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When most people think of the most dangerous states to live in, in America, Tennessee rarely comes to mind. Only those familiar with nationwide crime statistics might point fingers at this southern state. Those who do would not be wrong. Tennessee is, in fact, one of the most dangerous states in America to live in.

Believe it or not, a recent USA Today article ranks it at number three of all 50 states based on its 2018 crime rates. The violent crime rate in Tennessee is a whopping 623.7 per 100,000 people. To put this into better perspective, even New York has a murder rate of 350.5 per 100,000 people. Tennessee had a total of 493 murders, which is the 13th highest of all 50 states. It also the ninth highest poverty rate in America and the 18th highest incarceration rate.

In fact, Tennessee has higher rates of violence than any other state in the South. The city of Memphis accounts for a significant portion of these instances at 30%. Not surprisingly, it is considered the most dangerous city in the state. It has a violent crime rate per 100,000 people of 1,943.2.

In spite of these figures, FOX17 Nashville points out that 2018’s crime rates were actually an improvement compared to the previous year. Strangely enough, even cities with large populations in Tennessee experienced reductions in crime rates. Memphis’s figures showed a decrease in aggravated assault and rape offenses.

Nashville is more populated than Memphis, but it also showed a decrease in almost every type of violent crime. This is despite still ranking as the second-highest violent city in the state. Rape offenses and the murder rate declined for Tennessee.

Other cities that experienced decreases in violent crime include Knoxville and Chattanooga. Unfortunately, one city became the exception and saw an increase in violent crime; that was Clarksville.