This Town in Massachusetts State Takes the Crown for Most Violent


Although Massachusetts is renowned for its rich educational, cultural, and historical heritage, it also has a high rate of violence and crime. The state’s violent crime rate in 2020 was 338 per 100,000 people, according to FBI data, which is less than the 367 nationwide average. However, violent crimes including homicide, rape, robbery, and severe assault are far more common in some of the state’s towns and cities. Based on the most recent data, we will identify which Massachusetts town is the most violent in this article.

The Most Violent Town in Massachusetts: Fall River

With around 90,000 citizens, Fall River is the tenth most populous city in Massachusetts. Moreover, with a startling violent crime rate of 772 per 100,000 residents in 2020, it is the most violent town in the state. This indicates that one in every 130 residents of Fall River had a violent crime during that year. Additionally, there were two homicides in the city, which is concerning even though it is not as high as other places.

Industrialization and immigration, particularly from Portugal and other European nations, have long been traditions in Fall River. In the 1870s, it produced 80% of the country’s print fabric, making it the top textile manufacturing city in the US. But when numerous mills closed or relocated throughout the 20th century, the city’s economy suffered. In the 1960s, the city saw significant urban renewal initiatives that resulted in the demolition of numerous landmarks and historic structures. Fall River’s high crime rate is a result of issues including gang violence, drug misuse, unemployment, and poverty that still exist today.

The Runner-Up: Holyoke

Another old mill town that has had difficulty adjusting to the shifting social and economic landscape is Holyoke. In 2020, the town had 739 violent crimes for per 100,000 residents, making it the second most violent in all of Massachusetts. In addition, the city had eight homicides, the most of any town or city in the state. With 40,000 or so residents in Holyoke, one in every 54 persons lived there at the time of the violent crime that year.

Holyoke’s location on the Connecticut River’s Hadley Falls made it a major producer of alpaca wool, silk, and paper in the past. With a grid layout and a canal system to power the mills, it was also the first planned industrial city in the history of the United States. But when many companies shifted away or shrank in size over the second half of the 20th century, the city’s fortunes soured. In addition, the city had to deal with societal issues like pollution, urban deterioration, and racial conflicts. With projects like the Puerto Rican Cultural Center, the Holyoke Innovation District, and the Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center, Holyoke is currently working to reinvigorate both its economy and culture.

The Conclusion: What Can Be Done to Reduce Violence in Massachusetts?

There are other towns and communities in Massachusetts with high rates of violent crime besides Fall River and Holyoke. Among the top 10 most dangerous locations in the state are also Springfield, Brockton, New Bedford, and Lawrence. These locations have certain things in common that encourage crime and violence, like social injustice, economic suffering, and a lack of opportunities. In addition to increased funding for housing, work, healthcare, and education, Massachusetts needs to invest more in community involvement and more efficient law enforcement. The state can aspire to build a safer and more prosperous future for all of its citizens by tackling the underlying causes of violence.

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