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Crime is rising in the US on the whole, but one city can lay claim to being the most dangerous – not that it would want to.

St Louis has found itself in that undesirable top spot when a range of factors are taken into account: from the number of murders taking place, to natural disaster risks, to Covid vaccination rates.

The rankings, published on Monday by financial website WalletHub, were based on a study of 182 cities across America, including the 150 most populated.

Each one was assessed according to 42 metrics, these include the number of sex offenders per capita, the unemployment rate and the earthquake risk level.

The result for each metric was then translated into a score out of 100. The higher the score, the higher the level of safety in that area.

The top 10 scorers, and therefore the “safest” cities were found to be as follows:

  1. Columbia, MD
  2. Nashua, NH
  3. Laredo, TX
  4. Portland, ME
  5. Warwick, RI
  6. Yonkers, NY
  7. Gilbert, AZ
  8. Burlington, VT
  9. Raleigh, NC
  10. Lewiston, ME

Meanwhile, the bottom 10, starting with the least safe:

  1. St. Louis, MO
  2. Fort Lauderdale, FL
  3. San Bernardino, CA
  4. Detroit, MI
  5. Baton Rouge, LA
  6. Memphis, TN
  7. Oklahoma City, OK
  8. Oakland, CA
  9. Jackson, MS
  10. Chattanooga, TN

Among the reasons for St Louis’s unenviable position was its high number of assaults per capita (it ranked second after Birmingham, AL), and number of traffic fatalities (also second, this time after Baton Rouge, LA).

However, it did at least score low on the number of hate crimes (with the third fewest after Tulsa, OK, and Tampa, FL), and has the fourth highest number of law-enforcement employees per capita – though, admittedly, they seem to have their work cut out for them more generally.

The results follow surveys carried out by the Major Cities Chiefs Association between January and June in 2021 and 2022, which found that violence is on the rise in the US.

The report concluded that while the number of homicides and rapes in urban areas had decreased compared to the previous year, violent crime had increased by 4.4 per cent, and the rate of violent offences remains much higher than before the Covid pandemic.

So... who fancies a trip to Maryland?

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