Watch Your Back: Where Is America’s Most Dangerous City?

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Robert Giusic / Getty

List-happy Forbes just released its ranking of America’s Most Dangerous cities, and the results are mostly predictable.

Detroit emerged as the most violent crime-prone area in the United States in 2010, with 1,111 violent crimes reported per 100,000 residents.

To compile the list, Forbes used the FBI’s uniform crime report for 2010, which tallies crime data for each of the country’s metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs), regions that usually consist of a large city and its suburbs or clusters of closely linked smaller cities, and metropolitan divisions, which are core areas within some of the larger MSAs. They used the FBI’s numbers for four categories of violent crimes: murder and non-negligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault.

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Despite a foundering economy and a stubborn unemployment rate, crime in the United States continues the general downward trend that began in the 1990s. In 2010, murder was down 4%, rape fell 5%, robbery dropped 10%, and aggravated assault fell 4%, according to the FBI.

“There’s a complex series of forces at work behind these rates,” says Tom Blomberg, dean of the College of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Florida State University. “The state of the economy, demographics, the number of young males at any given time, the rate of imprisonment and the number of police all factor in.”

The motor city’s murder rate, though high at 345, reflects this overall trend.

Rounding out the top three were the Memphis metropolitan area and Springfield, Ill.

Click here to see the full list, along with photos and detailed explanations.

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