Total crime NAT. AVG.
Violent crime NAT. AVG.
Property crime NAT. AVG.
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Date & Last Updated: This data reflects the 2022 calendar year and was released from the FBI in September, 2023; this is the most current data available.
StatisticReportedincidents/100k peopleMemphis/100k peopleTennessee/100k peopleNational/100k people
Total crime59,912n/a (estimate)9,5872,9242,324
Violent crime15,129n/a (estimate)2,421622370
Vehicle theft10,924n/a1,748.0362.3282.7
Property crime44,783n/a (estimate)7,1662,3021,954

An Overview of Crime Rates in Memphis, TN

The Memphis crime rates are 312.5% higher than the national average. There are two main categories of crime - violent crime and property crime. Violent crime consists of murder, rape, robbery and assault, while property crimes include burglary, theft and vehicle theft. There were a total of 15129 violent crimes in Memphis (2421 per 100,000 people), which is 554.6% higher than the national average and there were a total of 44783 property crimes (7166 per 100,000 residents) which is 266.7% higher than average.

With a total of 9587 crimes per 100,000 people, the Memphis crime rates stand at 312.48 higher than the national average. Consequently, the area grapples with one of the nation's highest total crime rates. Addressing this challenge is crucial for enhancing the safety and livability in Memphis, making it a priority to reduce crime through community engagement, effective law enforcement, and collaborative efforts to secure a better future for residents and prospective residents.

Memphis ranks among the most perilous cities in the United States, bearing a violent crime rate of 2421 per 100,000 people, positioning it within the lowest 10% of all U.S. cities reporting crime statistics. The odds of falling victim to violent crime in Memphis stand at 1 in every 42 residents, emphasizing the pressing need for enhanced safety measures and community engagement to address this significant concern.

Although murder rates are essentially half of what they used to be 30+ years ago, some cities still struggle with higher rates than others. Memphis is one of those cities. In the last reported crime year, there were a total of 269 murders in Memphis, which equates to 43 murders per 100,000 people. This results in Memphis being a very dangerous place to live.

Every year, one in 14 people fall victim to a property crime in Memphis - which is high compared to the national average. With a property crime rate of 7166 per 100,000 people, Memphis has one of the highest property crime rates in the country. In fact, the city ranks among the worst 10% of all cities that reported crime last year.

The surge in vehicle thefts is a concerning trend across the United States, and Memphis is no exception, experiencing one of the nation's highest vehicle theft rates. Last year, Memphis reported a total of 10924 vehicle thefts, resulting in 1748 stolen vehicles per 100,000 people. This places the city in the lowest 10% tier among all cities, indicating that 90% of cities have less stolen vehicles. The probability of a vehicle being stolen stands at 1 in 58, underscoring the need for heightened vigilance and security measures.

What Do the Locals Say About Crime in Memphis?

What is the prevailing sentiment among Memphis residents regarding the state of crime? A comprehensive survey conducted by AreaVibes, involving 460 respondents, sheds light on this matter. The results were as follows: 15% of Memphis residents expressed a notable sense of security, asserting that crime was virtually non-existent in their community, and they felt at ease strolling the streets after dark. While, 85% of those surveyed held a contrasting viewpoint, perceiving a higher incidence of crime, leading them to feel apprehensive about walking alone at night.

Is Memphis a Safe Place to Live?

To determine if Memphis is a safe place to live, let's take a look at the overall crime rate of the area, as well as the number of daily crimes. Memphis has a total crime rate that is 312% higher than the national average per 100,000 residents. This results in a total of 164.14 daily crimes (41.45 violent daily crimes and 122.69 daily property crimes) in Memphis.

Has Crime in Memphis Increased Since Last Year?

Year-over-year crime data allows residents and potential residents to assess the crime in Memphis. A decrease in crime rates may indicate improving safety, while an increase could raise concerns. The year-over-year crime rate in Memphis has increased by 19.7%. Violent crimes have decreased by 4.2%, while property crimes have increased by 30.6%. By comparing crime rates from one year to the next, authorities and communities can identify trends and patterns in criminal activity. This helps in understanding whether crime is increasing, decreasing, or remaining stable over time.

Memphis Neighborhood Crime Rates

There are more than 13 different neighborhoods in the Memphis area. Depending on their location and other socioeconomic factors, the rate of crime in each neighborhood is vastly different. Areas that are located near the center or downtown core, tend to be more densely populated and typically see higher crime rates. While neighborhoods in the outskirts of the city tend to be less densely populated and have lower unemployment and poverty rates. Some of the safer neighborhoods in Memphis include Windyke-Southwind, Eads-Fisherville and Cordova-Appling. While Downtown, Parkway Village-Oakhaven and Shelby Forest-Frayser have a reported crime rate that is higher than average. This reinforces the need to do a quality check on multiple neighborhoods as their crime rates can be quite different.

Potential Causes for Crime in Memphis

If employment opportunities are limited or if many jobs offer low wages, it can lead to higher rates of unemployment and underemployment, which could lead to an increase in Memphis crime rates. Areas where individuals struggle with unemployment or low wages, may be more susceptible to an increase in criminal activities as a result of financial insecurity. While lower rates of unemployment or a surplus of job opportunities could lead to a decrease in crime as their basic needs are being met. Memphis has an unemployment rate of 5.4%, compared to a national average of 4.7%.

Escalating cost of living expenses, encompassing exorbitant housing costs, grocery and healthcare expenditures, can induce financial strain on individuals and families, particularly those with limited financial resources. Such economic stress may propel individuals towards criminal activities, including theft or burglary, as a means of addressing their financial hardships. Conversely, cities characterized by a lower cost of living may alleviate economic pressures, potentially resulting in a reduced crime rate. In Memphis, the cost of living is 18.34% lower than the national average, reflecting a more affordable economic environment that could contribute to a decrease in crime levels.

High rental costs can limit economic mobility, making it difficult for individuals to save money, invest in education, or access better job opportunities. This can perpetuate a cycle of poverty and increase the risk of involvement in criminal activities. In summary, high rental costs can create economic challenges, overcrowding, and neighborhood dynamics that may increase the likelihood of certain types of crime, particularly property crimes. In Memphis, the average rental rates are $915 per month, compared to the national average of $949.

Memphis crime map

The Memphis crime map provides a detailed overview of all crimes in Memphis as reported by the local law enforcement agencies. Based on the color coded legend above, the crime map outlines the areas with lower crime compared to the areas with higher crime. The Memphis crime heat map offers insight into the total crimes on a block group level. Please note that the red areas on the Memphis crime map does not always indicate that it is a dangerous area for its residents. Areas on the heat map could be inflated if they are located in high traffic areas like airports, sports centers or large parks. Other areas on the heat map could see increased crime rates if they are located in major tourist areas like the downtown core.
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Crime Quick Facts

  • Memphis crime rates are 312% higher than the national average
  • Violent crimes in Memphis are 555% higher than the national average
  • In Memphis you have a 1 in 11 chance of becoming a victim of crime
  • Memphis is safer than 0% of the cities in the United States
  • Year over year crime in Memphis has increased by 24%

Memphis, TN Crime Quiz


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        Daily Crime In Memphis (per 100,000 people)

        The above illustration depicts the number of crimes committed daily in Memphis, per 100,000 residents. In Memphis, the total number of daily crimes is 3.28 times more than the Tennessee average and 4.12 times more than the national average. Violent daily crime statistics in Memphis are 3.89 times more than the Tennessee average and 6.55 times more than the national average. For property crime, Memphis has a daily crime rate that is 3.11 times more than the Tennessee average and 3.67 times more than the daily national average.

        How Safe is Memphis (higher is better)

        When comparing the safety of Memphis to every other city in Tennessee, as well as the entirety of the United States, is Memphis safe? The gauges above illustrate that Memphis is safer than 0% of every city located within Tennessee along with 0% of the all the cities located in the United States. The results of these graphs are created after analyzing each of the cities in Tennessee and in the United States as a whole. As a result, Memphis, TN is ranked below average when compared to the rest of the US cities.

        Chance of Being A Victim of Crime in Memphis

        The chance of being a victim of violent crime in Memphis is 1 in 42
        The chance of being a victim of property crime in Memphis is 1 in 14
        The chance of being a victim of crime in Memphis is 1 in 11
        Are you curious to know the likelihood of suffering from a crime in Memphis? If you reside in Memphis, the likelihood that you will become a victim of a violent crime is 1 in 42. Violent crimes include: murder, sexual assault, robbery, and physical assault. There is a 1 in 14 change that you will become a victim of a property crime. These sorts of crimes against personal property include: burglary, theft, and auto theft. In total, the likelihood of being victimized by a crime in Memphis, is 1 in 11.

        Year Over Year Crime In Memphis (per 100,000 people)

        An analysis of year to year crime rates in Memphis, Tennessee (per 100,000 people) is a useful indicator of whether the area is becoming a safer or a more dangerous place to live. The amount of violent crime in Memphis has not changed, the amount of property crime in Memphis has increased by 36%, and the total amount of crime in Memphis has increased by 24% year over year.

        Memphis police department

        Item Memphis Tennessee National
        Law enforcement employees (officers & civilians)2,82611,551558,732
        Police officers & civilians /1000 residents4.33.63.3
        There are a total of 2,826 Memphis police officers. This results in 4.3 police officers per 1,000 residents which is 20.2% greater than the Tennessee average and 32.2% greater than the National average.

        Sex offenders in Tennessee

        State Total offenders Tennessee /100K National /100K
        There are a total of 24,578 sex offenders in Tennessee. This yields a total of 412 sex offenders in Tennessee per 100,000 residents which is 55% greater than the national average.

        Nearby Cities With Low Crime Rates

        City Population Violent crime/100k people Property crime/100k people Total crime/100k people
        Lynchburg, MS2,21670497567
        Walls, MS1,41585605690
        Clarkedale, AR4932619911,251
        Olive Branch, MS38,2703151,8572,172
        Bartlett, TN59,2522411,9522,192
        Horn Lake, MS27,2341502,0952,245
        Marion, AR12,3717062,7793,485
        Memphis, TN650,9102,4217,1669,587

        Cities with similar population

        City Population Violent crime/100k people Property crime/100k people Total crime/100k people
        Portland, OR650,3807516,3247,076
        Oklahoma City, OK649,8216423,0593,701
        Las Vegas, NV644,5945162,9183,434
        Nashville, TN667,0701,1023,8254,927
        Detroit, MI672,3512,0284,4786,506
        Memphis, TN650,9102,4217,1669,587
        Source: The Memphis, TN crime data displayed above is derived from the FBI's uniform crime reports for the year of 2022. The crime report encompasses more than 18,000 city and state law enforcement agencies reporting data on property and violent crimes. The uniform crime reports program represents approximately 309 million American residents, which results in 98% coverage of metropolitan statistical areas.