This City Has Been Named the Most Dangerous City to live in Virginia

It is said that Portsmouth, a town in Hampton Roads, has a higher crime rate than other places in Virginia. The 2020 FBI Uniform Crime Report said that there were 76.9 violent crimes for every 100,000 people living in Portsmouth. This made it the sixth most dangerous city in the country. This blog post will go into more detail about the reasons why Portsmouth has such high crime rates and the steps being taken to make the city safer and less violent.

Looking at crime in Portsmouth through the lens of history

Law enforcement in Portsmouth has been having a hard time with crime for a long time. The city has had problems with crime and the economy for many years, especially since its naval and shipbuilding businesses went out of business. Loss of jobs and people has caused cities to fall apart, causing social unrest and race tensions. In 1969,

There was a brutal riot in Portsmouth that killed two people, hurt many others, and damaged a lot of property. With 48 killings, Portsmouth had the highest murder rate in Virginia in 1984. According to a government drug official in 1993, Portsmouth was “the heroin capital of the East Coast.”

How Crime Is Going in Portsmouth Right Now

Even though there are signs of economic rebound and urban revitalization lately, Portsmouth still has a lot of problems with crime. There were 74 murders in the city in 2020, which is 55% more than in 2019. The number of shootings, robberies, carjackings, and attacks also went up.

The COVID-19 pandemic had a big effect on both the health and economy of Portsmouth. It may have made problems like poverty, unemployment, stress, mental health issues, and drug abuse worse, which can lead to more crime. In 2019, the U.S. Census Bureau found that 18.5% of people in Portsmouth were living in poverty, which was higher than the 9.9% state average. The unemployment rate in Portsmouth was 12.7% in June 2020, which was higher than the national rate of 11.0%.

Portsmouth’s efforts to cut down on crime

Even though the numbers are scary, Portsmouth has made great efforts to fight crime and make the city safer for everyone. The neighborhood Enhancement Division (CED) of the Portsmouth Police Department (PPD) is one such program. Its main goals are neighborhood policing and problem-solving.

Residents, companies, and community groups work with the CED to find and fix crime hotspots, quality-of-life issues, and neighborhood problems. The CED is also in charge of many crime-prevention programs and campaigns, such as mentoring for kids, stopping gangs, stopping domestic violence, and teaching people about drugs.

The Fugitive Safe Surrender Program (FSSP) is another important project. It is a partnership between the PPD and local churches that lets people with outstanding warrants turn themselves in quietly and get special treatment from the courts. Since it began in 2006, the FSSP has helped more than 2,000 people get rid of their warrants and start over.

How Possible It Is to Deal with Crime in Portsmouth

While Portsmouth has a lot of culture and historical history, it also has a big crime problem. It won’t be easy or quick to solve this complex problem, but there are signs that things are moving in the right direction. Law enforcement, community leaders, company owners, and residents can all work together to help Portsmouth get past its problems and become a safer and more rewarding place to live for everyone.

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