Do you live in one of the most dangerous cities in Utah?
We all watch the news and see the Facebook feeds come across of the latest crimes that are happening in our home towns. While a major crime just blocks away from your house can make you feel really uneasy, in the big picture, most likely, where you live is relatively safe.
If you think that Utah’s any less dangerous than your average state because of huge Mormon population and the difficulty of finding booze, you’d be dead wrong. And the capital, Salt Lake City, seems to be the epicenter of crime in Utah.
Instead of relying on speculation, we dug into the FBI crime data in order to identify the most dangerous places in Utah.
The result is the following list of top ten most dangerous Utah cities for 2019:
- Salt Lake City (Photos)
- South Salt Lake (Photos)
- Murray (Photos)
- Ogden (Photos)
- West Valley
- Roosevelt (Photos)
- Riverdale (Photos)
- Tooele (Photos)
- Price (Photos)
- Park City (Photos)
After analyzing 63 cities in Utah, why did Salt Lake City 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 Utah.
For more Utah reading, check out:
- 10 Best Places To Live In Utah
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Graphing The Most Dangerous And Safest Places In Utah
How we determined the most dangerous cities in Utah 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 63 cities in Utah.
We then ranked each city from 1 to 63 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 Utah — Salt Lake City.
Read on for a detailed look at the 10 most dangerous cities in Utah.
That capital and most populous city in Utah, Salt Lake City is, unfortunately, the 1st most crime ridden city in the state.
And, just like in South Salt Lake, crime has steadily been rising in the capital, with a 22% spike in violent crime from 2015-17, and a 5% increase in property crime.
This left the folks of Salt Lake City a 1 in 113 chance of being the victim of violence and a 1 in 12.4 chance of being the victim of a property crime in 2017.
Just south of Salt Lake City, South Salt Lake beats the capital’s crime rankings by just a sliver because it has a marginally higher rate of violent crime.
Residents of South Salt Lake had a 1 in 105 chance of being the victim of a rape, murder, or assault in 2017, and a 1 in 12.6 chance of being the victim of theft or arson.
And the crime rate has only been getting worse, with the city experiencing an 18% rise in violent crime and a 6% rise in property crime between 2015-17.
Though there has been a modest drop in violent crimes, the alarming increase in property crime from 2015-17indicates that Murray isn’t satisfied with being at the bottom of this list.
Murray residents had a 1 in 206 chance of a violent crime, while having a 1 in 14.6 chance of a property crime, 6th and 3rd in the state, respectively.
Just 40 miles north of Salt Lake City, Ogden was named the 6th best place to raise a family by Forbes in 2010.
That’s awfully surprising considering Ogden’s abysmal crime rate, with residents facing a 1 in 188 chance of being the victim of violence and a 1 in 23.0 chance of being the victim of a property crime in 2017.
Still, that’s 67% less violent crime than South Salt Lake, and 50% less property crime than Salt Lake City, so that’s some good news for Ogden’s families.
5. West Valley
Rank Last Year: 4 (No Change)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 582 (4th most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 4,237 (9th most dangerous)
More on West Valley:
A suburb of Salt Lake City (the seeming hub of Utah’s crime), West Valley is the second largest city in the state.
Not unlike the capital, West Valley has experienced a rapid growth in its crime rate — a 20% increase in violent crime and 22% in property crime between 2015-17.
Residents of West Valley had a fairly high 1 in 171 chance of being the victim of a violent crime in 2017.
The furthest city from the capital so far (140 miles southeast of Salt Lake City), Roosevelt has experienced a rapid 50% increase in its population since 2000.
But with this swell of people came a rapid rise in crime, with instances of violent crime more than tripling, and instances of property crime going up by 33% from 2015-17.
With that recent boom in violence especially, Roosevelt residents had a 1 in 243 chance of being the victim of a rape, murder, or assault in 2017.
Riverdale comes in as the most dangerous city in the state. It has the 12th highest rate of violent crime, and places 4th for its rate of property crime.
Residents of Riverdale had a 1 in 14.7 chance of being the victim of theft or arson in 2017. They also had a 1 in 364 chance of being the victim of violence.
Tooele is home to the 8th most dangerous population in Utah.
Violent crime has been decreasing of late, but the 1 in 28.8 chance of being the victim of a property crime has been fairly consistent.
The largest city in Carbon County, Price has experienced a 13% increase in its violent crime rate and a 19% rise in property crime rate between 2015-17.
Folks in Price had about a 1 in 19.8 chance of being robbed or burnt in 2017, which is just the heavy price you pay for living in Price.
Just 30 miles southeast of downtown Salt Lake City, Park City is a lovely, artsy city that’s one of three sites where the Sundance Film Festival takes place.
But that charm hasn’t protected Park City from a truly dramatic surge in violent crime; from 2015-17, instances of violent crime tripled.
On the bright side, property crime fell by 25% during these years. But most would prefer if the assaults and rapes were the statistics that were going down.
Locking It All Up In Utah
The latest FBI crime data shows that Salt Lake City ranks as the most dangerous city in Utah for 2019.
We want to point out again that there’s still safes places in Salt Lake City 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 Utah:
- Lone Peak (Pop. 29,691)
- Salem (Pop. 8,086)
- Santa Clara/Ivins (Pop. 15,615)
For more Utah reading, check out:
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- These Are The 10 Richest Cities In Utah
- 10 Safest Places In Utah
- 10 Worst Places To Live In Utah
Detailed List Of The Most Dangerous Cities In Utah
|1||Salt Lake City||194,968|
|2||South Salt Lake||24,811|
|34||American Fork/Cedar Hills||39,603|
|40||North Salt Lake||21,053|