Divide 100,000 by 93 and calculate your chances of surviving St. Louis for one full year.
The sum, you discover, is that one of 1,075 people will be murdered in that city during the next twelve months. That is the highest murder rate in the nation that I could find.
Keep in mind that this Department of Justice statistic is based on 2009. Let's assume it represents the typical year. The statistics grow exponentially every year. If 93 of 100,000 are murdered in one year, twice that many, 186 of 100,000, will be murdered within two years. In four years the number increases to 372. If you move to St. Louis at the age of 18 and stay until you reach age 78, you odds of being murdered are 5,580 per 100,000. One of 18 people who live in St Louis for sixty years will be victims of homicides if the numbers remain consistent.
There are other violent crimes.
2,480 violent crimes are committed every year per 100,000 residents of St. Louis. One who lives in St. Louis for sixty years is statistically doomed to be a victim of 1.48 violent crimes. If you manage to avoid being the victim of a violent crime, someone else was victimized more frequently than average.
The next time you're driving west on Interstate 70, consider by-passing the Arch and keep going until you get out of town.
St. Louis is not the only deadly, dangerous city in America.
The murder rate in Detroit, 61 homicides per 100,000 residents per year, is a tad better than St. Louis. A sixty year denizen faces 3,660 chances of 100,000 of being murdered. That's one chance out of 27.
Note this is not a coin toss where heads and tails will each come up 50 percent of the time perennially. The 100,000 is a static number.
If you prefer to be mugged, beaten, assaulted, raped, stabbed, bludgeoned or be a Knock-Out Game victim in Detroit, you stand one chance of 41 of enduring a violent crime over the next twelve months. That's 2,419 per 100,000 residents. Live in Detroit for sixty years and the odds of being a violent crime victim are 145,140 per 100,000 residents. That's not much better than St. Louis.
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