Massachusetts boasts a high quality of life for its residents and is frequently ranked among the top five safest states in the US. However, there are still some cities within the state that have areas best avoided due to high crime rates. In this article, we will be looking at the top ten most dangerous cities in Massachusetts. These cities have been ranked based on both their crime rate and quality of life.
10 Most Dangerous Cities in Massachusetts (2023)
- North Adams
- New Bedford
- Fall River
Holyoke, a city located near East Mountain in Massachusetts, has been deemed the most dangerous city in the state. With a population of 38,238, the city has a crime rate that is 195% higher than the national average. Residents face a 1 in 25 chance of becoming victims of any type of crime, and the city’s total crime rate is 4,020 per 100,000. In 2021, Holyoke recorded a total of 367 incidents of violent crime, including two murders, 63 robberies, and 285 assaults. Meanwhile, the number of property crimes was much higher, with 1,301 incidents reported in the same year.
Springfield, located in Hampden County, Massachusetts, has a population of 155,929 and is considered one of the most dangerous places to live in the state. With a crime rate that is 150% higher than the national average, Springfield tops the list as the most dangerous city in Massachusetts. Residents have a 1 in 30 chance of becoming victims of any type of crime, with a total crime rate of 3,403 per 100,000. Robbery, assault, and burglaries are the most frequently reported crimes in Springfield.
3. North Adams
Located in Berkshire County, North Adams is a town in Massachusetts that is known for its high crime rate. With a population of 12,961, the total crime rate in North Adams stands at 3,114 per 100,000. This statistic means that the residents of North Adams have a 1 in 33 chance of becoming a victim of a crime. In 2021 alone, the town witnessed 138 violent crimes and 309 property crimes, with common offenses including assault, burglary, and theft.
4. New Bedford
With a population of 102,882, New Bedford is situated along Massachusetts’ South Coast and is regarded as one of the most dangerous cities in the state. The city’s total crime rate stands at 3,089 per 100,000, which is 129% higher than the average for Massachusetts. This means that residents in New Bedford have a 1 in 33 chance of falling victim to any type of crime. Shockingly, in 2021 alone, there have been four murders, 84 robberies, and 476 assaults reported in the city. New Bedford’s high property crime rate is also concerning, with over 1,200 theft incidents recorded this year.
Chicopee, situated in Hampden County along the Connecticut River, is among the top cities in Massachusetts with high crime rates. With a population of 55,560, the city has a total crime rate of 2,626 per 100,000, which is 93% higher than the state average and 12% higher than the US average. The probability of becoming a victim of any type of crime in Chicopee is 1 in 39. Robbery, assault, and vehicle theft are some of the most frequent crimes committed in this city.
Boston, often referred to as the cultural and economic center of Massachusetts, is also recognized as one of the state’s most hazardous cities. Despite its population of 675,647, Boston remains relatively safe, with crime rates varying by neighborhood. However, the city’s overall crime rate is 2,366 per 100,000 people, which is 74% higher than the state average. Unfortunately, residents of Boston have a 1 in 43 chance of becoming a victim of crime. Shockingly, in 2021, the city experienced nearly 4,000 violent crimes and over 12,000 property crimes. Nevertheless, when adjusted for population size, Boston is merely a moderately dangerous city.
Chelsea, located in Suffolk County and adjacent to Boston, has a population of 40,787 and is known for having one of the highest crime rates in Massachusetts. The total crime rate in Chelsea stands at 2,048 per 100,000 people, which is 50% higher than the state’s average. The residents of Chelsea have a 1 in 49 chance of becoming victims of any type of crime. Currently, the most common types of crime in the city are robbery, assault, burglary, and theft.
8. Fall River
With a population of 94,000, Fall River is the tenth largest city in Massachusetts. Unfortunately, the total crime rate in this city is 1,989 per 100,000, which is 46% higher than the state average. This means that residents of Fall River have a 1 in 51 chance of becoming the victim of any type of crime. In 2021, there were a total of 853 violent crimes reported, with robbery and assault being the most common.
Located in Worcester County, Webster is a town with a population of 17,776. The crime rate in Webster is 1,766 per 100,000 residents, which means that there is a 1 in 57 chance of falling victim to a crime. In 2021, there were 123 cases of violent crime, including six robberies and 108 assaults. Additionally, there were 40 burglaries and fourteen motor vehicle thefts reported in the same year. Although Webster is not considered dangerous by national standards, its crime rate is still higher than the Massachusetts average.
Located in Essex County along the New Hampshire border, Haverhill is a city in Massachusetts with a population of 67,787. The city has a total crime rate of 1,472 per 100,000 people, which is 8% higher than the state average. Residents of Haverhill have a 1 in 68 chance of becoming a victim of any kind of crime. In 2021, the city saw 377 incidents of violent crimes and 545 property crimes. Robberies, assaults, burglaries, and thefts are the most commonly committed crimes in Haverhill.