West Virginia Crime Rate By City 2024 – Latest Statistics

It is always useful to understand the West Virginia crime rate by city, especially if you are relocating or moving into the state from elsewhere. Alternatively, if you find yourself accused of a violent crime in the state of West Virginia, it is important to know that there are lawyers in the state who can handle all types of cases, from alleged assault and battery to theft and domestic violence.

By understanding West Virginia’s crime statistics, you can feel some sense of security if you or a loved one is relocating, if you’re looking into local real estate, or if you find yourself in need of a criminal defense lawyer.

Overview of West Virginia Crime Rate

In a recent study, the daily level of concern about crime for the typical West Virginia resident was found to be 12% higher than the national average. However, the violent crime rate recently decreased, moving from 3.6 crimes committed per 1,000 people to 3.1. Property crime rates dropped as well by almost 26%.

Compared to the nation at large, West Virginia continues to be at the lower end of crime rates. Amidst the 44 states that reported rates this year, West Virginia ranked as the thirteenth lowest state for violent crimes and the sixth lowest for property crimes. Below, you will find a breakdown of some of the more dangerous cities in West Virginia and where they rank on the crime scale.


In the city of Fairmont, the chances of being a victim of violent crime are about 1 in 243. It is considered safer than only 23% of other U.S. cities. Annual violent crime statistics for Fairmont include, on average, 309 assaults, 5.5 murders, 49.7 rapes, and 27.6 robberies for every 100,000 residents. Property crime averages include 298 burglaries, 987.8 cases of theft, and 99.3 vehicle theft incidents per 100,000 residents.

South Charleston

The crime rate of South Charleston stands at 5,267 per 100,000 residents. This number is well beyond the national average by 126.62%. Because of these numbers, South Charleston is among the cities with the highest total crime rates in the nation. Similarly, the chances of falling victim to property crime in South Charleston are 1 in 22, a rate much higher than the national average. Unfortunately, due to these high numbers, we can also see that total crime increases by about 5.2% year after year.


In Martinsburg, the rate of crime is above the national average. Violent crimes hold steady at a rate of 23.1%. When it comes to property crime, however, the average is 67.6%, significantly higher than the average of 35.4% for the nation as a whole. In 2018, per every 100,000 residents, Martinsburg experienced 0 murders, 57.4 rapes, 112.6 robberies, 287.1 assaults, 523.6 burglaries, 3,884.9 acts of larceny, and 118.2 motor vehicle crimes.


The overall crime rate in Morgantown is 17.4%, higher than the national average. However, violent crimes are below the national average, totaling about 287 crimes per every 100,000 residents.

While acts of murder in the United States have been on the decline since 1990, an uptick has begun over the last few years. Morgantown stands out as a place where this uptick has been observed. Twenty murders per 100,000 residents occur on an annual basis.


Clarksburg has a crime grade of C+ and has a similar crime rate to most U.S. cities. It stands in the 50th percentile for safety, which means that 50% of cities are considered safer and 50% are more dangerous. Boasting a rate of 29.36 crimes per 1,000 residents, Clarksburg is considered safer in the southeast portion of the city.

Chances of being the victim of a crime in Clarksburg may be as high as 1 in 24 in certain neighborhoods and as low as 1 in 42 in other areas.


Q: What City in West Virginia Has the Highest Crime Rate?

A: At the very top of the list of most dangerous cities in West Virginia sits the town of Beckley. With a population of only 16,234, Beckley had 147 violent crimes. One hundred nine of these crimes were aggravated assaults, 24 were rapes, 11 were robberies, and murders accounted for three.

Q: What Is the Safest City in West Virginia?

A: In the state of West Virginia, the town of Grafton is considered the safest. With a population of 4,578 residents, only 30 crimes are calculated by FBI crime data annually. None of these crimes reported were considered violent crimes. Weirton and Buckhanon held onto the titles of second and third safest cities this year.

Q: What Is the Most Common Crime in West Virginia?

A: West Virginia reports that the most common violent crime committed is aggravated assault. In the state, 78.67% of all violent crimes are aggravated assaults, while robbery accounted for the lowest percentage. Larceny tends to hold the highest number of reports of property crime at 71%, while motor vehicle theft sits at the lower end of the property crime spectrum.

Q: Is West Virginia a Safe State to Live In?

A: West Virginia can be considered a safe state to live in, but safety can vary within individual areas. Its crime rate is lower than that of many other states. Some cities, such as South Charleston, have higher crime rates and are considered dangerous. However, others, like Weirton, are considered much safer.

Contact a West Virginia Attorney Today

If you find yourself facing criminal charges in the state of West Virginia, Crowe Law, LLC, is here to fight for you. It is wise to seek legal counsel and representation when faced with any criminal charge.

An attorney is crucial, as many of these crimes come with life-changing penalties. If you’re looking for compassionate and experienced legal support, contact our offices today. Our talented attorneys can advocate for your rights and freedoms.

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