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Massachusetts Crime Rate: Are the Biggest Cities Safe?

Aug 17, 2023|

If you are considering moving to Massachusetts, there are some things you need to know about the state and its biggest cities before you make your decision. Some of the most important things to know is the crime rate for the state and its cities. The Massachusetts crime rate is 33.57 per 1,000, which is higher than the nation's rate of 28.58 per 1,000. It has remained fairly consistent from 2018 to 2022 except for a noticeable increase in 2020.

There were 7,211 motor vehicle theft offenses in Massachusetts in 2022. This is low when you consider the state's population is estimated at 6,893,574. The arrest rate is also lower than you may have expected: 12.29 per 1,000 in 2022. However, this was a 3.02% increase from 2021.

Aerial view of Provincetown in Cape Cod

What is the crime rate in Boston?

Since Boston is the most populous city in Massachusetts (with about 650,706 residents within its city limits and nearly 5 million in its metro area) many people assume that it's the area of highest crime. The overall crime rate in Boston is 24.66 per 1,000, which is lower than both the state and national averages. Around 18.64 of these incidents are property crimes. Although Boston has a lower property crime rate than the national average, the violent crime rate is higher than the nation's average. Your chance of experiencing a violent crime in Boston is 1 in 166.

Worcester crime rate

Despite being the second most populated city in Massachusetts (with an estimated 205,319 residents) Worcester isn't among the most dangerous cities, either. The overall crime rate is 23.4 per 1,000, and the property crime rate is 17.51 per 1,000. The violent crime rate in Worcester is lower than in Boston but higher than the national rate. Although it's a big city, Worcester still has its small-town charm. Worcester preserves many of its historic buildings. The city also works on new building projects to use some of the latest architectural advancements. Many young professionals in Massachusetts choose Worcester as their home.

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How high is crime in Springfield?

Springfield has an overall crime rate of 32.76 per 1,000 and a population of about 154,064. It has one of the highest crime rates in Massachusetts. Property crimes occur at the rate of 23.41 per 1,000 in Springfield. The violent crime rate is also higher in Springfield than in Boston at 9.35 per 1,000.

What is the crime rate in Cambridge?

Home to Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Cambridge is a well-known Massachusetts city. It has an estimated population of 118,488 and a crime rate of 26.85 per 1,000. The violent crime rate in Cambridge is lower than in Massachusetts and the United States as a whole. at 3.23 per 1,000. Many Cambridge residents work in the science, computer, or math fields. A lot of artists live here, too. Cambridge has more artists, designers, and media workers than 90% of the neighborhoods in the nation.

Which city has the highest crime in Massachusetts?

The most dangerous city in Massachusetts, based on crime rate, is Holyoke. Its overall crime rate is 43.98 per 1,000 with a property crime rate of 34.3 per 1,000. You may not have heard of this city because its population is only about 37,720. The most dangerous neighborhoods are City Center and Holyoke Southeast.

What led to high crime in this city? Holyoke experienced fast growth from 1885 to 1920. During that time, the city's population shot to 60,000 from 4,600. It even earned the nicknames Queen of Industrial Cities and Paper City of the World because of its rise in industry and population.

When the paper mills left the city, things began to decline. However, there is potential for a recovery because of the city's hydroelectric power, new projects that are creating tech jobs, and tourism plans. Holyoke also has four and a half miles of canals, making it easy to transport goods through the city.

Historic New England houses along street in Salem Massachusetts

Property crime rates in Massachusetts

The rate of property crimes is higher in Massachusetts and many of its major cities than in the U.S. as a whole, but this doesn’t mean that Massachusetts is a dangerous place to live. Larceny, criminal damage, and fraud are the top three types of property crimes in the state. Fortunately, there are many methods you can use to make your property more secure. One of the best ways to protect your property is by using Vivint’s security cameras and alarm systems to monitor your property and alert you when a potential threat is detected..

Vehicle theft in Massachusetts

The rate of vehicle theft may have declined in Massachusetts in recent years, but you can never be too careful when it comes to protecting your car.

The most commonly stolen car in Massachusetts is the Honda Accord. Other top models for car thieves in the Bay State are the Honda Civic and Toyota Camry. American-made pickup trucks also rank high on the list. These car models are among the top-selling vehicles in the U.S., which is part of why they’re such a popular target: It's easier for thieves to sell parts due to their popularity. Hondas also have a higher body that makes their catalytic converters easier to steal.

You can protect your car by using a steering wheel lock and always locking the doors and closing the windows. Even if you're only leaving your car for a few minutes, stay in the habit of locking it. Never leave your key inside of your car, either. Use a car alarm, and park in well-lit areas when possible.

Home security in Massachusetts

Regardless of where you live, a home security system can reduce your chance of becoming a victim of crime.

  • Secure your garage door: Garage Door Control gives you the ability to remotely control the garage door. We’ve all been there: You get to work and can’t remember if you closed the garage door. With Garage Door Control, you don’t have to call a neighbor or drive home during your lunch break to check. Simply check on the Vivint app and tap a button to close the door if you did leave it open.
  • Keep an eye on your home: You can check your indoor security cameras any time through the Vivint app. To be notified of irregular movement in your home, you can set up custom detection zones and get alerted any time something moves in those zones.
  • Keep your doors locked: Smart locks let you know if your doors are locked or unlocked. If you forgot to lock your door, you can easily lock it in the Vivint app from anywhere. You can also create custom codes for family members or maintenance crews, and your smart lock will track the codes to keep you informed about who is entering your home.

Stay safe anywhere in Massachusetts

Although Massachusetts has a higher crime rate than the nation's average, some of its most populated cities have crime rates that are below-average and would be great places for a family to settle in. Even areas of the state with the highest overall and violent crime rates are currently showing signs of recovery. If you are still wary, you can always reduce your chances of becoming a victim of crime by installing a Vivint smart home security system. These systems provide real time alerts and let you control your locks and lights with the Vivint app on your phone, so your property remains secure no matter where you are. Contact our Smart Home Pros to discuss your options for securing your property at 855.822.1220.

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