Motor City claimed the top spot for highest overall crime rate among cities with 250,000 or more residents, according to CQ Press’ annual analysis of FBI data for 2011.

With 342 murders in 2011, Detroit trailed only New Orleans in terms of homicide rate. And the city reported the highest rate of assaults out of any other major city.

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The FBI warns that ranking cities based on crime data can be misleading because each city reports crimes differently and some crimes go unreported.

However, an increase in crime can have a significant negative impact on a population, according to a 2009 study by the Furman Center for Real Estate Urban Policy at New York University. And Detroit’s unsafe streets are aggravating the city’s struggle to maintain its already-dwindling population, which has shrunk by 25% since 2000.

NEXT: St. Louis

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