Do you live in one of the most dangerous cities in North Carolina?
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 North Carolina — and anyone looking to move to North Carolina — know just how close they are to danger, we took data from the annual FBI report and did some serious analysis.
The data shows that these ten cities are currently the most dangerous in the Tar Heel State for 2019:
- Whiteville (Photos)
- Wadesboro (Photos)
- Kinston (Photos)
- Williamston (Photos)
- Clinton (Photos)
- Reidsville (Photos)
- Rockingham (Photos)
- Roanoke Rapids (Photos)
- Washington (Photos)
- Goldsboro (Photos)
After analyzing 99 cities in North Carolina, why did Whiteville 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 North Carolina.
For more North Carolina reading, check out:
- 10 Best Places To Live In North Carolina
- These Are The 10 Best Counties To Live In North Carolina
- 10 Cheapest Places To Live In North Carolina
Graphing The Most Dangerous And Safest Places In North Carolina
How we determined the most dangerous cities in North Carolina for 2019?
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 2017 data, specifically the 2017 Crime In The United States Report. We will update the results when data becomes available in September 2019.
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 99 cities in North Carolina.
We then ranked each city from 1 to 99 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 North Carolina — Whiteville.
Read on for a detailed look at the 10 most dangerous cities in North Carolina.
Whiteville takes the 1st spot in our analysis of the most dangerous cities in North Carolina.
The rough and tumble nature of the town leaks into the crime stats.
The city ranks 3rd for violent crime and 4th for property crime.
Wadesboro ranks relatively poorly in both categories of crime in North Carolina.
That left Wadesboro’s residents with a 1 in 65 shot of being the victim of violence in 2017. Additionally, it ranked 7th for property crime.
Kinston is the 3rd most dangerous city in North Carolina, and places 8th for property crime.
Though the city has seen a 12% drop in property crime in recent years, anyone in Kinston still faced a 1 in 17.1 chance of being robbed in 2017 when within city limits.
Violent crime is relatively high, and the numbers aren’t getting better or worse, but the 1 in 78 chance of being the victim of violence makes Kinston pretty dangerous.
The 92nd most populated city in North Carolina, Williamston ranks as the 4th most dangerous.
Williamston’s crime problem has been slowly improving in recent years, with violent crime going down from 2015-17, and property crime dropping.
Still, Williamston residents face about a 1 in 16.3 chance of being the victim of theft or arson.
Clinton has the smallest population of any city in North Carolina, but still places 5th in our ranking.
Living in such a small place evidently breeds a high rate of violence in the state, with residents of Clinton facing a 1 in 114 chance of being the victim of a violent crime in 2017.
Reidsville ranks as the 6th most dangerous city in North Carolina.
The Reidsville ranks as having the 7th highest violent crime rate and 14th highest property crime rate.
The tiny town of Rockingham might not be familiar to most residents of North Carolina. Rockingham has really seen crime rise very quickly in the last few years.
For instance, there were 60 violent crimes in the entire city. For a town of 9,005, that’s a lot.
Residents in Rockingham have a 1 in 11.9 chance of being the victim of a property crime, according to the FBI.
Roanoke Rapids residents faced a 1 in 140 chance of being the victim of violence in 2017 and a 1 in 17.7 chance of being the victim of a property crime — both statistics that have barely changed in recent years.
It’s the 14th most violent city.
Washington is the smallest city to make this list.
Violent crime rose between 2015-17, leaving residents a 1 in 136 chance of being the victim of violence in 2017 (a rate that would earn a top 10 spot in most states).
Washington’s already horrible property crime statistics also got worse in these years, going up between 2015-17.
Crime in Goldsboro has been heading in the right direction over the past few years, as both property and violent crimes have been on the decrease since 2011. Perhaps the former home of Andy Griffith could use more help of Matlock-type lawyers to help solve some of Goldsboro’s recent crimes.
Goldsboro residents have a 1 in 19.9 chance of being the victim of a property crime, good for 20th worst in the state. Additionally, they have a 1 in 133 chance of being the victim of a violent crime, 9th worst in North Carolina.
Locking It All Up In North Carolina
The latest FBI crime data shows that Whiteville ranks as the most dangerous city in North Carolina for 2019.
We want to point out again that there’s still safes places in Whiteville and that this isn’t a comment on the people that live there. So please don’t beat us up.
If you’re curious enough, here are the safest cities in North Carolina:
- Elon (Pop. 10,283)
- Holly Springs (Pop. 34,897)
- Pinehurst (Pop. 16,145)
For more North Carolina reading, check out:
- 10 Best Places To Raise A Family In North Carolina
- These Are The 10 Best Places To Retire In North Carolina For 2018
- These Are The 10 Richest Cities In North Carolina
- 10 Safest Cities in North Carolina
- 10 Worst Places To Live In North Carolina
Detailed List Of The Most Dangerous Cities In North Carolina
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