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Murder Rate By State

Murder Rate By State

Murder in America

Across the United States, the incidence of homicide notably varies from state to state, painting a complex picture of safety and criminal activity. With populations veering from dense metropolises to sparse rural landscapes, economic infrastructures that range from burgeoning to struggling, and myriad other nuances in social, political, and judicial contexts, each state bears its own unique contributing factors to its murder rate. To break down the issue, our dataset showcases the homicide rates per 100,000 inhabitants in every state.

  • The Southern states demonstrate significantly higher murder rates than the rest of the country, with Mississippi leading at a rate of 23.7 homicides per 100,000 people, followed by Louisiana at 21.3, and Alabama at 15.9.
  • In stark contrast, the Northeast carries the lowest homicide rates. New Hampshire, the state with the lowest rate, has a murder rate of 1.1 per 100,000 inhabitants, with states like Vermont (1.5) and Maine (1.7) tailing closely.
  • There's a clear discrepancy in murder rates among states with large metropolis areas when compared to less densely populated regions. For instance, Illinois and Maryland, both of which include high-density urban areas like Chicago and Baltimore, have higher murder rates at 12.3 and 12.2 respectively, while more rural states like Wyoming have a considerably lower rate at 2.7 homicides per 100,000.
  • Interestingly, the data paints an inconsistent picture when comparing states with similar population sizes. For instance, despite having similar populations, New Mexico records a homicide rate of 15.3, while West Virginia stands at a relatively low rate of 6.9.

States with the Highest Murder Rate

The highest rates are predominantly located in Southern states, with Mississippi leading the pack at 23.7 homicides per 100,000 people. It is followed closely by Louisiana, which has a rate of 21.3. 

Alabama ranks third with 15.9 homicides per 100k people, whereas New Mexico isn't far behind, with a slightly lower rate of 15.3. In South Carolina, the murder rate stands at 13.4, tailing not too closely behind. Missouri earns a spot with a rate of 12.4 homicides per 100k people.

Illinois, with cities like Chicago, posts a murder rate of 12.3 per 100k people. Just below Illinois, we see Maryland, with an equal rate of 12.2 despite its smaller population size. Tennessee also posts a murder rate of 12.2 homicides per 100,000 people. The tenth state on this list is Arkansas, where the murder rate stands at 11.7.

States with the Highest Murder Rate:

  1. Mississippi - 23.7
  2. Louisiana - 21.3
  3. Alabama - 15.9
  4. New Mexico - 15.3
  5. South Carolina - 13.4
  6. Missouri - 12.4
  7. Illinois - 12.3
  8. Maryland - 12.2
  9. Tennessee - 12.2
  10. Arkansas - 11.7

States with the Lowest Murder Rate

Leading this list is New Hampshire, with only 1.1 homicides per 100,000 people, which is strikingly lower than the rates observed in states with the highest murder rates. Following closely, we have Vermont and Maine with murder rates of 1.5 and 1.7 respectively.

Idaho and Massachusetts also demonstrate relatively low homicide rates with a mere 2.2 and 2.3 homicides per 100,000 citizens respectively.

States like Wyoming, Utah, and Hawaii, despite their different geographical locations and varying demography, share the same homicide rate of 2.7 per 100,000 people. Meanwhile, more centrally located states like Iowa and North Dakota report slightly higher but still considerably low rates of 3.2 and 3.4 respectively.

States with the Lowest Murder Rate:

  1. New Hampshire - 1.1
  2. Vermont - 1.5
  3. Maine - 1.7
  4. Idaho - 2.2
  5. Massachusetts - 2.3
  6. Wyoming - 2.7
  7. Utah - 2.7
  8. Hawaii - 2.7
  9. Iowa - 3.2
  10. North Dakota - 3.4

Full Data Set

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