Do you live in one of the most dangerous cities in Louisiana?
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 Louisiana — and anyone looking to move to Louisiana — 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 Pelican State:
- Monroe (Photos)
- Bastrop (Photos)
- Alexandria (Photos)
- Hammond (Photos)
- Opelousas (Photos)
- Ponchatoula (Photos)
- Marksville (Photos)
- Natchitoches (Photos)
- Bogalusa (Photos)
- Pineville (Photos)
Why did Monroe 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 Louisiana.
How we determined the most dangerous cities in Louisiana 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 53 cities in Louisiana.
We then ranked each city from 1 to 53 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 Louisiana — Monroe. Read on for a detailed look at the 10 most dangerous cities in Louisiana.
Read on for a detailed look at the 10 most dangerous cities in Louisiana.
Population: 49,677Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 3,005
Property Crimes Per 100k: 9,352
Monroe, in the eastern part of the state, is the largest city to make the top of this list, meaning it has the most criminals per capita prowling the streets of Louisiana. Outright poverty might play into this ranking, as nearly a third of the residents here live below the poverty line.
Or, perhaps it’s due to its location, since it is a major stop heading east-west on I-20.
You’ve got a 1 in 10.7 chance of being robbed here every year. Additionally, Monroe saw 11 murders in 2016.
Population: 10,595Rank Last Year: 3 (Up 1)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,444
Property Crimes Per 100k: 11,514
Bastrop is another city in the Louisiana panhandle that you’re simply not safe in.
If you’re within Bastrop city limits, you have a 1 in 69 chance of having your life threatened every year. Additionally, you have a 1 in 8.7 chance of being robbed or having something you own vandalized. Scary stuff.
Or, put another way, in the safest city on our list, Patterson, residents had a 1 in 693 chance of being robbed. That’s the way it should be.
Population: 47,936Rank Last Year: 2 (Down 1)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,842
Property Crimes Per 100k: 8,534
If you live in Alexandria, you already know know to avoid the city’s northeast side. But did you know you have a 1 in 54 chance of being raped, attacked or outright killed every year? Those are the stats. And it’s getting worse there by the year.
Plus, 1 in 11.7 people has their lives screwed up due to a property crime of some sort. Odds are if you’ve lived in Alexandria for a long time, you’ve been robbed at least one time in your life.
Alexandria is smack dab in the middle of Louisiana off of I-49.
Population: 20,576Rank Last Year: 4 (No Change)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,389
Property Crimes Per 100k: 10,356
It seems like the far eastern side of the state of Louisiana is where criminals hang out the most. At least those who prey on smaller towns.
Here in Hammond, you’ve got the 2nd best chance statistically to be robbed on any given day. If you’re within Hammond’s city limits for a year’s time, there’s a 1 in 8.5 chance you’ll encounter a criminal who wants to take something from you.
Hammond is right off of I-20. Crime here has ticked downwards over the last few years, but you’re in no way safe here.
Population: 16,557Rank Last Year: 7 (Up 2)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,509
Property Crimes Per 100k: 7,990
Opelousas is the 3rd oldest city in Louisiana, and one that was known as a haven for gambling and prostitution. It seems as if the people there are having a hard time moving away from those sorts of criminal activities, as every year, you have a 1 in 66 chance of being the victim of a rape, attack or outright killed when you’re within the city limits.
Legendary adventurer Jim Bowie grew up here. They need some more of his spunk around here to put the criminals in their place.
Opelousas is just north of Lafayette off of I-49. It’s beginning to sound like it’s pretty scary to travel north-south on this stretch of road. It’s no wonder the population here has plummeted 23% in the last 10 years.
Population: 7,168Rank Last Year: 6 (No Change)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,395
Property Crimes Per 100k: 7,087
Ponchatoula is the smallest city to make this list.
And this city in Louisiana has been making great strides to get off this list altogether — the violent crime rate fell between 2014-16.
That’s means residents have a 1 in 71 chance of being a victim of violence in 2016.
Population: 5,499 Rank Last Year: 9 (Up 2)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,145
Property Crimes Per 100k: 7,037
Folks who live in little Marksville have the 87 highest chance of being the victim of a rape or attack. The city, located in Louisiana, has seen a moderate population decline in recent years, perhaps due to the crime happening within its city limits.
In 2016, 1 out of 12.2 Marksville residents were the victim of a crime.
Population: 18,332Rank Last Year: 5 (Down 3)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,025
Property Crimes Per 100k: 7,042
It’s still pretty violent here, but you have to be more concerned about being robbed when you’re in Natchitoches. Within city limits, you have a 1 in 14.2 chance of being robbed. That’s a lot of car break-ins and home invasion robberies.
Like some of the cities mentioned elsewhere on the list, there’s no doubt that the poverty level here is playing a part in the sheer number of crimes that are going on here. When people are desperate, they’ll do whatever it takes to survive.
Natchitoches is south of Shreveport on I-49.
Population: 11,882Rank Last Year: 8 (Down 1)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 1,321
Property Crimes Per 100k: 5,571
Bogalusa, Louisiana is on the east side of the state, and it can be downright scary considering the number of robberies that happen here every year. When you’re within the city limits, you have a 1 in 17.9 chance of having a crime committed against you that involves theft or vandalism.
But the sheer number of crimes happening here are going down quickly, which is a great sign. That might be due to a population decrease that has been an issue since the 1960s as the lumber and paper mills have moved onto other towns.
Population: 14,379Rank Last Year: 11 (Up 1)
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 945
Property Crimes Per 100k: 6,245
Pineville has the 15th worst property crime rate in the state.
Property crime rose between 2014-16, leaving residents of Pineville with a 1 in 16.0 chance of being the victim of theft or arson in 2016.
At least violent crime fell during this interval.
Locking It All Up In Louisiana
The latest FBI crime data shows that Monroe ranks as the most dangerous city in Louisiana for 2018.
However, there will be new data coming out later this year. At that point we can revisit Monroe’s status — that is if they haven’t beaten us all up already.
If you’re curious enough, here are the safest cities in Louisiana:
- De Ridder
For more Louisiana reading , check out:
- A Hilarious Look At The 10 Most Redneck Cities In Louisiana
- 45 Facts About Louisiana That You Never Learned In School
- These Are The 10 Most Boring Places In Louisiana
Detailed List Of The Most Dangeroues Cities In Louisiana