The Murder Capitals Of Pennsylvania For 2021


These are the places in Pennsylvania where people were killed most often, according to the latest FBI numbers.

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This article is an opinion based on facts and is meant as infotainment. It is our seventh time ranking the most places with the most murders per capita in Pennsylvania and is updated for 2021.

Do you live in one of the murder capitals of Pennsylvania?

We all watch the news with horror when we hear about a homicide that happens not that far away from us. While a murder just blocks or even a couple of towns away from your house would make anyone uneasy, in the long run, most likely, where you live is relatively safe.

So we wanted to get the facts straight and dug into the FBI crime data in order to identify the places with the most murders and the highest murder rates per capita in Pennsylvania.

The result is the Murder Capitals of the Keystone State for 2021:

  1. Chester (Photos)
  2. Wilkinsburg (Photos)
  3. Harrisburg (Photos)
  4. McKeesport (Photos)
  5. Pottstown
  6. Penn Hills
  7. Stowe Township
  8. Chambersburg (Photos)
  9. Erie (Photos)
  10. Norristown

The city with highest murder rate in Pennsylvania? That would be Wilkinsburg with 71.5 murders per 100,000 people.

While the city with highest number of murders period? Chester with 18.

Read on below to see how we crunched the numbers and how your town ranked. There were 'only' 29 cities in Pennsylvania where a city reported a murder to the FBI, meaning 92 places had no murder.

For more reading on the Keystone State check out:

The 10 Murder Capitals Of Pennsylvania For 2021

Chester, PA

Source: Public domain

Overall SnackAbility

3
/10

Population: 33,905
Rank Last Year: 3
Murders: 18 (Most)
Murders Per 100k: 53.1 (2nd Most)
More on Chester:  Data | Photos

Wilkinsburg, PA

Source: Public domain

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 15,389
Rank Last Year: -
Murders: 11 (3rd Most)
Murders Per 100k: 71.5 (Most)
More on Wilkinsburg:  Data | Photos

Harrisburg, PA

Overall SnackAbility

3
/10

Population: 49,195
Rank Last Year: 16
Murders: 13 (2nd Most)
Murders Per 100k: 26.4 (5th Most)
More on Harrisburg:  Data | Photos

Mckeesport, PA

Overall SnackAbility

3
/10

Population: 20,765
Rank Last Year: 18
Murders: 7 (6th Most)
Murders Per 100k: 33.7 (4th Most)
More on McKeesport:  Data | Photos

5. Pottstown

Pottstown, PA

Overall SnackAbility

/10

Population: 22,705
Rank Last Year: 5
Murders: 5 (8th Most)
Murders Per 100k: 22.0 (6th Most)
More on Pottstown:

6. Penn Hills

Source: Public Domain

Overall SnackAbility

/10

Population: 40,809
Rank Last Year: 71
Murders: 7 (6th Most)
Murders Per 100k: 17.2 (9th Most)
More on Penn Hills:

7. Stowe Township

Source: Public Domain

Overall SnackAbility

/10

Population: 6,141
Rank Last Year: 47
Murders: 3 (12th Most)
Murders Per 100k: 48.9 (3rd Most)
More on Stowe Township:

Chambersburg, PA

Source: Public domain

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 21,131
Rank Last Year: 45
Murders: 4 (9th Most)
Murders Per 100k: 18.9 (8th Most)
More on Chambersburg:  Data | Photos

Erie, PA

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 95,834
Rank Last Year: 62
Murders: 9 (4th Most)
Murders Per 100k: 9.4 (16th Most)
More on Erie:  Data | Photos

10. Norristown

Overall SnackAbility

/10

Population: 34,430
Rank Last Year: 79
Murders: 4 (9th Most)
Murders Per 100k: 11.6 (13th Most)
More on Norristown:

How we calculated the murder capitals of Pennsylvania

While there are surveys and public polls on what cities in a state are the most dangerous, we didn't want to rely on speculation and opinion. Instead, we looked at the hard numbers from the FBI's last year of reporting. Specifically, we analyzed the FBI's Uniform Crime Report which summarizes the number of murders that may happen in each city per year.

We only looked every single city in Pennsylvania for which FBI data was available for the most recent FBI Crime In The United States. That left us with 29 cities to rank.

Finally, we averaged the two scores into an index:

  • The raw number of murders in each city
  • The murders per person

We felt as if a small place with 2,500 people and two murders makes it a lot more dangerous than a city of 25,000 people with three murders. Any ties went to the larger city. You can download the data here.

We must note that this report is not an analysis of the effectiveness of local police departments. It simply states where murders occurred most frequently on an absolute and rate basis.

There You Have It - The Places With The Most Murders In Pennsylvania For 2021

If you're looking at the places in Pennsylvania with the most murders, and where residents have the highest chances of being killed themselves, this is an accurate list. Again, these statistics are an indication of where crimes occur, not a statement about the effectiveness of the law enforcement in the areas they serve.

For more pennsylvania reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Places With The Most Murder In Pennsylvania For 2021

Rank City Murders Murders/100K
1 Chester, PA 18 53.09
2 Wilkinsburg, PA 11 71.48
3 Harrisburg, PA 13 26.43
4 McKeesport, PA 7 33.71
5 Pottstown, PA 5 22.02
6 Penn Hills, PA 7 17.15
7 Stowe Township, PA 3 48.85
8 Chambersburg, PA 4 18.93
9 Erie, PA 9 9.39
10 Norristown, PA 4 11.62
11 Darby Township, PA 2 21.61
12 West Norriton Township, PA 2 12.78
13 Allentown, PA 7 5.74
14 Wilkes-Barre, PA 3 7.37
15 Wilson, PA 1 12.78
16 Upper Dublin Township, PA 2 7.51
17 Swatara Township, PA 2 7.51
18 Grove City, PA 1 12.76
19 Swissvale, PA 1 11.56
20 State College, PA 3 5.12
21 Wyomissing, PA 1 9.52
22 North Middleton Township, PA 1 8.54
23 New Kensington, PA 1 8.15
24 Robinson Township, Allegheny County, PA 1 7.29
25 Lancaster Township, Lancaster County, PA 1 5.82
26 West Manchester Township, PA 1 5.3
27 Susquehanna Township, Dauphin County, PA 1 3.96
28 Lebanon, PA 1 3.85
29 Bristol Township, PA 1 1.87

About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.

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