Top 10 Most Dangerous Cities in Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania, in 2024, presents a varied landscape of safety across its cities, with certain areas exhibiting significantly higher crime rates.

Here’s an in-depth analysis of the most dangerous cities in Pennsylvania, backed by recent statistics and data:

  1. McKees Rocks: Known as “The Rocks,” this Pittsburgh suburb is the most dangerous city in Pennsylvania. With a population of just 6,000, it has a crime rate of 64.09 incidents per 1,000 citizens, 173% higher than the national average. In 2022, the city reported 106 violent crimes and 262 property crimes​​.
  2. Darby: A Philadelphia suburb, Darby reported 152 murders in 2021 within its 10,600 population. The property crime rate is 46.25 per 1,000 people. Combining violent and property crimes, residents have a 1 in 22 chance of being victims​​.
  3. Chester: Located between Delaware and Center City, Chester has a crime rate 115% higher than the state average, with 43.89 crimes per 1,000 individuals. The city, troubled by unemployment and poverty, has a median home price of only $66,800​​.
  4. McKeesport: In suburban Pittsburgh, McKeesport has a population of 17,700 and a total crime rate of 42.91 incidents per 1,000 individuals. Residents face a 1 in 24 chance of becoming crime victims, with 332 violent crimes and 542 property crimes reported in 2021​​.
  5. Yeadon: This Philadelphia suburb has a crime rate of 40.83 per 1,000 residents. In 2021, Yeadon reported 747 violent crimes and 3,336 property crimes. The median household income is significantly lower than the national average​​.
  6. Ambridge: Located in western Pennsylvania’s Beaver County, Ambridge, with a tiny population of 7,000, has a crime rate of 40.57 incidences per 1,000 people, 73% higher than the U.S. average. Residents have a 1 in 39 chance of being victims​​.
  7. Philadelphia: The city’s crime rate is 97% higher than the state average, with a 1 in 25 chance for residents to be victims. Philadelphia, with a population of 1.6 million, has specific areas known for higher crime rates, notably in North and West Philadelphia neighborhoods​​.
  8. Pottstown: With a population of 23,400, Pottstown’s crime rate is 88% higher than the state average. In 2021, the city reported 3,823 crimes, giving residents a 1 in 27 chance of being crime victims​​.
  9. Reading: In Berks County, Reading has a population of 95,000 and an overall crime rate 81% higher than the state average. In 2022, 2,742 property crimes and 690 violent crimes were reported within the city limits​​.
  10. Johnstown: This city has a crime rate 68% higher than the state average, with 34.17 crimes per 1,000 citizens. Johnstown’s residents and visitors have a 1 in 30 chance of being crime victims, with yearly crime averages around 250 violent and 558 property crimes​​.

Statewide, Pennsylvania has seen notable changes in crime dynamics. Property crime declined by 42% in 2022, though it remains a significant concern, with 45% of residents thinking it may happen to them. The violent crime rate in Pennsylvania increased by 27%, from 3.1 to 3.9 occurrences per 1,000 people. Violent crime accounted for 19% of all crimes recorded in the state, compared to 17% nationally​​.

These statistics and trends underscore the significant safety challenges faced by various communities across Pennsylvania, necessitating focused efforts towards crime prevention and community resilience.

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