Do you live in one of the murder capitals of Virginia?
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 Virginia.
The result is the 10 Murder Capitals of the Old Dominion for 2019:
- Portsmouth (Photos)
- Petersburg (Photos)
- Danville (Photos)
- Norfolk (Photos)
- Roanoke (Photos)
- Newport News (Photos)
- Hampton (Photos)
- Emporia (Photos)
- Colonial Heights (Photos)
- Martinsville (Photos)
The city with highest murder rate in Virginia? That would be Emporia with 38.5 murders per 100,000 people.
While the city with highest number of murders period? Norfolk with 36.
Read on below to see how we crunched the numbers and how your town ranked. There were ‘only’ 30 cities in Virginia where a city reported a murder to the FBI, meaning 28 places had no murder.
If you’re curious, here are the places in Virginia which had the least murder chances for its residents, based on population: Vienna, Williamsburg, Warrenton, Suffolk, Pulaski.
For more reading on the Old Dominion check out:
- 10 Best Places To Live In Virginia
- 10 Cheapest Places To Live In Virginia
- 10 Most Dangerous Cities In Virginia
How we calculated the murder capitals of Virginia
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 Virginia for which FBI data was available for the most recent FBI Crime In The United States. That left us with 30 cities to rank.
Finally, averaged two scores:
- 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 one murder.
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.
Portsmouth is an independent city in the Commonwealth of Virginia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 95,535. It is part of the Hampton Roads metropolitan area.
Petersburg is an independent city in the U.S. state of Virginia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 32,420. The Bureau of Economic Analysis combines Petersburg with Dinwiddie County for statistical purposes. It is located on the Appomattox River and 21 miles south of the state capital of Richmond. The city’s unique industrial past and its location as a transportation hub combined to create wealth for Virginia and the region.
Danville is an independent city in the Commonwealth of Virginia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 43,055. It is bounded by Pittsylvania County, Virginia and Caswell County, North Carolina. It hosts the Danville Braves baseball club of the Appalachian League.
Norfolk is an independent city located in the Commonwealth of Virginia in the United States. At the 2010 census, the population was 242,803; in 2015, the population was estimated to be 247,189 making it the second-most populous city in Virginia after neighboring Virginia Beach.
Roanoke is an independent city in the U.S. state of Virginia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 97,032. It is located in the Roanoke Valley of the Roanoke Region of Virginia.
Newport News is an independent city in the Commonwealth of Virginia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 180,719. In 2013, the population was estimated to be 183,412, making it the fifth-most populous city in Virginia.
Hampton is an independent city in the Commonwealth of Virginia, United States of America. As of the 2010 census, the population was 137,436.
Emporia is an independent city located within the confines of Greensville County, Virginia, United States. It and a predecessor town have been the county seat of Greensville County since 1791. As of the 2010 census, the population was 5,927, making it the second-least populous city in Virginia. The Bureau of Economic Analysis combines the city of Emporia with surrounding Greensville county for statistical purposes.
Colonial Heights is an independent city in the Commonwealth of Virginia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 17,411. The Bureau of Economic Analysis combines the City of Colonial Heights with Dinwiddie County for statistical purposes.
Martinsville is an independent city near the southern border of the Commonwealth of Virginia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 13,821. It is the county seat of Henry County, although the two are separate jurisdictions. The Bureau of Economic Analysis combines the city of Martinsville with Henry County for statistical purposes.
There You Have It – The Places With The Most Murders In Virginia For 2019
If you’re looking at the places in Virginia 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 Virginia reading, check out:
- 10 Best Places To Raise A Family In Virginia
- These Are The 10 Fastest Growing Cities In Virginia
- 10 Safest Places In Virginia
- 10 Best Cities For Singles In Virginia
- 10 Worst Cities In Virginia For 2017
Detailed List Of The Places With The Most Murder In Virginia For 2019
|6||Newport News, VA||24|
|9||Colonial Heights, VA||3|
|16||Virginia Beach, VA||14|