The United States is often considered by many as one of the safest places in the world to live. When compared with some other countries, corruption is relatively low, and crime rates, although higher in many urban areas, are not as high as in many other places in the world. Still, many U.S. cities have become havens for criminals and can be very dangerous in certain spots. Here are the top 10 cities in the U.S. for crime in 2008 according to Morgan Quitno Press, which releases annual rankings on this subject.
1. New Orleans, LA
The fallout from Katrina continues to pervade this cultural hot spot, but the statistics should be considered skewed somewhat. The population has declined severely since the fateful hurricane slammed the city, and that has driven up the percentages.
2. Camden, NJ
This city, just across the Delaware River from Philadelphia, took the top spot in 2004 and is a perennial member of this list. Although the top brass claim to have taken many steps to reduce crime, clearly they have a long way to go.
3. Detroit, MI
What annual listing of crime-ridden cities would be complete without Detroit? Perhaps it’s the cold weather and snowfall amounts that drive people to a life of crime. Or maybe it’s the stress of working on those auto assembly lines, with the constant need to keep up.
4. St. Louis, MO
Another city that is known for being at the top of these lists, St. Louis city took the top spot on this list in 2002. Some believe this is unwarranted though, because when the data is adjusted to include crime levels in suburbs, St. Louis ranks much lower than when only considering crime inside the city limits.
5. Oakland, CA
With an NFL team called the Raiders, its no wonder that crime seems to gravitate to the city of Oakland. There’s no doubt that the residents of its much safer neighbor San Francisco are happy that the criminals generally prefer to commit their acts on the other side of the bay.
6. Flint, MI
Flint’s location of just 70 miles northwest of Detroit surely doesn’t do it any favors in the crime department. According to many sources though, rates in this city have dropped dramatically, and the city is on its way to urban renewal once again.
7. Gary, IN
When one thinks of Indiana, crime isn’t usually the first thing to come to mind, but Gary’s proximity to Chicago and its lack of jobs hurts the city when it comes to the crime rate.
8. Birmingham, AL
Although increased patrols by police and the City Action Partnership (CAP) have worked to reduce crime downtown, this city in the center of Alabama is still plagued by crime which makes it the eighth most dangerous city in the U.S.
9. Richmond, CA
Right down the road from Oakland, Richmond CA is separated from this dangerous city by Berkeley. One would think that the messages of peace, love, and happiness emanating from that city would help to reduce the crime rate in its neighbor, but perhaps the high rate is a result of overcompensating.
10. North Charleston, SC
Not to be confused with the other Charleston, that of stately historic houses and overall genteelness, North Charleston rounds out the list with a rise in youth violence, according to its police chief.