The Most Dangerous U.S. States to Be a Woman

November 13th 2015

Diana Crandall

Violence against women is a problem that affects every community and every socioeconomic class. The numbers are sinister: one in every three women will be sexually assaulted in her life, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), and a new set of charts from Pixable visually illustrate where women in America report rape and other instances of sexual violence or assault.

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In the United States, it’s nearly impossible to tell how many women are assaulted every day because so many go unreported—in fact the FBI only collects data from arrests and convictions of "forcible rape." Only 12 percent of reported rapes lead to an arrest, and only three percent of rapists end up serving prison time, the Rape Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) reports.

Also many instances of sexual assault are not strangers assaulting women; RAINN explains:

"Approximately 4/5 of rapes were committed by someone known to the victim.
82% of sexual assaults were perpetrated by a non-stranger.
47% of rapists are a friend or acquaintance.
25% are an intimate.
5% are a relative."

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Though there are some gaps—due to the fact that so many rapes go unreported, or don't make it through the legal system—Pixable compiled the data available from the FBI, the CDC’s 2010 comprehensive National Intimate Partner and Violence Survey, and the U.S. Census Bureau in order to zero in on the most dangerous places in America to be a woman. These data are from 2010-2014.


States like Michigan and Oregon have the highest percentage of reported rape against women, while states like Ohio and South Carolina have some of the lowest. The latest numbers from the FBI also show some different numbers than those reported above, according to Pixable. Factors influencing the fluctuation could include an increase or decrease in crime in certain states, or varying types of justice systems within states.

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Twenty-two percent of women in Louisiana report experiencing sexual violence other than rape, according to Pixable's chart. This is the lowest state. Oregon was the highest at 43 percent, while most other states fell in the middle.

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Kentucky is the state where women are most likely to be stalked, based on the data reported. Most states see an incidence of stalking that hovers between 11 and 13 percent, according to Pixable.

To see the full chart and analysis, visit Pixable online.