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.
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.
For more Pennsylvania reading, check out:
- 10 Best Places To Live In Pennsylvania
- These Are The 10 Best Counties To Live In Pennsylvania
- 10 Cheapest Places To Live In Pennsylvania
Graphing The Most Dangerous And Safest Places In Pennsylvania
The 10 Most Dangerous Places To Live In Pennsylvania For 2019
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 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.
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.
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.
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 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 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.
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.
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.
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:
- O’Hara Township (Pop. 8,514)
- East Marlborough Township (Pop. 7,310)
- Luzerne Township (Pop. 5,868)
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