Do you live in one of the most dangerous cities in Illinois?
We all watch the news and see reports on Facebook of the latest crimes that happen in our hometowns. But it can be hard to tell at a big picture level how dangerous our town actually is.
No one wants to feel unsafe, and statistically speaking, odds are that where you live is most likely relatively safe. In order to help the good people of Illinois — and anyone looking to move to Illinois — know just how close they are to danger, we took data from the annual FBI report and did some serious analysis.
For all the press Chicago gets about being dangerous, it doesn’t even show up in the top ten for Illinois. So that either means it’s a bad stereotype (probably) or these places are really dangerous.
So then, the data shows that these ten cities are currently the most dangerous in the Prairie State:
- Danville (Photos)
- Mount Vernon (Photos)
- Springfield (Photos)
- Centralia (Photos)
- Rockford (Photos)
- Metropolis (Photos)
- Harvey (Photos)
- Calumet City (Photos)
- Alton (Photos)
Why did Danville take the top spot? For the answer to this question and a detailed explanation of the data and analysis we used in creating this ranking, read on. Or learn more about the safest places in Illinois.
How we determined the most dangerous cities in Illinois for 2017?
Every year the FBI release two crime datasets, a preliminary dataset limited to the biggest cities in the country, followed by a more detailed release at the end of the year.
For our analysis, we focused on the second release of 2015 data, specifically the 2015 Crime In The United States Report. We will update the results when data becomes available for 2016 in September 2017.
So what criteria did we use? Have a look:
- Violent Crimes Per Capita
- Property Crimes Per Capita
In order to make the analysis as apples to apples as possible, we only considered cities over 5,000 in population. That left us with 287 cities in Illinois.
We then ranked each city from 1 to 287 for the two criteria with a #1 ranking being the most dangerous for the particular criteria.
Next, we averaged the two rankings into one “Dangerous Index”.
Finally, we ranked every city on the “Dangerous Index” with the lowest index being the most dangerous in Illinois — Danville. Read on for a detailed look at the 10 most dangerous cities in Illinois.
Population: 32,056Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,410
Property Crimes Per 100k: 6,354
Danville is no stranger to our lists as it ranks as the second poorest city in Illinois and appears in the middle of the list of the worst places to live. And it would make sense that crime contributes to its placement on both of those lists.
In this particular case for the city of over 32,056, the combination of high property crime (highest in the state on a rate basis) and violent crime (4th highest) led to the top overall spot of most dangerous city in Illinois.
2. Mount Vernon
Population: 15,154Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,339
Property Crimes Per 100k: 6,018
Mount Vernon might be known as the King City, but it’ll have to settle for 2nd place in this contest.
With high rates of both property and violent crime, which have either stayed the same or slightly increased in recent years, Mount Vernon is certainly one of the least safe places in the state.
There is a 1 in 16.6 chance of being the victim of a property crime in Mount Vernon, which is nearly double the odds someone would face in Chi-town.
Population: 116,875Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,070
Property Crimes Per 100k: 4,552
Based on the fact that the Springfield that the Simpsons live in only has one bumbling criminal in it, it’s a safe bet that they’re not from Springfield, Illinois.
Although there has been a drop in property crime and a much more modest drop in violent crime from 2013-15, the improvements haven’t been enough to get the state’s capital, Springfield, outta the top 5.
Population: 12,669Violent Crimes Per 100k: 773
Property Crimes Per 100k: 4,633
Located in (you guessed it) central Illinois, Centralia has a mix of good and bad news concerning its crime numbers.
Violent crime decreased 2013-15, which is anachievement. Apparently the thieves and vandals didn’t get the memo, though, as property crime statistics have pretty much stayed the same. And with a 1 in 21.6 chance of being the victim of a property crime, that is very bad news.
Population: 5,033 Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,629
Property Crimes Per 100k: 4,073
Centreville ranks 2nd and 16th for violent and property crime.
And while the city is about half a violent as some other cities, its below average score still earns it the title of 5th most dangerous city in Illinois.
The good news is that violent crime was reduced by about 10% from 2013-15, but the bad news is that property crime rose by 21% in that period.
Population: 148,178Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,585
Property Crimes Per 100k: 3,952
Rockford is the largest city you’ll be seeing on this list and the 3rd largest city in the state.
Located in northern Illinois about 80 miles west of Chicago, Rockford residents face a staggeringly high 1 in 63 chance of being attacked, raped, or killed. That’s almost 3 times as likely as it is in the Windy City.
Population: 6,349Violent Crimes Per 100k: 614
Property Crimes Per 100k: 4,599
Metropolis has the smallest population of any city in Illinois, but still places 7th in our ranking.
Living in such a small place evidently breeds a high rate of violence in the state, with residents of Metropolis facing a 1 in 162 chance of being the victim of a violent crime in 2015.
Population: 25,361Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,178
Property Crimes Per 100k: 3,848
The city of Harvey is about a half hour south of Chicago and is definitively the most dangerous place in Illinois.
Residents of the city face unbelievably high odds of being the victim of a violent crime — a 1 in 84 chance of being attacked, raped, or killed. To put that into perspective, a person with 300 Facebook friends living in Harvey would have had 5 friends been the victim of a violent crime in the last year.
And the crime numbers have been stagnant for the last few years, meaning Harvey has no intention of giving up the title of most dangerous city in Illinois.
9. Calumet City
Population: 37,248Violent Crimes Per 100k: 612
Property Crimes Per 100k: 4,392
A city in Cook County, Calumet City has seen crime become a problem over the last decade.
Perhaps that has something to do with the high rate of violent crime, with residents facing a 1 in 163 chance of being the victim of violence in 2015.
On the bright side, instances of property crime fell during this time period.
Population: 27,003Violent Crimes Per 100k: 488
Property Crimes Per 100k: 4,917
Alton ranks highly for the occurrence of crime. In particular, violent crime rates in Alton stick out for being the 26th worst in Illinois.
There were 132 violent crimes in Alton, but that’s down from earlier in the decade.
A City Data user says, “I dO NOT recommend Alton for a single person looking to get out there and have fun and meet people.” Probably because going out there leads to crime.
Locking It All Up In Illinois
The latest FBI crime data shows that Danville ranks as the most dangerous city in Illinois for 2017.
However, there will be new data coming out later this year. At that point we can revisit Danville’s status — that is if they haven’t beaten us all up already.
If you’re curious enough, here are the safest cities in Illinois:
For more Illinois reading , check out:
- These Are The 10 Cities In Illinois Where You’re Most Likely To Be Framed For Murder
- These Are The 10 Most Miserable Cities In Illinois
- These Are The 10 Most Affordable Places In Illinois
Detailed List Of The Most Dangeroues Cities In Illinois
|14||East St. Louis||26,616|
|52||Country Club Hills||16,944|
|100||Round Lake Beach||27,983|