Do you live in one of the most dangerous cities in South 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 South Carolina — and anyone looking to move to South 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 Palmetto State:
- Hartsville (Photos)
- Dillon (Photos)
- Myrtle Beach (Photos)
- Camden (Photos)
- Walterboro (Photos)
- Darlington (Photos)
- Lake City (Photos)
- Florence (Photos)
Why did Hartsville 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 South Carolina.
How we determined the most dangerous cities in South Carolina for 2018?
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 2016 data, specifically the 2016 Crime In The United States Report. We will update the results when data becomes available for 2017 in October 2018.
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 55 cities in South Carolina.
We then ranked each city from 1 to 55 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 South Carolina — Hartsville. Read on for a detailed look at the 10 most dangerous cities in South Carolina.
Read on for a detailed look at the 10 most dangerous cities in South Carolina.
Population: 7,837Rank Last Year: 3 (Up 2)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,965
Property Crimes Per 100k: 10,424
Hartsville is less violent than Spartanburg, but makes up for it with a high rate of property crime.
There’s a 1 in 9.6 chance of being the victim of a property crime in a city of 7,837 people, so chances are everyone here knows someone who’s been a victim. but, like most of the other cities on this list, both violent and property crimes have been decreasing.
Population: 6,648Rank Last Year: 1 (Down 1)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,910
Property Crimes Per 100k: 10,905
Dillon may not be the worst place for property crime, but demonating one event makes for overall gold in this contest. And a 1 in 52 chance of being the victim of a violent crime is super high, especially for South Carolina.
Dillon is a small city of less than 10,000 people, like most of the cities you’ll see on this list, meaning you might wanna stick to crowds if you end up here when you’re in the Palmetto state.
Dillon also finished as the most dangerous in last year’s list.
3. Myrtle Beach
Population: 31,864Rank Last Year: 2 (Down 1)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,688
Property Crimes Per 100k: 13,792
Folks on the East Coast love vacationing in Myrtle Beach — lovely beaches and boardwalks make it seem quite a safe summer retreat.
Yet a roughly 1 in 7.3 chance of being the victim of a property crime makes it one of the few places where wearing a wallet chain may not be a bad idea. And unfortunately for residents and vacationers alike, both violent and property crime has been steadily rising over the past few years.
Population: 7,132Rank Last Year: 6 (Up 2)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,570
Property Crimes Per 100k: 7,978
Camden isn’t great in the violent crime category, with a 1 in 63 chance of being the victim of a violent crime in 2016. On average, though, the amount of property crime is about the same as other places on the list, despite Camden’s larger population.
Unlike most other cities on this list, Camden has experienced an increase in violent crime over the 2011-2016 period, while property crime has remained fairly stagnant.
Population: 5,253Rank Last Year: 10 (Up 5)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,123
Property Crimes Per 100k: 8,547
The third smallest city in the state and one of the smallest city on this list, Walterboro shows that small cities can be more dangerous than the big ones.
There’s less than a 1% chance of being the victim of a violent crime in Walterboro, which is better than most cities on this list. A 1 in 11.7 shot of being the victim of property crime is what keeps Walterboro on the list.
Population: 6,130 Rank Last Year: 8 (Up 2)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,109
Property Crimes Per 100k: 8,646
Darlington, a representive from Darlington County finds itself as one of the most dangerous cities in South Carolina.
Darlington’s ranking for violent crime and property were 10th and 5th, respectively.
Darlington is a bit off the beaten path, yet it still manages its fair share of crime.
7. Lake City
Population: 6,809 Rank Last Year: 5 (Down 2)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,879
Property Crimes Per 100k: 6,447
Though there has been a modest drop in violent crimes, the alarming increase in property crime from 2014-16indicates that Lake City isn’t satisfied with being at the bottom of this list.
Lake City residents had a 1 in 53 chance of a violent crime, while having a 1 in 15.5 chance of a property crime, 3rd and 12th in the state, respecitvely.
Population: 6,674 Rank Last Year: 4 (Down 4)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 913
Property Crimes Per 100k: 8,960
Compared to Myrtle Beach, Marion has seen a continuous drop in crime of late — just not at a quick enough rate to get it off this list.
And with residents still facing a 9% chance of being the victim of a property crime, there’s little cause for celebration. In fact, the latest FBI report shows that there were 61 violent crimes in a town of only 6,674 in 2016.
Population: 38,382Rank Last Year: 13 (Up 4)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,062
Property Crimes Per 100k: 6,677
The most populated city in South Carolina, Florence ranks as the 9th most danerous city in our analysis.
While the rate of property crime dropped by 12% between 2014-16, violent crime went up by 8%.
This left Florence residents with a 1 in 94 chance of being the victim of violence in 2016.
Population: 7,981 Rank Last Year: 20 (Up 10)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,115
Property Crimes Per 100k: 5,926
The least populated city on this list, Union’s crime rate has gotten pretty extreme.
Between 2014-16, violent crime went up to 89 occurrences, leaving Union’s residents a 1 in 89 chance of being the victim of a violent crime in 2016.
Property crime remained stagnant during these years, with residents of Union having about a 1 in 16.9 chance of being the victim of theft or arson each year.
Locking It All Up In South Carolina
The latest FBI crime data shows that Hartsville ranks as the most dangerous city in South Carolina for 2018.
However, there will be new data coming out later this year. At that point we can revisit Hartsville’s status — that is if they haven’t beaten us all up already.
If you’re curious enough, here are the safest cities in South Carolina:
- Mount Pleasant
- Tega Cay
For more South Carolina reading , check out:
- 5 South Carolina Foods Taste Tested By Californians
- These Are The 10 Dumbest Cities In South Carolina
- These Are The 10 Worst Places To Live In South Carolina
Detailed List Of The Most Dangeroues Cities In South Carolina
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