The 10 Most Dangerous Cities In Montana For 2022


We used data and science to identify the most dangerous cities in the Treasure State for 2022.

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There really are more dangerous things in Montana than grizzly bears, the most frigid temperatures in Havre, trucks with loaded gun racks, and rodeo in Kalispell on a Friday night? BIg Sky Country has its fair share of dangerous cities too.

Do you think that you live in one of the most dangerous cities in Montana? Before you lock your doors and grab your taser, we suggest that you take a look at RoadSnacks' list of the most dangerous places in Montana for 2022, there might be some that surprise you.

How'd we do it? We consulted the numbers. In total, we analyzed 31 cities. We looked at the FBI's latest crime report for violent crime and property crime statistics for every place with over 2,000 residents. We discovered that Montana's violent and property crime numbers, while not the worst in the country, could be better.

If you guessed that most of the state's problems are centralized around some of Montana's largest cities, Billings and Missoula, you're partially right. But honestly, the Treasure State has done a fair job of keeping it's crazy spread evenly across the state.

And while Montana might not be one of the top ten most dangerous states in the country, the state's most dangerous places do need some work. Maybe more police? Security cameras? Drug programs? We're not entirely sure. One thing that we are sure about, however, is that you should take a look at our list of Montana's most dangerous places before you make any life changing decisions.

To see our list of Montana cities with more issues than the Helena's Independent Record, take a look below.

The Most Dangerous Cities In Montana For 2022

  1. Billings
  2. Ronan City
  3. Helena
  4. Polson
  5. Havre
  6. Cut Bank
  7. Great Falls
  8. Missoula
  9. Wolf Point
  10. East Helena

We do recommend that you take a minute to look at Montana's most dangerous places before you make any life changing decisions. And if you choose to live in one of these dangerous cities, know that you will need to be aware of your surroundings at all times. There are a ton of 'wolves in sheep's clothing' out there..or just wolves.it is wild Montana, after all.

So, where is Montana's most dangerous place? That would be, Billings.

To see how your city faired, take a look at the list below; and if you don't find what you're looking for there, head to the bottom.

Learn more about the safest places in Montana.

If you're looking for something more national, check out the most dangerous cities in America or the most dangerous states in America.

For more Montana reading, check out:

The 10 Most Dangerous Places To Live In Montana For 2022

Built along the Yellowstone River in the south-central part of Montana, Billings represents a key urban area in an otherwise predominantly rural area. Beside the gorgeous natural vistas you can appreciate just outside of town, the community itself features loads of cultural attractions, like the Yellowstone Art Museum or the Western Heritage Center.

However, like any urban area, Billings attracts its share of bad characters. As a result, this ranks as the number 1 most dangerous spot in Montana. Property crime represents a major problem, with high rates of burglary, robbery, and car thefts. The city of 110,157 residents also faced 14 murders last year.

Overall SnackAbility

8
/10

Population: 110,157
Rank Last Year: -
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 852 (Third most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 4,765 (Second most dangerous)
More on Billings:  | Cost Of Living | Crime Report

Billings, MT

2. Ronan City

Part of the Flathead Indian Reservation in the northwest section of Montana, Ronan sports a population of just 2,141 people. However, on a per-capita basis, it ranks as one of the most dangerous spots in the state, coming in at second highest on that unfortunate list.

During the course of a year, the residents of Ronan suffered 66 property crimes. That equates to a rate of 3,082/100k people - enough to put it at sixth highest in Montana.

The true danger in Ronan comes as a result of violence. The small town saw 20violent crimes during the year. Comparing that to the total population, and you get a per-capita pace of 934/100k people, enough to rank second highest in the state as a whole. Aggravated assaults made up most of the violent crimes in the area.

Population: 2,141
Rank Last Year: 6 (Up 4)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 934 (Second most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 3,082 (Sixth most dangerous)
More on Ronan City:

Ronan City, MT

Every elementary-school student can name Helena as the political capital of Montana. Sadly, it's also the state's capital of something else: rape. The city of 33,629 people reported 50 rapes during the year. That's one for every 672.6 inhabitants - by far the highest rate in the Big Sky state.

Total violent crimes reached 216 during the year, putting Helena seventh highest in the state in that category. The city also suffered 1,227 property crimes over the course of 12 months. That pace projects to a figure of about 3,648/100k people - the third highest rate in Montana.

Overall SnackAbility

8
/10

Population: 33,629
Rank Last Year: 2 (Down 1)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 642 (Seventh most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 3,648 (Third most dangerous)
More on Helena:  | Cost Of Living | Crime Report

Helena, MT

Situated in the northwestern corner of Montana, Polson is located within the Flathead Indian Reservation. Unfortunately, life in this relatively small town comes with its challenges. It ranks as the 4 most dangerous place in Montana, suffering 164 property crimes and 36 violent crimes over the course of the year.

In raw numbers, those might not seem particularly scary. But it's important to put those figures into perspective. Putting it in terms of population, Polson has per-capita rate of violent crime of 703/100k people. That's about the same as Great Falls, Montana, a city with about 11 times more people.

Looking at property crimes, the rate comes in at 3,206/100k people. This gives Polson the fifth highest pace in Montana.

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 5,115
Rank Last Year: 4 (No Change)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 703 (Sixth most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 3,206 (Fifth most dangerous)
More on Polson:  | Crime Report

Polson, MT

Despite being located in bowels of the far west, built along the Milk River in north-central Montana, Havre gets its name from a spot in France, the port city of Le Havre. Ooo la la. But don't worry: this Havre has its share of old-fashioned American grit, booming as a railroad town around the turn of the 20th century.

Maybe to prove its still got that Wild West spirit, despite its European name, Havre struggles a crime problem. This includes both high rates of property crime and violence. This town of 9,820 residents reported 57 assaults last year.

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 9,820
Rank Last Year: -
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 712 (Fifth most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 3,054 (Seventh most dangerous)
More on Havre:  | Cost Of Living | Crime Report

Havre, MT

You've heard the expression "good things come in small packages?" Well, it can go the other way as well. Just look at Cut Bank, Montana. It's a town of 3,075 people that still tops the list of the state's most dangerous places.

Located about 30 miles south of the Canadian border, Cut Bank gets its name from a nearby gorge. However, the designation could suggest something a little darker: the violent nature of town. In an area with just a few thousand people people, Cut Bank suffered 23 violent crimes. That's a violent crime rate of 747/100k people, the highest rate in the state.

Cut Bank is a little better when it comes to property crime. The town reported 78 property crimes during the year, or a rate of 2,536/100k people. That pace puts it at ninth highest on the state's list for property crime.

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 3,075
Rank Last Year: 1 (Down 5)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 747 (Fourth most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 2,536 (Ninth most dangerous)
More on Cut Bank:  | Crime Report

Cut Bank, MT

Historically an important industrial and transportation center in the state, Great Falls boasts the 3rd highest population in Montana, with 58,345 residents. Unfortunately, a large population often comes with some downsides. In this case, residents of Great Falls have to contend with the highest rate of property crime in the state.

The city reported 2,999 property crimes over the course of a year. Putting that into perspective, it equates to a per-capita pace of 5,140/100k people. With this epidemic of property crime, Great Falls also ranks second highest in the state in overall crime, with a pace of 5,596/100k people.

One bright spot: Great Falls is a little better when it comes to violent crime. While it did have 266 of those during the year. As a result, it ranked only 12th highest in the state in its violent-crime rate.

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 58,345
Rank Last Year: 3 (Down 4)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 455 (12th most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 5,140 (Most dangerous)
More on Great Falls:  | Cost Of Living

Great Falls, MT

Having a population of 76,468 might not seem like much compared to places like New York City and San Francisco. But, for Montana, that number allows Missoula to rank among the biggest cities in the state. That size comes with a dark side, though. Missoula also holds the dubious distinction of being one of the murder capitals of Montana.

The city reported 4 murders over a year, out of 376 violent crimes for the 12-month period. In a small-population state, where everyone's spread out over a huge area, this ranks as the most killings for any municipality. Missoula also suffered 60 rapes during the year.

In addition to this violent streak, Missoula has a significant problem with property crime. The city saw 2,745 such occurrences during the year, ranking eighth highest ing burglaries and eighth highest in car thefts. In terms of rate, Missoula had a per-capita pace of property crimes of 3,589/100k people - the fourth highest pace in Montana.

Overall SnackAbility

8
/10

Population: 76,468
Rank Last Year: 8 (No Change)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 491 (Tenth most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 3,589 (Fourth most dangerous)
More on Missoula:  | Cost Of Living | Crime Report

Missoula, MT

Never heard of Wolf Point, Montana? You must not be a rodeo fan. The city hosts the oldest rodeo in Montana. However, visitors beware. A traveler to Wolf Point has more to fear than wild bulls. Unfortunately, Wolf Point also sports one of the highest violent crime rates in the state.

The main population center on the Fort Peck Indian Reservation, located in the northeastern part of the state, Wolf Point suffered 33 violent crimes during a year. That might not sound like much, but consider that the city has a population of just 2,744. In terms of rate, the city had a per-capita pace of violent crimes of 1,202/100k people - ranking it highest in the state for that category.

The news isn't all bad for rodeo fans, though. The city's property crime rate was relatively low, with a per-capita rate of 1,931/100k people in that category. That figure puts it 16th highest in the state for property-related issues.

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 2,744
Rank Last Year: 7 (Down 2)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,202 (Most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 1,931 (16th most dangerous)
More on Wolf Point:  | Crime Report

Wolf Point, MT

You can think of East Helena as a suburb of Helena, the capital of Montana. Located a short 5 miles from the center of political power in the state, East Helena counts as its own municipality. With a population of just 2,113 people, the city also ranks as one of the most dangerous places in Montana.

Over the course of a year, East Helena suffered 50 property crimes and 10 violent crimes. That's probably less than a single police precinct would see in a single day in New York City. But when compared to East Helena's scant population, it represents a virtual crime wave.

Put in terms of population, East Helena reported per-capita rate of violent crime of 473/100k people and a pace of 2,366/100k people for property crimes. Those rank 11th highest and 11th highest in the state, respectively. As far as violence is concerned, that means that East Helena is more dangerous than cities like Missoula, Montana, a city with more than 30 times more people.

Overall SnackAbility

8
/10

Population: 2,113
Rank Last Year: 5 (Down 5)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 473 (11th most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 2,366 (11th most dangerous)
More on East Helena:  | Crime Report

East Helena, MT

Methodology: How we determined the most dangerous cities in Montana for 2022?

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 JUST released 2020 data, specifically the 2020 Crime In The United States Report. We will update the results when data becomes available in September 2022.

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 Montana cities over 2,000 in population. That left us with 31 cities in Montana.

We then ranked each city from 1 to 31 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 Montana -- Billings. Any ties went to the smaller city. You can download the data here.

Most Dangerous Places To Live In Montana FAQs

Is Montana a dangerous state?

Yes, Montana is a dangerous state as it ranks as the #12 most dangerous state in the United States based on our analysis of the latest FBI Crime Data. The violent crime rate in montana ranks 11th highest in the United States -- 21.16% worse than US average violent crime rate. The property crime rate in the Treasure State ranks 22nd highest in the United States -- 8.3% worse than US average property crime rate. The latest reporting year from the FBI was 2020.

Is Billings, MT a dangerous city?

Yes, Billings is a dangerous city. Billings ranks as the #24 most dangerous out of 320 major cities over 100,000 people in the United States based on our analysis of the latest FBI Crime Data. Keep in mind that are always safe and dangerous parts of any city, so even though Billings might be considered dangerous you still need to be aware of where you are.

Compared to other big cities, the violent crime rate in Billings ranks 59th highest in America -- 55.29% worse than US average violent crime rate. The property crime rate in the ranks 2highest in the United States -- 79.42% worse than US average property crime rate. Note the latest reporting year from the FBI was 2020 and that no city in America is 'dangerous'. Despite the uptick in murders, it's nothing like you'd see in Tijuana or Caracas where the murder rate is 2x any American city.

Graphing The Most Dangerous And Safest Places In Montana

Most Dangerous Cities In Montana Graph

Click To Enlarge

Summary: Locking It All Up In Montana

So what is the most dangerous city in Montana? After analyzing 31 cities in Montana, Billings takes the top spot as the most dangerous city in Montana based on the most recently reported FBI data -- 2020.

The latest FBI crime data shows that Billings ranks as the most dangerous city in Montana for 2022.

We want to point out again that there's still safes places in Billings and that this isn't a comment on the people that live there. So please don't beat us up.

We do recommend that you take a minute to look at Montana's most dangerous places before you make any life changing decisions. And if you choose to live in one of these dangerous cities, know that you will need to be aware of your surroundings at all times. There are a ton of 'wolves in sheep's clothing' out there..or just wolves.it is wild Montana, after all.

So, where is Montana's most dangerous place? That would be, Billings.

To see how your city faired, take a look at the list below; and if you don't find what you're looking for there, head to the bottom.

Learn more about the safest places in Montana.

If you're looking for something more national, check out the most dangerous cities in America or the most dangerous states in America.

Here are the safest cities in Montana:

  1. Lewistown (Pop. 5,772)
  2. Libby (Pop. 2,797)
  3. Miles City (Pop. 8,250)
  4. Conrad (Pop. 2,458)
  5. Dillon (Pop. 4,318)
  6. Whitefish (Pop. 8,523)
  7. Glendive (Pop. 4,908)
  8. Red Lodge (Pop. 2,324)
  9. Deer Lodge (Pop. 2,822)
  10. Colstrip (Pop. 2,249)

For more Montana reading, check out:

Crime By City In Montana

Rank City Population Violent Crimes Per Capita Property Crimes Per Capita
1 Billings 110,157 852 4,765
2 Ronan City 2,141 934 3,082
3 Helena 33,629 642 3,648
4 Polson 5,115 703 3,206
5 Havre 9,820 712 3,054
6 Cut Bank 3,075 747 2,536
7 Great Falls 58,345 455 5,140
8 Missoula 76,468 491 3,589
9 Wolf Point 2,744 1,202 1,931
10 East Helena 2,113 473 2,366
11 Hamilton 4,970 342 2,957
12 Sidney 6,279 557 1,863
13 Livingston 7,892 418 2,230
14 Kalispell 25,125 310 2,376
15 Belgrade 9,762 307 2,253
16 Glasgow 3,326 541 1,142
17 Laurel 6,732 267 2,213
18 Stevensville 2,100 428 761
19 Bozeman 51,460 305 1,354
20 Columbus 2,100 190 2,000
21 Columbia Falls 6,023 298 1,411
22 Lewistown 5,772 363 744
23 Libby 2,797 143 1,751
24 Miles City 8,250 230 1,296
25 Conrad 2,458 284 895
26 Dillon 4,318 301 231
27 Whitefish 8,523 187 997
28 Glendive 4,908 122 590
29 Red Lodge 2,324 129 215
30 Deer Lodge 2,822 106 496
31 Colstrip 2,249 44 0

How Is Your Town In ?

This article is an opinion based on facts and is meant as infotainment. It is our ninth time ranking the most dangerous places to live in Montana and is updated for 2022.

About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.