- Lake City
- Riviera Beach
- Florida City
- Lake Worth
- Daytona Beach
1. Lake City
The most dangerous city in Florida is Lake City. The violent crime rate in Lake City is 1,547 per 100,000 residents, which is the highest in the state, and one of the worst in the entire country.
Although this smaller municipality of approximately 12,500 residents offers a lower cost of living than most places in Florida, it also has very high poverty and crime rates. Your chance of being the victim of a violent crime in Lake City is almost four times higher than the state average, making it one of the worst cities in Florida when it comes to safety.
2. Riviera Beach
Another one of the most dangerous cities in Florida is Riviera Beach. This small community of 35,000 people has an especially high violent crime rate. In particular, Riviera Beach is the worst city in Florida when it comes to the murder rate, which is seven times higher than the national average.
Riveria Beach is located on the outskirts of the Miami metropolitan area, and most parts of the city should be avoided if safety is a concern. The least dangerous area in Riviera Beach is Singer Island, but the rest of the city makes it one of the worst areas in Florida. Interestingly, Riviera Beach is less than a 10-minute drive from North Palm Beach, one of the safest cities in Florida.
Cocoa is another dangerous town in Florida due to the very high rate of violent crime. Although it only has a population of 19,000, the violent crime rate in Cocoa is 1,108 per 100,000 residents, which is 2.8 times higher than the national average and 3 times the state average. The most common types of violent crime committed in Cocoa are burglaries and assaults.
Cocoa is located on the Space Coast, near Cape Canaveral, and should be avoided if you're looking for a safe and peaceful place to live in the Sunshine State.
4. Florida City
Florida City is another one of the most dangerous cities in the sunshine state. This city of approximately 12,000 is located in South Florida, near the Everglades and the Florida Keys, and is one of the car-jacking capitals of the US. The rates of other violent crimes are high as well in Florida City, with residents having a roughly 1 in 38 chance of being the victim of a violent crime.
Unlike some cities on this list that have slowly been tackling their crime problems, Florida City has seen crime rates rise in the last decade.
5. Lake Worth
Located just a short drive south of Riviera Beach, Lake Worth is another one of Florida's worst cities for violent crime. The violent crime rate in Lake Worth is 996 per 100,000 residents, which is over 2.5 times higher than the state and national average. However, although Lake Worth is still one of the most dangerous places in Florida, crime rates have been dropping in recent years.
The northern neighborhoods in Lake Worth are more dangerous than the rest of the city, so it's best to avoid them altogether.
6. Daytona Beach
Daytona Beach is well known for its race track and spring break parties, attracting hundreds of thousands of tourists annually. Unfortunately, it's one of the most dangerous places to live in Florida.
The violent crime rate in Daytona Beach is 1,006 per 100,000 residents. That means residents are almost three times as likely to be the victim of a violent crime compared to the state average. Property crime rates are also high in Daytona Beach, almost 2.5 times the state average.
Lauderhill is also one of the most dangerous cities in Florida. Lauderhill has seen crime rates rise in the past few years. In 2022, there were 632 violent crimes in this city of 72,000 people, which was more than a 20% increase from 2018. Overall, the violent crime rate in Lauderhill is 878 per 100,000 people. That means Lauderhill residents are 2.3 times as likely to be the victim of a violent crime compared to the Florida state average.
The most violent major city in Florida is Orlando, which has a violent crime rate that is 2.2 times higher than the state average.
Although crime in Orlando had been declining for decades, falling drastically since 2002, it has risen slightly since 2020. That being said, the city has made admirable efforts to crack down on violent crime and make Orlando safer for its residents.
Although Florida takes a tough stance on criminal activity statewide, the state capital, Tallahassee, is also one of the worst areas in the state regarding violent crime. In 2021 there were 1,516 violent crimes reported in Tallahassee, meaning there were 774 violent crimes per 100,000 residents. This makes Tallahassee more than twice as dangerous as both the state and national average.
Property crime rates are also quite high in Tallahassee, and your chance of being a victim of property crime is approximately 1 in 30.
To find the most dangerous cities in Florida, we analyzed crime and violent crime rates throughout the state. We used data from the FBI crime data explorer for crime rates in 2020 and 2021, as well as the Florida Department of Law Enforcement annual report from 2022.
Overall, crime rates in the most violent cities in Florida are 2.6 times higher than the national average.