Do you live in one of the most dangerous cities in Washington?
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 Washington — and anyone looking to move to Washington — 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 Evergreen State for 2019:
- Fife (Photos)
- Spokane (Photos)
- Tacoma (Photos)
- Centralia (Photos)
- Seattle (Photos)
- Federal Way (Photos)
- Union Gap (Photos)
- Lakewood (Photos)
- Moses Lake (Photos)
- Lynnwood (Photos)
After analyzing 117 cities in Washington, why did Fife 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 Washington.
For more Washington reading, check out:
- 10 Best Places To Live In Washington
- These Are The 10 Best Counties To Live In Washington
- 10 Cheapest Places To Live In Washington
Graphing The Most Dangerous And Safest Places In Washington
How we determined the most dangerous cities in Washington 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 117 cities in Washington.
We then ranked each city from 1 to 117 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 Washington — Fife.
Read on for a detailed look at the 10 most dangerous cities in Washington.
An eastern suburb of Tacoma, Fife rivals the bigger city with its violent crime statistics.
Residents face a 1 in 103 chance of being the victim of a violent crime, a number which increased between 2011 and 2017.
Though the property crime ranking isn’t as bad, it’s still on an upwards trend.
Spokane is the 2nd largest city in Washington, and also just so happens to be the 2nd most dangerous city in the state.
Both violent and property crimes have been increasing at a troubling speed over the past few years.
While the 1 in 13.8 chance of being a property crime victim here might not seem so bad, I’d say it’s still not a number to celebrate.
Tacoma’s danger level ranks as the 3rd most dangerous city in the state.
About 30 miles southwest of Seattle and 30 miles northeast of Olympia, this coastal city was strangely named one of the most walkable cities in 2006.
However residents of the City of Destiny, as it’s nicknamed, might disagree, what with the 1 in 122 chance of being the victim of a violent crime in 2017, and the ever-growing numbers of both categories of crime.
Centralia ranks as the 4th most dangerous city in Washington according to the FBI data.
The city ranks as having the 5th highest property crime rank and 12th highest violent crime rank in the Evergreen State.
Seattle’s population ranks as the 1st biggest in Washington, which probably helped earn it a place on this list.
Whether crime relates to the population is anyone’s guess, but at least Seattle’s been handling its crime problem well.
Property crime stands at 15th overall while violent crime clocks in at 4th overall.
Federal Way has placed 10th for property crime per capita in the state.
Residents of Federal Way faced a 1 in 10th chance of being the victim of theft or arson in 2017.
As if that wasn’t bad enough, violent crime bumped up between 2015-17, making Federal Way the 14th most violent city in Washington.
Located 15 miles east of Portland, Union Gap’s violent crime looks to be an issue.
Violent crime went to 22 occurrences between 2015-17, leaving residents with a 1 in 277 chance of being the victim of violence in 2017.
Though Union Gap is the 27th most violent city in Washington overall, it does only have the 1st most property crime on this list (which still leaves residents a 1 in 9.1 chance of being robbed each year).
Lakewood ranks in the top 8th worst rates of violent and property crime in the state.
Residents of Lakewood faced a 1 in 143 chance of being the victim of violence, a rate which steadily increased from 2015-17.
Property crime did drop by a modest amount during this interval though.
Located in east-central Washington, Moses Lake is the largest city in Grant County.
Violent crime increased between 2015-17, but the numbers are still much lower than most places on this list.
Property crimes statistics are about the same as Shelton, with a slightly lower chance of 1 in 21.1.
Lynnwood is way out on Route 26 near Wyoming. If you’re passing through, lock your car doors. Residents here have a 1 in 16.8 chance of being the victim of a property crime, which is the second highest in the state.
Job growth is negative here, which isn’t a good sign. Crime is typically contained on the south end of town.
Locking It All Up In Washington
The latest FBI crime data shows that Fife ranks as the most dangerous city in Washington for 2019.
We want to point out again that there’s still safes places in Fife 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 Washington:
- Snoqualmie (Pop. 13,648)
- Duvall (Pop. 7,875)
- Sammamish (Pop. 64,857)
For more Washington reading, check out:
- 10 Best Places To Raise A Family In Washington
- These Are The 10 Best Places To Retire In Washington For 2018
- These Are The 10 Richest Cities In Washington
- 10 Safest Places In Washington
- 10 Worst Places To Live In Washington
Detailed List Of The Most Dangerous Cities In Washington
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