Here Are the Top 5 High-Crime Cities in California


California, which is typically hailed for its ideal climate, magnificent beaches, and lively culture, has pockets of high crime rates, which contrasts sharply with its lovely image. The FBI’s Crime Data Explorer for 2020 displays the following five California communities dealing with higher crime levels:

1. Emeryville

Emeryville, located in Alameda County and home to around 12,000 individuals, has the state’s highest violent crime rate. With 1,590 incidences per 100,000 persons, this figure is more than four times the national average of 366.7.

Additionally, Emeryville has a highly increased property crime rate of 11,181 per 100,000 population, which is more than three times the national rate of 2,109.9. Emeryville is well-known for its retail malls, restaurants, and hotels, but its reputation has been tarnished by concerns including as drug trafficking and gang activity.

2. Oakland

Oakland, the largest city on this list with a population of over 438,000, ranks second in violent crime and fourth in property crime across the state. In 2020, Oakland recorded 12,948 violent crimes and 25,596 property crimes, for rates of 2,955 and 5,837 per 100,000 population, respectively.

Oakland’s high crime rate is due in part to persistent social upheaval, poverty, and racial animosity. Furthermore, the city’s role as a major port and a center for drug smuggling and human trafficking exacerbates security concerns.

3. Commerce

Commerce, which is located in Los Angeles County and has a population of around 13,000 people, is third in violent crime and second in property crime in California. In 2020, Commerce reported 1,271 violent crimes and 9,741 property crimes, for rates of 9,741 and 74,701 per 100,000 population, respectively. Commerce, an industrial city best known for its casinos, warehouses, and industries, has a sizable Hispanic population and significant poverty rates.

4. Red Bluff

Red Bluff, located in Tehama County and home to around 14,000 individuals, has the state’s fourth worst violent crime rate and fifth highest property crime rate. Red Bluff’s 2020 data show 1,026 violent crimes and 5,493 property crimes, for rates of 7,328 and 39,236 per 100,000 population, respectively.

This remote city has issues such as unemployment, homelessness, and substance misuse, as well as a high percentage of sex offenders and domestic violence cases.

5. Barstow

Barstow, which has around 24,000 people and is located in San Bernardino County, is fifth in violent crime and third in property crime in California. In 2020, the city recorded 1,463 violent crimes and 7,215 property crimes, at rates of 6,088 and 29,979 per 100,000 people.

Barstow, a desert community that serves as a gateway to tourist attractions and military sites, has low median incomes and high dropout rates.


In conclusion, Emeryville, Oakland, Commerce, Red Bluff, and Barstow, known for their natural beauty, have serious crime problems. Economic inequality, social discontent, and illegal activity contribute to high violent and property crime rates in certain places. These neighborhoods enrich California’s variety, but their criminality shows the need for focused interventions, community participation, and comprehensive social and economic assistance. Addressing poverty, substance abuse, and unemployment is essential to creating safer settings and maximizing the state’s potential for people and tourists.

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