The 10 Most Dangerous Cities In Pennsylvania For 2019


We used data and science to identify the most dangerous cities in the Keystone State for 2019.

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This article is an opinion based on facts and is meant as infotainment. It is our fifth time ranking the most dangerous places to live in Pennsylvania and is updated for 2019.

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Do you live in one of the most dangerous cities in Pennsylvania?

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 Pennsylvania — and anyone looking to move to Pennsylvania — know just how close they are to danger, we took data from the annual FBI report and did some serious analysis.

Here are the 10 most dangerous cities in Pennsylvania for 2019:

  1. McKees Rocks (Photos)
  2. Ambridge (Photos)
  3. Darby (Photos)
  4. Duquesne (Photos)
  5. Chester (Photos)
  6. Taylor (Photos)
  7. Lancaster (Photos)
  8. Bradford (Photos)
  9. Pottstown
  10. Steelton (Photos)

So what is the most dangerous city in Pennsylvania? After analyzing 447 cities in Pennsylvania, McKees Rocks takes the top spot as the most dangerous city in Pennsylvania based on the most recent FBI data.

For a detailed explanation of the data and analysis we used in creating this ranking, read on.

Or learn more about the safest places in Pennsylvania.

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 Pennsylvania reading, check out:

Graphing The Most Dangerous And Safest Places In Pennsylvania

Most Dangerous Cities In Pennsylvania Graph

Click To Enlarge

The 10 Most Dangerous Places To Live In Pennsylvania For 2019

Mckees Rocks, PA

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 5,926
Rank Last Year:
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,333 (7th most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 5,467 (1st most dangerous)
More on McKees Rocks:  Data | Photos

McKees Rocks ranks as the 1st most dangerous city in Pennsylvania according to the FBI data.

The city ranks as having the 1st highest property crime rank and 7th highest violent crime rank in the Keystone State.

Ambridge, PA

Source: Public domain

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 6,744
Rank Last Year: 4 (Up 2)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,556 (5th most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 4,314 (4th most dangerous)
More on Ambridge:  Data | Photos

Ambridge ranks 5th in violent crime, but 4th overall in property crime to place as the 2nd most dangerous city in Pennsylvania.

To put that in perspective, you have a 1 in 23.2 chance of being a victim of a property crime in Ambridge. That makes property crimes much more common in Ambridge than the safest city, Luzerne Township.

Darby, PA

Source: Public domain

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 10,648
Rank Last Year: 2 (Down 1)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,615 (2nd most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 3,765 (10th most dangerous)
More on Darby:  Data | Photos

Located just five miles southwest of downtown Philadelphia, Darby is the most violent city in Pennsylvania by a wide, wide margin.

A shockingly high 1 in 61 of Darby’s residents was a victim of a violent crime in 2017, a rate four times worse than Philly.

And violent crime has only been going up recently, with a spike in the violent crime rate between 2015-17.

Duquesne, PA

Overall SnackAbility

3
/10

Population: 5,507
Rank Last Year: 1 (Down 2)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,561 (4th most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 3,958 (8th most dangerous)
More on Duquesne:  Data | Photos

Located in Allegheny County, Duquesne has the 8th worst rate of property crime in Pennsylvania.

Instances of property crime went up between 2015-17, with 2017’s rate being 1 in 25.3.

Violent crime went to 4th worst overall during this time.

Chester, PA

Source: Public domain

Overall SnackAbility

3
/10

Population: 33,984
Rank Last Year: 10 (Up 5)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,609 (3rd most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 3,298 (24th most dangerous)
More on Chester:  Data | Photos

Residents of Chester faced an unbelievable 1 in 62 chance of being the victim of violence in 2017. That contributed to an overall ranking of 5th most dangerous in Pennsylvania.

Taylor, PA

Source: Public domain

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 5,929
Rank Last Year: 32 (Up 26)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 995 (13th most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 3,423 (20th most dangerous)
More on Taylor:  Data | Photos

Taylor is the smallest city to make this list, but don’t let that fool you — the city is also one of the most violent in the state.

Taylor residents had a 1 in 100 chance of being the victim of a violent crime in 2017.

The only reason Taylor is so low on this list is because it has the lowest frequency of property crime (about 1 per 203 residents in 2017) of any city on this list.

Lancaster, PA

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 59,199
Rank Last Year: 8 (Up 1)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 895 (17th most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 3,376 (22nd most dangerous)
More on Lancaster:  Data | Photos

Lancaster has more outdoor CCTV cameras per capita than other U.S. city, and, despite the controversy among residents, it’s kinda understandable.

Not only that, but it seems to be working (somewhat), as violent crime has been held steady in recent years and property crime has fallen.

Still, a 1 in 29.6 chance of being the victim of a property crime hardly seems like a cause for celebration.

Review Of Lancaster by HomeSnacks User

I’ve lived in Lancaster all my life and I will agree there are rednecks here as well as dive bars but I must say there’s no place I’d rather call home. Yes times are changing but this town has its ups and downs just like anyplace else. Besides there is plenty of history in this town and many many Good people. Rednecks are everywhere they don’t bother me at all. I say live and let live! I Love Lancaster Pa!!!

Bradford, PA

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 8,307
Rank Last Year: 19 (Up 11)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 782 (22nd most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 3,430 (19th most dangerous)
More on Bradford:  Data | Photos

Bradford, a city in McKean County, has seen its crime increase overall for the last few years. According to the FBI, violent crimes have nearly doubled here, and residents have a 1 in 127 chance of being robbed.

Additionally, there were 65 attacks in a city of only 8,307 residents.

9. Pottstown

Pottstown, PA

Population: 22,706
Rank Last Year: 6 (Down 2)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 726 (26th most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 3,598 (15th most dangerous)
More on Pottstown:

Just 30 miles northwest of Philadelphia, Pottstown has the 15th worst property crime rate in the state.

Property crime rose between 2015-17, leaving residents of Pottstown with a 1 in 27.8 chance of being the victim of theft or arson in 2017.

At least violent crime fell during this interval.

Steelton, PA

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 5,897
Rank Last Year: 5 (Down 5)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,000 (12th most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 3,154 (31st most dangerous)
More on Steelton:  Data | Photos

Located in the heart of the Keystone State, Steelton has the 31st worst rate of property crime in the state, with residents facing a 1 in 12th chance of being the victim of theft or arson in 2017.

The city had a 1 in 99 chance of being the victim of a violent crime in 2017.

How Is Your Town In ?

How we determined the most dangerous cities in Pennsylvania 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 447 cities in Pennsylvania.

We then ranked each city from 1 to 447 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 Pennsylvania — McKees Rocks.

Read on for a detailed look at the 10 most dangerous cities in Pennsylvania.

Locking It All Up In Pennsylvania

The latest FBI crime data shows that McKees Rocks ranks as the most dangerous city in Pennsylvania for 2019.

We want to point out again that there’s still safes places in McKees Rocks 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 Pennsylvania:

  1. O’Hara Township (Pop. 8,514)
  2. East Marlborough Township (Pop. 7,310)
  3. Luzerne Township (Pop. 5,868)

For more Pennsylvania reading, check out:

Where Are The Most Dangerous Cities In Pennsylvania?

Rank City Population Violent Crimes Per Capita Property Crimes Per Capita
1 McKees Rocks 5,926 1,333 5,467
2 Ambridge 6,744 1,556 4,314
3 Darby 10,648 1,615 3,765
4 Duquesne 5,507 1,561 3,958
5 Chester 33,984 1,609 3,298
6 Taylor 5,929 995 3,423
7 Lancaster 59,199 895 3,376
8 Bradford 8,307 782 3,430
9 Pottstown 22,706 726 3,598
10 Steelton 5,897 1,000 3,154

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15 thoughts on “The 10 Most Dangerous Cities In Pennsylvania For 2019

  1. I’m surprised Johnstown isn’t ranked higher! Violent crime such as shootings and stabbing a are still too frequent here! I work in a hospital and see the traumas all the time! Drugs have caused 80% of this problem!

  2. Just to clarify, a majority of people left Johnstown after the steel mills closed. The increase in crime has only been around for the last 5 years. In an effort to bring people back and try to generate revenue from it, the city added halfway housing, a methadone clinic, and has been known to advertise low income housing in rougher cities like Philadelphia and even out of state.
    Most of the drug related crime is funneling in from states like New York, New Jersey, Ohio. It’s a small town, most residents would rather move than try to save this dying town. It’s sad, this poor town is looking and feeling more and more like Detroit.
    I still hold out some hope for this place though.

  3. The reason why crime continues to increase worldwide is because most people are not born again Christians.Also there is a percentage of people worldwide who claim they are born again who are not being fully faithful to the Lord Gods word.The holy bible predicted SIN will intensify.Jesus Christ will come down on a cloud in great power and glory.He will resurrect the true Christians from there graves.These Christians will meet the Lord Jesus Christ in the sky.People who are not saved will be left behind.Some Christians are hypocrites.Some unsaved are hypocrites.

  4. Crime continues to increase every year in cities worldwide because of SIN!Most people throughout the world are not Christians.There are those claiming to be Christians worldwide.A percentage are not being faithful to the Lord God.What are we so afraid of?Are we ashamed of Jesus Christ?Are we afraid of changing?The Holy bible says it will get worst!

  5. Truth has never been lost, we left it. We never had a right to hate others through jealous, bigotry, racism or any other type of hatred. The only time we are justified is in proverbs 8 :13. Google it! Repent ! Do a self examination.

  6. Any list of dangerous places in Pennsylvania that doesn’t have Killadelphia at the top of the list is not to be taken seriously. Any site publishing a list that can’t be taken seriously is also not to be taken seriously.

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