Most Dangerous Cities In South Carolina

South Carolina has a rich history, charming towns, and warm southern hospitality.

However, beneath its charming exterior lie pockets of the state that pose significant safety concerns due to high crime rates.

An Infographic Showing Most Dangerous Cities In South Carolina
Get an insider’s perspective on the most dangerous cities in South Carolina and the fight against crime/Image Credit:

Let’s explore the top 11 most dangerous cities in South Carolina, shedding light on their crime statistics and what residents and visitors should know.

Top 7 Most Dangerous Cities in South Carolina

This analysis of the most dangerous cities is based on crime data sourced from the FBI’s National Incident-Based Reporting System (NBIRS).

  1. Myrtle Beach
  2. Georgetown
  3. Charleston
  4. North Charleston
  5. Orangeburg
  6. Columbia
  7. Florence

1. Myrtle Beach

Myrtle Beach, known as the most dangerous place in South Carolina, has a lot of crime happening there.

Its status as a favored tourist destination contributes significantly to its alarming crime rates.

With a population of 38,000, Myrtle Beach endures a crime rate that exceeds the national average by a staggering 330%.

The statistics paint a grim picture, with a staggering 10,096 reported crimes per 100,000 individuals, translating to a daunting 1 in 10 likelihood of falling victim to any form of transgression.

The year 2022 witnessed a harrowing tally of 458 violent offenses and 3,056 property-related infractions.

While Myrtle Beach continues to attract thousands of visitors annually, exercising caution and confining activities to tourist-friendly areas is strongly advised.

A picture of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
Myrtle Beach, South Carolina/Image Credit: Shutterstock

2. Georgetown

Georgetown is one of the oldest cities in South Carolina and has about 9,500 people.

The crime rate there is 5,712 per 100,000 people, which is 141% higher than the national average.

Especially concerning is the violent crime rate, which is 1,441 per 100,000 people, more than twice the state average.

A picture of Georgetown, South Carolina
Georgetown, South Carolina/Image Credit: Shutterstock

3. Charleston

Charleston, a renowned tourist hotspot celebrated for its culinary delights and rich historical heritage, is home to approximately 153,000 residents.

Despite its allure, Charleston grapples with a crime rate 18% higher than the national average, positioning it as the eighth most perilous city in South Carolina.

Residents face a 1 in 37 chance of experiencing any type of crime, with 621 violent crimes and 3,316 property crimes reported in 2021 alone.

These statistics translate to a 1 in 20 chance of becoming a crime victim while residing in Charleston.

A picture of Charleston, South Carolina
Charleston, South Carolina/Image Credit: Shutterstock

4. North Charleston

North Charleston, situated in South Carolina, emerges as another of the state’s most menacing urban centers.

With a populace of 106,113, it bears a staggering crime rate of 6,249 incidents per 100,000 individuals.

This figure surpasses the national average by a staggering 166%, underscoring the city’s perilous landscape.

Residents face a daunting 1 in 17 chance of falling prey to criminal activities.

In the tumultuous year of 2021, North Charleston witnessed 35 homicides, alongside prevalent offenses like robbery and assault.

Moreover, property-related crimes such as theft and motor vehicle theft remain distressingly commonplace within its borders.

5. Orangeburg

Orangeburg, nestled in South Carolina, stands out as one of the state’s most concerning urban areas, marred by a distressingly high incidence of violent crime.

Situated 37 miles from Columbia, SC, it accommodates a populace of around 14,000 individuals.

However, its crime rate is alarmingly elevated, tallying 7,871 incidents per 100,000 people, surpassing the national average by a staggering 241%.

Particularly troubling is the prevalence of violent offenses, with 2,035 such crimes per 100,000 residents recorded in the year 2022.

A picture of Orangeburg, South Carolina
Orangeburg, South Carolina/Image Credit: Shutterstock

6. Columbia

Columbia, the capital city of South Carolina, is among the most concerning locales in the state due to its elevated crime rates.

With a population of 140,000, Columbia grapples with a crime rate of 5,228 per 100,000 people, significantly surpassing both the state and national averages by 123%.

The city’s landscape is marred by common occurrences of violent crimes such as robbery and assault, along with prevalent property crimes like burglary and vehicle theft.

Despite ongoing urban revitalization efforts, numerous areas within the city continue to pose safety concerns for residents and visitors alike.

A picture of Columbia, South Carolina
Columbia, South Carolina/Image Credit: Shutterstock

7. Florence

Florence, situated in Florence County, stands out as one of the most perilous cities in South Carolina.

With a population of 39,899, the city grapples with a crime rate of 7,648 per 100,000 people, surpassing the US average by 226%.

Residents face approximately a 1 in 14 chance of falling victim to any form of transgression.

In 2021 alone, Florence witnessed five murders, 41 robberies, 455 assaults, and 235 burglaries, with property crime significantly outweighing violent offenses.

A picture of Florence city, South Carolina
Florence, South Carolina/Image Credit: Shutterstock

Bottom Line

While South Carolina is a state with much to offer, it is important to acknowledge and address the crime challenges faced by certain cities.

Through continued efforts and community collaboration, there is hope for a safer and more prosperous future for all South Carolinians.


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