When it comes to planning to relocate, many people find themselves looking into the crime rates of their potential new homes, to try and get an idea of what they can expect as residents. Now while a high crime rate doesn’t necessarily mean that a place isn’t worth living in, but it certainly requires more preparation from a resident, particularly in terms of home security.

So to help you figure out which cities in America really are the most dangerous, let’s count them down.

  1. Indianapolis, Indiana


Capital of Indiana, Indianapolis is home to more than 850,000 people, making it the second largest city in the Midwest, and the 14th largest in America. With numbers like that does come a large amount of crime, which is how the city ended up on this list. The city experienced 136 murders in 2014 and residents can expect a violent crime rate of 1,255 per 100,000 people.

  1. Stockton, California


A city of almost 300,000 people, Stockton in California is the largest inland seaport in California. In 2008 the city hit the headlines when it became the second largest U.S. city to file for bankruptcy protection. That’s not the only less than positive thing about the city. There were 49 murders there in 2014, which is high considering the number of residents. The violent crime rate is also high, at 1,332 per 100,000.

  1. Cleveland, Ohio


The most populous county in the state of Ohio, Cleveland is home to around 390,000 people. While the city has much to offer residents, there have been some marks on the reputation of the city. For one the police force was investigated for their use of excessive force. For another the violent crime rate is 1,335 per 100,000 people and 63 people were murdered in Cleveland in 2014. However, the city has dropped from the 7th most dangerous to the 8th, which is something.

  1. Baltimore, Maryland


As the largest city in the state of Maryland it’s no surprise that Baltimore has its fair share of crime. The city is known as being the largest independent city (not belonging to any county) and home to more public monuments than any other city per capita. But it’s not all good news. In 2015 Baltimore broke the record of highest per capita homicide rate with 327 people murdered before December was even over. That’s a rate of 52.5 per 100,000 people.

  1. Milwaukee, Wisconsin


Milwaukee has a few aspects to its reputation. For one it’s the largest city in the state of Wisconsin, home to more than 600,000 people. It’s located on the picturesque western shore of Lake Michigan, and has made a name for itself in the brewery industry. It’s also number 6 on the most dangerous cities in America with 90 murders in 2014 and a violent crime rate of 1,477 per 100,000.

  1. Birmingham, Alabama


Sliding into fifth place in America’s most dangerous cities is Birmingham, Alabama. It might not be the biggest city, home to around 212,000 people, but it has made headlines over the years. Once a major industrial city, Birmingham has diversified over the years to be a centre of education and business. However the city experienced 90 homicides by December of 2015 and the violent crime rate is 1,588 per 100,000.

  1. St. Louis, Missouri

st louis

A city and port located in the state of Missouri, St. Louis is home to over 315,000 people. It’s known for the unique 630-foot tall Gateway Arch located downtown, as well as for its large Bosnian population, which represents the highest concentration of Bosnians outside of their homeland. The city is also unfortunately known as a crime centre. In 2015 St. Louis had the highest murder rate in the entire country with 59.23 homicides per 100,000, as well as a violent crime rate of 1,679 per 100,000.

  1. Oakland, California


A major West Coast port city in the state of California, Oakland is home to more than 400,000 people and has a lot going for it. It’s known for its sustainability practices, and ranks highly for its use of renewable energy resources. The city is also known for its political activist history, and ethnic diversity. However it is still number three on the most dangerous American cities list, and not without reason. There were 93 homicides in 2015, an increase from the previous year and the violent crime rate is still high, around 1,686 per 100,000.

  1. Memphis, Tennessee


Located in the south-western corner of the great state of Tennessee, Memphis is the second largest city in the state with a population of around 680,000 people. It is the youngest of the Tennessee cities, having been founded in 1819, and is well known for its impact on the music world after providing starts for many famous musicians in the 1950s and 1960s. Memphis gets to number 2 on the most dangerous cities in America thanks to its high violent crime rate of 1,741 per 100,00. However its place on the list has been explained by more detailed reporting practiced by police in the region.

  1. Detroit, Michigan


Coming in at number 1 on the list of most dangerous cities in America is Detroit. The most populated city in the state of Michigan, but its population has gone through several precipitous drops in recent decades. This wasn’t improved in 2013 when the city filed for bankruptcy, but in truth the city has already struggled with higher crime rates. In fact, almost two-thirds of all the murders in the state happened in Detroit in 2011, with 298 murders in 2014 and a total violent crime rate of 1,989 per 100,00 people, much higher than the national average.

So there you have it, the United States’ most dangerous cities. It’s certainly a motivation for residents, both present and future, to protect themselves effectively in their homes!