FBI Data Reveals the Most Dangerous Cities in Wisconsin

According to the latest FBI crime data, the city of La Crosse, Wisconsin has emerged as one of the most dangerous cities in the state. The data paints a concerning picture of rising violent and property crime rates in the city.

Violent Crime Rates Soar in La Crosse

La Crosse, situated along the Mississippi River in western Wisconsin, is considered one of the most dangerous cities in the state. With a population of 52,680, its crime rate exceeds the national average by 82%.

Although its violent crime rate falls below the national average, property theft is prevalent, with over 2,000 theft incidents and 186 burglaries reported in 2022. Drug activity is a significant contributor to the city’s crime problems.

Property Crime Plagues La Crosse

In addition to the troubling violent crime statistics, La Crosse also suffers from elevated property crime rates. The city’s property crime rate stood at 31 per 1,000 residents in 2021, meaning residents have a 1 in 32 chance of becoming a victim of burglary, larceny, motor vehicle theft, or arson. This rate is more than double the national average, indicating that property crime is a significant issue in the city.

How Does La Crosse’s Crime Rate Compare to Other Cities in Wisconsin

Based on the search results, La Crosse, Wisconsin has a significantly higher crime rate compared to other cities in the state:

– La Crosse’s violent crime rate in 2018 was 279.38 per 100,000 population, which is much higher than the national average of 380.56 per 100,000.

– La Crosse’s property crime rate stood at 31 per 1,000 residents in 2021, more than double the national average.

– Compared to other Wisconsin cities, La Crosse’s crime index is higher than 84.1% of U.S. cities, indicating it is one of the most dangerous cities in the state.

– The data shows that La Crosse experiences high rates of violent crimes like murder, rape, robbery, and aggravated assault, as well as elevated property crimes like burglary, larceny, and motor vehicle theft.[1][3]

– In contrast, cities like Eau Claire, Wisconsin have significantly lower crime rates, with a violent crime rate that is less than half of La Crosse’s.

So in summary, the FBI crime data reveals that La Crosse stands out as one of the most dangerous cities in Wisconsin, with both violent and property crime rates that are well above state and national averages.

What Measures Are Being Taken to Reduce Crime in La Crosse, Wisconsin

In La Crosse, Wisconsin, several measures are being implemented to reduce crime:

1. Community Policing Initiatives: The La Crosse Police Department has prioritized community policing under Police Chief Ron Tischer’s leadership. This approach involves engaging the community to enhance safety and reduce crime. The department has reported a 20% decrease in major crimes, indicating the effectiveness of community involvement in crime prevention.

2. Increased Police Presence: The department has created four new community police officers assigned to specific neighborhoods, focusing on building relationships with residents, business leaders, schools, and the community at large. This localized approach aims to address issues at the grassroots level and foster a sense of security within neighborhoods.

3. Encouraging Community Engagement: By encouraging more people to report incidents and get involved in crime prevention efforts, the La Crosse Police Department is fostering a culture of cooperation between law enforcement and the community. This increased communication and collaboration can lead to more effective crime prevention strategies.

4. Specialized Crime Prevention Programs: The University of Wisconsin-La Crosse Police Department offers various crime prevention programs, including alcohol awareness, self-defense training, and theft prevention, aimed at educating individuals on safeguarding themselves and their property from criminal activities. These programs empower individuals with the knowledge and skills to protect themselves and prevent crime.

These combined efforts reflect a comprehensive approach to reducing crime in La Crosse, Wisconsin, emphasizing community engagement, targeted policing strategies, and proactive crime prevention programs.


The FBI’s latest crime data paints a troubling picture of La Crosse, Wisconsin, which has emerged as one of the most dangerous cities in the state. With high rates of violent and property crime, the city faces significant challenges in ensuring the safety and security of its residents.

While local authorities are working to address the issue, more comprehensive and sustained efforts will be needed to turn the tide and make La Crosse a safer place to live.

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