Most Dangerous Neighborhoods in Yellowstone County

Discover the 5 Most Dangerous Neighborhoods in Yellowstone County, Montana

Yellowstone County, Montana, boasts the state’s largest city, Billings, in addition to numerous smaller towns and rural regions. While the county offers a plethora of attractions and conveniences for both residents and tourists, it also contends with pockets of crime and violence.

Within this Article, we will delve into Yellowstone County’s five most high-crime neighborhoods, drawing from the most recent crime data and reports available.

Central Billings

Central Billings, the city’s downtown hub, houses numerous businesses, dining establishments, bars, and cultural spots. Unfortunately, it’s also the epicenter of criminal activity in Yellowstone County.

Per the U.S. Department of Justice, there has been a notable rise in violent crimes in Yellowstone County since the emergence of COVID-19 in Montana.

The majority of homicides, robberies, and aggravated assaults have been connected to methamphetamine use and incidents of domestic violence. Central Billings, on average, experiences 2,671 crime cases annually, establishing it as the county’s most perilous neighborhood.

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South Side Billings

The South Side Billings community is a historically rich and diverse neighborhood situated alongside the Yellowstone River. It boasts numerous parks, scenic trails, and vibrant community gatherings, yet it grapples with significant issues including poverty, homelessness, and substance abuse.

In terms of safety, South Side Billings exhibits a higher-than-average violent crime rate of 3.5 incidents per 1,000 residents, surpassing the county-wide average of 2.8. Unfortunately, the neighborhood has witnessed several instances of shootings and stabbings in recent years, some of which tragically resulted in fatalities.

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Lockwood, situated to the east of Billings, is an unincorporated community with approximately 7,000 residents. It’s experiencing rapid growth and has aspirations to attain city status in the coming years.

Yet, Lockwood grapples with a notable issue: a heightened incidence of property crimes, including burglary, larceny, and auto theft. The property crime rate stands at 4.5 incidents per 1,000 residents, surpassing the county’s average of 4. Additionally, Lockwood’s inhabitants have reported cases of vandalism, arson, and trespassing.

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Laurel, situated to the west of Billings, boasts a population of approximately 6,000 residents. It has gained recognition for its traditional Fourth of July festivities and its flourishing refinery sector.

While Laurel maintains a relatively lower rate of violent crimes in contrast to other regions within Yellowstone County, it grapples with a heightened incidence of property-related offenses.

The property crime rate in Laurel stands at 2.6 per 1,000 residents, surpassing the statewide average of 2. Additionally, Laurel experienced an upswing in violent crimes in 2019, reporting a total of eight homicides during that year.

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Shepherd, situated to the north of Billings, is a tranquil and picturesque rural community, home to approximately 3,000 residents. This area provides a serene environment for outdoor enthusiasts and farming enthusiasts alike.

Nonetheless, it’s important to note that Shepherd faces a relatively elevated rate of violent crime when compared to other areas within Yellowstone County.

Specifically, Shepherd experiences a violent crime rate of 3 incidents per 1,000 residents, exceeding the countywide average of 2.8. This has led to reported cases of domestic violence, assault, and robbery in the community.

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Yellowstone County encompasses a variety of experiences and advantages for both its residents and guests. Nevertheless, certain areas within it have a higher susceptibility to crime and violence than others.

To fully appreciate the offerings of Yellowstone County and ensure safety for oneself and others, it’s essential to be mindful of these areas and take appropriate precautions, thus minimizing unwarranted risks.