Massachusetts consistently ranks in the country’s top five safest states and offers its residents a high quality of life. However, just like any other state, there are some cities where caution should be exercised. In this article, we have compiled a list of Massachusetts’s ten most dangerous cities, ranked by crime rate and quality of life. So, if you’re planning to move to Massachusetts or are already a resident, it’s essential to be aware of these cities and take necessary precautions.
10 Most Dangerous Cities in Massachusetts
Holyoke, located near East Mountain in Massachusetts, has been identified as the most dangerous city in the state. With a population of 38,238, Holyoke has a crime rate of 195% higher than the national average. Residents of Holyoke have a 1 in 25 chance of becoming victims of any crime, making it a risky place to live. In 2021, the city recorded a total of 367 incidents of violent crime, including two murders, 63 robberies, and 285 assaults. Property crime was even higher, with 1,301 incidents reported in the same year.
In Hampden County, Springfield has a population of 155,929 and is considered one of the most dangerous places to live in Massachusetts. Sadly, Springfield’s crime rate is 150% higher than the national average, making it the most dangerous city in the state. Shockingly, the total crime rate in Springfield is 3,403 per 100,000 residents, and the likelihood of becoming a victim of any crime is 1 in 30. Robbery, assault, and burglaries are the most common crime in this city.
North Adams, located in Berkshire County, Massachusetts, has a reputation for being a dangerous town. Its population of 12,961 is faced with a total crime rate of 3,114 per 100,000, which means that its residents have a 1 in 33 chance of becoming victims of crime. The town recorded 138 violent crimes and 309 property crimes in 2021, with assault, burglary, and theft being some of the most commonly reported crimes.
New Bedford, situated along Massachusetts’ South Coast, is one of the most difficult cities in the state. With a population of 102,882, the city’s total crime rate is 3,089 per 100,000, 129% higher than the state’s average. This means that residents of New Bedford have a 1 in 33 chance of being a victim of any crime. In 2021, four murders, 84 robberies, and 476 assaults were reported. Additionally, the city has a high property crime rate, with over 1,200 theft incidents recorded in the same year.
Located in Hampden County along the Connecticut River, Chicopee is notorious for its high crime rate, making it one of the worst cities in Massachusetts regarding safety. With a population of 55,560, the total crime rate in Chicopee is 2,626 per 100,000 residents, which is a staggering 93% higher than the state average and 12% higher than the national average. Sadly, residents of Chicopee have a 1 in 39 chance of becoming a victim of any crime, with crimes like robbery, assault, and vehicle theft being the most prevalent.
Boston, Massachusetts, is renowned for its rich cultural and economic heritage but is also known as one of the state’s most dangerous cities. Despite having a population of 675,647, Boston is relatively safe for a large city, with crime rates varying from neighbourhood to neighbourhood. The overall crime rate in Boston is 2,366 per 100,000 people, 74% higher than the state average, translating to a 1 in 43 chance of becoming a victim. In 2021, Boston witnessed nearly 4,000 violent crimes and over 12,000 property crimes. However, Boston is only moderately dangerous when adjusted for the city’s population.
Located in Suffolk County and adjacent to Boston, Chelsea has gained a reputation for being one of the worst cities in Massachusetts for crime. With a population of 40,787, the city has a total crime rate of 2,048 per 100,000 people, which is 50% higher than the state average. This means residents have a 1 in 49 chance of falling victim to any crime. In 2021, Chelsea’s most commonly reported crimes were robbery, assault, burglary, and theft.
With a population of 94,000, Fall River is the tenth-largest city in Massachusetts. Unfortunately, the city has a higher crime rate than the state average, with 1,989 incidents per 100,000 people. This means that residents have a 1 in 51 chance of becoming victims of any crime. In 2021, there were 853 violent crimes reported, with robbery and assault being the most common.
Located in Worcester County, Webster is a small town with a population 17,776. The city has a crime rate of 1,766 per 100,000 people, meaning that residents have a 1 in 57 chance of falling victim to a crime. In 2021 alone, there were 123 violent crimes, including six robberies and 108 assaults. Additionally, the town experienced 40 burglaries and fourteen counts of motor vehicle theft. Although Webster is not considered dangerous by national standards, it still has a higher crime rate than the average for Massachusetts.
Haverhill, a city in Massachusetts situated along the New Hampshire border with a population of 67,787, is considered dangerous. The total crime rate in Haverhill is 1,472 per 100,000 people, which is 8% higher than the state average. The chances of becoming a victim of any crime in Haverhill are 1 in 68. In 2021, the city reported 377 violent crimes and 545 property crimes. The most common types of crime in Haverhill are robberies, assaults, burglaries, and thefts.
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