Charleston South Carolina Crime Rate

Charleston is a historic coastal city in South Carolina known for its rich culture, architecture, and cuisine.

However, along with its charm and hospitality, Charleston has recently struggled with an increasing crime rate.

According to recent statistics from the Charleston Police Department, the total crime rate in Charleston has risen by around 5% over the past two years.

While still below the national average, the growing crime rate has become a concern for city officials and residents.

Issues like petty theft, assaults, and drug-related offenses seem to be driving the increase.

As Charleston continues to grow as a popular tourist destination and port city, officials are focused on addressing crime proactively to maintain public safety and quality of life.

Tackling issues around inequality, education, unemployment, and housing appear central to these efforts.

Charleston South Carolina Crime Rate 2024

Charleston has made meaningful progress in reducing its crime rate through comprehensive public safety initiatives.

According to the latest statistics from the Charleston Police Department, the total crime rate has decreased by 11% compared to 2021 levels, bringing it below the state and national averages.

This reduction was driven by a reduction in property crimes such as burglary and theft, which fell by more than 15% due to expanded community policing efforts and youth outreach programs.

Violent crimes such as aggravated assault and robbery also saw modest declines, as authorities focused on high-crime areas with increased patrols and community engagement.

We have provided the Charleston South Carolina Crime Rate in the table below.

Charleston Annual Crimes

Charleston Annual CrimesViolentPropertyTotal
Number of Crimes6313,3163,947
Crime Rate
(per 1,000 residents)

Chances of Becoming a Victim of a Violent Crime

CharlestonSouth Carolina
1 IN 2401 IN 192

Charleston Violent Crimes

Population: 151,612

Report Total177490450
Rate per 1,0000.110.490.592.97

United States Violent Crimes

Population: 331,888,310

Report Total22,941144,285202,155943,774
Rate per 1,0000.070.430.612.84

Chances of Becoming a Victim of a Property Crime

CharlestonSouth Carolina
1 IN 461 IN 39

Property Crimes

Population: 151,612

ReportsBurglaryTheftMotor Vehicle Theft
Report Total2622,567487
Rate per 1,0001.7316.933.21

United States Property Crimes

Population: 331,888,310

ReportsBurglaryTheftMotor Vehicle Theft
Report Total899,6564,626,970890,179
Rate per 1,0002.7113.942.68

North Charleston South Carolina Crime Rate

North Charleston has a higher than average crime rate compared to national and state averages.

In 2021, there were 6,054 crimes per 100,000 people, compared to 2,887 crimes per 100,000 people nationally and 3,482 per 100,000 in South Carolina.

Violent crime in North Charleston is nearly 3 times the national average. In 2021 there were 1,165 violent crimes per 100,000 people, compared to 399 nationally.

The violent crime rate has decreased slightly in recent years, down from 1,319 per 100,000 in 2018.

Property crime is over double the national rate, at 4,889 incidents per 100,000 people in 2021 versus 2,488 nationally.

As with violent crime, property crime has also been trending downward over the past few years.

The most common crimes in North Charleston are larceny/theft, burglary, motor vehicle theft, aggravated assault, and robbery.

Together these account for over 80% of crimes committed. North Charleston’s violent and property crime rates are higher than other major South Carolina cities like Columbia and Charleston.

However, crime has been steadily decreasing in North Charleston, suggesting targeted policing and prevention strategies may be having a positive impact.

CrimeNorth Charleston (per 100k)South Carolina (per 100k)National (per 100k)
Total crime6,8515,7482,800
Violent crime1,123942370
Vehicle theft708594.0249.2
Property crime5,7284,8052,308


How bad is the crime in Charleston SC?

Charleston has moderate crime rates compared to other US cities, with property crime being more common than violent crime. The city has seen an increase in some types of crime in recent years.

What is considered a high crime rate in Charleston SC?

The FBI considers a crime rate of over 5,000 incidents per 100,000 people to be high for cities in the US. In 2020, Charleston’s crime rate was 4,504 per 100,000.

Is Charleston SC a high-crime area?

Parts of Charleston do have higher crime rates than the national average, especially for property crimes. However, most areas of the city are relatively safe compared to other major US cities.

Where is the highest crime area in Charleston SC?

The highest crime neighborhoods in Charleston are concentrated in the northern parts of the city. Places like Park Circle and Union Heights tend to have higher rates of violent and property crimes.

Is North Charleston SC dangerous?

North Charleston has higher crime rates than South Charleston and other areas around the city. Violent crimes in particular are more common in North Charleston compared to the rest of the metro area.

What is the safest area to stay in Charleston SC?

Some of the safest neighborhoods in Charleston are Daniel Island, Isle of Palms, Sullivan’s Island, and parts of West Ashley. These areas have lower crime rates and are considered safe places for visitors to stay.

Is downtown Charleston SC safe?

Downtown Charleston is generally considered safe, with lower crime rates than many other parts of the city. However, petty crimes like theft and vandalism do occur, especially at night.

What is the murder rate in Charleston SC?

In 2020 there were 58 murders in Charleston, giving the city a murder rate of 12.2 per 100,000 residents. The murder rate has increased in recent years but is still lower than many other US cities.

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