Do you live in one of the most dangerous cities in Vermont?
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.
On the whole, Vermont’s a pretty safe place to chill, ski, snowboard, and drink maple syrup by the gallon. I mean how much crime can there be in a state that’s 75% forests? Not much, but that doesn’t mean that some cities have a heckuva lot more crime than others.
Instead of relying on speculation, we dug into the FBI crime data in order to identify the most dangerous places in Vermont.
The result is the following list of top ten most dangerous Vermont cities for 2019:
- St. Albans (Photos)
- Barre (Photos)
- Rutland (Photos)
- Brattleboro (Photos)
- Burlington (Photos)
- Winooski (Photos)
- South Burlington (Photos)
- Springfield (Photos)
- Montpelier (Photos)
- St. Johnsbury (Photos)
After analyzing 22 cities in Vermont, why did St. Albans 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 Vermont.
For more Vermont reading, check out:
- 10 Best Places To Live In Vermont
- These Are The 10 Best Counties To Live In Vermont
- 10 Cheapest Places To Live In Vermont
Graphing The Most Dangerous And Safest Places In Vermont
How we determined the most dangerous cities in Vermont 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 22 cities in Vermont.
We then ranked each city from 1 to 22 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 Vermont — St. Albans.
Read on for a detailed look at the 10 most dangerous cities in Vermont.
St. Albans takes 1st because of its 1st place finish for violence.
Located in central Vermont, 30 miles north of Montpelier, St. Albans experienced rise in violent crime between 2015-17.
This left residents with a 1 in 147 chance of being the victim of violence and a 1 in 13.4 chance of being the victim of theft or arson in 2017.
Barre ranks as the 2nd most dangerous city in Vermont according to 2017’s data.
While there’s still a 1 in 21.4 chance of being the victim of a property crime in Barre, their crime statistics in both categories have been falling steadily over recent years.
It’s probably no surprise for most Vermonter’s to see Rutland taking 3rd place for most dangerous city in the state.
Rutland experienced a 7% rise in violent crime between 2015-17, tempered by a 7% drop in property crime, meaning that, overall, crime has stayed at about the highest levels in the state.
In 2017, folks in Rutland had a 1 in 181 chance of being murdered, raped, or assaulted, and a 1 in 30.3 chance of being robbed or the victim of arson.
Located in southeastern Vermont, Brattleboro is Vermont’s 7th biggest town and 4th most dangerous.
In recent years, the crime rate has changed dramatically in Brattleboro, for better and for worse.
On the one hand, instances of violent crime dropped between 2015-17, but on the other, a hike in property crime during this interval leaves Brattleboro as the town with the 3rd highest rate of property crime in Vermont.
Though there has been a modest drop in violent crimes, the alarming increase in property crime from 2015-17indicates that Burlington isn’t satisfied with being at the bottom of this list.
Burlington residents had a 1 in 319 chance of a violent crime, while having a 1 in 36.3 chance of a property crime, 5th and 5th in the state, respectively.
Winooski ranks as the 6th most dangerous city in Vermont according to the FBI data.
The city ranks as having the 7th highest property crime rank and 4th highest violent crime rank in the Green Mountain State.
South Burlington isn’t the worst in state in terms of either violent or property crime statistics, but bad rankings in each earn it the title of the 7th most dangerous city in the Green Mountain State.
The good news is that instances of property crime dropped between 2015-17, but the bad news is that violent crime rose in the same time period.
That left South Burlington residents with a 1 in 517 chance of being the victim of a violent crime in 2017, making the city the 11th most violent place in Vermont.
Just 40 miles north of Brattleboro, Springfield has the 8th highest rate of violent crime, giving it a 8th place danger ranking overall.
Folks in Springfield had a 1 in 449 chance of being the victim of a violent crime in 2017, a 5% increase from 2016.
Property crime went up during this interval, giving a Springfield resident a 1 in 52.6 chance of being the victim of theft or arson in 2017.
Montpelier Vermont has seen crime within its city limits head downwards over the last few years, but it’s still a relatively dangerous place.
Chances are if you live in Montpelier, someone you know was the victim of a break-in or theft in recent years, as nearly 1 in 39.4 residents had a run in with a criminal last year.
St. Johnsbury was named the best small town by National Geographic in 2006, but a recent surge in crime may change the some observers’ perspectives.
Violent crime more than doubled between 2015-17, and property crime went up by 35%.
That means residents of St. Johnsbury had a 1 in 449 chance of being the victim of a violent crime and a 1 in 53.3 chance of being the victim of a property crime.
Locking It All Up In Vermont
The latest FBI crime data shows that St. Albans ranks as the most dangerous city in Vermont for 2019.
We want to point out again that there’s still safes places in St. Albans 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 Vermont:
- Middlebury (Pop. 8,681)
- Swanton (Pop. 6,529)
- Shelburne (Pop. 7,827)
For more Vermont reading, check out:
- 10 Best Places To Raise A Family In Vermont
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- These Are The 10 Richest Cities In Vermont
- 10 Safest Places In Vermont
- 10 Worst Places To Live In Vermont
Detailed List Of The Most Dangerous Cities In Vermont