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The 20 Most Dangerous Cities in the United States

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Living in the United States is supposed to be a wonderful thing for residents. We have freedoms that many people in other countries are unjustly denied. Women don’t have to cover up, we are all free to vote and we all have a say; even if it doesn’t always feel that way. Living here is supposed to make us feel safe and comforted, and we’re supposed to be happy. And while most of us are, there is still danger and crime in the US. If you want to steer clear of living in a dangerous area of the country, you’ll want to pass on living in one of the most dangerous cities in the US.

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Camden, New Jersey

Often ranked as one of the most dangerous cities in the country, Camden has one of the highest crime rates around. Between violence and other criminal behavior, this is a city that is one of the most dangerous not only for all people, but especially for women. This is a city that has a murder rate so high it’s one of the highest in the nation, and it’s not the big city you might assume would have a murder rate so high.

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Atlantic City, New Jersey

Atlantic City is known as a miniature version of Las Vegas on the East Coast, but the crime rate here is far higher. Robberies and violent crimes run rampant in Atlantic City, and rarely are the police shocked at the kind of calls they receive and the types of crime scenes at which they appear. This city is a hugely popular tourist destination, and that might be a small part of the reason there are so many crimes committed here.

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Atlanta, Georgia

The problem with Atlanta is that it’s located along a major interstate and it’s a hub for many smaller and larger cities in the south. Because of this, the crime rate here is very high. Many of the crimes that occur in Atlanta are credited to drug use and trafficking, and are usually drug related. Smaller areas in the suburbs of Atlanta are much less criminally-active and make for a wonderful location in which to live and even raise a family.

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Stockton, California

Because this area has so few things going for it, it’s just gone downhill quite fast over the past few years. The city has had issues of its own, the law enforcement here is just plain outnumbered, and the sheer number of drug related crimes that occur here are out of this world. There are more crimes committed here than in almost any other city the same size across the country, which is just preposterous when you consider the size of the area.

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Wilmington, Delaware

Believe it or not, this lovely little city that seems so innocuous actually has a very high crime rate that lands it on numerous lists of most dangerous cities in the country. It’s not been on here just once or twice, either. It’s been on the list many times and it’s because the city has an issue with drugs, violence and crime as a whole. The crime rate in Wilmington is much higher than it is in the rest of the country, and that’s what makes this city so dangerous to call home.

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Orlando, Florida

It’s the most famous place in all of Florida thanks to Disney World, and so it should be considered the happiest place on earth. While the murder and violent crime rate here is far less than it is in other places across the country, there are nearly 60% more crimes here than the average across the country. The city has implemented several cameras across the city to help catch criminals and put them behind bars, and so far the program has been quite helpful in terms of ensuring that criminals are held accountable.

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Birmingham, Alabama

The south just seems like it might be such a safe place to live, but it’s not the truth. Birmingham has a lot of access from other cities, and that makes it a hotspot for drugs. There are many murders here, and there are twice as many violent and nonviolent crimes committed in Birmingham each year than there are across the entire country on average. The number is high, and most of it can be attributed to the drug trade.

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Trenton, New Jersey

New Jersey has a reputation for being a certain type of place, and in places that reputation is likely very true. Trenton is one of those examples. Many people who think of Trenton do think of the startlingly high crime rate and the lack of safety many feel when outside – and even inside – their homes. The crime rate here is one that makes people feel very nervous being home, and it’s for good reason. It’s more than twice as high in Trenton than it is in the rest of the country.

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Newark, New Jersey

Newark is not far at all from New York City and, in fact, provides a major transportation hub for the city. The Newark International Airport brings in a great deal of people from the world to the city, but this little New Jersey city is not exactly well-known for its safety and comfort. In fact, Newark has one of the highest crime rates in the country when comparatively speaking, and when you do the math the rate here is actually higher than it is in many larger cities.

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Little Rock, Arkansas

It’s the place that many people don’t even think of as being a big city or even on a regular basis, but Little Rock is a dangerous place. It has an almost permanent spot on the list of most dangerous cities in the country thanks to the number of crimes per person in the city. Drugs are a problem here, and the city is considered dangerous more so in some places than others, but as a whole the entire city is considered one of the most dangerous in the country.

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Baltimore, Maryland

A lovely city with so much water, this is not the kind of place that you should feel safe. Baltimore’s crime rate is significant. It’s a big industry for drugs, which does not help the matter. And there are many other violent crimes that are prevalent in the area, as well. The fact of the matter is that this is a city that has a crime rate that’s 68% higher than the rest of the country, which makes it one of the most dangerous cities in which to live. The number of crimes per resident is astounding.

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Kansas City, Missouri

While some of the area’s crime has gone down over the past few years, it’s not enough to make this city a safer place to call home. The reason is that its crimes such as car theft and things of that nature that have gone down significantly over the past few years, and not actual crimes that cause violence. The city’s average record for violence and crime is more than three times that of the rest of the country, which is significant. It’s not a small city, but it’s not that bit, either.

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Memphis, Tennessee

The city in which music is so important is also a city in which crime is rampant. The city has begun an initiative to fight back, though, and that makes the crime rate far less likely to continue. The city is using historical data that was found after analyzing past crimes to target the city’s most dangerous areas so that the police can increase patrols and presence in the area as a way of hopefully reducing the crime rate in the city as a whole.

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Cleveland, Ohio

This is a city that’s had it rough over the past few years. For a while, Cleveland was thriving. And then LeBron left. Kidding – well, not really kidding, but kind of kidding. The economy hit Cleveland very hard and that meant a lot of lost jobs, closed businesses and the downfall of many in the area. This meant that much of the area has become quite desolate and many of the people here have turned to crime. Drugs are a big problem in the area, too, which is another reason there is so much crime in Cleveland.

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Flint, Michigan

Flint frequently tops the list of most dangerous cities in the country, and for good reason. There are more violent crimes and murders here than almost any other city in the country, and the numbers keep increasing. The area is riddled with drugs, low on jobs and really has very little going for it these days, and that makes it even more of a disaster. The vast number of people who live here and are not involved in drugs or crime are often scared to be home.

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Minneapolis, Minnesota

It might seem that a city with a really big mall in a location that’s quite cold wouldn’t be so dangerous, but it is. For many years the city’s murder rate was higher than that of New York City, which is a lot of murders. It’s fallen some in the past few years, but doesn’t change the fact that Minneapolis’ crime rate as a whole is three times that of the crime rate in the rest of the country. That’s a dangerously high number and it scares many people who reside and visit.

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Oakland, California

So close to San Francisco, yet so far from San Francisco. Oakland has a lot of problems within the city, and crime is one of the biggest. In recent years the crime rate here has shot up significantly higher than it’s been in the past, which is not a good thing. The city can’t do with any more crime when you consider what it’s been like as of late, but many people feel that the lack of financing, the inability to hire more police and the fact that criminals practically run the city are just the way of life in this particular city.

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Detroit, Michigan

One of the most dangerous cities in the country on a regular basis, Detroit cannot seem to pick itself up and carry on successfully. The city  has a huge drug problem on top of a problem with employment. The economy’s downfall devastated this community and more people lost their jobs here than so many other places across the country. This has led to an increase in crime, drug use and other issues that cause the city to be one of the least safe in the country.

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Miami, Florida

It makes sense that Miami would be on the list. It’s a hugely populated area, it’s a big tourist attraction as a whole, and it’s got plenty of ways in. This makes Miami prime location for things like drugs and trafficking, and that’s what makes this area so dangerous. There is an average of 429 murders per year across the entire United States, but there are 680 murders every single year in Miami, which is well above the national average, making it exceptionally dangerous.

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St. Louis, Missouri  

People love St. Louis, and for good reason. The issue here is that it’s a major drug trafficking area because of its access and proximity to so many other areas around the country. This makes it a prime location for drug related crimes, violence and other criminal activity. The thought is that without the drug trade in the area, it would be significantly safer for residents and visitors. Unfortunately, until drugs are no longer a problem there is little that can be done about this.

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Written by Tiffany Raiford