Rochester, New York…Dangerous city…or great place to raise a family…

I just finished a rewrite of a draft of a book titled: The Butterfly Murders, which I set in Rochester, New York, which has always ranked high in most dangerous cities in New York State.

Grunge rubber stamp with name of Rochester, New YorkRochester is the 7th largest community in the state with a population of 209,802 (this does not include the surrounding areas (like the suburb that I live in).

I found this statement at “…in Rochester you’ll only be safer than 6% of our other cities in the United States. The largest city included in our list, your chances of becoming a victim of a violent crime here are just 1 in 119. The city also has a high number of reported rapes, murders and cases of arson.”

For years, it has fascinated me that so many people say (including myself) that Rochester is such a great place to raise a family, I mean, I did raise mine there…Forbes actually rated Rochester in 2010 as the third-best place to raise a family. Yet, the city is considered one of the more dangerous cities… ranks Rochester #3 of the most dangerous cities just behind Buffalo and Niagra Falls. has Rochester ranked at #4, stating that: “The chance of being a victim is 1 in 16…” That statistic isn’t just for violent crimes, but all crimes…

One site that I found very interesting regarding Rochester is the The crime index for Rochester is a 7, which means it’s only safer than 7% of all cities in the U.S. Ouch!

Some of the more notable murderers in Rochester were the Alphabet Murders, which a movie was made about and the killer was never caught. Then there was Arthur Shawcross, who was nicknamed The Genesee River Killer.

The most memorable for me was the Mark Christie, who killed a 4 year-old girl named Kali Ann Poulton in 1994. It is a heart-breaking story. My daughter was just 3 years old when it happened.

We also had some interesting Mob murders in Rochester. Salvatore Gingello, Jake Russo, Thomas Didio, Vincent (Jimmy the Hammer) Massaro, and Dominic Chirico…

So, is Rochester dangerous? Or a great place to raise a family?

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