Do you live in one of the most dangerous cities in Maine?
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 Maine — and anyone looking to move to Maine — 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 Pine Tree State:
- Augusta (Photos)
- Biddeford (Photos)
- Bangor (Photos)
- Waterville (Photos)
- Presque Isle (Photos)
- Portland (Photos)
- Auburn (Photos)
Why did Augusta 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 Maine.
How we determined the most dangerous cities in Maine 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 Maine.
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 Maine — Augusta. Read on for a detailed look at the 10 most dangerous cities in Maine.
Read on for a detailed look at the 10 most dangerous cities in Maine.
Population: 18,347Rank Last Year: 2 (Up 1)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 414
Property Crimes Per 100k: 3,684
It’s a semi-rare thing to see state’s capital on the list of most dangerous cities in that state — to see it as the MOST dangerous? That’s unheard of.
But Augusta, the third smallest capital in America, is the most dangerous place in Maine, and the 2nd most violent city.
Augusta residents faced a 1 in 241 chance of being the victim of violence in 2016 and a 1 in 27.1 chance of being the victim of a property crime — both statistics that have barely changed in recent years.
It’s also important to remember that dangerous is relative and Maine, as a whole, is super safe. Augusta wouldn’t even show up on most states top ten lists.
Population: 8,454 Rank Last Year: 3 (Up 1)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 283
Property Crimes Per 100k: 4,376
Skowhegan’s motto is “A Place to Watch,” but with their property crime as it is, they should maybe amend that to “A Place to Watch Your Wallet.”
While violent crime has remained stagnant in recent years, property crime went up by 19% between 2014-16.
That left Skowhegan residents with a 1 in 22.8 chance of being the victim of theft or arson in 2016.
Population: 21,285Rank Last Year: 1 (Down 2)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 408
Property Crimes Per 100k: 3,424
Located in the southern part of the state, Biddeford is the most violent place in Maine by a wide margin.
Compared to Augusta, Biddeford residents face a 55% higher chance of being the victim of violence, with 2016’s stats showing a 1 in 87 chance of it.
That’s mostly due to a crazy 51% upswing in violent crime between 2014-16. One could argue that, due to the violence, Biddeford really belongs at the top of this list.
Population: 32,264Rank Last Year: 7 (Up 3)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 232
Property Crimes Per 100k: 4,153
Bangor has the third highest population of any city in the state, and is the commercial center of eastern and northern Maine.
It’s also the 3rd worst spot for property crime in the state, with residents facing 1 in 24.1 chance of being the victim of theft or arson in 2016.
Violent crime remained stagnant from 2014-16, while property crime rose by 10%.
Population: 16,370Rank Last Year: 4 (Down 1)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 232
Property Crimes Per 100k: 4,050
Just 25 miles north of Augusta, Waterville ranks 9th and 4th for violent and property crime.
And while the city is about half a violent as Biddeford, its below average score still earns it the title of 5th most dangerous city in Maine.
The good news is that violent crime was reduced by about 10% from 2014-16, but the bad news is that property crime rose by 21% in that period.
Population: 20,914 Rank Last Year: 5 (Down 1)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 277
Property Crimes Per 100k: 3,404
Located in the southern part of Maine, Sanford is the 6th most violent city in the state.
And violence has steadily been rising, up a total of 25% from 2014-16, leaving residents a 1 in 360 chance of being the victim of violence in 2016.
Property crime, meanwhile, has remained stagnant at about 712 instances each year.
7. Presque Isle
Population: 9,075Rank Last Year: 14 (Up 7)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 363
Property Crimes Per 100k: 2,655
Tiny Presque Isle, statistically, is the 4th most violent city per capita in the entire state of Maine.
While crimes here skyrocketed in 2015, apparently, local jurisdictions have made progress, as crimes went down in 2016. However, for a town of just over 9,075 people, 33 violent crimes is eye opening. Statistically, 1 in 275 residents was the victim of a rape, attack or was killed last year.
Population: 67,041Rank Last Year: 6 (Down 2)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 292
Property Crimes Per 100k: 2,677
The most populated city in Maine and the commercial and cultural center of the southern half of the state, Portland also has a bit of a crime problem.
While violent crime went down by 7% between 2014-16, property crime remained consistent, affecting about 4% of the population each year.
Still, Portland’s property crime statistics are 56% better than Augusta’s, and its violent crime stats make it more than twice as safe as Biddeford.
Population: 22,836Rank Last Year: 18 (Up 9)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 188
Property Crimes Per 100k: 3,196
Auburn and Lewiston are twin cities, which may explain why they occupy proximate rankings on this list.
Located 35 miles north of Portland, Auburn has experienced an enormous 34% reduction of violent crime between 2014-16.
During the same time period, however, the 1 in 21 chance residents faced of being the victim of a property crime did not change much at all.
Population: 5,835 Rank Last Year: 15 (Up 5)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 428
Property Crimes Per 100k: 2,227
Houlton has the 19th worst property crime rate in the state.
Property crime rose between 2014-16, leaving residents of Houlton with a 1 in 44.9 chance of being the victim of theft or arson in 2016.
At least violent crime fell during this interval.
Locking It All Up In Maine
The latest FBI crime data shows that Augusta ranks as the most dangerous city in Maine for 2018.
However, there will be new data coming out later this year. At that point we can revisit Augusta’s status — that is if they haven’t beaten us all up already.
If you’re curious enough, here are the safest cities in Maine:
- Cape Elizabeth
For more Maine reading , check out:
- If You’re From Maine This Will Be The Most Jaw-Dropping Thing You See Today. Guaranteed.
- These Are The 10 Most Ghetto Cities In Maine
- These Are The 10 Worst Places To Live In Maine
Detailed List Of The Most Dangeroues Cities In Maine
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