In 2012, for the third year in a row, Flint had the highest violent crime rate in the country.
Birmingham, Alabama; St. Louis, Missouri and Oakland California were among the 10 worst cities in the nation for both violent crime and property crime.
Flint and Cleveland, Ohio had among the highest burglary rates, while Oakland, Detroit and St. Louis had among the highest rates of vehicle theft.
The economies of many of the most dangerous cities have been in bad shape for years, in some cases long before the Great Recession. The populations of many of the most dangerous cities declined and left behind highly impoverished urban centers.
Here are the Top 5 worst cities in America:
5. Memphis, Tennessee–Violent crimes per 100,000: 1,750.0–2012 murders: 133–Poverty rate: 27.2%–According to a Gallup survey, 43% of Memphis residents reported feeling unsafe walking at night, the highest percentage of all the 50 largest metropolitan areas in the country.
4. St. Louis, Missouri–Violent crimes per 100,000: 1,776.5–2012 murders: 113–Poverty rate: 27.0%
3. Oakland, California–Violent crimes per 100,000: 1,993.1–2012 murders: 126–Poverty rate: 21.0%–There were 1,085.9 robberies per 100,000 residents in Oakland in 2012, higher than any other city. The rates of murder and aggravated assaults also increased. Crime in the city has increased ever since the city’s police department went through a round of layoffs in 2010.
2. Detroit, Michigan–Violent crimes per 100,000: 2,122.6–2012 murders: 386–Poverty rate: 40.9%–Detroit’s murder rate of 54.2 per 100,000 residents was the second highest in the country last year. The homicide rate in Detroit reached the highest level in almost 40 years. The city’s aggravated assault rate was also the second highest in the United States.
1. Flint, Michigan–Violent crimes per 100,000: 2,729.5–2012 murders: 63–Poverty rate: 40.6%–With 2,729.5 violent crimes per 100,000 residents, no city had a higher violent crime rate than Flint. Flint also had nationwide highs in burglary rates and arson.