higher than the national average. Memphis has 7,913 crimes per 100,000 people, with an exceptionally high violent crime rate.

What big city has the lowest crime rate? ›

MoneyGeek, a personal finance technology firm, has released a list of the safest metropolitan cities in America with populations greater than 300,000 for the third year in a row. Honolulu was named the safest large city in the country this year, with the lowest per-capita crime rate in the country.

What major US city has the highest crime rate? ›

Detroit is consistently ranked high on violent city lists, as its population of over 600 000 residents sees about 22 crimes per day. This means its violent crime rate is about six times the US average. This makes it one of the most dangerous cities in America.

What state has the most murders? ›

Mississippi has the highest murder rate in the U.S. with 20.5 murders per 100,000 residents. Murders were far more common in the state than they were nationwide. There was also a drastic increase in homicides from the previous year.

What city has the most murders in the US? ›

Chicago had 697 total homicides in 2022, higher than Philadelphia (516), New York City (438), Houston (435), and Los Angeles (382). Chicago has led the nation for the 11th straight year, the report concluded.

What state is number 1 in crime? ›

1. Alaska. The most dangerous state in the USA is Alaska, as it has the highest combined violent and property crime rate out of any state. Out of a population of 736,081, Alaska's crime rate was 32.14 per 1,000 people in 2022, making it the state with the highest crime rate.

What is the safest state in the US? ›

Story at a glance
State/rankViolent crime rateProperty crime rate
1. Maine109 per 100K residents1,156 per 100K residents
2. New Hampshire146 per 100K residents1,099 per 100K residents
3. New Jersey195 per 100K residents1,158 per 100K residents
4. Vermont173 per 100K residents1,217 per 100K residents
6 more rows
May 7, 2023

Which state is most lenient on crime? ›

The most friendly state for felons is Vermont, where no felons are disenfranchised and no voting restrictions. In the US, there are 5.17 million people disenfranchised due to a felony conviction.

Where is everyone moving to in 2023? ›

Based on migration data from the U.S. Census Bureau, Americans are moving to Austin, Texas; Raleigh, North Carolina; Orlando, Florida; Dallas, Texas; and Phoenix, Arizona. The most moved-to cities are based on percentage increases in population since 2010.

Where is the cheapest place to live in USA 2023? ›

1. Mississippi. Coming in as the cheapest state to live in in the United States is Mississippi with a cost of living index score of 83.3. It also has the lowest average housing costs in the nation at 33.7% below the national average.

Where is best to live in 2023? ›

The Best Countries to Live in 2023
  • Switzerland. Switzerland looks to be the best country to live in 2023. ...
  • Norway. Norway is the second-best country to live in 2023, coming in second on the HDI report with a score of 0.961. ...
  • Iceland. ...
  • Hong Kong. ...
  • Australia.

What are the top 10 worst cities for crime in the United States? ›

The latest dangerous list by 2023, The top 10 most dangerous cities in the US are Memphis, Detroit, Little Rock, Pueblo, Tacoma, Kansas City, Rockford, St. Louis, Cleveland and Springfield.

What is the #1 best place to live? ›

The 10 Best Places to Live in the U.S. in 2023-2024:
  • Green Bay, Wisconsin.
  • Huntsville, Alabama.
  • Raleigh and Durham, North Carolina.
  • Boulder, Colorado.
  • Sarasota, Florida.
  • Naples, Florida.
  • Portland, Maine.
  • Charlotte, North Carolina.
May 16, 2023

What is the safest small town to live in the USA? ›

15 Safest Small Cities and Towns in America
CityCrime Cost per Capita
1.Yorktown Town, NY$43
2.Mason, OH$47
3.Andover, MA$51
4.Southlake, TX$64
11 more rows
Jan 30, 2023

What city in U.S. has lowest crime rate? ›

The Safest Cities in the US

This year, Honolulu was named the safest large city, with the lowest per-capita crime cost in the country—$528.

What state to move in 2023? ›

Download Table Data
StateOverall RankEducation
Washington14
Minnesota217
Utah310
New Hampshire413
21 more rows

What is the 1 safest state in America? ›

Vermont is the safest state in the United States, according to a new report from WalletHub. The ranking is based on 53 different indicators ranging from unemployment rates to assaults per capita. Vermont is followed by Maine, New Hampshire, Utah, and Hawaii, respectively.

What is the safest country in the world 2023? ›

Which country has ranked the safest place in the world in the Global Peace Index 2023? According to the GPI, Iceland is the safest place in the world, ranking 1st with a score of 1,107.

Which US city has the highest homicide rate? ›

New Orleans had the highest homicide rate in the nation in 2022 with 74.3 homicides per 100,000 people. It was followed by St. Louis (68.2), Baltimore (58.1), Detroit (48.9) and Memphis (45.9), Wirepoints found.

What city has highest crime rate in US? ›

Most Dangerous Cities in the US
RankCityState
1MemphisTennessee
2DetroitMichigan
3Little RockArkansas
4PuebloColorado
64 more rows

Which US state has the most murders? ›

Louisiana is currently the state with the highest murder rate in the US, with a rate that stands at 22.9 homicides per 100,000 people. This puts Louisiana at more than double the overall national average and far above other states in terms of homicide rates.

What is the best peaceful state in USA? ›

Maine is the most peaceful state in the U.S. for the 11th year in a row, Louisiana is the least peaceful. The Northeast continues to be the most peaceful region with three of the five most peaceful states. The South is once again the least peaceful region in America, with four of the five least peaceful states.

What are 10 safest states? ›

Property crime rate
  • Maine. 109 per 100K residents. 1,156 per 100K residents.
  • New Hampshire. 146 per 100K residents. ...
  • New Jersey. 195 per 100K residents. ...
  • Vermont. 173 per 100K residents. ...
  • Idaho. 243 per 100K residents. ...
  • Rhode Island. 231 per 100K residents. ...
  • Massachusetts. 309 per 100K residents. ...
  • Virginia. 209 per 100K residents.
May 7, 2023

What is the 5 safest country in the world? ›

Iceland takes the GPI crown for the safest country in the world, followed by New Zealand, Ireland, Denmark, and Austria in the top five. But what exactly makes these 12 countries so safe?

Which country is best to live in 2023? ›

The Best Countries to Live in 2023
  • Switzerland. Switzerland looks to be the best country to live in 2023. ...
  • Norway. Norway is the second-best country to live in 2023, coming in second on the HDI report with a score of 0.961. ...
  • Iceland. ...
  • Hong Kong. ...
  • Australia.

Which country is best to live in future? ›

Denmark. Denmark should be at the top of the list for expats searching for the best quality of life available. This small Nordic country consistently ranks highly in international surveys on factors like happiness, income equality, safety, and access to education. It's also a global leader in social welfare.

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